The fairy tale of Sleeping Beauty experienced a twist in 2014 when Disney released “Maleficent“, a story focusing on the powerful fairy Maleficent (Angelina Jolie) who cast a spell that caused the human girl Aurora (Elle Fanning) to fall asleep. Maleficent cast the spell because she was betrayed by King Henry who had attacked the Moors, the home of Maleficent and other fantastic creatures. Aurora is the daughter of King Stefan, who had actually loved Maleficent, but also betrayed her. All the betrayals led Maleficent to cast her spell on teenage Aurora, but as the film progressed she began to care for teen and eventually becomes her “fairy godmother.” At the end of the first film, Maleficent returns the Moors to its former glory and crowns Aurora as Queen of the Moors. The sequel, entitled “Maleficent“: Mistress of Evil” begins five years after the first film, with Aurora happily ruling over the Moors as its queen, and enjoying life with all the fantastic creatures who inhabit the land. Meanwhile, Maleficent is the protector of the Moors, and despite her heroic efforts in the first film, has been deemed a villain by the kingdom of Ulstead, a city across the river from the Moors. The leader of naming Maleficent a villain is Queen Ingrith (Michelle Pfeiffer), the mother of Aurora’s love interest, Prince Phillip (Harris Dickinson). Phillip and Aurora met in the fist film, and have fallen in love, leading Phillip to propose to Aurora. The proposal upsets Maleficent, and she warns Aurora against the union, but true love will persist nevertheless. After Queen Ingrith hears of the proposal, she invites her future daughter-in-law and Maleficent to a intimate dinner at her castle. During the dinner Maleficent has a difficult time controlling her emotions after the Queen Ingrith spouts several unpleasant events including the sleeping curse she once placed on Aurora. Taking all she can, Maleficent reacts angrily and supposedly places a sleeping curse on the queen’s husband, King John (Robert Lindsay). But did she? Maleficent flees the castle without the shocked Aurora, who stays behind. As she flies away, Maleficent is shot down by Ingrith’s servant Gerda (Jenn Murray) with an iron bullet, something that is deadly to faeries. After she falls into the ocean, Maleficent is rescued by a mysterious winged creature, who takes her to a underground cavern on an island far from the Moors. When she is healed from her injury and awakens, Maleficent discovers she has been rescued by other fairies like herself. She overhears the other fairies arguing about the need to attack Ulstead and its human inhabitants. The fairies have been living in fear of humans after they nearly drove powerful fairies like Maleficent to extinction. The fairies know they can use the power of Maleficent to their favor in the planned war with humans. Meanwhile back at the castle, Aurora is growing disillusion with her soon-to-be family, and realizes Queen Ingrith is plotting to kill all fairies and the other creatures of the Moors, so she can have the wonders of that land for her kingdom. As the creatures of the Moors cross the river to Ulstead to attend the wedding of Aurora and Phillip, Queen Ingrith begins her first step to war. This is the point in the film where the action, and the special effects go into overdrive, and viewers are bombarded with an exciting battle. The battle between the humans and fairies has several shocking moments, but ends as it should. The returning actors are all wonderful once again, and Jolie meets her match in Pfeiffer, who proves to be far more evil than Maleficent, which proves to be a satisfying turn of events. I love how the film continues to convey how the love between Aurora and her fairy godmother has blossomed to mover of a mother/daughter relationship, and how Maleficent still calls Aurora “beastie.” The film has beautiful cinematography which results in plenty of cinematic “eye candy.” The fantasy land in this film, is one many movie fans would no doubt love to visit. The film is a joyous fantasy romp, and is one I highly recommend for fans of the fist film. Maleficent, as presented in “Maleficent: Mistress of Evil” is nothing of the sort. Now playing in theaters. (Rated PG)
Maleficent Mistress of Evil
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