Maleficient was magnificent.
Well. Not really. But it’s fun to say. 😄
More acurately, Maleficient was surprisingly good. I seem to be saying that a lot this year, but it’s still true. Based on the trailers, I was mostly going because I thought Angelina Jolie would make an awesome villain (she did) and I thought the raising of the wall of thorns scene looked cool (it did).
Unfortunately, other than Jolie, I wasn’t particularly thrilled with any of the other characters. Sharlto Copley King Stefen did ’evil’ well enough and Elle Fanning certainly had the right blend of innocent/clueless, but I just felt they could have done better. On the other hand, Jolie carries the movie almost by herself. She really fits the role that well.
One interesting thing that a lot of people have been talking about is the rape analogue when King Stefan drugs Meleficent and removes her wings. Honestly, I thought it was well done. Rape is a problem in our modern culture and if this gets people talking then that’s a good thing. I’m not sure that murder was the proper response (even if there was far more than just this one reason), but that makes the conversation even better.
All together, solid. It’s another in a line of movies that I wanted to rank higher, but it’s just been a good year for movies. Based on some of the visuals alone–and the guts to make such a dark echo of a Disney film–I think… #4.
Ranked: 2014 Movie Reviews
Side note: My wife’s name is Aurora (Disney). We pretty much had to catch Maleficient.