25 Weeks of DisneyToon Sequels: Week 11
The original Cinderella has a special place in many a Disney fan’s heart. With beautiful animation and memorable music, many people cite that film as a favorite. Like many of Disney’s other beloved properties, the company decided to produce a sequel to the original film straight to home video, with the help of DisneyToon Studios. Cinderella II: Dreams Come True was released on video in 2002 and was extremely successful, selling over $100 million worth of copies. Like Belle’s Magical World, this Disney sequel consists of segments that were intended for a failed television series. These segments, three in number, are loosely tied together with the Fairy Godmother and our favorite mice. Also like Belle’s Magical World, this concept doesn’t really work and makes for a sequel that leaves much to be desired.
Despite being called Cinderella II, only one of the three segments actually focuses on the titular character. Though she is present in all three, the second and third segments focus on other characters, namely Jaq the mouse and Anastasia, her sister. The first segment is called “Aim to Please” and follows Cinderella in her newly appointed role of princess. It seems that she was unaware of all of the rules and traditions that she was expected to uphold as the princess. This is made difficult when her new father-in-law puts her in charge of a traditional banquet where she is expected to follow tradition. And who likes tradition and old rules, anyway? Not Cinderella, and so she doesn’t follow them, much to the dismay of Prudence, the head maid.
What I liked about this segment is that it feels the most in line with Cinderella as a character of the three. She knows herself and is keen to do what feels right to her, rather than following what everyone else tells her is proper or correct. The new characters, such as Prudence, fit in well and serve their purpose in this story. Though I wouldn’t go as far as to call it “good”, it is certainly watchable and even amusing at times which is more than I can say for the other two segments.
The second segment, called “Tall Tail” focuses on Jaq the mouse and details how the Fairy Godmother made him human, which is about as cringy as it sounds. Also, before she even casts the spell, it is clear the lesson they are trying to teach here. The biggest problem with this segment, apart from the silly premise, is that Cinderella has very little to do within the story. She appears in a couple of scenes but ultimately, this is Jaq’s story and one that I just didn’t care about.
The final segment and arguably the strangest is “An Uncommon Romance”. After the original film, I would think that Cinderella would want nothing to do with her stepfamily that abused her for years, but apparently, I was wrong. This story is about Anastasia and her love for a local baker, which her mother doesn’t approve of. However, with the help of Cinderella (again, why Cinderella helps her is beyond me), she attempts to win his heart despite her mother’s cry. Oh, and there is also a cat love story featuring Lucifer. This segment simply bad.
For those who want to take a look at the sequels to classic Disney films, this one may be the most skippable. If you must watch it, I would recommend turning it off after the first segment; the other two aren’t worth it.
Next week, we will be watching The Hunchback of Notre Dame II. Happy watching!