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Overall Rating

Worth A Look: 10.59%
Average: 3.53%
Pretty Bad: 25.88%
Total Crap: 22.35%

3 reviews, 67 user ratings

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Cinderella Story, A
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by EricDSnider

"Glass slipper? I hardly knew her! Oh, yeah, and the movie sucks."
2 stars

Pity Hilary Duff, less pretty and talented than Lindsay Lohan, and also less able to choose good movies to make. (Well, pity Amanda Bynes even more, as she seems to have disappeared altogether, but never mind.) In the race to become the most successful not-quite-legal teen-queen movie star, Lohan has won and Duff has landed under Mandy Moore and on top of the Olsen twins, crushing poor Mary-Kate. (That there should even be this many names to consider, while Hollywood has no work for Helen Mirren or Maggie Smith, is a sad thing to contemplate.)

Anyway, Duff's new film "A Cinderella Story" is a frustrating and convoluted modern fairy tale in which characters behave irrationally and without motivation. The movie knows it wants certain things to happen, but it has no idea how to construct a story that will lead to those events naturally. Instead, things just HAPPEN, without regard for whether those characters would actually do that, or whether real people would actually say that, or whatever. The film exists in its own little fantasy world where cause and effect have no place, and where you can talk to a woman face-to-face for an entire evening, but if a 2"x5" part of her face is covered with a mask, you won't recognize her when you talk to her again the next day.

Duff plays Sam, a high school senior stuck with her vain stepmother Fiona (Jennifer Coolidge) and dumb stepsisters in a posh California suburb. Fiona makes Sam work at the family's diner, which is the cause of Sam's unpopularity at school. (Evidently this school is SO rich that NONE of the students have menial after-school jobs. In real life, I think being a roller-skating waitress at a diner would actually be one of the cooler occupations a high school kid could have.)

Sam's been carrying on a relationship via e-mail, text message and Internet chat, "You've Got Mail"-style, with a boy called Nomad. He is sensitive -- he wants to be a writer! He quotes poetry! -- but he is also, unbeknownst to Sam but beknownst to us, captain of the football team Austin Ames (Chad Michael Murray). He's one of those brooding, soulful hunks you see in teen movies, with two devoted male followers who love him as much as all the girls do.

They arrange to finally meet at the homecoming dance (held mid-week, inexplicably), and Sam is shocked to discover she's in love with the unattainable Austin, and Austin is shocked to discover ... nothing, because Sam won't take off her mask and won't tell him her real name. She's afraid once he finds out she's Diner Girl, he won't like her anymore. The dance ends, Sam rushes out, and Austin begins a search for his Cinderella.

This is a movie where the plot complications exist only because the main characters are retards. Austin must be borderline amnesiac to not recognize Sam any of the several times he sees her after the dance -- especially since he's in a frame of mind where he's searching the face of every girl he encounters to see if it's her -- and Sam's wishy-washiness over telling him the truth gets old oh-so-fast.

Directed by Mark Rosman and written by Leigh Dunlap, neither of whom has any credits I recognize, the film is airy and blithely romantic at first, but very quickly descends into unintentional absurdity and stays there. A subplot in which Fiona sabotages Sam's college plans makes no sense -- if she hates the girl, why does she want her sticking around? -- but that's typical of the half-baked nonsense that comprises the film as a whole. It's pre-fab "fun" at its most mirthless.

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originally posted: 07/19/04 10:49:36
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User Comments

