Thursday, 19 June 2014

Films for Thoughts on Thursday: Maleficent


This is a weekly meme that I am hosting here at Reviews from a Bookworm. I own over 500 books, I'mn a book blogger so it's kind of obvious that I love books. But the one thing I own more of than books is DVDs, I love movies, TV shows, musicals. So I think it's time to include a weekly movie review on the blog. To take part all you have to do is share a movie review once a week, link back to Reviews from a Bookworm and add your link to the linky tool.


This weeks movie review will be for:


Maleficent 


I have seen quite a lot of people praising Maleficent and talking about how much they loved it. It made me start to question my own opinion and maybe I had been too harsh. But, I hadn't, this movie just wasn't to my liking and I didn't feel too satisfied with it when I left the cinema. Maleficent is probably my favourite Disney villain and I was so excited to finally get her back story. Angelina Jolie is a talented actress and I think she played the part to perfection. But, in my opinion, the script and plot just wasn't strong enough and she outshone it all. I am definitely in the minority with this opinion so, if Maleficent is something you are looking forward to seeing, still give the movie a chance as you will probably love it. I am clearly just a terribly moody person and wanted it to end horribly. To be fair, both my friends ended up not liking it either - so, technically, I'm not alone.

I urge you all to still go see it if it's something you're excited to see. Apparently we just wanted a dark, miserable film where Maleficent was as evil as she was in the original. I know a lot of you have seen and loved it, so I'm sure you will never be able to trust my movie judgement again, but I can't deal with all the lovey dovey stuff that's in this film.

Damn you, Disney! Maleficent is a V.I.L.L.A.I.N
Maybe my biggest issue with it is that I was expecting something darker and more sinister. Don't get me wrong, I know this is Disney and have come to expect happy, happy, happy but the trailer for this had felt darker than most Disney films. Sadly, it's yet another misleading trailer that hides that this is a rather cheesy, lovey dovey movie at it's core. I was expecting this to be a story of how Maleficent became the villain we came to know and love from Sleeping Beauty. Not the story of how Sleeping Beauty was all a lie and Maleficent is actually the good guy. I love the woman, but I wanted her kicking arse and taking names. Sorry, not sorry.

They made Maleficent do a Grinch! Nooooooooooo!!!
The film shows us the story of how Maleficent went from a happy, winged fairy to the dark, bitter, wingless villain we met in Sleeping Beauty. Maleficent lives in the Moors, which is her magical home that borders along a human kingdom. As a child she meets Stefan, who is a peasant, and the two become great friends. As they grow older he becomes more interested in gaining favour with the King, who has no heir and is looking for someone to prove their worth in order to take his place. Maleficent falls in love with Stefan and is devastated when he betrays her in order to convince the King that he has killed her and, in doing so, gain the throne. This changes Maleficent, who has lost so much more than just her wings. After this it begins to go into the general storyline of the original movie - the King has a daughter, Maleficent curses her and they try to hide her to prevent the curse from coming true.

One thing that did end up bothering me, which may sound really weird, is the casting of Elle Fanning as Aurora. She's a really pretty girl but I don't think she had the right look for a girl who has had a spell cast on her that gives her the gift of beauty. I just expected the character to be a lot more beautiful, but that's probably because I keep thinking back to the original Disney film. My friend came out saying the exact same thing and when I spoke to my sister she commented on it as well. Acting wise I thought she was okay but I never really believed her as Aurora at all. I don't know what it was but she never clicked for me. I think part of it was the accent, which sounded rather strange and bugged me the whole movie.

Super creepy!
Special effects in this weren't actually that impressive to me. There were some aspects that were incredibly well done but, compared to other movies I have seen recently, the special effects over all were pretty disappointing. From Maleficent's flying to whatever they were trying to accomplish with the three fairies. It just didn't work for me. They looked like those bobblehead dolls you can get. Also, why did the three fairies need to have there names changed from the original Disney film? I also wondered why one fairy never gave Aurora a gift in the end, she sort of forgets all about it. I also feel that, in a movie where they make a villain a hero, it's no coincidence they have Imelda Staunton as Knotgrass, the pink fairy - as she played Umbridge in HP who was a villain who wore pink.

