And so, the film industry proceeds to deliver us another sequel that no one really asked for. ‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ is a prime example of this. The Angelina Jolie driven vehicle from Disney returns in a live-action retelling of ‘Sleeping Beauty’. Like it’s predecessor, this is also a dark and gritty film like all films were in 2014. The sequel picks up where the original left off, with Maleficent and Aurora returning together. Much to Maleficent’s chagrin, Aurora receives accepts a proposal from her Prince Phillip, this follows into Phillip’s family meeting with Maleficent and Aurora, family feuds ensue and Phillip’s mother Ingrith declares war on the fairy-like Moorfolk. The film is capable of teaching children that everyone is capable of change, and that no one has to be evil or good just because of what their fate declares. The characters are also presented as understanding and empathetic when it is necessary, providing a solid example for younger kids to follow.
Just like the original film, the sequel has an incredibly polished and distinct style to help it stand out from the current schlock of superhero movies at cinemas. This especially comes through in the excellent costume design and vibrant visuals that make the world of ‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ more tangible and lived in. The two central leads played by Angelina Jolie and Michelle Pfeiffer as Maleficent and Ingrith respectively are fantastic, with there being an incredible contrast and battle between their equally electric performances. But, despite the star-power behind the film, the writing and plot can’t quite keep up. The plot feels quite like a generic clashing of two sides and makes little effort to make each side compelling or sympathetic to the audience.
Nonetheless, this film is still much more inventive and imaginative than Disney’s recent set of live-action remakes but still manages to fall short. Ultimately this makes for a fairly mediocre movie with punchy style but little substance to back it up.
CRESCENT FINE FOODS.