Sunday, October 30, 2011

HALLOWEEN WITCH #5: Malificent of "Sleeping Beauty"

Aside from Snow White’s “Evil Queen”, who is well known and very horrible, “Sleeping Beauty’s” Malificent is a 9.9 on Disney’s richter scale of evil.  Contrary to popular belief, however, Malificent is not a witch but an evil faerie; on a par with the Fairy Godmother, only selfish, jealous, and narcissistic.  She was the fairy that didn’t get invited to Princes Aurora’s christening and then got really, really pissed off about it.

Rather than go into a bunch of descriptive information that you can see for yourself in the video below, I’d like to take a look at this spectacular  villain’s staying power. 

First, she’s been in a number of movies, video games and novels since her first appearance in “Sleeping Beauty” fifty years ago in 1959.  This is in addition to having a solid presence at Disney’s theme parks, where she appears in the night time spectacular “Fantasmic”, is on stage regularly and plays a strong lead in Halloween festivities. 

At this time, Malificent is stepping into the mainstream and set to appear in ABC’s latest epic fantasy drama “Once Upon a Time” this Sunday night – tonight, in fact.   Played by “True Blood’s”  Kristen Bauer, she is supposed to make a single appearance as the Evil Queen’s nemesis, with rumors of a recurring role.  What I’ve seen on line looks delicious. 

Most surprising, however, is that Disney has a live action movie in development right now and scheduled for a 2013 release.  Entitled aptly “Malificent”, rumor has it her Nefariousness will be played by Angelina Jolie.  Fans in the know spend a lot of time speculating over who should play that role, as you can see below, as well.  There are rumors that Tim Burton of “Alice in Wonderland” may direct, although I’ve also read that “Black Swan’s”  Darren Aronofsky may do the deed.  I’ve had enough of Tim Burton, thank you very much, so quite frankly having Helena Bonham Carter play Malificent is simply out of the question.  I don’t know how I feel about Aronofsky.  I saw “Black Swan” and was aptly impressed, but his use of CGI was subtle and his character’s descent into madness was somewhat understated.  I don’t know if subtle and understated is what Malificent demands.  Nor do I know if Aronofsky’s work delves deeply enough into pop-culture fantasy to follow her all the way into the depths of hell.

With only one more witch to salute by Halloween, which is tomorrow, let’s take a moment to savor the shapeshifting demoness Malificent.

Her message is this: The next time someone gets on your nerves, I mean REALLY gets on your nerves, don’t hesitate to transform into a giant dragon and pound the shit out of them.  Just make sure you don’t trip and fall off a cliff when you’re doing it.



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