Review: “Maleficent” Blu-ray

maleficent-blu-ray-review

It goes without saying that Disney’s Maleficent was a huge box office success, and after all that success, it seems like it was an obvious smash hit. However, that wasn’t really the case and Maleficent was one of the most unexpected box office hits in 2014. It currently sits as the second-highest grossing film of the year, and as you watch the Blu-ray in the comforts of home, you are certainly reminded why.


Maleficent is a live action reimagining of the animated classic Sleeping Beauty. This modern remake places one of Disney’s most iconic villains in a completely different light: with sympathy. I’m not sure that’s exactly what screenwriter Linda Woolverton had in mind when she started, but in the Bonus Featurettes of the Blu-ray, she discusses that her motivation for writing the film was an in-depth exploration of Maleficent so we learn why she’d be so willing to condemn an innocent child. Woolverton’s views on the character present her as a woman that’s not just simply evil. Rather, she’s been severely betrayed by a man she loved, and is looking for revenge. It’s a look at all of the classic Grimm/Disney tale, but through the eyes of the villain, and this change in perceptive pulls you, and your previous ideas of Maleficent, in many directions.

At the beginning of the film, Maleficent is a young fairy (played by Isobelle Molloy) who really looks like she is loving life. She glides through the forests nearly carefree. We quickly discover that humans and fairies don’t have a great relationship, and as such, they clash whenever they come into contact. The still young and naive Maleficent, manages to form a bond with a young human named Stefan, and their feelings seem to transcend the difficulties that normally exist between humans and fairies.

Disney's MALEFICENT

However, Stefan is driven by power, and their relationship takes a tragic turn. The reigning human king is injured and humiliated by the now adult version of Maleficent (Angelina Jolie). He orders her death, and takes the order a step further by suggesting that anyone that kills her will be the heir to the throne. Stefan (Sharlto Copley) takes advantage of his friendship with Maleficent, and although he is actually unable to kill her, he drugs her so that she is unconscious and  cuts off her wings. He takes back her wings as a trophy, and proof, that he has killed the fairy.

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Maleficent is obviously distraught over the loss of her wings, and after some time goes by, Stefan becomes king and has a new daughter. Maleficent decides that this is the perfect time to seek her revenge and curses Stefan’s baby, Aurora, so that she’ll fall into a death-like sleep before her 16th birthday. I won’t spoil the ending, but as a Disney film, I’m sure you’ll probably understand where this ends up.

MALEFICENT

As I’ve come to expect from Disney, this Blu-ray is beautiful with a richly detailed presentation throughout, but there are a few scenes that we really enjoyed. Maleficent has a servant named Diaval (played by Sam Riley), and she can transform the servant into any type of creature she wishes. There is a scene in which she transforms him into a fire-breathing dragon that is amazing visually. During this action packed climax, the audio stands out as well. It’s possibly the best scene on the Blu-ray, and if you have a nice home theater setup, this would be an excellent way to showcase it to your friends and family. It’s scenes like this one that make a home theater worthwhile. There aren’t a great deal of Bonus Features, but what’s here is good. There are a few minutes of deleted scenes, and some “making of” style of titles.

MALEFICENT

Maleficent is excellent in so many ways and it’s a great family movie that you can enjoy this holiday season. When I originally heard that Angelina Jolie was the choice for Maleficent, I wasn’t sure exactly what to think. It wasn’t a negative feeling necessarily, I just wasn’t sure how she would work in the role. It turns out that Angelina Jolie was the perfect choice as Maleficent, and this role has provided her with the biggest hit of her career to date. Although I didn’t mention it earlier, the entire cast was good in the film and Elle Fanning does a great job as Aurora as well, but this film is really about Maleficent, so I focused on her character for the review. With the success of this film, I can’t wait to see what Disney has in store for us with their upcoming live action remakes of other classics like Cinderella.

Maleficent Bonus Clips

Bringing the Curse to Life

Awkward Situation

Maleficent Revealed

Aurora: Complexities of Maleficent

Maleficent’s Wings

Disney Princess Party Crasher

 

Release Date:  November 4, 2014

Bonus Features:

Blu-ray Combo Pack, Digital HD/SD & Disney Movies Anywhere

  • From Fairy Tale to Feature Film – Reimagining Maleficent for a new generation
  • Building An Epic Battle –Creating the clash between Maleficent and King Henry’s Forces
  • Classic Couture – Examine Maleficent’s spellbinding head wraps and jewelry.
  • Maleficent Revealed – Explore the layers of extraordinary special effects.
  • Aurora: Becoming A Beauty – Elle Fanning reveals her lifelong love of Disney’s original animated classic.

Deleted Scenes:

  • “Stefan In King’s Chamber”
  • “Pixie Idiots”
  • “Diaval asks about the Curse”
  • “Pixies Seek Asylum”
  • “Suitor”
  • And More!

*Digital bonus offerings will vary per retailer

Disc Specifications:

Feature Run Time: Approximately 97 minutes
Rating: Feature Film: “PG” in U.S. and Canada (CE); G in Canada (CF)
Additional Bonus Features Not Rated

Aspect Ratio:Blu-ray Feature Film = 1080p High Definition/2.40:1

DVD = Widescreen 2.40:1 / Enhanced for 16×9 Televisions
Audio: Blu-ray Feature Film = 7.1, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio, Spanish and French Dolby Digital 5.1
DVD = English, French and Spanish 5.1 Dolby Digital, English 2.0 Descriptive Audio
Languages/Subtitles: English, Spanish & French
English Captions for the Deaf and Hearing Impaired

Disclosure: We received a complimentary copy of this movie. All opinions are our own.

Bryan Moore

Bryan is a theme park and coaster enthusiast. He enjoys spending time at his favorite parks in Central Florida: Walt Disney World and Universal Studios. In addition to theme parks, Bryan enjoys movies and gaming.

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