'Maleficent': The feminist retelling of a Disney villain

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  • Jamescmeyer Midwest City, USA, OK
    June 3, 2014 9:38 a.m.

    Not even my sister's high school play was free of the political ideology that demans women as being useless if they're not socially identical to men, and that men are "the bad guys" holding women back.

    I don't take live performance events seriously anymore.

  • iron&clay RIVERTON, UT
    May 31, 2014 12:56 p.m.

    Kingdoms have a unity of power at their apex.
    There are Kings and Queens,
    there are Princes and Princesses,
    there are Priests and Priestesses.

    It may be that their are God's and Goddesses.

    If you go bad, you are just a criminal.
    Male or female, you are still simply just a criminal.

    May 31, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    How about this ongoing message in media - Men - are inept, greedy, war loving monsters that do anything for power. Fools who are included as a joke.

    Fathers were once celebrated for their wisdom, wit and charter. They could be trusted to handle a crisis. Now they are viewed as buffoons acting as comic relief.

    If Malificent was true to life it would have made Stephan equally noble but trapped in a cultural quagmire, unable to find an answer to both worlds problems. How great would it have been if rather than war against one another, Stephan and Malificent had to fight together to overcome a powerful mistake they both made, together. After all Shakespeare made Romeo and Juliet both powerful characters.

    I have no problem with giving greater depth to women - but it does not have to be at the expense of men. Most of whom cotinue in real life to be reliable, honest and hard working.

    In the end - neither men nor women should be marginalized - it is not an either or - greatness is born in the celebration of both not just one.

  • carman Wasatch Front, UT
    May 31, 2014 8:43 a.m.

    Gender is an interesting topic to explore, and is rich with potential for literature and film. I do look forward to the day, however, when critics and artists alike focus more on the genders synergies together rather than which gender is strong, saving the other, evil, power-hungry, angry, right or wrong, jealous, etc. It seems that we are stilling paying a high price for previous gender inequity. I hope we can move past it at some point so that we get more than the "other side", as there is rich potential in exploring how the genders compliment each other, a thread that is often lost in modern art forms.

  • JBQ Saint Louis, MO
    May 31, 2014 8:19 a.m.

    "Women are powerful and equal too". This connotes a "war of the sexes" and obviously Disney has joined the fight. For some time, Disney has had a controversial parallel film producer not associated with the Disney name. Disney is now taking its modern act from the "low road" to the "higher stage". Disney was always aimed at the emotional development of children and obviously received its impetus from Grimm. There is no way that Angelina Jolie, the true "ice princess", can ever be remotely mistaken for Snow White. There is also no mistaking the drift from the "vision of Walt Disney".

  • Baccus0902 Leesburg, VA
    May 31, 2014 6:32 a.m.

    I saw the movie last night. I enjoyed it. IMO it can have too much violence for little children. But I think is a great movie for 10 and up kids. Wonderful twist to the motivations of a classic villain. Maleficent is hurt, angry, made choices and...... You must see it, I will certainly watch it again in a few months.

  • l.cee Ridgefield, WA
    May 31, 2014 6:11 a.m.

    When a headline includes "feminist" shouldn't the article include feminism, or a clear tie-in to support the headlines claim? I didn't read anything in the article that spoke of the feminist viewpoint.

  • UT Brit London, England
    May 30, 2014 11:24 p.m.


    That's funny my kids love frozen. I don't know about the complexity you tried to read into it, seemed pretty simple to me.

  • Howard Beal Provo, UT
    May 30, 2014 10:02 p.m.

    I think the message it tells is that life is actually more complicated than simple. Nothing wrong with that per se.

  • AerilusMaximus Berryville, VA
    May 30, 2014 9:02 p.m.

    It is movies like this, frozen, etc that make me realize that a lot of Disney are not for little children. They put a lot of complexity into their movies that isn't always readily apparent.

    To me animation for children should be used to tell a simple story. I wonder what sorts of lessons that children are learning from these new movies?

    I already understand how some of the other Disney movies have affected young girls images of themselves.

  • BYU Track Star Los Angeles, CA
    May 30, 2014 5:20 p.m.

    About 10-12 Years ago I flippently made a comment to a bunch of English Majors at a College Graduation about how neat it would be if Maleficent, the character in Sleeping Beauty, had a back story to further explore. There always seemed to be something there but never brought out.

    Prehaps the Disney animated movie was a 50s fable of what happens to an Uppidity Woman who came of age during the war years some ten-fifteen (16?) years earlier, who became financially independent, but lost that freedom when the Greatest Generation came home from the War and took her Job that formally three men did. And now she is morphed into a crazed spinster cat lady living in a dark and dreary place. Powerful object lesson to the Would-be Mildred Pierces. I wonder what Betty Friedan's take on the movie was?

    Wow, who says (Disney) wishes don't come true. Prehaps I'm jaded now in my old-age, But a good story, that make you think, always trumps an action movie with car chaes, etc.

  • Overdubbed San Diego, CA
    May 30, 2014 1:00 p.m.

    Anyone who has watched "Once Upon a Time" will realize that the Disney formulation is not exactly a new idea.

    Why are the reviewers not mentioning this?