Thanks for pointing that out R Shea, he's one I missed. The film is chock full o' Western NY natives. Composer David Shire's from Buffalo too!
While this reviewer can't endorse egotistically-directed, pseudo-spiritual adventure stories, he wholeheartedly recommends Donuts Delite, at Empire and Culver.
Hi Kathryn! Thanks for the comment! You may be right, but I'm hoping that by the time I AM in the target demographic, I'll have maintained my sense of humor about it. The movie does, that's for sure. You can definitely expect to find a more than a few jokes in the same vein throughout the film, so be prepared for that once you do see it.
Right. Yes, those are all words that also mean brave, but they're lacking that same (at the risk of sounding SUPER pretentious) je ne sais quoi—that bite, you know?
But I do see your point, and I absolutely agree.
Hey Kate, thanks for the comment and I'm so glad you enjoy my reviews! You're absolutely right, and it's something I admit that I hadn't considered. It's silly, but the connection to being "manly" didn't even occur to me, I just wanted a word for "courageous" that had a bit more of a crude bite to it, since that's in keeping with the film's tone. I appreciate you calling my attention to this though!
Now I'm racking my brain: is there a non-gendered or even a female equivalent?
Hi Clark, I appreciate you taking the time to write in and respond to my review. I always appreciate the feedback, However, I have to disagree with your belief that I went into this film with the expectation that I'd be seeing the exact same story told in Disney's original "Sleeping Beauty." Of course I didn't. My only expectations for "Maleficent" were that I'd see a movie that told a compelling story and honored a character who has long been been one of my favorites. Simply put, I felt the film failed to deliver on either account.
As for the idea that I couldn't accept the "dismembering of her person" or the "betrayal for the sake of power gain" as reason enough for Maleficent's rage, of course those are perfectly valid reasons. But the point remains (and perhaps I was unclear on this) that her transition was completely reactionary, based on her treatment by the man she loved. If the loss of her wings was to be the ultimate result, why couldn't it have been in a way that more befitted such a powerful and capable character? Say, losing them in battle? Wouldn't that have been an equally valid reason for her anger toward those that took them from her?
A simple search of the internet will tell you that I'm hardly the only person that interpreted the scene of Stefan taking Maleficent's wings as a metaphor for rape. Intentional or not (and I'd argue it is) the fact is that those connotations are there, and the idea that I'm simply trying to sexualize the scene for my readers is insulting.
Regardless, the fundamental reason for my disappointment with the film is that the decision was made to alter one of the most memorable Disney villains of all time in order to make her more likeable. The fact that the film was made in the first place shows that Disney knows how beloved the character of Maleficent is to many people. So why change her most defining characteristic? She's evil. Giving her a backstory and motivation for her villainy doesn't have to change that fact. By doing so, it seems to say that audiences won't accept a film whose protagonist is "bad." You only have to look at the popularity of television shows like "Breaking Bad" or "The Sopranos," both centered around male antiheroes, to see that's not true.
It was my hope that in "Maleficent," I'd see a film that found imaginative ways to flesh out an already great character in ways that made her even better and more interesting. In my mind, the film failed to do that.
Hopefully that clears things up. Thanks for reading!
Hi LaDawn, as the person who puts together the list of film openings each week, I apologize for any inconvenience the missing theaters may have caused. City goes to press on Tuesdays, and sometimes theaters haven't finalized their schedules for the following week at that point (that sometimes doesn't happen until late Tuesday or even early Wednesday). I try to wait as long as possible, but at a certain point I just have to go with what I have.
However, the Movie Times section on our website (http://www.rochestercitynewspaper.com/roch…) is updated multiple times a day with movie theater listings AND showtimes as the information becomes available, so definitely check that out!
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