Maleficent Review and Blu-ray Features
30 May 2014
Behind the Scene and other Major Plot Points
Maleficent in Disney D23 Expo
On the second day of the Disney D23 Expo at the Anaheim Convention Center, Saturday, 10 August 2013, Angelina Jolie admitted that she scared little kids while in costume on the set of Maleficent, with one kid actually saying, “Mommy, please get the mean witch to stop talking to me.” She adds that her daughter, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt, played young Aurora, and was the only kid who wasn’t scared of her.
Maleficent’s menacing look
Angelina Jolie worked very closely with the costume and make-up designers to develop Maleficent’s menacing look. Disney executives objected, hoping to take advantage of Jolie’s beauty in marketing the film, but the actress insisted that the character maintain the scarier look of the animated incarnation from Sleeping Beauty (1959).
Angelina Jolie’s insistence to do the movie
Angelina Jolie was definitely interested to be in the movie to begin with. She repeatedly stated it was because 1.) she grew up on Disney movies as a child, especially Sleeping Beauty (1959); she was quite fond of the character Maleficent: “Since I was a little girl, Maleficent was always my favorite,” Jolie said. “I was terrified of her, but I was also drawn to her. I wanted to know more about her. She had this elegance and grace, yet she was wonderfully, deliciously cruel,” 2.) she wanted to do a movie in which her children can go see her in, as well as the fact that her children really also wanted her to be in the movie, 3.) the beauty, warmth, complexity, and strong intelligence of the script, and 4.) she was very impressed with Maleficent’s characterization for this film. In fact, Jolie also served as an executive producer on the film
Characters resemblances to Sleeping Beauty Movie
All the actors and actresses in Maleficent were partly chosen to be in the movie based on their uncanny resemblances and/or likeness to their respective character counterparts in Disney’s Sleeping Beauty (1959).
Fairies in the movie
In order to give the the fairies a proper feeling of featherweight and agility, the three actresses who performs the fairies, Lesley Manville, Imelda Staunton and Juno Temple, spent three weeks filming motion capture, while being guided by artists of Cirque du Soleil. Lesley Manville called this experience “just fantastic”.
About the Director
Angelina Jolie also said that “having a director (Robert Stromberg) coming from the world of production design really helped pull me into the fairy tale world. The film is beautiful but also has a sexy, dark edge because the story is coming from the point of view of a villain.”
Does Maleficent have wings?
Yes and No. She was born with wings, but they are stolen from her in the beginning of the film. At the end of the movie (over 16 years after they are taken from her), Princess Aurora breaks the case the wings are trapped in and Maleficent gets them back
What happens to Queen Leila?
There is a brief scene in which King Stefan is informed that his wife is dying of an unspecified illness. Stefan simply brushes off the information and focuses mainly on his revenge plot against Maleficent. It is implied that Queen Leila dies off screen.
Do Aurora and Prince Phillip fall in love?
It is actually left ambiguous. They have a brief bonding moment the first time they meet, but they do not connect again until the very end. Phillip does attempt to kiss Aurora (by order of the fairies) in order to wake her, but the attempt is unsuccessful, showing that Phillip was not truly in love with her. However, they do share a smile at the end of the film, hinting at the possibility of a relationship.
RT/Meta Critic Review
“Maleficent” is a fascinating spin on an old tale that gives us the unique opportunity to explore the story from a different point of view. (Click here to see)
Maleficent‘s Blu-ray presentation sparkles. Disney’s latest is a spellbinding affair, producing a clean, but not sterile, image that’s bounding with vibrant brilliance and crisply defined details in every shot. General image clarity is striking across the board, and both digital and practical visuals reap the benefits. Skin textures are impeccably complex, revealing every minor pore and line and bit of makeup powder to eye-catching perfection. Leaves, wooden details at the cottage where Aurora is raised, clothing lines, and terrain are beautifully reproduced to exacting detail. Colors are bold and consistently so. The palette is a joyously vibrant place in the film’s brighter scenes, with multicolored adornments, landscapes, and other small details abundant. Reproduction is exacting, and even lower-light scenes reveal a natural palette influenced only by the relative absence of light. Speaking of, black levels are deep and pure, while flesh tones never betray natural, or makeup-defined, shades. The image is stable and technically flawless, with even dense fog no match for Disney’s 1080p transfer. Visually, this is about as good as it gets.
Maleficent‘s DTS-HD Master Audio 7.1 lossless soundtrack won’t lull listeners to sleep. While it’s not a blaring earful of an experience, its elegance and balance will leave listeners satisfied. Musical clarity is a strong point, with richly defined notes flowing into the stage from throughout the range and across every one of the seven main speakers. The subwoofer chimes in to offer a deep, but not rumbly or overpowered, supportive low end. Ambient effects are effectively transparent, so well integrated that they’re not so much noticed as they are subconsciously appreciated, whether during outdoor scenes or drab castle interiors. Battle sequences rise to the occasion with powerful, but not overpowered, mayhem, delivering precise and sweeping effects both, as well as a nicely defined chaotic din and a strong bass line, in perfect harmony. Dialogue reproduction is smoothly delivered and accurately focused in the center channel. Overall, this is a top-flight presentation from Disney.
Maleficent contains a handful of bonus featurettes and deleted scenes. Inside the case buyers will also find a DVD copy as well as a code for a downloadable digital copy.
- Aurora: Becoming a Beauty (1080p, 4:53): A look at Elle Fanning’s love of the original film, her casting, her work in shaping the character, and “sleeping” in the film.
- From Fairy Tale to Feature Film (1080p, 8:13): A look at the writing process by sourcing the original material, fleshing out the story and characters, and alterations made from the original animated film.
- Building an Epic Battle (1080p, 5:48): An inside look into the making of one of the film’s largest battle scenes.
- Classic Couture (1080p, 1:34): A short look at Maleficent costume details.
- Maleficent Revealed (1080p, 4:45): A piece that recounts the story and shows special effects progression and behind the scenes footage along the way.
- Deleted Scenes (1080p): Stefan in King’s Chamber (2:34), Pixies Seek Asylum (1:51), Pixie Idiots (0:22),Diaval Asks About the Curse (1:00), and Suitor (0:51).