Last Updated on July 22, 2022 by Scott Charleboix
In this post, we find out about Cruella and how she came to be through the eyes of Estella.
It all started with Maleficent, where they create a backstory for villians. Cruella is a movie told through the eyes and memories of a young Estella (Cruella’s name when she was younger and before she died – spoiler alert! We’ll get to that part later).
What is Cruella about?
Cruella takes place many years before the start of the classic Disney movie 101 Dalmatians.
A Reader’s Digest condensed version of Cruella is Estella and her Mom are happy to be together and her Mom recognizes Estella’s potential. But the troublesome side to Estella (in the form that her and her Mom refer to as Cruella), the “bad” Cruella, get’s Estella thrown out of school.
Her Mom doesn’t know what to do so tries to get some help from the Baroness played by Emma Thompson. Young Estella sees the dogs attack and regrettably kill her Mom. Fearing that Estella is the cause of her Mother’s death, Estella runs away and meets her henchmen who we know from the 101 Dalmatians, Horace and Jasper. And they form a rather tight family (opposed to the way that we usually see Horace and Jasper as Cruella’s hired henchman).
Fast track to Estella living in London, circa 1970 Estella is recognized for her fashion taste by none other than Baroness von Hellman. You might recognize this name that later Cruella shortens Hellman House to Hell House.
Throughout the Cruella Deville movie there’s a fierce rivalry growing between Cruella and the Baroness. And one thing leads to another as Cruella begins to learn more and more about the true Baroness.
My wife loves to watch the television show, Say Yes to the Dress and Cruella is a fashion statement show where the Baroness and Cruella are trying to outdo the other, with “usually” Cruella getting the upper hand.
What is Disney’s Cruella about?
As mentioned earlier, Cruella takes place prior to 101 Dalmatians and there are a lot of vague references in the movie that are cleverly introduced that relate to the classic Disney animated movie.
An interesting thing to note about Cruella DeVille (or however else you may want to spell it) is that her name is a play on words combining two terms into one – Cruel and devil forming Cruella Deville.
The Baroness finally discovers the true identify of Cruella because she recognized Horace and Jasper and followed them home. Being the narcissist that the Baroness is, she wants to murder Cruella; however, what the Baroness isn’t aware of is that her aid, played by Mark Strong (named John, the Baroness’s valet) knows what really happened all those years ago and pulls Cruella out of the fire.
The whole of London believes that the Dalmatian killer, Cruella has been killed. So, they all show up at a party to pay homage to the departed Cruella and they’re all dressed up as Cruella to pay their respect.
After John pulls Cruella out of the fire and she asks why am I here? John tells her everything that has happened. That the Baroness was a narcissist who didn’t want to have children so she insisted that the child leaves. That the true Hellman fortune belongs to Cruella ( I never did figure that one out). And that the family jewel that Cruella has been trying so hard to get has a hidden key in it. The key is the secret to Estella’s true identity. She’s the daughter of the Baroness.
Cruella is pretty smart so she foresees that the Baroness might try some shenanigans, but prepares things to happen in her favor. Estella fakes her death with all of the Baroness’s guest to come out to the terrace because their presence there has been requested.
The people are appalled to see what the Baroness has done, and she’s hauled off to jail for killing Estella. But before Cruella went to have that visit with her Mum, she got a will and left everything if anything would happen to her to Cruella.
That in a very short way is how Estella is dead and how Cruella is the one that is now in charge, calling the shots.
Why is Cruella’s hair black and white?
The reason for the black and white hair is to personify a split personality that Cruella has and the origin for this phenomenon is actually a natural occurrence that Estella hides after she runs away and doesn’t want to get caught for what she believes was her fault for her Mum getting killed.
How did Cruella become evil?
Cruella is evil because she has an obsession with furs and one of the things that she wants to do is to do the unthinkable, making a fur coat out of the 99 puppies from 101 Dalmatians.
More than likely Cruella 2 will probably have something to do with Roger and Anita where they left puppy Pongo and Perdita with them. Another more likely alternative is that we could see the stereo typical 101 Dalmatians from Cruella’s perspective.
If you’ve liked this post, please be sure to check out my Pinterest board, Cruella and share your favorite Cruella pin.