[REVIEW] ‘Cruella’: It’s Weird but Ok I Guess?

I know people like us as critics to be sure about our opinions. To come out of the gate with a confident ‘masterpiece’ or ‘garbage’ about every film. Indeed, I know some critics who seem to be able to always know how they feel with ease. However, in my case I often struggle weighing the pros and cons and trying to decide how I actually feel.

Cruella is one of those moments. Even as I am writing this review I’m not entirely sure what grade I am going to give it. Smile or frown worthy? Hmmm.

Part of the problem is Cruella is a very strange movie. To begin with it tells the backstory of one of Disney’s most notorious villains Cruella De Vil from 101 Dalmatians. But it’s not really for children and it doesn’t try to humanize Cruella in the way that Maleficent did. They aren’t telling you that she actually had the best interest of the puppies in mind or something like that.

It’s basically a Devil Wears Prada story but with both characters being wicked or ending wicked. What I liked about is both Emma Thompson and Emma Stone are having a blast in their roles. It’s a battle of wits in who can be the most cutthroat and evil and that’s fun to watch.

The fashion is also absolutely stunning and guaranteed an Oscar nomination come Awards season. Both the costuming and the hair and makeup are outstanding and very memorable.

It is also fun to see a series of heists staged during the fashion shows/galas but I wish they had only had 2 instead of 3 because it started to feel repetitive after a while. The music, for the part, works (they spent a fortune on the soundtrack) although it can be sometimes a little too on the nose and obvious.

In general the movie is way too long at 134 minutes and like I said feels repetitive after a while. Some of the nods to the original film are fun and others are cringeworthily obvious. In the end, it had a hard time overcoming the bizarre premise for a children’s film.

See Cruella for the fun performances and the fashion. I would love to see it do well because we need hits at the box office but just as far as quality I’d wait and watch it on Disney Plus. At least they tried something different rather than a remake like The Lion King or Beauty and the Beast. Maybe that’s a low bar but there it is. It has fun moments and is a weird experiment from Disney. If it sounds like your jam check it out and let me know what you think

6 out of 10

Smile Worthy (Barely)

9 thoughts on “[REVIEW] ‘Cruella’: It’s Weird but Ok I Guess?

  1. I love this review, too often people think they need to love and praise, or slam and nitpick! I’m very interested in the film too, especially the Devil Wears Prada plot element!

  2. I’ll probably see it this weekend and I’ve been unsure what to expect. 134 minutes though, yikes! Does it tie much into the original story/her character as we know it? The vibe I’m getting from the trailers is that this could be a movie about anyone. I’m just not getting much of the 101 Dalmatians connection so far.

  3. I guess that’s why I use a rubric so I can come out with a grade for the movie after watching it, although we know how that can backfire (cough…Pollyanna…cough).

    I’m really not interested in this film especially not after hearing it’s 134 minutes long! I can definitely wait to see this.

    1. Yeah it’s definitely long. It’s hard to decide for rottentomatoes whether I should go rotten or fresh. You can definitely wait on this

  4. Interesting review. Without spoiling the movie, does Cruella explain how its titular villain became evil, or is it a mess like Maleficent and, glob forbid, Minions?
    PS. When/if you do 1999 Animated Oscars, could you please pick family-friendly titles? You’re my idol, and I’m hoping you stay with your usual family-friendly values.

    1. You’re very kind. They don’t really humanize her like Maleficent. It’s more they give someone more evil to pit her against. It’s weird but I do like it better than Maleficent. As far as animated Oscars the point of that series is to imagine what would the Academy would chose not what I would personally pick. I will definitely let you know if something isn’t family friendly though so you have heads up

      1. Thank you so much! Looking forward to your video, if you end up making it!

      2. I actually haven’t done animated oscars for 2021 yet so that will be first but will do 1999 eventually. Just takes a while to watch all the movies

  5. Good review. Personally, I loved this movie. I saw it both in theaters and i got it on Disney+. I’ve watched it several times. I think it is a bit long and borrows scenarios from other films, but i think its one of the better live-action remakes of Disney of late.

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