Little Mermaid (2016)

This little 2016 indie film is simply titled as Little Mermaid, and is a modern-day, adult adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen story. Rosie Mac plays the little mermaid, who sells her voice to a sea witch for legs, and the chance to gain an immortal soul if she can win the love of a human. The film opens pretty much on land and with the little mermaid already having traded her voice for legs, though there are some very brief flashbacks of her swimming in the ocean, and her tail is gorgeous.

There are some other twists involved in this adaptation, most of them of an adult nature. Among them is how in the original story the little mermaid entranced people with her dancing, while in this adaptation she entrances them by her burlesque stripping. The guy the little mermaid originally made the deal for turns out to be nasty and self-centered, but the sea witch gamely allows her to switch him out for another guy, Jack, who is kind, sweet, and has allowed the homeless, near-penniless little mermaid to move into his apartment. But although the little mermaid and Jack end up having a relationship, there is still a "dark-haired rival", and the way she nudges the little mermaid out of the way is deceitful.

Overall, this version is more cynical than magical, and is more interested in the little mermaid learning the hard way how selfish and unkind the human world can be. The sea witch is just plain cruel, and all the people the little mermaid meets during her time as a human end up betraying her in one way or another. One thing though, is that Jack's fate may be even worse than the little mermaid's, which is saying something.

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