[ESTE ARTÍCULO CONTIENE SPOILERS DE CRUELLA]
We were already warned with malefic: as much as Cruella Promising to delve into the origins of one of the most famous villains in the Disney canon, it was reasonable to expect that we would not find a prequel to use. In fact, the movie starring Angelina Jolie laid the foundations of what we have found in the film of Craig Gillespie, which arrived on Friday both in theaters and in the Disney + catalog at an additional cost: that is, not a relationship of strict continuity, but a healthy desire to establish a dialogue (or a game of echoes) with the original film. In this case, the beloved 101 dalmatians that the House of the Mouse opened in 1961.
There was some concern about how Disney would try to get audiences to empathize with someone like Cruella De Vil. No matter how much I played it Emma StoneWhat we know about this lady is that she would not hesitate to kill puppies to make herself a coat, and that made things very difficult to humanize her. What has been Disney’s strategy? Well, not just give it a background with multiple traumas for the so-called Estella, but also… modify various aspects of the story that we knew. There is no doubt that the Cruella that appears in the film is not exactly the same as that of 101 dalmatians, and this is evident from the fact that she has a genuine affection for Horacio and Gaspar.
These were treated with great contempt in the animated film, but here they have the face of Paul Walter Hauser Y Joel Fry and his relationship with Cruella is one of the axes of the film. This could then be erected as an independent story, taking place in an alternative universe to that of 101 dalmatians… But his post-credit scene throws up a somewhat more confusing possibility. Let’s take a look at it.
The origin of Pongo and Perdita
Anita Darling and Roger are the owners of the main dogs of 101 dalmatians. Inside of the remake live action released in the 90s were played by Jeff Daniels Y Joely Richardson, and in Cruella appear with the faces of Kirby Howell-Baptiste Y Kayvan Novak. What Cruella takes place before the events of 101 dalmatians (assuming they share a timeline), the Roger and Anita from the film have yet to meet. In fact, we discover that Anita is a childhood friend of Cruella, and thanks to her work as a reporter the protagonist can start her reign of fashion.
But here comes the weird. The post-credit scene of Cruella (which bursts in after the Florence + The Machine song ends Call Me Cruella) tells how Roger and Anita take in two pet Dalmatians: Roger stays with Pongo, and Anita with Perdita. In the future, these pets will make it easier for their masters to get to know each other and form an extended family, but the curious thing about this scene is who gives the puppies to the couple: none other than Cruella, who seems to send them to them in gratitude / apology for previous events of the movie.
What consequences does this have? It depends on whether we consider that Cruella Y 101 dalmatians they are closely related. According to this there would be two options. First of all, there is a part of Cruella’s story that we don’t know yet that could unfold in a hypothetical Cruella 2: here the character of Stone would definitely fall on the dark side after resisting it throughout the Gillespie film, and would decide to kidnap the Dalmatians that she herself gave to Roger and Anita to find the ultimate coat.
After all, there is already a resentment towards the serial Dalmatians. Cruella reveals that the Baroness’s Dalmatians murdered Estella’s mother, forcibly generating great animosity from the protagonist towards these animals. However, throughout the film we understand that the Dalmatians were not at fault, but were manipulated by the Baroness, and Cruella never harms them. That is, it still has a way to go if history directs it to turn evil at all.
The other option, much more convoluted, is that everything is a Cruella plan. The film ends with the protagonist having consolidated her avant-garde fashion business, and perhaps she has given the Dalmatians to Roger and Anita with the intention that … Roger and Anita meet … Roger and Anita fall in love … Pongo and Perdita do it Also … Pongo and Perdita have an indecent number of babies … and Cruella with Horacio and Gaspar may steal them in the future to sew a great coat.
Yes, none of this seems very likely. And there may be a much simpler explanation.
Meet a new Cruella
Along the Cruella there are many nods to the original film. Horacio and Gaspar watching football accompanied by several dogs. These same characters making jokes about how much some dogs resemble their owners (referencing the memorable opening scene of 101 dalmatians). Or, of course, the moment when Londoners believe that Cruella has murdered the Baroness’s Dalmatians to sew her speckled clothing.
What do all these winks have in common? That they are never literal. They don’t just make the reference and bask in the memory of the original movie, they all have a twist that modify its meaning. They launch expectations and then break them. Remember a lot, we must insist, what happened with malefic, with the difference that it told the same story as Sleeping Beauty introducing changes both from the perspective and in relation to the end of the story itself.
Having malefic in mind (which came to have a sequel, Mistress of evil, building on that modified ending), it is easy to intuit that Cruella flies free, and her relationship with 101 dalmatians it is more iconographic than narrative. That Cruella gives the Dalmatians to Roger and Anita does not mean more than that. Cruella has given them two Dalmatians and it’s exactly what it sounds like: she just wanted to do something nice for two people who have done her no harm during her fight against the Baroness.
It is possible for this reason that, if one day we have a sequel to Cruella (at the moment there is nothing confirmed), the protagonist remains an antiheroine, but in no case a villain. It could even be repeated as is the scenario of malefic and tell the same story of 101 dalmatians from another point of view; certainly with huge changes. Until then, it remains to enjoy the latest from Disney and admire the trick that is against everything we thought the film would be.
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