Finding a way to retell a story that makes you want to experience it anew can be a difficult thing. I mean sure when you love something you don’t mind seeing it over and over, but what if it was the same story, but just not as good? That pretty much sums up a lot of the retelling of movies that have already be done, most of them are just not as good as the original. Disney has made a living lately on going back to the well again and while they seem to just doing a shot by shot remake in some cases, sometimes they take the path less traveled and give us something different.
2014’s Maleficent was the something different as it told the story of Sleeping Beauty, but from the perspective of the villain. Now we pick up where the last film left off, Aurora (Elle Fanning) is Queen of the Moors as her Godmother, Maleficent (Angelina Jolie) watches over her. Aurora has grown up and the time has come for Prince Phillip (Harris Dickinson) to ask for her hand, something Aurora is eager to give. Together they dream of uniting their kingdoms and their people, but before that happens the families must come together. Everyone is not so eager for change, none more so than Queen Ingrith ( Michelle Pfeiffer), who believes that the two can never coexist and wants to destroy Maleficent and the Moors. The rival families come to head and it’s a battle of good versus evil that will determine the fate of the kingdom.
Singing the praises of Maleficent if only for the idea to tell the story from the other side. Now that’s not saying it’s a good movie, but at least they tried something different that worked somewhat well mainly because of Jolie’s performance. Enter Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and you get a movie that feels like it shouldn’t exist at all. Gone is the originality of a story you know so well from a different angle, and it is replaced with you thinking to yourself “well at least the tried.” There are not many redeeming things about this second visit to the kingdom, except to say everything looks pretty. Also gone is any magic the first film showed, except if you count the fact they took a good cast and turned them into nothing special. Besides making the cast ordinary, they also delivered a story that is nothing if it’s forgettable at its best. Sometimes in life you do something good, but sometimes that is followed up with you taking it too far. Maleficent: Mistress of Evil is Disney taking a good idea too far and making you hope to never see a Maleficent movie ever again.