What a marvelous adaptation of this film! Everything was executed brilliantly; the costumes, the gorgeous locations, and great effects in the infamous dress transformation scene.
I watched the film mainly for the costumes and certainly wasn't disappointed! Dresses looked like a mix between the Rococo era - when the film was set - and the 1950s, which was when the original Disney cartoon version was aired.
All the outfits suited their characters perfectly. The step-sisters and their mother were suitably excessive and gaudy (and I have to admit that I loved that about them; I would wear their clothes in a heart-beat!), as well as colour-coded. The step mother wore poison green and black, which I suppose was to put an emphasis on her toxic personality, and both sisters wore identical dresses in almost florescent shades of pink and yellow, showing that they were both exactly the same, with no personality of their own.
As for Cinderella, the costume designers got her spot on, with plain, yet still incredibly beautiful, country-like dresses. Her ball gown, as magically whipped up by the wonderful Helena Bonham Carter/The Fairy Godmother, is all it was reputed to be. Really, it lived up to its reputation as the best dress of the year! It was the most wonderful costume I've ever seen in any film, and everything about it just sparkled! There was so much glitter and luminosity to the fabric that I was left feeling incredibly envious of Cinderella. Truly, it was magical!
The actress who played Cinderella was wonderful too. She made me feel so much sympathy and love for Cinderella (my first favourite Disney princess as a girl!), which is rare now as I hardly ever find myself engaged in a Disney film. When the sisters and step-mother were horrible to her, and her parents died, I could have honestly hugged her (and kissed her too, if I were to be so bold as to say it; Damn the prince, because I wanted to marry her first! haha).
Helena Bonham Carter is one of my favourite actors, and once again she was outstanding in this performance.
All I can say about this film now is just a stunned... "wow, I really want to see this again"!