I love fairytales. As a kid, I was drawn to the magic, adventure, and, of course, the happily ever afters of the princesses and princes. Now that I’m older, I find myself fascinated by the evolution of the stories themselves. I never had the opportunity to take any Folklore classes when I was in college, and I’ve always regretted it. Ghost stories, urban legends, and fairy tales are all a reflection of their environment and the culture in which they were written, and it’s so interesting to pick apart the different morals, themes, and lessons being taught in the old Grimm’s unabridged fairy stories–a book that I’ve read cover to cover multiple times.
Nowadays we prefer to fracture and rewrite existing fairy tales rather than produce new ones, which is a damn shame. So I’ve gathered together a little list of ORIGINAL modern-day fairy tale movies that I completely adore!
‘Penelope’ is the story of a girl who is cursed with a…slight physical deformity because of her rich, blue-blooded family’s past wrongdoings. While the eponymous main character and her family attempt to break the curse (which can only be broken when she is ‘loved by one of her own kind’), Penelope is forced to go on a journey of self-discovery, involving hijinks, a one-eyed paparazzi with a vendetta, a vespa-driving Reese Witherspoon, and a sexy gambling addict. The movie’s final twist is really phenomenal, and the ultimate message is a crucial one that we should be teaching young girls everywhere: love yourself the way you are.
#2. Stranger Than Fiction
‘Stranger Than Fiction’ is the literal story of Harold Crick, a man who starts hearing his own life narrated as it is being written by an author suffering from writer’s block. When his imminent death is mentioned in his narrative, Harold makes a series of life changes in order to keep himself alive. At it’s most basic, ‘Stranger Than Fiction’ is about the inevitability of death and the beauty of living life to the fullest. And the ending never fails to make me cry–in a good way!
#3. Spirited Away
This stunningly-animated movie always reminds me of Alice in Wonderland. The main character, 10-year-old Chihiro, is a whiny and perpetually-frightened young girl who accidentally gets sucked into the spirit world, where her parents are turned into pigs. An unlikely heroine, Chihiro quickly transforms from a spoiled cry-baby to a self-sufficient and independent girl on a quest to rescue her parents. The themes of true love and greed are continually played upon, and the movie’s finale will leave you cheering for Chihiro and marveling at her character’s growth. Additionally, this movie has the most amazing soundtrack! I listen to it constantly!
So what are you waiting for? Go get some popcorn and have a fairy tale movie marathon!!!
And if you can think of any other modern fairy tale movies I missed, be sure to mention them in the comments!