Maleficent ***

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Run Time: 97 mins           Cert: PG

 

Synopsis: Betrayed and threatened, a fairy seeks revenge on a kingdom by cursing a young princess. 

 

The film begins when Maleficent (Angelina Jolie), a young fairy, becomes friends with a boy named Stefan (Sharlto Copley). As they get older, he betrays her and helps to destroy the land she lives in. This leads Maleficent to become evil and set on revenge.

 

The story is completely different from the original Sleeping Beauty and doesn’t really work. However if the audience are able to disregard the original story, this version is enjoyable. Despite being predictable at times there are a number of twists and the ending is not what the viewer is likely to expect.

 

Jolie gives an excellent performance as the title character. She looks the part, clearly enjoys the role and is both entertaining and fun. Elle Fanning is pleasant to watch as Aurora and the pair work well together. Sharlto Copley gives an average performance as King Stefan, but his Scottish accent is not particularly good.

 

“Maleficent” also has comic relief in the form of the fairies played by Imelda Staunton, Lesley Manville and Juno Temple. Temple in particular shines as the youngest of the three.

 

The 3D effects are subtle but nice to look at. Colours are also well used despite the film’s dark themes and the costumes are nicely designed.

 

Overall, Maleficent is an enjoyable film with some good performances but does not do the original story justice.

 

 

Reviewed by Lesley Logan

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