Disney / Cinderella III: A Twist in Time


"I can't live in dreams if my dreams are to come true."

A 2007 Direct-to-Video sequel to the Disney Animated Canon hit Cinderella and Cinderella II: Dreams Come True. It bears a resemblance to Twice Charmed, and was made after it.

Cinderella is living her happily ever after with her friends and her prince, while her despicable stepfamily have fallen on hard times. But then Lady Tremaine gets ahold of the Fairy Godmother's magic wand. She uses it to turn back time to the day the Grand Duke arrives with the slipper and have it pan out perfectly.

Suddenly - Cinderella doesn't escape the tower in time, the shoe fits her stepsister Anastasia, and Prince Charming is brainwashed to think she's the one he danced with. Now Cinderella has to fight for her happy ending, or she might lose it forever. Not to mention, Anastasia finds herself swept in her mother's plans and that soon becomes a wake-up call...

The film provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Abusive Parents: Lady Tremaine. Not only with her stepdaughter but her own biological daughters as well - she's the one to blame for Drizella and Anastasia being jerks, and she emotionally/mentally abuses Anastasia when she begins to question her.
  • Actionized Sequel
  • Adorkable: Anastasia.
  • Agony of the Feet: Anastasia attempt at dancing results in her doing a number on Charming's feet.
  • All Animals Are Dogs: Lucifer (the cat) sniffs and acts like a bloodhound.
  • ...And That Little Girl Was Me: Cinderella's opening narration.
  • Apologetic Attacker: When Anastasia accidentally turns the Fairy Godmother into a stone statue with the magic wand, her immediate reaction is to ask if she's OK before panicking and starting to apologize, having not wanted to actually hurt her.
  • Armor-Piercing Question: Cinderella To Anastasia, who's teetering on the brink of a Heel–Face Turn, when she discovers Lady Tremaine's plot to have her marry the Prince, magically disguised as a false Cinderella.
    Cinderella: What have you done? The prince won't be fooled.
    Lady Tremaine: The prince will never know. He'll be perfectly happy.
    Cinderella: But will you, Anastasia? Will you be happy?
    Anastasia: I...I want what you had.
    Cinderella: But...do you even love him?
  • Ascended Extra: Prince Charming. In the first film, he's onscreen for less than ten minutes, and his only dialogue is with Cinderella. He wasn't even the one who went around getting girls to try on the slipper. In this he plays a major role and gets an actual personality, which is actually quite... well, charming.
  • Award Bait Song: "I Still Believe", sung by Hayden Panettiere.
  • Badass Adorable: Cinderella becomes this.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Turns out even a Disney Princess has her limits. Lucifer learns this the hard way when Cinderella sends him crashing off of the pumpkin carriage into the lake.
    Cinderella: Bad kitty!
  • Big "NO!": Lady Tremaine when her magic gets deflected back at her.
  • Brainwashed: Lady Tremaine uses the wand to do this to Prince Charming, when she realizes he wants to marry the girl that wore the slipper that night, not just any girl that fits it.
  • Character Development: Anastasia gets not only the spotlight, but focus on her thoughts and her actually quite complicated relationship with Lady Tremaine.
  • Chekhov's Gun: Metal reflecting the wand's magic.
  • Church of Saint Genericus: The minister at the wedding ceremony doesn't wear any religious symbols, and omits the word "holy" before "matrimony" when beginning the service.
  • Close Enough Timeline: Fairy Godmother offers to restore the original timeline, but then decides to not bother as everything turned out fine anyway.
  • Clothing Damage: Somehow, Cinderella's dress gets torn up when she is transported inside the pumpkin carriage.
  • Continuity Nod: As with Dreams Come True, we see Anastasia grow out of her bratty behavior.
  • Conspicuous CG: Some wedding bells and the pumpkin carriage.
  • Cool Horse: Prince Charming's steed races for miles, jumps over spears, and runs up lighthouse steps. He draws the line at jumping onto ships from lighthouses, though.
  • Cosmic Retcon: Due to the course of the first movie being changed through time travel, Cinderella 2: Dreams Come True is presumably retconned out of existence (though some characters from it still exist in the new continuity, such as Prudence and Anastasia's love interest).
  • Creative Closing Credits: The credits show paintings of the characters in different styles (eg, the Grand Duke in the style of The Scream, Cinderella and Prince Charming as silhouetted profiles). This occasionally doubles as a "Where Are They Now?" Epilogue.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Charming gains a rather cheeky and playful sense of humor. The weird part is that it ALSO ties into his Took a Level in Badass.
