Turning off ‘Cinderella’ is slipper-y slope

It’s movie night, and the request is for “Cinderella.” Why not?” I grumble to myself. We may have missed something during the first 57 viewings. So a recap of the Disney classic is in order.

Yes, I know. You’ve seen it. But have you REALLY digested the story? Absorbing it to the depths of your soul? Have you, for example, watched it six consecutive nights? Been subjected to dialogue recitation during every meal? Have you been forced to wear an officially licensed Disney tiara as your wife watches — witnessing the few remaining drops of testosterone flee your body? WELL HAVE YOU?

No, of course you haven’t. So you won’t understand my need to write about a video I’ve seen so many times I’m beginning to root for the evil stepsisters, just for the change of pace. You won’t emphasize with my desperate need to mentally expel the constantly repeating sound of Gus and Jaq singing “Cinderelly, Cinderelly” out of my system, lest I become a likely candidate for a shooting rampage.

Oddly enough, the film starts off with the credits. That’s because it was made in 1950, when filmmakers put them at the very beginning. So at first you’ll think you’re already at the ending, but this is just false hope.

We see Cinderella, who lives with her mean stepmom, stepsisters and several mice — singing mice — all of whom happen to sing better than the average contestant on “The Voice,” which admittedly is a not a high bar.

Cinderella is shown performing a variety of menial tasks while being subjected to cruelty by her stepfamily. I personally witnessed 14 violations of labor laws within the first 10 minutes.

Then an invitation arrives. A royal ball! But what to wear? Unfortunately, Cinderella is poor, and without means, so she does what any young woman would do in a similar situation, which is to have birds and rodents craft a gown for her.

Just before the big royal ball, Cinderella’s dress is shredded when her jealous stepsisters get into a cat fight with her. This is not nearly erotic as it sounds.

Because her dress is torn, she can’t to go to the ball. Fortunately a fairy Godmother appears, waves her magic wand and POOF! — there it is — a $300 gift card to Walmart, which Cinderella uses to purchase a gown.

At the ball, she meets Prince Charming, and he’s immediately smitten. They dance and dance. The prince, of course, is handsome, and nice, and smooth on his feet, and basically everything that every other male on the planet is not. And although I’ve never thought much about Prince Charming, I’m starting to dislike him too, because he makes the rest of us look bad. Most guys would eventually tire of dancing and go back to the cash bar, or look for a poker game in the back, or at least use their iPhone to find out the score of the Notre Dame/USC game.

Soon it’s midnight. Cinderella has to leave, but she doesn’t tell the prince why. A smart move that. Because if it’s a first date, and if you want a man to call you back, it’s probably not a good idea to tell him that your chauffeur is going to turn into a bloodhound soon.

The carriage, of course, turns back into a pumpkin at the stroke of midnight, because that’s when it was due back at Budget Rent-A-Pumpkin. The next morning there’s a duke, and a glass slipper and, well, you know the rest. Everyone lives happily ever after. Except for the those of us who are watching this instead of Sunday Night Football.

We turn off of the movie, and I put it away, long since regretting the yard sale purchase. It’s then when my daughter looks up at me: “Daddy let’s dance. You be Prince Charming.”

Never mind what I said before. I love this movie.

Reach Steve Beauregard at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).


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