Danger and I recently attended a 3D screening of the new Disney movie "Maleficent." I've noticed that a lot of people have been describing the movie as 'magnificent' - a fun play on words, and certainly one word that comes to mind for me, as well. But my review can be summed up in another word: unexpected.
"Maleficent" explores the untold story of Disney's most iconic villain from the classic "Sleeping Beauty" and the elements of her betrayal that ultimately turn her pure heart to stone. Driven by revenge and a fierce desire to protect the moors over which she presides, Maleficent cruelly places an irrevocable curse upon the human king's newborn infant Aurora. As the child grows, Aurora is caught in the middle of the seething conflict between the forest kingdom she has grown to love and the human kingdom that holds her legacy. Maleficent realizes that Aurora may hold the key to peace in the land and is forced to take drastic actions that will change both worlds forever.
The writers did a fabulous job of exploring the "Maleficent" story and character. Angelina Jolie didn't just portray Maleficent - she was Maleficent.
My initial expectation of this movie was that it was going to be very dark and a bit scary. Some of the previews made me shudder (especially the ones featuring Lana Del Rey's eerie version of "Once Upon A Dream!") Without giving away any spoilers, I will say this: I cannot think of a single dark scene that was not also represented in the previews.
Things To Watch For
There are some magical creatures that could look scary to small children, and a few brief battle scenes. I found the battle scenes to be very tame, so I had no problem with Danger watching (and those little eyes stayed glued to the screen the entire time!)
The one thing that concerned me was when Maleficent lost her wings. While the actual act is not shown at all, Maleficent's reaction to the realization that her wings were gone was absolutely gut-wrenching. I wanted to cry along with her! Danger seemed to handle this scene better than I did, but I could see that she was a little concerned.
My overall opinion of the film is this: If your child is accustomed to Disney movies, then this one should be just fine. That said, my child doesn't scare easily, so my scale might be a bit different than yours. Let's hear from Danger:
"Maleficent" From A 5 Year Old's Perspective
To sum it up: She loved the movie, but she didn't like the part where Sleeping Beauty pricked her finger. Fair enough :)
Danger's first remarks after the film was over? She told me that she loved the movie - and could we please buy it when it comes out on DVD so we could watch it over and over. HA!
Free Printable "Maleficent" Activities!
Keep the "Maleficent" excitement going at home long after you've returned from the theater. Download and print these fun and FREE Disney Maleficent Activity Sheets for your child to enjoy any time.
I would love to see Disney explore some more of the classic villain tales. "Maleficent" exceeded my expectations and gave me something that I didn't know I needed: a reminder that evil isn't born - it's created. There's got to be a life lesson in that!
Do you plan to watch "Maleficent" this summer?
I received complimentary admission to a screening of "Maleficent" in exchange for an honest review. All opinions come from my personal experience.