Elle wants to be a singer/songwriter, but her dreams are cut short by the sudden death of her parents. She moves in with her adoptive uncle, who runs a small independent record label whose ... See full summary »
Elle wants to be a singer/songwriter, but her dreams are cut short by the sudden death of her parents. She moves in with her adoptive uncle, who runs a small independent record label whose biggest act, Sensation, is also Elle's biggest pain. The pop music environment at the label, very different than the country roots she is used to, adds to Elle's feelings of loss and frustration, and her misplaced guilt, which is caused by the fact that her parents had been en route to her performance at the time of her death. But when she meets Ty Parker, a famous pop singer with a passion for "real" music, her repressed ambition is released through a revitalized interest in singing and songwriting. Written by
I'll confess I like sweet movies. I'm not automatically alienated by predictability or lack of originality.
Elle: A Modern Cinderella Tale is not an ambitious movie. The bad guys are painted broadly as self-absorbed celebrities. The good guys are sweet and deserving. Acting is uneven but some of it is clearly intentionally bad and meant as humor or parody. I can see how it would be annoying for many. It didn't bother me. I wasn't looking for Paul Newman in The Verdict or Daniel Day Lewis as Hawkeye. This is light Disney-esq or ABC Family style fare. I've seen far worse movies.
For me, Ashley Hewitt's singing redeemed all. When Ashley's character Elle was singing she carried the story and lit up the stage or screen. The songs were both catchy and well-delivered.
I found myself rewinding to the songs and replaying them. The movie ends on a musical performance high note, emphasizing that the Cinderella plot device and character development are not the focus of the movie. The music is the raison d'etre and Ashley Hewitt's voice and pretty face are enough to frame the music. It left me feeling the beat, lyrics repeating in my head, and with a smile. Not so bad. Yes, it is not the best example of film making nor a model for method acting. The producer's ambitions were low and many elements are cartoonish, but a few catchy songs sung by a pretty girl won me over. Unlike many technically better movies I'd watch it again.
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