Growing up Disney’s Sleeping Beauty was one of my favorite movies. I loved pretending I was Princess Aurora dancing in the forest with the forest animals. I actually loved the movie so much that I named my oldest daughter Aurora. That being said I was excited to see a different take on the story but worried that Maleficent won’t hold up to my expectations. I am happy to say that I left Maleficent very pleased. I took my daughter Aurora, who is now 12, to see the movie and she really liked it as well.
The movie begins with a beautiful, sweet, young fairy named Maleficent living in a magical land separated from the humans. As she becomes older she grows to be the protector of her land. When the land is under attack from the neighboring greedy human kingdom she drives the army away with the help of her magical companions. Maleficent is soon betrayed by one she believed she could trust above all others. The betrayal awakens a merciless side of her and drives her to a dark place bent on revenge. She takes her revenge out on the new born baby Princess Aurora by placing the curse that we all know so well. Aurora is to prick her finger on the spindle of spinning wheel on her sixteenth birthday and fall into a deep sleep until awakened by true love’s first kiss. King Stefan and his wife send Aurora to live with three fairies deep in the forest in an attempt to hide and protect her from Maleficent.
I don’t want to give too much of the storyline away but one thing that I really loved about this version is the difference in the story of how the three fairies raise Aurora. In the Disney version Maleficent spends the next 16 years looking for Aurora while in this version Maleficent knows where she is the whole time and watches over her.
Angelina Jolie did an awesome job in the title role. She was very convincing as both the “good” and “evil” Maleficent. I was surprised to see Sharlto Copley in the role of King Stefan. Although he did well in his portrayal of the character every time he was on the screen I couldn't help thinking that he was Murdock from the A-Team. Elle Fanning was charming as the teenage Aurora and it was cute to see Vivienne Jolie-Pitt as the young Aurora. Sam Riley was great in the role of Diaval, Maleficent’s servant, who was one of my favorite characters in the movie.
Go check out Maleficent this week!
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