Archive for the ‘Robert Stromberg’ Category

Never Clip a Fairy…

Maleficent

maleficent_ver3

Director: Robert Stromberg

Cast: Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, Sharlto Copley, Sam Riley, Kenneth Cranham, Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple, Leslie Manville

The classic Disney tale of Sleeping Beauty is gorgeously reinvented entirely from the perspective of the jilted fairy Malificent who after a brief romance with a young teenage boy, Stefan soon discovers humanity’s tendency for greed and ambition.

maleficent_ver13
Oscar winner Angelina Jolie’s magnetic screen presence reverberates throughout this spectacular fantasy as she transforms from an innocent though powerful fairy to an evil, caustic fairy who avenges the older Stefan, played by District 9’s Sharlto Copley, who in his ambition to become King of the Human Realms, clips Malificent’s powerful wings while she is sleeping.

*
Malificent in turn seeks revenge on the nearby kingdom with a spectacular entrance at the christening of Stefan’s only baby daughter, the cute and adorable Aurora, casting a spell on the child that by the time she turns 16 she will have pricked her finger on a spinning wheel and fall into a treacherous sleep, only to be broken by the kiss of her true love. Naturally Stefan bundles the child off to a safe haven in the countryside with the help of three hapless fairy guardians, played by Imelda Staunton, Juno Temple and Leslie Manville away from Malificent and any lethal needles from nearby spinning wheels, most of which have been tossed into a dungeon and burned.

maleficent_ver9

Meanwhile the war between the fairies and humans intensifies as Stefan sends his burly soldiers to destroy Malificent’s magical realm only to be met by an impenetrable wall of thorns. Curiosity gets the better of the teenage Aurora, a luminous performance by the new Hollywood It girl Elle Fanning (Somewhere, Super 8, Ginger and Rosa) who ventures into Malificent’s domain and naturally meets the menacing if not curious evil fairy who soon harbours an unnatural affection for the cursed youth.

Malificent is ably assisted by Diaval, a changeling creature, played by Sam Riley which enables her to keep an eye on Stefan’s Kingdom.
The stage is set for a showdown between Malificent and King Stefan with the wandering Aurora a luscious pawn in their bitter fight representative of eternal unrequited love.

*
What makes this cinematic retelling of Sleeping Beauty truly astounding is the spell bounding special effects and an astounding powerful performance by the dazzling Angelina Jolie, whose star power clearly is the main reason Disney Studios choose to reinvent a darker more accessible version of the original animated Sleeping Beauty classic.

*
Malificent is dazzling, intriguing and while retaining its childhood charm, balances a subtle attraction for older audiences, who prefer their fairies darker and vengeanceful. Angelina Jolie is central to this fine balancing act and the scenes between her and Fanning as Aurora are especially infused with delicacy and dimension, making Malificent one of the more complex and sympathetic hero/villain characters ever created in the pantheon of modern day fairy and folklore tales.

*
Malificent is highly recommended viewing not just for Angelina Jolie’s powerful and superb performance but also for the brilliant special effects orchestrated by first time director Robert Stromberg who served as a Visual Effects Supervisor on such films as 2012, The Hunger Games and Shutter Island. Watch out for newcomer Australian actor Brenton Thwaites as the naive Prince Phillip aka Prince Charming.

 

Film Directors & Festivals
Reviews and Awards
Review Calender
April 2020
M T W T F S S
« Mar    
 12345
6789101112
13141516171819
20212223242526
27282930  
  • Disney to Furlough Some Employees Starting April 19
    The Walt Disney Co. will start the process of putting some employees on furlough status as of April 19 given that there is “no clear indication” when its theme parks and related businesses will be able to reopen because of the coronavirus pandemic. Disney said in a statement that furloughed employees will still retain their […]
    Cynthia Littleton
  • Why LeVar Burton Is Launching a Live-Streaming Reading Series on Twitter: ‘I’m a Storyteller’
    LeVar Burton, known to many Americans as the longtime host of PBS’s “Reading Rainbow,” wants to spread the love during the coronavirus crisis with a new story-reading series he’s launching on Twitter — for kids and adults. Burton says he plans to host three “LeVar Burton Reads” sessions a week on Twitter (at @levarburton): Mondays […]
    Todd Spangler
  • Tekashi 6ix9ine Gets Early Release From Prison Due to Coronavirus Vulnerability
    Rapper Daniel “Tekashi 6ix9ine” Hernandez will be released from prison immediately over concerns for his health amidst the coronavirus pandemic, according to court documents obtained by Page Six. Hernandez was sentenced in December to two years in prison and set for an early release on July 31. However, due to growing worry about the impact […]
    Ellise Shafer
  • Remembering Adam Schlesinger, a Friend and Fellow Songwriter Who ‘Wanted Everyone to Win’
    I first met Adam 14 years ago outside the Juice Bar in Nantucket. I quickly introduced myself because my awkward gawking would’ve made any ordinary person uncomfortable. I’d been a fan for years. Like most songwriters, I was completely in awe of his power pop songbook. From “That Thing You Do” and “Stacy’s Mom” to […]
    Shirley Halperin
  • L.A. Orchestra Musicians’ Lost Wages Could Add Up to $4 Million for March
    The shutdown of production was devastating to Los Angeles’ music community, just as it has been for every aspect of TV- and movie-making. But creative thinking is putting some studio musicians back to work. John Acosta, president of Local 47 of the American Federation of Musicians, projects that lost wages due to the cancellation of […]
    Shirley Halperin
  • Read More
    Different providers offer different cell phones, so take a look at the options from each provider to choose the right one for you. You may also want to look into any promotions that the providers have to offer, such as free cell phones in exchange for signing a contract. Tags: 2gmhass90