Another Cinderella Story

Movie review by
Carrie R. Wheadon, Common Sense Media
Another Cinderella Story Movie Poster Image
Selena Gomez brings fresh pop fun to an old tale.
  • PG
  • 2008
  • 92 minutes
Parents recommendPopular with kids

Parents say

age 8+
Based on 16 reviews

Kids say

age 9+
Based on 69 reviews

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Positive Messages

Not the helpless heroine message you usually get from Cinderella stories.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Mary is not a typical helpless Cinderella, and she charms Joey by being herself. Joey defies his money-grubbing parents to get the girl. The stepmother figure, Dominique, is supposed to be over-the-top, and she gets enough laughs that there's no taking her bad behavior seriously, even though Mary is expected to do her bidding at every moment. Twins Britt and Bree try to make Mary's life miserable, but they seem pretty pathetic themselves. Joey's conniving ex-girlfriend Natalia is truly mean until the very end.

Violence

A mention that Mary's mother, who was one of Dominique's dancers, died before Dominique took her in. A couple of empty threats by Tami to the twin "step sisters" and Dustin in defense of Mary. Someone falls off a stage and ends up with two broken legs.

Sex

A couple of kisses between teens. Girls -- and some boys -- fawn all over teen singer Joey Parker; one girl kisses him in the school hallway, another asks him if he wants to make out, and others rub up against him and embarrass themselves to get his attention. Mary and Joey hang out alone together in her room and almost kiss on her bed. A mention by Dominque that some talk-show hosts had grabby hands. Some slightly sexy dancing moves.

Language

Pretty mild. One "damn," and someone says "frickin'" a few times in a row.

Consumerism

The Zune music player figures prominently in the story. Mary's friend Tami drives a VW bus. Plenty of celeb-lifestyle shout-outs, including TMZ, the VMAs, E Hollywood True Story, Dr. Phil, TiVo, and YouTube. A funny plug for the fake product "Baby Got Bacne."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Dominique likes her martinis and always seems a little inebriated; she embarrasses herself at parties and passes out one night. Adults drink at dinner.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that tweens will want to see this movie because it stars Disney Channel darling Selena Gomez, star of the TV show Wizards of Waverly Place. Compared to High School Musical, the dance moves are just slightly sexier, and there's a little kissing between teens. Also, girls fawn all over a teen heartthrob to an embarrassing extent, even rubbing up against him suggestively in public. A Zune music player figures prominently in the plot, and the wicked stepmother likes her martinis. The mean behavior directed at the main character is typical of her Cinderella role and played as over the top for laughs.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Adult Written byTinaSoFly01 February 14, 2012

Very good movie

i like this movie and other cinderella storys there all good
Adult Written byBeckstar October 31, 2011

disappointing

I do not think this was appropriate. Some scenes were slightly suggestive and the main guy is apparently way older than Selena.
Teen, 14 years old Written bynataliedance June 23, 2011

To those of you complaining, this is NOT a Disney movie, it's Warner bros. And a great one.

I'm 15 and I absolutely adore this movie. I'm a dancer and believe the moves they do to be perfectly normal and completely appropriate. There are a fe... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old October 30, 2011

mustsee

Need 2 see it!!! luv isabella31

What's the story?

When she's not finishing up high school and dreaming of auditioning for the Manhattan Dance Academy, Mary (Selena Gomez) spends most of her time playing maid for her guardian, washed-up pop singer Dominique Blatt (Jane Lynch), and Dominque's twin daughters Britt (Emily Perkins) and Bree (Katherine Isabelle). Then teen pop star Joey Parker (Andrew Seeley) enrolls in school and announces a big dance competition; the winner will star in his next video. Suddenly the incredibly uncoordinated Britt and Bree -- and the rest of the girls at school -- are clamoring for Joey's attention. But only one girl catches his eye at the masked ball -- Mary, of course -- and when she drops her Zune on the dance floor, Joey rushes to identify her. Finally Mary comes forward, and the two practice their dance moves together while they do Mary's chores -- until a jealous ex-girlfriend and the twins do their best to separate them before the big dance competition.

Is it any good?

Cinderella stories usually end at the big reveal, but this refreshing take keeps on trucking through a courtship (with some rather cheesy moments). Then there are the jealous plans to split the pair apart, and a big dance competition to get them back together. It's a lot to cram in, and it stalls a few times before the big dance finish.

But some of its more unconventional elements make ANOTHER CINDERELLA STORY more worthwhile, especially for modern tweens. Lynch, a fabulous comedic actress, is both a wicked stepmother figure and a pathetic fading pop star (her opening back acne commercial is laugh-out-loud funny). Plus, instead of sticking to the most popular dance moves -- there are plenty of those throughout the rest of the movie -- the masked couple at the ball goes for classy and launches into a tango. And when Joey, the big star, smartly defies his money-grubbing parents and even helps Mary with the housework so he can spend time with her, the usual silent-but-handsome prince role takes on a lot more character.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how the high school girls act around Joey Parker. If you had a crush that severe, would you do anything for that person's attention? How does Joey handle all the unwanted attention? How do celebs in the news handle it? Do you think they deserve more privacy?

  • Families can also discuss what made kids want to see this movie -- was it the fact that Selena Gomez was in it? How do you think the producers of this movie went about making sure kids knew it was coming out?

Movie details

Themes & Topics

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