Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella

Movie review by
Teresa Talerico, Common Sense Media
Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella Movie Poster Image
Multi-ethnic cast modernizes classic fairy tale.
  • G
  • 1997
  • 99 minutes

Parents say

age 6+
Based on 2 reviews

Kids say

age 7+
Based on 7 reviews

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A lot or a little?

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

Positive Messages

With the exception of the conniving stepmother and the obnoxious two stepsisters, characters in this movie are generally portrayed as good and caring. In the end, the good-hearted person triumphs.

Violence & Scariness

Occasional pushing and shoving. A man on a ladder almost falls off due to the inadvertent recklessness of other characters, but the scene is played for slapstick laughs.

Sexy Stuff

Some kissing.


No profanity, but some name-calling, such as "stupid" and "lazy."

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this movie, as in some other versions, establishes that Cinderella's father has died. She lives with her stepmother and two stepsisters, and it's clear that they have relegated her to the role of servant. They frequently mock her and demand that she wait on them hand-and-foot.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 6 and 13-year-old Written byNilus September 4, 2021

Ethnic diversity & a great story!

We started trying to watch the ‘new’ Cinderella (2021). It was so bad and my kids wanted to watch “Cinderella” so we went on the search. Live action but with ma... Continue reading
Adult Written byAHulsbos September 1, 2018


Excellent for mixed families and families who care about values, substance vs. appearance particularly for girls.
Kid, 11 years old April 9, 2008


This movie was amazing! Brandy and Whitney's voices to so well with each other. There should be no person on the planet who can't love this movie.(It... Continue reading
Kid, 10 years old February 17, 2021

*Mwah* THE BEST Cinderella movie ever, for even 2 centurys

I dont know how, or even why CSM rated this 3 stars, im rating it 5. The use of a black woman and the beautiful singing and acting brings more meaning and is ju... Continue reading

What's the story?

A modern retelling of the classic tale, this version of RODGERS & HAMMERSTEIN'S CINDERELLA features a multiethnic cast including Brandy in the titular role, Bernadette Peters as the wicked stepmom, Whoopi Goldberg as the Queen, Paolo Montalban as the prince, and Whitney Houston as the fairy godmother. Pop star Brandy shows off her vocal skills in tunes like "In My Own Little Corner" and "A Lovely Night." Indeed, the highlight of this adaptation comes in watching three generations of high-voltage songstresses -- Peters, Houston, and Brandy -- belt out the Rodgers & Hammerstein lyrics.

Is it any good?

The movie's strengths are its richly hued costumes, its vibrant sets, and several entertaining musical sequences. The finest acting comes from Peters, deliciously snooty as the wicked stepmother, and Goldberg, who brings a quirky charm to her role as the prince's mother (and kudos to her for tackling a brief singing sequence). Houston is also great as the wisecracking but warm fairy godmother.

Other aspects don't fare quite as well. Some dance numbers seem too staged and stiff. Jason Alexander, best known for his role in Seinfeld, seems a bit out of place here, particularly in a lavish song-and-dance number. Yet he skillfully handles the drier humor of his role as the prince's assistant. Overall, kids will be captivated, and adults will enjoy some aspects of this modern take on an old fairy tale.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about why it's significant that this version of Cinderella features a diverse cast that includes African-American, white, and Asian performers, as well as an interracial marriage. Also, does this version of the story feature a more empowered Cinderella? Or is it still the traditional tale where she must be rescued by her fairy godmother and the prince?

Movie details

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