  • Decon-Recon Switch: This film takes many of the tropes from the original film and plays with them. While many tropes are deconstructed and questioned (The Girl Who Fits This Slipper and Love at First Sight), it still maintains many of the original tropes, while adding a touch of realism to them (the prince doesn't just fall for the first girl who can wear the slipper, he wonders if she's truly the one he fell in love with).
  • Earn Your Happy Ending: The whole point of the film is Cindy regaining the happy ending that she's being denied, and Anastasia realising that she also should start working on getting her own one.
  • Establishing Character Moment: Subtly. In the first song, Drizella and Anastasia are both bemoaning their fate. Drizella complains about not being able to go to the ball and having to do chores. Anastasia simply wonders why she couldn't get her happy ending like Cinderella did, and wonders if there's a prince out there for her.
  • Evil Redhead: Inverted. Anastasia, who was a Rich Bitch in the original movie, is now less evil and more like a "Well Done, Daughter!" Girl.
  • Exact Words/Loophole Abuse: The prince invokes this on his father midway through the movie.
    The King: I forbid you to take another step down those stairs!
    Prince Charming: Okay.
    [jumps out the window]
  • Fairytale Wedding Dress
  • Feet-First Introduction: Cinderella has one when she runs down a staircase in her bare feet.
  • For Want of a Nail: If Lady Tremaine had taken the time to deal with Cinderella's oh so useful animal friends, she would have won.
  • Girl Friday: Prudence.
  • Green-Eyed Monster: Anastasia suffers this. She realizes it's wrong and grows out of it, though.
  • The Guards Must Be Crazy: Averted; they're competent at their jobs and successfully catch Cinderella before she can undo the spell.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Anastasia.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: A gender-swapped example. At the end of the film, Lady Tremaine's use of Fairy Godmother's wand turns against her after Prince Charming intervenes from using magic on Cinderella. After that, Lady Tremaine and Grizella transformed into frogs and eventually, maids.
  • Holding Hands: It's a plot point; this is how you tell you love each other.
  • Humiliation Conga: Lady Tremaine and Drizella. The only punishment they get, but considering it ends with them both getting turned into frogs due to a magical backfire, and then maids, it's good enough.
  • Hypnotize The Prince: Lady Tremaine brainwashes Prince Charming to marry Anastasia.
  • I Broke a Nail: Drizella sings a line about this when cleaning dishes.
  • I Choose to Stay: At the end of the film, Fairy Godmother offers to return things to how they were in the original timeline, but both Cinderella and Charming reject it in favor of the new one.
  • I Just Want to Be Loved: Anastasia. At first she thinks she'll be happy with the prince's love, but then she realizes that she wants someone who loves her for who she really is, not because they're under a spell. She also craves for her mother's approval and love, which explains a lot about how she went with Tremaine's plan anyway
  • Jabba Table Manners: Drizella "sampling" the party food. Lampshaded by Anastasia.
  • Make Wrong What Once Went Right: Lady Tremaine's evil plot.
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Minor example. After Anastasia accidentally petrifies the fairy godmother, she is shocked that it happened and starts apologizing.
  • Nice Guy: Turns out Prince Charming lives up to his name rather well.
  • Plucky Girl: Cinderella. Now that magic is being used against her, she decides to fight back...
  • Oh, Crap!: Lady Tremaine and Drizella when the former's magic gets deflected right back at them.
  • Our Time Travel Is Different: The time-reversing sequence combines Videocassette Time Travel and Wormhole Time Travel. It starts with Lady Tremaine, Anastasia, and Drizella standing in their garden while the sun and the moon set and rise in reverse a few times. Next, they get surrounded by green smoke, and visions of Cinderella going through her marriage to Prince Charming backwards. Anastasia and Drizella also see their magic pull Cinderella and Prince Charming away from each other, until she gets locked back up in the chateau tower, followed by themselves curtsying backwards for the Grand Duke. When Lady Tremaine and her daughters finally end up back on the day the Grand Duke came to try the slipper on Cinderella, they find themselves inside their foyer instead of in their garden.
  • Reasonable Authority Figure: Both the King and Prince Charming. Charming especially is shockingly accepting of talking mice telling him that a magic spell is the reason why he can't remember dancing with Cinderella.
  • Rebel Prince: Once Charming decides to do something, there's absolutely nothing his father can do to stop him.