I loved the introduction of Diaval, who plays the role of Maleficent's raven. In this she saves his life and uses her powers to transform him into human form, in return he pledges to serve her for life. He becomes the person she confides in and who she uses to help keep track of King Stefan and Aurora. He was a brilliant character, but for the longest time I thought he might end up being Aurora's true love in the end. Not sure why I thought that but I did. Freaked me out a bit as he's technically a bird / old guy but still. I fell in love with that character in the end and sort of wanted him to be her true love. I'm clearly a terrible person! I shipped them people, I shipped them! Actually, I think I just shipped Diaval, he could have got with himself and I would have been happy.

There is no arguing that Maleficent steals the show, without such a brilliant performance than I probably would have been as out of it as Aurora was for most of this movie. In my opinion, the script is really lacking and I wasn't completely satisfied with the lovey dovey ending. I love happy endings so I don't get why I was so unhappy with this one, I just was. I am actually scared to see what they do with the live action version  of Beauty and the Beast after this, they'll probably have Beast killed at the end and Beauty marries Gaston. I shudder at the thought.



6/10 Butterflies

It's not a terrible film but it's just not the film I was hoping to see. This wasn't nearly dark enough. I didn't want to see Maleficent getting feelings, I wanted to see her become the villain. I loved Sleeping Beauty's Maleficent and think Angelina Jolie did such a brilliant job playing her. I hate that it seems people's grumbles about the bad messages Disney sends (it doesn't) have got to them. They made this a movie all about women but made the men subservient or power hungry or liars or manipulative or just completely useless. How is that any better? I admit that Angelina Jolie did a fantastic job and was my favourite part of the whole film. I also really loved the character of Diaval and fell in love with that character a little bit. 



Next Week:

The Fault in Our Stars
The one that's based on a book, obviously!





I have been meaning to take part in both of the following memes for a while now, so its nice to finally be able to get to them. I will be taking part in Reading is Fun Again's Thoughtful Thursday and Okay, Let's Read's  Thursday Thoughts, picking between them or doing both topics each week.



Rereads

Do you/have you ever reread books/a book? What do you look for when rereading a book? What have you found in the way of changes in your opinions when you reread a book, any? What books have you reread, if any? Would you ever reread a book that you didn't like the first time around?

Okay, before I started blogging I was a huge rereader. If I read something and absolutely love it then of course I am going to want to reread it. Ever since Harry Potter & the Philosopher's Stone came into my life I have reread the HP series every year during Summer, last year being  the first time I couldn't do it, which sucks. I am hoping to find the time to do it this year because I miss HP in my life.
I haven't ever really considered rereading a book that I didn't like because I didn't see my opinion changing. But, I did reread TFIOS and my opinion changed a lot. The first time I read it, I enjoyed the book but I didn't love it as much as everyone else seemed too and I didn't cry once. But, with the movie coming out, I decided to try it again and loved it so much more this time and I had tears in my eyes so much whilst reading it this time. 
I don't want to list the books I have reread because there are literally hundreds of them, I was a big rereader before I started blogging. I definitely want to try and make time for rereads because they are definitely great reads. 



Book Boyfriends & Book BFFs

Do have a character crushes? Are there characters that you want to be your BFF?

Who doesn't have character crushes and books BFFs? Seriously, if there is someone out there that doesn't then there is something wrong with them. Naming all of the characters I have crushes on would be quite embarrassing for us all, it would be far too long for one thing. The first people that popped in to my mind were Roar from Under the Never Sky, Jace Garret from My Life Next Door and Ron from Harry Potter. Yup, I love Ron. I can't help it, I love that boy! 
As for best friends forever? I don't know, that list would probably be even longer. It's not my fault though, there are far too many awesome characters in books to choose from. 






