Friday, March 28, 2014

New 'Maleficent' TV Spot Emphasizes Fantasy Creatures (Dobby, Is That You?)

I always worry about fantasy films, especially big budget ones in which the creators/directors seem to feel the need to show you  every bit of magic (which, ironically, usually lessens the wonder*). As gorgeous as certain recent large fantasy films have been (are) the storytelling/translation to big screen of the importance and "solid necessity" of 'other'-like creatures tends to get lost. Either it becomes all about the amazing effects and the writing suffers, or the writing is ok but the visuals are cringe-worthy.

Maleficent is looking pretty (damn) great overall to date but I still worry that we're going to be able to watch all these creatures - fairies, sprites, trolls, tree-people and more - without dismissing aspects.
With this latest TV spot, which puts a lot of the magical creatures side-by-side my effects-are-king concerns are rising again. My big concern: does this story REALLY need ALL of that?
I'm really hoping the answer to that is that it does, that all this effort in creating new creatures adds depth and scope to this world of Sleeping Beauty and Maleficent. Unfortunately we really won't know until we see it all in context.
Here's the spot:
 One thing that's been really interesting about the huge - and highly successful - live action Cinderella preview this week is that one thing is clear: though the effects are coming, they are not what will be holding Branagh's Cinderella together. Despite the preview being largely effects-free and not even having final footage for some of the scenes shown, the response has been ecstatic! And yes, I'm a little surprised by that. While a live action version of the animated classic is a shoe-in for a certain built-in fan base, it's not the hard-core Disney fandom-people who are most excited. It's the (usually very jaded) critics.
But I'm rooting for Maleficent. Ms. Jolie has shown some very savvy thinking and is clearly smart about all aspects of filmmaking these days. Gone are the days of signing on to an 'easy film' for her. It's now apparent that she wants all her efforts - whether on screen or off - to be excellent, and to make a positive difference. My thumbs are still up for this one.

Here's the updated and official synopsis:
Crow's Nest Jewelry Maleficent Poster

Maleficent is the untold story of Disney's most iconic villain from the 1959 classic Sleeping Beauty. A beautiful, pure-hearted young woman, Maleficent has an idyllic life growing up in a peaceable forest kingdom, until one day when an invading army threatens the harmony of the land. Maleficent rises to be the land's fiercest protector, but she ultimately suffers a ruthless betrayal—an act that begins to turn her pure heart to stone. Bent on revenge, Maleficent faces an epic battle with the invading king's successor and, as a result, places a curse upon his newborn infant Aurora. As the child grows, Maleficent realizes that Aurora holds the key to peace in the kingdom—and perhaps to Maleficent's true happiness as well.
*Although it may lessen the wonder, the merchandising opportunities abound! 

(I admit it: one of my favorite things is a tavern mug from The Prancing Pony.) 

And Maleficent is just getting started. 

There's already a cosmetics line, costumes for kids created by Stella McCartney in collaboration with Angelina Jolie, new Funko Pop! figurines and Halloween costumes in the works. 

Today we also got our first look at these jewelry pieces being released from Crow's Nest Jewelry - starting at the tidy price of $5k a piece and ranging up to $20k...!

Source: HERE 

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