Two weeks ago, Disney released the DVD copy of “Maleficent.” The film, which starred Angelina Jolie, grossed $758 million worldwide. Disney is known to create fairytale love stories with a happily ever after ending; however, “Maleficent” was quite different. The film is a live action dark fantasy that originally derives from “Sleeping Beauty,” which debuted in 1959, and portrays the story from the perspective of the antagonist, Maleficent.
For those of you who have not watched “Sleeping Beauty” in eons, the musical fantasy film is about King Stefan and Queen Leah, who welcome the birth of their daughter—Princess Aurora. The royal family proclaims a holiday for their subjects to celebrate the princess at her christening. During the christening, in walks the evil fairy Maleficent who curses the princess, proclaiming that Aurora will grow in grace and beauty. but before the sun sets on her 16th birthday, she will prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and Aurora will fall into a deathlike sleep from which she can only be awakened by true love's kiss. As a kid, I always ponder what prompt Maleficent to curse the baby? As I aged, I began to wonder if King Stefan thrown shade at Maleficent because, let’s be quite honest, only a woman scorned curses a man’s child. Well, just yesterday I watched the film and low and behold I was right.
The film touches on several of life’s qualms. First and foremast, Maleficent was not always an evil fairy, like most women are not always bitter and filled with contempt. During her adolescent years, Maleficent fell in love with a boy name Stefan, who attempted to steal from her kingdom, but instead took the most precious jewel—her heart. Stefan was not born into royalty. He was a young boy over taken by greed. As years go by, Maleficent grows to become the most powerful fairy and the protector of her peers—the Moors. Stefan finds himself working for a human king.
One day, the human king tries to conquer the Moors, having promised to do so when he came to the throne, but is stopped by a mature Maleficent. The king was fatally wounded in battle and declares whoever slaughters Maleficent would be named his successor. An older Stefan hears this while attending to the king. Knowing Maleficent is likely still in love with him, he goes to see Maleficent, lying that he has come to warn her of the king's plot. In typical man fashion, Stefan plays on Maleficent’s emotions. He drugs her and attempts to kill her, but cannot bring himself to do so. Instead, he cuts off her wings with iron, a material which burns fairies, and presents them to the king as proof of her death. Maleficent awakens to find herself wingless and deceived by a man who she thought loved her. In retaliation, Maleficent curses Princess Aurora.
As I watched the film, I thought to myself this is exactly why women find themselves on an episode of “Snapped.” The movie is a great depiction of a woman scorned. Maleficent confided and trusted a man who claimed to love her. In reality, Stefan only loved money and used Maleficent to get what he wanted most—power. He snubs her for a younger woman, leaving her broken hearted and cold.
Another theme that is present in the film is karma. After stealing Malicent’s wings, King Stefan was faced to deal with his actions that now will determine the destiny of his child. Like Jay-z eloquently rapped, “See I got demons in my past| So I got daughters on the way| If the prophecy's correct| Then the child should have to pay| For the sins of a father.”
As the climax descends upon us, there is an unlikely twist in the movie. Maleficent strangely watches over the child awaiting for her 16th birthday. However, Aurora’s kind and compassionate soul stimulates a love that was seemingly lost within Maleficent.
Overall, the dark fantasy is a great movie that portrays what happens when you betray a woman who loves you. In addition, it also illustrates how one kind soul can inspire you to become a better person.
A definite must-see.
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