As some people might have guess from my clues, this week we’re looking at the 2014 movie, Maleficent. This movie is a re-imagining of the 1959 Disney version of Sleeping Beauty but from villain Maleficent’s perspective, hence the name. While on paper that does not seem like a bad idea, the execution of this movie is so fucking naive that it’s bad. It’s like they took the stupidest idea possible for what to do with Maleficent’s character and combined with more successful movies, like Frozen, Avatar and Lord of the Rings to name the obvious ones.
Also, all I will say on the narration is that it was over-done and bogged the movie down. It was the first red-flag of crappiness.
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent with Elle Fanning as Aurora
Basically, Maleficent is a fairy with bird wings and horns and she lives in the Moors and fucking shot me already. The Moors are clearly just a name but they don’t look anything like Moorlands of England. They could have called the mythical utopian fairy land ANYTHING else and it wouldn’t been an issue but now I have to think about how stupid this name is every time it appears on screen. Since the Moors are a discount failed Pandora from Avatar why not just called them something Greek or something, ANYTHING would have been better. Was that your first idea screenwriter? Really, off an a tangent already, great start.
So the “Moors” which is a land of fairies and Tree-ants a la Lord of the Rings and/or Groot are at odd with the Humans. Maleficent is a some kind of super fairy and she befriends and falls in love with a human named Stefan. The king gets his beard in a twist because Maleficent kicked with army’s butt with her tree-ants, so he offers the hand of his daughter to the person that can slay Maleficent. Stefan drugs her and steals her wings and gets to be the king while Maleficent’s heart turns cold or something and gets a crow minion.
Stefan has a baby girl and Maleficent curses her and this scene is ALMOST verbatim to the original expect Maleficent puts the clauses in about True Love’s kiss awaking her as a slap-in-the-face to Stefan who claimed he had given Maleficent a true love’s kiss. Also the green fairy who was the blue fairy didn’t get to give Aurora a gift, though the gifts in this version are stupid. Also Maleficent says it’s a sleep like death when in the original Maleficent just said she will die, so…… anyway.
Stefan must be smoking copious crack because he entrusts the stupid fairies with raising the princess (I think there was line about the fairies being good with human but WTF why?). The fairies are so stupid that Aurora would have staved to death and fallen off a cliff if not for Maleficent who helps care for the child on the sly and pranks the fairies for jollies. Aurora gets in to her head that Maleficent is her fairy godmother, oh dear god movie, I can’t, I don’t even know but wrong movie there. Maleficent then tries to revoke the curse but can’t because of her wording about nothing be able to break the curse.
Aurora meets Prince Mcgaffin erm I mean Phillip and they have a little attraction which crow-boy hopes means is true love. Aurora for some reason (I wasn’t paying a lot of attention at this point), goes back to the castle a day before she was suppose to and falls in to the death-like sleep coma-nap. Maleficent bring Prince-i-boy to help with that pesky curse but he fails, (fail sound effect from the Price is Right), so Maleficent kisses her on the forehead and in Frozen fashion Aurora wakes up and then there is a dumb fight, Maleficent turns her pretty-boy crow into a dragon, pffffffttttttttttttttttttt and stupid happy ending and it turns out all that annoying narration was done by Aurora. Hate this movie.
Isobelle Molloy as Young Maleficent with Michael Higgins as Young Stefan
On the one small hand, I sort of appreciate what Maleficent was trying to do in theory but on the other larger hand this movie missed the point of everything and meanders into the realm of idiocity.
The first major problem is Maleficent herself. Maleficent in no way shape or form should be the same entity as the Good fairies and for the record why did they change their names from Flora, Fauna and Merriweather to Flittle, Knotgrass and Thistlewit? Really, I could do another full post on these useless pixels but I will refrain*.
To have Maleficent as good fairy at the start with a name like Maleficent which means evil is dumber than naming a character Knotgrass or Flittle or Thistlewit. They could have made Maleficent change her name to suit her evil persona but nope a child fairy who ages for no reason that the film gives is given the name which means Evil. I mean for Fuck sake movie, you give the origins of her staff but no mechanic for how or why she grows-up when nothing else in her realm does? F-U!
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent after her wings have been cut off
Another issue is that original movie called Maleficent the mistress of evil. Given this, she didn’t NEED reason to be evil, she just was and rather enjoyed it. Actually she did have a reason for why she cursed Aurora, she got snub an invitation to a baby shower, I would have done the same thing.
But you what REALLY pisses me the fuck off about all this movie? SO the film takes the stance that true love between two platonic ladies exists and is a strong bond a la Frozen which is great HOWEVER this lead you down the path that the film as feminist bent BUT Maleficent’s anger and hatred comes from a guy betraying her. She is literally a scorned woman, a man made her become evil. Why can’t she just be evil? Why can’t she just have been demonic entity whose got a sense of humanity from a pure girl, kind of a Sleeping beauty meets Hades/Persephone dynamic. This movie spouts the power of women but evil unintelligible king caused the Maleficent to be evil.
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent
And that is another problem, Maleficent’s evilness is VERY infantile. Literally all she does besides the plot-curse is prank the fairies with rain magic and turns the Moors gloomy. If that is extent of her evil that means the curse on Aurora or the plot is very out-of-character for Maleficent. It’s like the movie took this awesome kick-ass bad guy but was afraid to make her evil because if she is evil than the audience wouldn’t like her but that was the point. Sleeping Beauty from the perspective of the Mistress of Evil and they sap all of her likable-evil and just watered her down to the point of delusions.
Elle Fanning as Aurora
Then we have Sleeping Beauty herself. One BIG criticism of the original is that Aurora gets very little screen-time and this movie was chance to give her more of a character but nope fuck that. One of the fairies, and who fucking cares which one it was, gave her the gift of being happy. This makes Aurora a smiling simpleton with no other sense of character. Really all she is happy, I think the original Aurora had more of a range of emotions and that is so sad.
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent flying
But you know most modern movies have shit for characters because they more are all about being Bigger, Louder and having more teeth i.e technicals and CGs and you may ask how are they in Maleficent? OH dear god, do they suck, they suck much my friends. It’s like everything looked so fake and cheesy that it hurt, like I’m in pain just thinking about it.
But the REAL tragedy is that costumes which I need to distract me from a movie’s stupidity were not there, Maleficent’s costume were meh. Really, don’t recall anything, maybe Aurora wore blue and Maleficent had horn wraps.
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent with Baby Aurora
Maleficent could have been an interesting movie if the screenwriter had just kept certain things in play like Maleficent’s character and TURINING IN A FUCKING DRAGON! Really that they turned the Mistress of Evil into a Mischievous Nanny is insulting. I bet a re-imagining of Mary Poppins would have a more Maleficent like character than this movie. And WHO the FUCK gave the Money to get this shit storm a sequel? Know that I hate you whatever orderd a sequel.
* leave a comment if you want me to bash the fairy and maybe the other characters.