This is a very late review, for a movie. I got busy and I’m sorry for that. Anyway here’s the review of Maleficent, a reimagining of the classic Sleeping Beauty, done in the same style as Alice in Wonderland 2010, although Tim Burton is not involved with it at all. This time it focuses on the main villain, Maleficent herself, who is perhaps the number 1 Disney villain of all time. So is this film good? Find out.
I enjoyed Alice in Wonderland. Heck, I even enjoyed Snow White and the Huntsman even though Kristen Stewart is a pain in the ass to watch. This, and the fact that Maleficent is a really famous villain makes it natural for me to get excited for this film. And I even watched the movie in an event where they promoted dining in cinema, so it’s luxurious to watch it. HOWEVER, this is probably the movie in this year. that I got really bored watching it. Let me tell you why.
First, I was actually expecting a gritty, dark and evil-toned movie. Not in the way like Snow White and the Huntsman, but more like Alice in Wonderland. This is because the movie has Maleficent as the title character, and you know how evil she is! But no, the movie feels far lighter than both of the aforementioned fairy tale reimaginings, to the point that this movie was kid-friendly. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I want an R-rated Maleficent movie, but a PG-13 movie. This movie in particular feels like it’s G-rated.
I understand why they did that, it’s because some people doesn’t like the idea of a gritty fairy tale reimagining, and that if they did a grim movie with a villain as the title character, some people might think it’s too scary for children, and you know we don’t want that after we got Return to Oz right? The problem is, the trailers are dark as ever, so I expect this to be one badass movie. This film actually teaches us to not to trust trailers sometimes.
The film takes us to the background of Maleficent, to how she ended up being evil. In terms of plot, I appreciated what they did here but they didn’t craft it well enough. I’ll talk about that in a while but first, I was actually interested in how they portrayed Maleficent in this movie. Angelina Jolie is not only perfect for the role, but she is THE only person who could play Maleficent. This is what attracts me to the film. In the movie, she was portrayed as an anti-villain protagonist and later turned hero, which is far from the Maleficent that we know. But actually I don’t feel butthurt at all with this, I appreciated it a lot.
The funny thing is that the plot resembles a real-life situation where, first of all let me remind you that this is a pretty adult thing to say, but this is my opinion. Regardless, the plot is about a woman who got raped (Maleficent getting her wings cut resembles a woman’s virginity being taken by force) and she sets out to get her revenge. Granted, it’s kinda offensive to talk about that subject, but I can’t help but to relate it.
While that aspect of the plot is appreciated, the story is sloppily executed. First, the writers doesn’t seem to know how to use the same characters in a new telling of a movie. This is because the movie has a lot of characters, yet they are shoved in to this movie and serves a really pointless role just because they were in the original and not having them here would raise questions. The prime examples are the three fairies and Prince Phillip. First, the fairies are really, really, useless. They didn’t do anything except being the comic relief of the movie, even though it’s funny to see Professor Umbridge not being a bitch. As for Prince Phillip, he was so forgettable that you wondered why they put him into the movie, because he had to be the guy who kissed Aurora. But really, even Diaval, Maleficent’s servant is more memorable than him!
Let’s talk about the performances and the visuals. First the performances. Like I said, Jolie was perfect for the role, now let’s look at the others. Aurora, played by Elle Fanning, is good, and thanks to her voice I would sometimes mistake her for being Dakota Fanning’s older sister instead of younger! And other than Jolie, the one who steal the show is Sharlto Copley playing Aurora’s father and Maleficent’s ex a.k.a they guy who ‘raped’ her. I really, really enjoyed his performance, from how he was ambitious to be a king to the point that he becomes the most hated king because of his paranoia against Maleficent. Seriously, the servants and the knights looked really pissed with Stefan’s paranoia. Next is my favorite character in the movie, Maleficent’s henchmen Diaval, played by Sam Riley. The reason why I like the character is that he is the only person whom Maleficent is nice to throughout the movie other than Aurora, because he also serves as her friend, even though she doesn’t admit it. And I feel like he is the one who helped remind Maleficent that she is not a bad person throughout the movie.
As for the visuals, being a Disney movie the CGI is fantastic, I really like it. The creatures’ designs are terrific, although I do feel like it’s cartoony at certain areas such as when Maleficent has wings. However I do not like the action scenes at all. While the CGI is fantastic, the action scenes are bullshit in my opinion, mostly because of the sudden slow motion that’s pointless and it feels like it’s directed by a noob.
To summarize it up, Maleficent is a wasted potential. It had a really good potential to be a really good movie, and might even form a trilogy or something. But it was executed poorly. If it weren’t for the performances and the visual, the movie would be shitty.
Regardless, Maleficent is Meh, Could’ve Been Better.