Saturday, February 28, 2015

The new Cinderella movie: Have courage, and be kind

Disney's Cinderella (2015): Have courage and be kindMy daughter and I had the chance to attend an early screening of Disney's new Cinderella movie this week.
At first, I questioned why her Girl Scout council was promoting this event for older girls - after all, it's just a Disney movie.

But this may be one of my favorite live-action adaptations of classic Disney films of all time.

If you're looking for singing mice and bippity boppity boo, go back to the 1950s original. Instead, watch for a Cinderella who shows poise and strength despite the increasing abusive treatment from her stepmother and stepsisters.

Have courage, and be kind

"Have courage, and be kind" was the advice given to Cinderella by her mother on her deathbed. It's a message Cinderella struggles to uphold during difficult times, but she ultimately lets her light shine through even in her darkest moments.

On a day when she has suffered enough, she takes her horse for an escape into the woods, where she encounters none other than the prince, who's hunting. Her compassion for a hunted deer catches his attention, and in their discussions she learns on how he torn between following his father's orders and following his heart. She offers him the advice of "Have courage, and be kind."

I loved the movie, and I loved the message. But I was surprised by some unintended results.

My daughter, a fourth-grader, has never truly overcome being bullied for a good portion of last year. While the behavior was put to an end, she deals with trust issues, sadly, with most of the girls in her grade. And while she longs to be part of the group, there's a part of her that hangs back, that hides her true self.

The day after the preview, she shared with me her disappointment that a new girl was invited to lunch, "but no one invites me." Yet she lacked the confidence to even approach the girls she liked. My advice? "Remember the movie: Have courage, and be kind."

The next afternoon, she reported that she joined some girls at lunch and had a wonderful time. I asked if she was asked or if she just joined. She had summed up her courage - the kindness I never worried about - and put herself out there. And, not to my surprise, she was accepted for who she was.

Cinderella comes out later this month, but you can order the Cinderella: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack here

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