  • Recycled Premise: Years before A Twist in Time, a play called Twice Charmed performed to passengers of the Disney Magic cruise ship, featured Cinderella's stepfamily using time travel to try and take Prince Charming away from her. The two stories don't have much else in common, though. (eg, Lady Tremaine in Twice Charmed has a Fairy Godfather to help her perform evil.)
  • Ripple Effect-Proof Memory: Lady Tremaine, Drizella, Anastasia and the Fairy Godmother are the only ones who remember what happened in the original timeline.
  • Room Disservice: A variation; Cinderella pretends to be a maid to get into her stepmother's room. Unfortunately for her, Lady Tremaine savvy.
  • Scenery Porn: The background designers did an admirable job adapting Mary Blair's penchant for massive, stylized backdrops and props to widescreen. Extra kudos for those who had to design new environments, such as the wedding chapel, with similar aesthetics.
  • Shout-Out: During "Much More than a Dream", Cinderella is spinning in a hill, in rags, singing about climbing the mountains. Sounds familiar?
  • Sickly Green Glow: The Fairy Godmother's wand normally emits white sparkles when used, but here, its magic changes to this color when under the control of Lady Tremaine and Drizella.
  • Star-Crossed Lovers: Cinderella and the Prince until almost the end.
  • The Stinger: A clip interrupting the end credits shows Lady Tremaine and Drizella punished to a life of servitude not unlike that they made Cinderella go through.
  • Stopped Numbering Sequels: In some countries, Cinderella III had no number 3 on the cover.
  • Strange Minds Think Alike: When the Prince walks in and finds Anastasia instead of Cinderella, he asks if he's in the right room. Later when the King enters the dining room with the Prince and sees the mess Anastasia and Drizella made, he asks if they're in the right room.
  • Take a Third Option: Parodied. When the King tries to keep the Prince from leaving the castle without authorization, the Prince either has to push his dad aside or stay put. What he chooses is... jumping off a balcony and escaping. The scene has reached Memetic Mutation levels on Tumblr.
  • Taken for Granite: Anastasia accidentally does this to the Fairy Godmother when they fight over the wand. Surprisingly, reversing time doesn't turn the Godmother back to normal. After Cinderella with help from Anastasia undoes this spell following Tremaine's defeat, the Godmother exclaims that she feels stiff, and takes time to loosen up her joints.
  • The Power of Love: Lampshaded by Anastasia partway through, when the Prince realizes the deception:
    The magic didn't work! It wasn't as powerful as their -
  • Throw the Dog a Bone: The first painting shown during the end credits of assures viewers that Anastasia did eventually get her own boyfriend after redeeming herself.
  • Took a Level in Badass:
  • Took a Level in Jerkass: Lady Tremaine. She is worse than the original movie. She poofs Cinderella in a twisted pumpkin carriage with Lucifer as its human driver, and attempts to get Lucifer to kill Cinderella. Especially heinous because up until that point she was satisfied with just making Cinderella's life a living hell. She also has Anastasia posing as Cinderella to fool the prince. If anyone doesn't know, this is rape by deception... and for worse, she tries to use one of her own flesh and blood daughters for such shit, and right when Anastasia is becoming more and more sympathetic.
  • Took a Level in Kindness: Anastasia. While in Cinderella II she is already nice, is in this movie that she makes the first step.
  • Ugly Guy, Hot Wife: The movie revealed Prince Charming's mother, who was quite beautiful, while the king still looked the same.
  • Villainous Breakdown: Lady Tremaine really starts to lose her cool when Anastasia rejects Prince Charming and she resorts to turning the guards into animals before pointing the wand at Anastasia.
  • Voices Are Mental: When Lady Tremaine turns Anastasia into a Cinderella clone, viewers hear the clone speak with Anastasia's voice.
  • "Well Done, Daughter!" Girl: Anastasia's Freudian Excuse in the sequels.
  • What Happened to the Mouse?:
    • Bruno the faithful dog is completely absent from this film, which is rather odd.
    • As of the other mice besides Jaq and Gus. In fact, none of them are referenced or seen here.
  • What If?: The original ad campaign advertised the movie as taking this approach to Cinderella.
  • Why Waste a Wedding?: The disguised Anastasia saying, "I don't" and Cinderella crashing the royal wedding ruin what was to be the wedding between Charming and a fake Cinderella. Once her stepmother is defeated, Anastasia reverses her disguise in redemption and the real Cinderella takes her place.
  • Xenafication: Cinderella. It's actually more true to what she was originally meant to be.
    Walt Disney: Cinderella, here, was more practical [than Snow White]. She believed in dreams, all right, but she also believed in doing something about them. When the Prince Charming didn't happen to come along, she went right over to the palace and got him!source