TL; DR– Great movie, but not a great retelling. 87%
Summary-How about a story from the other side? Maleficent is the story of the evil witch from Sleeping Beauty. Maleficent starts off as a fey creature from a land locked in war with the land of men. She is tricked, mutilated, and driven to evil cursing the first born of the human king. But, how does the story play out looking from the other side?
Story– I have mixed feelings on this one. The movie by itself is awesome. I liked the plot. The world is consistent, and the characters fit it in. BUT, this is a retelling of another movie. All the major elements from the first movie are there, but they don’t fit with how this movie changes them. The elements are a bit too scattered to have the two work as being from different sides of the same coin. Wicked did a god job of making the two sides work, this one gets close but almost falls into the uncanny valley of one looking like another. The two are there, but as mirrors of one another they just don’t “work” on some levels for me. 3.5/5
Actors-All the actors do an amazing job, but a lot of them are not give enough time. You have Jolie doing an excellent job being a fairy, then evil queen, and finally a redemptive angel. Copley does a good job slowly slipping into crazy too. Sleeping beauty gets a bit of a roll, but it feels like she’s there pretty much to move those other two set pieces around one another. 4.5/5
Cinematography– Looks great. All the characters look like they should. The kings growing madness is reflected in his castle and the queens anger is reflected in her fey world. As those actors/characters change so does their world. Well done CGI. 5/5
Summary– This is an amazing stand alone move, but it’s not a standalone movie. As a semi-sequel, I felt the plot was a bit off. The actors and cinematography are booth great. If you want a good Disney movie with a bit more adult themes this summer, I’d check this one out! 87%