4/05/11 Jennifer Marquardt cute modern twist on fairy tale, entertaining, romantic 5 stars
11/27/08 little Red micheal is so hot in this movie 4 stars
3/27/08 tanda nataniya it was so romantic comedy movie..I like it very much 4 stars
5/28/07 none ya oh my gosh chad is a HOTTIE 5 stars
11/17/06 Alyssa Hale A great story portrayed exceptionally well by wonderful acting. 5 stars
10/17/06 emily garza your movie was great and for my fifthteenth b day party i wanna have a dress exacly like it 5 stars
5/24/06 john hilary duff rules 5 stars
4/28/06 Annie G Just because a movie is a "fantasy" shouldn't mean the viewer has to be brainless! 1 stars
4/03/06 JRE the crappiest piece of chick flick garbage ever to hit a film screen 1 stars
3/23/06 tabiya karim great!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
12/07/05 Candace Bogle the best movie ever 5 stars
12/03/05 cody a good romantic comedy with a twist and hilary is hot , fairy tales meets dawson's creek 4 stars
12/02/05 Kelly This is my favorite movie! 5 stars
10/28/05 dylans gurl only if it had chad with no shirton like house of wax 4 stars
10/09/05 Dani perfect! 5 stars
9/20/05 Jonathon Holmes can someone tell me how is Hillary talented? 1 stars
9/05/05 Lenny Absolute Best Movie In World. Rent It, Now. 1 stars
8/19/05 ES The oil in my car is less formuletic = unless your female under 14 stay away 1 stars
7/31/05 TED it sucked, why does hilary duff even bother? could someone please answer that? 1 stars
7/20/05 Chris *yawns* 1 stars
6/27/05 dan r u people on crack??? this movie was the worst ever!!! 1 stars
6/13/05 Kelsie This movie is the BEST!!! I watched it 5 times in 3 days...i LOVE this movie!!!!!!!!!!!! 5 stars
6/10/05 nATALIE totally awsome!!! 5 stars
5/20/05 Jin I was pleasantly surprised. Duff and Murray make a good pair. 4 stars
4/17/05 iteachpc Wholesome and sweet. We love Hilary Duff so we enjoyed this movie! 3 stars
3/31/05 Netsurfer What garbage! Well, whadda you expect? It's got Hilary. 1 stars
3/28/05 Emma A fun twist on a classic childrens story. 5 stars
3/22/05 The Mockingbird what happened to the reviewers I respected? Pretty Crappy?!?! This movie BLOWS 1 stars
12/16/04 Christina Orcutt THe movie was awesome and Chad Michael Murray - HOTT 5 stars
12/11/04 Amy Colarusso I loved this movie it was great 5 stars
12/05/04 Sam This movie sucks, I mean it REALLY sucks. What's wrong with you people? 1 stars
12/05/04 jen Chad Michael Murray is absolutely awesome in this movie, DEFINITELY worth seeing! 5 stars
11/29/04 brittney it was great any1 no where the script is 5 stars
11/09/04 martine travis it wiked!!!!! 5 stars
11/09/04 Mrs Murray not very good only saw it cause of Chad Michael Murry=HOTTIE 2 stars
11/08/04 Mindy I found this movie to be really cute, and i loved it. 5 stars
11/06/04 TCIC This movie is a zombie. It just isn't alive 2 stars
11/04/04 Michelle I think its wonderfull movie 5 stars
10/06/04 wendy liu it's really a good movie! i watched it eleven times, but i think the clothes hilary wore ws 5 stars
10/06/04 jenni awsome movie, very hott chad 5 stars
10/02/04 Sophia Gabaldon Not worth seeing 2 stars
9/29/04 Rachelle Dureault This movie is a outstanding perforemance 5 stars
9/25/04 madz i thought it was a really great movie!!!!! 5 stars
9/17/04 Lacy Thompson HilaryDuff's best performance yet, marred by Rhonda, far too much a ballbuster to fit story 3 stars
9/16/04 Rosa Zared Hilary Duff as Stifler's step-sister. Pretty spooky! 2 stars
9/10/04 Charlotte chad was reallli fit! great film though ending was a bit corny 4 stars
8/25/04 katie This was the worst movie I've ever seen. Hilary Duff is horrible 1 stars
8/13/04 Martha web it was super 5 stars
8/12/04 Jordan I loved it definitly the ending!! I adore Hilary she is my rolemodle! Yes I am a girl!!! 5 stars
8/11/04 Cecilia Hilary Duff is really good!! 5 stars
8/09/04 courtney the best movie ive ever seen and will ever see!! 5 stars
7/31/04 crystal ross it suks and so does she! 1 stars
7/26/04 ylove Great date movie! I laughed and smiled ^__^ 5 stars
7/25/04 frankie i thought it was entertaining 5 stars
7/24/04 buddy garrett Tris to be sentimental- too sappy- no story 3 stars
7/24/04 Melissa The movie was cute and great for preteen girls. My kids loved it. 4 stars
7/23/04 Stacey i love this movie!!!!!! 5 stars
7/23/04 Malina A Cinderella Story was full of enchantment and magic-Duff and Murray were magnificent! 5 stars
7/22/04 Nobody GAAAH! RUN FROM THE EVILNESS OF DUFF BEFORE ITS TOO LATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 1 stars
7/21/04 Laura Shangraw Good for what it is 4 stars
7/19/04 twilliams606 My 11 year old daughter loved this movie! And I must admit iit was pretty good. 4 stars
7/19/04 Amerigo Vespukey Why are you wasting money to see this? Perv!! 1 stars
7/18/04 Brian ..... 1 stars
7/17/04 Ray Nothing to say 1 stars
7/11/04 Emma I saw this movie in a sneak peek. I didn't like hillary that much before, I do now. 5 stars
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  16-Jul-2004 (PG)
  DVD: 19-Oct-2004


  23-Sep-2004 (PG)

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