Based on a fairy tale by Charles Perrault of Cinderella fame, Jacques Demy's Donkey Skin tells the bizarre story of a King who rules over an enchanted land. The King's wife falls very ill but on her deathbed she makes him promise that he'll never marry anyone less beautiful than she. After her passing, the King scours the land looking for a woman who matches his late wife's beauty but has no luck. With little choice, he makes the logical decision, deciding to wed his own daughter. His daughter isn't as keen on the idea, and with the help of the fairy godmother, she is saved from this incestuous fate only to find her true love several years later in the form of a young prince. Jacques Demy's Donkey Skin is a musical fairytale that is an enjoyable experience regardless of its incestuous storyline which is likely to turn off some viewers. This is a beautifully realized film that should be praised for its lavish set design and the other inventive ways it brings this fairy tale to life. These days, a filmmaker would probably take the lazy way out, throwing a ton of CGI on the screen to create a fantastical world. Of course Demy didn't have that option, opting instead to use a vibrant color palette, impressive sets, and some old-fashioned camera tricks to make this story come to life. Demy's film is very much a story made specifically for children, given its simplicity and colorful characters, but with some surrealistic style and dramatic undertones, it's likely to satisfy adults as well.
Love of all things cinema brought me here.