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Fairy tales can be retold countless times, updated to modern times with contemporary sensibilities, or transformed into show stopping extravaganzas, but they never lose the simplicity at their core. Which, I can only assume, is the challenge that attracted Kenneth Branagh to this restaging of Cinderella, penned by Chris Weitz (About A Boy and The Golden Compass). Branagh must have been intrigued by the possibility of injecting a bit of Shakespearean drama into the mix. After all, Branagh has given audiences thrilling takes on Henry V, Much Ado About Nothing, Hamlet and Love’s Labour’s Lost and even infused the great bard’s aesthetic into a Marvel Universe pic (Thor). So why can’t he weave his magic on the tale of a young orphan (Lily James) at the mercy of her cruel stepmother (Cate Blanchett) and a pair of incompetent stepsisters (Sophie McShera and Holliday Grainger)? Watch out for able support of Derek Jacobi, Stellan Skarsgård and Helena Bonham Carter. (Now open) (PG) Not reviewed

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