Maleficent tries to tell us the real story behind the Disney villain who curses Sleeping Beauty on her birthday. It follows the titular character from when she was a young fairy and attempts to explain why she is the way she is.
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent is superb; the movie does owe her a lot. By and large the film has received good reviews. It has also done incredibly well at the box office, opening at number one both here (UK) and in the US.
I'll be honest with you, the film at times is a little bit boring. It's beautiful production design and CGI but without Jolie's face and presence it would not have worked so well.
With sparse dialogue Jolie does a great job of reminding us just how good an actress she is; conveying all sorts of emotions with her facial expressions.
Jolie's English accent is lovely to hear. She gave an interview where she discussed how she practiced her voice and accent, and it's job well done. Also the fact that she's been missing on screen for four years may account for the large box office pull. She has been in animated features but not since Salt and The Tourist has she been in a live action film.
Sharlto Copley from District 9 is also in this film and in fact I did not recognize him until later. He plays Sleeping Beauty's father and I truly hated his character in this film which I guess is a testament to his acting.
Elle Fanning plays Aurora aka Sleeping Beauty and she's good. I think both the Fanning sisters come across well on screen. Aurora's younger self is played by Vivienne Jolie Pitt, Angelina and Brad Pitt's four year old. The scene she has with her mother is interesting as it almost feels as if you get a glimpse into the world of a domestic Angelina Jolie.
All in all, the film is an enjoyable 97 minutes and I would definitely recommend it.