For years now - certainly since Dreamworks threw down the "anti-fairy tale" gauntlet with the first Shrek and arguably since the Disney Renaissance of the 90's - the in thing has been the subversion, revision, or deconstruction of traditional fairy tales. Sequels, prequels, restructurings, stories from the villain's perspective, and other approaches have lead to some great movies (2013's Frozen, for example), some admirable-if-uneven ones (last year's Maleficent) and some truly terrible ones (2010's Alice in Wonderland).
But for this year's live-action Cinderella, Disney took a different approach. With Shakespeare alum Kenneth Branagh (who also directed the first Thor) at the helm, this is a straight retelling of the story, from the friendly mice to the glass slipper. And somehow, whether through the refreshingly upfront nature of the tale or the stylistic approach of the film-maker, the result is a beautifully-told story that manages to feel old-fashioned in all the best ways without feeling regressive.