One chance to win a Kindle Fire HDX, to enter go here.

You can also enter my June giveaway, where 3 winners have the chance to win any 2 of the books I have reviewed in 2014 so far. For full details go here.






Five Friday Favourites: Favourite Parents In Fiction
My Weekly Book Haul: 14/06/2014
My Last Kiss by Bethany Neal: 2/5 Review
Top Ten Tuesday: Summer TBR List
Dangerous Boys by Abigail Haas:  4.5/5 Review





26 comments:

  1. Oooooo, excited for your thoughts on The Fault in Our Stars, need to see that sooooon! This movie review was fantastic and you've delved into why I'm not sure I want to see this, in the original story, she was sinister, cruel and did what she wanted because she could, not through revenge. Disappointed with the affects to, what a shame. Glad it wasn't a total waste though :) Reread wise, I've only reread a few books, The Night Circus, which is beautiful, have you read it yourself? and Harry Potter series, but I do plan to reread others. I don't reread that many because I tend to remember what's happened, if it did happen a year ago! Book boyfriends, yes, too many, waaaaaay too many, oops.

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    1. I have to admit to enjoying TFIOS, but not loving it. It wasn't a total waste but I was left disappointed and I won't be watching it again. I know, I didn't want them to change her character like that or say that all of Sleeping Beauty was basically a lie.

      I have never read The Night Circus but have been tempted to try it, hear amazing things about that one.

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  2. I totally thought Diaval was going to end up Aurora's true love at the end also! I was like ooo it's going to be him. I'm glad it worked out as a family type love instead of a romantic love though. Hey never think you're being to harsh everything floats someone's boat differently!

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    1. I ended up feeling disappointed that he wasn't in the end! I think he actually loved her more in a family way too, he wanted to watch and protect her. It just came across as more at times but I don't think it was intentional.

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  3. Eeeek!! Can't wait to see your review of TFIOS!! I thought it was pretty bad (I didn't like the book though) but it had a FEW things that I thought was ok. I laughed hysterically through all the sad scenes while everyone else in the theatre was sobbing their hearts out, so that was a bit awkward!

    Lovely post, Charnell!! xx

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    1. I have to admit to not being the biggest fan of it either. I found the really emotional scenes had me giggling more than anything else. Oh dear! And the girls in the cinema were just embarrassing.

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  4. Aw that stinks when it's just not what you were hoping for or expecting. Book or movie. Shame they didn't get the script/plot up to snuff to really make it shine.

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    1. I had high hopes but it just wasn't all that great.

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  5. "Maybe my biggest issue with it is that I was expecting something darker and more sinister." I completely agree! This wasn't a bad film by any means, but I guess we both agree that it just didn't have the UMPH it needed, right? And I also thought Jolie's acting was fantastic! She definitely carried the movie and made it her own, which was wonderful. Thanks for the recap! <3

    ~ Zoe @ The Infinite To-Read Shelf

    P.S. I totally thought Diaval was going to be Aurora's true love too! Ha!

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    1. Nope, definitely no umph to it :( Jolie carried that entire film... and Diaval ;) I had a soft spot for him.

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  6. Wow, it's cool that you do more than one feature at a time! I have to go se Maleficent when I come back from vacation, I haven't had time to go see it before. Can't wait to see Angelina in this role!
    Kaja @ Of Dragons and Hearts (http://ofdragonsandhearts.com)

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    1. She is perfect for the sole, in my opinion, so it was sad she didn't get a better script to work with. I hope you end up enjoying it :)

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  7. But wait... The whole HP series must be like 4000 thousands page! It must take your the whole summer! :D

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    1. Stupidly, I once set myself the challenge of reading ALL 7 in 2 weeks before the final movie. I ended up doing it, but it was basically all I did for two weeks. And I was reading the last few chapters in the cinema before the adverts started. I won't be doing that again ;)

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  8. We just saw this on Tuesday and I do have to agree with you about the casting. I was expecting someone more too. She was almost too innocent looking to be a true beauty, if that makes sense? I don't know, maybe I was expecting her to be younger and more mature by the time she turned 16. I did love the movie though and I was secretly glad it wasn't so scary that my youngest was going to have nightmares (which she hasn't).

