Maleficent (2014)

This adaptation of ‘Sleeping Beauty’ is beautiful, the different interpretation should be loved as it is such a unique spin on the well-known Disney Classic. As friends of mine would know, I love Disney, but there’s nothing more that I love than someone putting their own interpretation and twist on a Disney Classic itself, so of course this is a film I would appreciate. But the best thing, is that it is not a let-down, it is brilliantly created to give a new side into the villain Maleficent; someone that was just perceived as evil before. Robert Stromberg creates a beautiful land of the Moors and a stunning alternative in ‘Maleficent’.

So as you can guess, the story is Maleficent’s. Played excellently by Angelina Jolie. Jolie makes this film so much better, she is truly amazing in her part. The way she expresses all her emotions, whether it be pain or love, desperate need or hate, she creates a character lost in anger and found again when her heart starts to repair. The whole look of Angelina Jolie is brilliant, she looks alike to the animation in ‘Sleeping Beauty’, but you can tell she carries her presence in her costume and make-up, but also in her attitude and power. Maleficent becomes the protector of the Moors, the strongest fairy of them all. But she is wronged by a man who is overtaken by greed and his want to become King. It’s in this light we see the pained and heartbroken Maleficent; one who only sees hate and revenge in the colour of green. Until one little girl is born, but Maleficent riddled by anger makes the worst mistake of her life, placing a curse on the innocent Aurora (Elle Fanning). All because her father, Stefan (Sharlto Copley), pissed off a very powerful fairy.

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The whole essence of this film is one to be admired. The film is very creative, for children to get lost into this admirable kingdom of the Moors, a land of strange and magical creatures. From this magical place we jump to and fro the other neighbour, the human kingdom; one not so pretty, one riddled by greed and darkness, where a King starts to go crazy in this own mind and a Queen is depressed by the loss of her daughter, who was sent away into a small house in the woods for safety. The other effects are also excellent. The slow motion in action scenes are really effective for the audience; or perhaps vision blurred to express the pain from Maleficent and her weakness. The whole film flows well even if it is over a big time scale.

There are a variety of aspects to love in ‘Maleficent’. You can have a chuckle at occasional comments, especially between Maleficent and Diaval (Sam Riley). Or maybe you can smile at the small pathetic arguments between the little fairies who are supposed to look after Aurora; Flittle (Lesley Manville), Knotgrass (Imelda Staunton – indeed the one and only Umbridge! But a very different character I promise) and Thistletwit (Juno Temple). There are also some action moments, which done by the graphics is brilliant (like I’ve already said). I don’t know if people will be happy to hear, but I thought I’d mention anyway, this Disney isn’t a musical, there is no random break-outs of song. There are some very emotional moments, the audience shocked a character would treat someone else that way, and also some heart-felt moments.

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I would recommend this film, I love it. Such a different interpretation of a film I watched as a child is one of course I’d love. The fact that it is done so well and Angelina Jolie is amazing, are just a plus. I would advise you to watch ‘Maleficent’; discover her past so different from the story told before, and follow her as she takes steps into hatred and love. Besides can those little three fairies look after little “beasty” on their own? Or will Maleficent, torn between villain and hero, save the day?

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