Okay, so I’m a little late on the “Maleficent” band wagon. I’m a busy lady, what can I say? So last night as my husband and I settled down to relax, he suggested “Maleficent” as it was On Demand.
I said “Sure,” as I’m always one for a wicked fairytale.
NOTE: CONTAINS SPOILERS, don’t read if you haven’t seen yet.
Then I was more than pleasantly surprised as the storyline developed. A movie, produced by Angelina Jolie, was much more than a fairytale … it was an empowering movie for women. Kudos to Jolie for not only doing a wondrous job acting (her best since “Gia” in my little opinion) but directing too and bringing an important message to young girls: True love exists, but not overnight.
As a young fairy, Maleficent quickly learns the evils of the world, as her love bubble bursts after Stefan, her first and only love, screws her over in order to advance himself in his career. He not only leaves her, but takes her wings to become king.
Maleficent becomes bitter and even more so when Stefan, now King, has a child — born not out of love but out of greed. Maleficent puts a curse on the child that on her 16th birthday, she will fall into a deep sleep and never wake up.
Stefan begs Maleficent for mercy and Maleficent softens the curse, that the child will wake up if kissed by true love. However, the curse is not so soft, as Maleficent, in her bitterness, believes there is no true love.
Stefan sends his child, Aurora, to live with the fairies, so they could protect her until after her 16th birthday. During this time, the fairies don’t do such a great job and Maleficent ends of caring for the child. It’s inevitable that she falls in love with the child — a child she once hated. And the child sees her as her “Fairy Godmother.” As a side note, one of the fairies blessed the child with happy days and to never be blue. (The child is played by Elle Fanning. And earlier by Eleanor Worthington Cox, and Angelina’s own child, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt. Young Maleficent is played by breathtaking beauties Ella Purnell and Isobelle Molly.)
And after Aurora falls asleep on her 16th birthday, it’s not the prince who awakens her, but Maleficient, illustrating the true, unconditional love between mother-figure and child.
Though the fairytale does have a happy ending, and Aurora does reunite with the prince, who you imagine eventually does love her.
I absolutely loved this spin on the fairytale, illustrating that true love is not infatuation and that it takes time. It also shows how love can soften the most broken heart and how there is good in all of us.
And there’s even more.
You can read just how deep Angelina Jolie’s version of the story is on Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maleficent_%28film%29
It’s a haunting, enchanting tale that will stay with you a very long time. The vulnerability Jolie expresses as Maleficent is priceless. The visuals are stunning. And the cast is perfect!