The Mistress of Evil is too good to be true

Disney uses dazzling scenery and costumes to cover poor screenwriting


Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, sequel to the original Maleficent starring Angelina Jolie, was, in almost every respect, the epitome of a Disney fairytale. From the very beginning, the sound effects, CGI, and costumes were all magnificent. Furthermore, the videography was almost flawless, making the audience feel as though they are flying alongside the characters. Unfortunately, the stunning artistic direction could not make up for the lack of creativity in the script — it was predictable and simply unreasonable. Disney has once again disappointed by releasing another cliché storyline and tacking on one of its unsurprising, unsatisfying happy endings, which we have already seen mass produced hundreds of times throughout our youth.

The story centers around Maleficent and her own identity when she has to choose between Dark Feys, horned and winged creatures who are her own kind, and her human daughter, Aurora (Elle Fanning). This entire conflict is orchestrated by the true evil queen who manipulates Aurora to question her own mother and leads all of humankind to distrust and fear Maleficent. However, the story escalates when the queen decides hatred is not enough. She must commit a genocide, killing all fairies of the Moors (the land Maleficent once ruled) and the Dark Feys. The glaring issue in the movie is how perfectly everything was going according to the true evil queen’s plan — the conflict should have been more complex and layered than this. The conniving ruler had clearly been scheming for years. However, the plan seemed to fall into place a little too perfectly.

Why did Aurora trade a lifetime of her godmother’s love for an alleged curse she may or may not have put on the prince’s father? Out of everyone working with Maleficent, did no one question how ethical performing a massacre was? If one fairy stayed awake at night when the True Blooms (magical flowers) were being stolen to kill them, the queen’s plans would’ve been foiled. If the king had said just one more measly word after his curse, this tragedy wouldn’t have occurred. If Aurora would have followed the clues sooner and if the prince wasn’t so frustratingly trusting of his mother despite her suspicious actions, the entire movie literally wouldn’t have happened. The list is truly endless.

It seems as though the writers were trying to fit five movies into one. There were too many factors and themes running around to be understable: good vs. evil, deception, curses, identity politics, you name it. The movie was rushed and none of the ideas were properly developed or executed the way they could have been. Moreover, the glaring plot holes amplified this problem. In all honesty, one of the few redeeming qualities of this movie was Angelina Jolie’s cheekbones.

It’s a shame Disney put so much money and resources into this project. Frankly, this is the kind of movie that belongs on the Disney channel for free viewing rather than in theatres. This movie promised too much and didn’t deliver. Regrettably, everything was perfect except for the story itself.

One out of Four stars