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It has to be The Slipper and the Rose.

The Cinderella story! High camp! Serious (well kind of serious) angle of politics, mourning the loss of a parent, class struggles! The best Fairy Godmother portrayal ever! Songs by the Sherman brothers, of Mary Poppins fame (I only just discovered this. But the songs are excellent so it’s not really a surprise)! A lurid technicolour carriage to take Cinderella to the ball!

Gemma Craven was so beautiful, I just loved her. And Richard Chamberlain just looks like Prince Charming.

Here’s the trailer:

Man they did trailers very differently in 1976…”this is entertainment for everyone!”

When we moved to PNG in the 80s, we only had a few video tapes. One had a bunch of Warner Bros cartoons on it (so we got very familiar with Bugs and Daffy). One was Star Wars. And one was The Slipper and the Rose, taped off the television.

I must have watched that tape a thousand times. I had even memorised the ads – Godfreys, Grace Bros, Nescafe – and there were several spots where one of us had accidentally pressed REC instead of PLAY. So in the middle of a song there would be a bit of static, a random scene from some other movie, more static and then back to the song. It was all part of the experience.

I kind of just want to sit in my pyjamas and watch this now. Oh look…someone’s uploaded the full movie to youtube…terribly quality upload though…I really should buy it on DVD sometime because I don’t have a VCR anymore, but it just won’t be the same without those ads and the scene from that 50s musical that I have no idea what it was, but it had people watching a play that had a snowman in it.

Also it’s one of those movies that I don’t want to watch with anyone else, because I fear they really won’t understand why I love it so. Seriously, don’t try and convince people of the merits of something you dearly loved from your childhood, unless they also loved it in their own childhood. It just won’t translate.