Maleficent Movie Review by Laura C. Cantu

Maleficent Movie Review:  

Disney’s Maleficent stars Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley, Sam Riley, and other notable actors and actresses who made this movie memorable and charming. I thought Angelina Jolie played her role of Maleficent perfectly. Not only did she look the part, she gave Maleficent beauty, power, femininity, and depth, which I believe has been lacking in other renditions of the Sleeping Beauty story. On the other hand, Sharlto Copley played a character that I considered despicable. I typically do not detest characters in stories because I realize they are fictional. However, Sharlto Copley embodied the greedy character so well that I found myself revolted by simply looking at his face.

Speaking of villains…One of my favorite casting choices in this movie was for Knotgrass. She was played by none other than Imelda Stauton, the professor known as Dolores Umbridge; yes . . . that’s the one . . . the one who made us grit our teeth in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I was pleased to see, however, that Imelda Stauton’s character in Disney’s Maleficent was charming, fun, and even likeable.

I also thought Elle Fanning, Sam Riley, and others played their parts well, yet I cannot think of anything outstanding to mention regarding their performances. Overall, I consider this a good thing, because fake emotions or lines that seemed forced did not distract me.

As for the storyline, Disney’s Maleficent takes the cake of all the Sleeping Beauty films. Not only does this movie cover the entire tale of Sleeping Beauty, it also gives us glimpses into the kingdoms, societies, and how the realms interacted. I was especially pleased to learn how the monarchies of man and fairies were entirely different. I also enjoyed seeing Maleficent as a young girl.

Perhaps my favorite part of this movie was learning the background and motivations of Maleficent herself. In the other Sleeping Beauty renditions I’ve seen, Maleficent is simply an evil witch with seemingly little or no credible motivation to place such an evil curse on a young girl. In this movie, however, we learn what drove Maleficent to become jaded, resentful, and revengeful. Not only do we learn her motivations, but this script makes it clear why most characters do-what-they-do. In other words, this movie has its bases covered as far as motive is concerned. I would go into more detail regarding this, however, I do not want to put any blatant SPOILERS in this review. Suffice to say, Sleeping Beauty used to be my least favorite of all the animated Disney films. After seeing Disney’s Maleficent, it’s one of my favorites.

One last note . . . I also appreciated the graphics and the new creatures crafted in this film. We didn’t see most of the run-of-the-mill fairy characters, which I thought was refreshing. Instead, we saw amazing and beautifully crafted tree soldiers, root dragons, mud gnomes, and other amazing fantasy beings.

Overall, I give Disney’s Maleficent 5 out of 5 stars. I highly recommend seeing this film if you enjoy fairy tales, fantasy, villain stories, and tales of true love.

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