Reviews provided by RottenTomatoes
Detroit Free Press:
A step down for Duff, who owes her fans and herself something fresher than another lazy rehash of the world's most-exploited fairy tale.
The sort of entertainment that makes you happy to be grown up and able to avoid the current onslaught of trite, lazy, unimaginative films aimed at tween-agers.
Duff is cute and chirpy; Murray is cute and bland, and the stepsisters squabble a lot. Ho-hum.
Duff needed to channel TV-Lizzie for this role, but instead she gives us milquetoast.
Ebert & Roeper:
A Cinderella Story doesn't break any new ground, but it's a well-acted little breeze of a film -- perfect if you're a 12-year-old girl.
Thanks to a charming cast and several bubbly moments, adults in the audience may find themselves genuinely entertained by the pleasantly feathery story.
Mean Girls it's not; a plastic butter knife has more edge. But sometimes it's nice to know your kids won't cut their fingers.
Los Angeles Times:
Feels like a pro forma TV movie from the get-go and relies almost entirely on Duff's likability to hold the audience's attention.
Duff plays off her Lizzie Maguire persona as a cute but unassuming girl, but also conveys soulfulness and earnest longing.
The movie starts off keenly aware of the hokum of fairy-tale schemes. Yet, like a slew of similarly themed movies (The Prince & Me and 13 Going on 30), it has a hard time giving its audience a brand-new vision.
When not unnecessarily bland, synthetic, and indistinguishable from undistinguished teen TV, A Cinderella Story is unnecessarily coarse and dumbed down, with every character except Sam and Austin subject to perfunctory ridicule.
Globe and Mail:
Content to be another candy-coloured fantasy. It'd be easier to enjoy it as such if most of the young characters here weren't mean-spirited caricatures who chiefly serve to illustrate Sam's virtues.
Dallas Morning News:
In typical Lizzie spirit, it's harmless, it's sweet, it's corny, it's fun and it all comes out impossibly right.
Under the charmless direction of Mark Rosman, the actors seem to be frozen at the rehearsal stage, with the blessed exception of a sublimely funny Jennifer Coolidge as the Botoxed horror of a stepmother.
Writer Leigh Dunlap and director Mark Rosman tart up their Cinderella variation with the predictable accoutrements of teen comedies.
Its take is about as original as its title, full of recycled ideas and half-hearted performances.
New York Daily News:
The Prince is a wet rag, the slapstick stepsisters are dull and even the fretful Sam seems colorless.
New York Times:
The movie strains to bend the fairy tale to accommodate another coarse high school comedy of air-headed teenage vixens ganging up on a meek little angel.
This witless little comedy takes the classic fairy tale and turns it into a Hilary Duff vehicle about popularity, e-mail and cell phones at a San Fernando Valley high school.
Desperately conceived by even the most insipid standards of contemporary teen-queen cinema.
Modern footwear simply doesn't fit this perennial fairy tale heroine, who's been reborn as a Valley Girl in a rendition that stumbles in almost every conceivable way.
Lacks the guiltily pleasurable panache (and punch) of other recent chickadee flicks posited as protofeminist fairy tales.
Let me get quickly to the word that best describes this movie. It is horrible.
You can say of this movie, truly, that they took the most famous tale in the world and broke it.