    As for rereads, I use to have time to do this but since blogging, I rarely do anymore. I will sometimes rescan a book in a series before starting the next if it has been awhile since the last one released but that is about the extent of my rereading anymore.

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    1. I know, I need to remember that it's a movie that's aimed at children... not twenty-two year olds. Haha. I just expecting more from Aurora, more in general and I think I expected her to seem more mature as well.

      I know, blogging has definitely cut down my rereading by about 95%. Barely do it any more unless I really have to.

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  9. I'm starting to see what you mean about blogging putting a halt on further rereads. I've been receiving my first couple of book review requests and am already having trouble finding time for books off my TBR list.

    And there's nothing wrong with having a Ron crush. I also seem to always crush on the adorably awkward and kindhearted characters. Take Stiles from "Teen Wolf" for example (though I know that's not a book). I freaking LOVE him and want one of him so bad. Haha.

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    1. Me too, I think those types of characters are my favourites and I get crushes on them all the time. I hear a lot about Teen Wolf, keep getting tempted to try it.

      Blogging has cut my rereading by like 95%, only do it when I really have to.

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  10. I haven't seen the movie yet, but when I saw it was PG, I knew it couldn't be very dark. It would have been interesting for it to have been darker, but yeah, with Disney, they have to make sure the movie works for younger audiences.

    Rereading…there are certain books I like to reread and I feel like I reread a lot of books because my book memory is horrible and when a new book comes out in a series, I usually reread the earlier ones since otherwise I would have no clue what was going on.

    And book boyfriends…I have too many to mention! Jase is one of my favorites. And then JLA always writes such wonderful guys…Daemon and Aiden are my two favorites. ~Pam

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    1. I just wish it could have been a little darker! Disney need more 12A movies ;)

      I have to reread a lot because my book memory sucks as well! It's time consuming but I would be utterly lost otherwise. Happy I'm not the only person with that problem.

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  11. I am really looking forward to seeing Maleficent and sort of embellishing the story that we all know about Sleeping Beauty. Too bad it wasn't the dark story you were looking forward to though!

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    1. I hope you really love it! I am surprised I didn't love it more but it just didn't work for me in the end.

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  12. I really want to see this film and can't wait until I do! I have heard mixed reviews of this, some people love it and some people ended up disappointed, but I still want to see it! I've heard J-Lo acts Maleficent fabulously, although the prince and princess were less good in the film. I will be interested to see what I think of it once I've seen it...

    http://olivia-savannah.blogspot.nl/2014/06/seraphina-book-review.html

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    1. Angelina is definitely the best part of the whole film, everything else just left me feeling disappointed it. Very excited to see if you end up loving it, I really hope you do.

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  13. I was torn about this movie. Pros; it's fantasy, it's from a story I know, it's got Elle Fanning in it =D and... it's FANTASY! XD But the Cons what that it looked boring. Nothing in the trailer suggested that, for a retelling from the villain's POV, it would actually be interesting. So again this review fulfilled my (usually bleak) expectations, as your reviews seem to do a lot, LOL.

    Ending a few years back, I reread a fair bit. Now I'm trying to catch up on the (soon-not-to-be) new fantasy books falling left right and center from publishing houses.

    HP gets me too emotional. I've only actually read the whole series once, as the books came out (well, from the later ones) and i can't bring myself to read it again yet =s T4S! Power to the blog <3

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    1. Haha, I am always so miserable and moody in my negative reviews! I can't help it, but I am glad it helped you. It was definitely pretty boring at times and didn't live up to my expectations at all.

      Haha, I love rereading Harry Potter but it can be a painful experience. I still cry from beginning to end when reading HP7.

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