Maleficent (3D Blu-ray) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Fantasy
Director: Robert Stromberg
Distributor: Disney

Maleficent (3D Blu-ray) – Movie Review

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8.1
Good: Great story, great acting
Bad: a tad shorter and less action than you would expect
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Maleficent, one of the most notorious Disney villains has finally received a movie that revolves solely around her. Sleeping beauty is still very much a part of the movie of course, but this time she it’s not all about her. Of course, when a known villain gets a Disney movie named after her, it must mean she wasn’t always that bad?

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As all good fairytales, this one also begins with a ‘once upon a time’. In this case, once upon a time there was a world in which magical beings and humans lived separate, yet peacefully next to each other. Whilst the human race preoccupied itself with gaining more and more power, the magical beings on the other side, were living as equals among each other and only cared about each other, and the happiness they could give to their friends and family.

Among those magical beings, there was a fairy, that was not quite like the other fairies. One had big majestic wings and horns, unlike the typical small fairy with small wings. This special fairy was called Maleficent and she was more powerful than the other magical beings and thus in a way, she had the power to lead them.

One day the peaceful existence of the woodland creatures is disturbed by a young human boy, who crossed to border to steal items humans see as valuable. When getting caught, Maleficent goes to inspect the boy, who bears the name Stefan and both seem to take an interest in each other, perhaps even more. Soon after they decide to see each other on a regular basis and even fall in love.

As years ‘fly’ by, both become a tad more estranged from each other and each of them seems to have their own agenda. Stefan is aiming to become a man of nobility, whilst Maleficent just occupies herself in getting stronger to protect the woodlands with all the mystical creatures. Getting stronger seems to be needed, as the human king wishes to take over the woodland and its creatures to become the rules of the entire world. Luckily, Maleficent is able to stop his attempt.

Disney's "Maleficent"..Baby Aurora..Ph: Film Still..?Disney 2014

When the king lies on his deathbed, he states that his successor will be the one that is able to defeat the ‘monster’ that foiled his plans. Stefan, who tends to the king on his deathbed, promises he will be the one. Whilst he does not kill Maleficent, he takes something so precious to her, that she feels as if she was killed. She then becomes the villain we know from the original Sleeping Beauty movie.

The movie then follows the original plot of the animated movie for a bit, when it comes to cursing the first born child, Aurora, of the king. The curse where she will fall into an eternal slumber on her sixteenth birthday, when getting stung by a spinning wheel. After that things might go a bit different from what you may remember of the original story.

Overall the flow is not what you’d expect of the movie. Whilst some action sequences may feel as if giant battles will constantly happen, the movie is actually a tad more timid in nature. Story value above all and in the end, that seems to be the forte of the movie. You’ll be drawn into the mind of one of the most elusive ‘villains’ of all time.

Visually the movie is quite enchanting as well. The mystical creatures often have a little grim feeling about them but they still look very likeable and above all, fairytale-like. The human kingdom also bears a grim tone, seeing they have been the original aggressor and are still out for gaining more and more power. That being said, the movie creates the right atmosphere for the plot.

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Acting performances are top notch. Angelina Jolie gives us the perfect portrait of a majestic being that has gone bad. The emotions she depicts as well as the atmosphere her presence creates pretty much carry the entire movie. Stefan (Sharlto Copley) presents us a power hungry man that is simply blinded by his goal, whilst this beautiful daughter Aurora (Elle Fanning) is the complete opposite. The three fairy godmothers and Maleficent’s faithful assistant also enforce the roles of the leading cast and these are pretty much the only ‘important’ characters in the movie. Side characters enhance the atmosphere but are overshadowed by the main characters.

The only thing that was a slight downside to the overall ‘Maleficent-experience’ was the fact that the movie felt kind of short or at least that some items should have been lengthened by a tiny bit. Not sure if this is simply a personal opinion but the movie left me wanting a tad more.

Conclusion

Maleficent finally shows us the flipside of the coin that was otherwise known as Sleeping Beauty. This Disney film draws you into a world where a slight grim touch reigns supreme but this might as well make the world that much more enchanting. Great acting performances and an already good story make for quite a good movie.

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