One Who Was Both Hero and Villain: Maleficent (2014)

So every year I do a Disney film. So here we go!

…One who was both hero and villain. And her name was Maleficent.

So I never was ever interested in seeing this film. I am the biggest Sleeping Beauty fan and I just felt that this story did not need to be made. After all this film is amazing:

And one of the best parts was the terrifying Maleficent:

And then when she turns into a dragon!!!

AMAZING!!!!!

When I saw the remake, you know me:

I mean why did they have to give her a whole betrayed back story. Why couldn’t she just have been pissed and wanted revenge-fairies aren’t like humans they feel one emotion exponentially.

Or why couldn’t she have just been evil? Wanted to have world domination? Wanted to take down people? If men can be, why not a woman? Like Chernabog.

Anyways, my friend loved the movie. She felt it was the perfect post-betrayed in love film you could watch.

So the film is that Maleficent is this wonderful fairy who protects the forest and one day befriends a human boy, Stephen. They fall in love but are torn apart as he wants money and power and Maleficent wants her home.

The King tries to destroy the creatures on the moors, but are stopped as they are much more powerful. He promises to give anyone ultimate power-daughter’s hand in marriage and be future King if one can destroy them. Stephen sees it as his chance, finds Maleficent and the two reconcile.

Not really as he just did it to get her drunk and kill her.

But he doesn’t kill her, there is a shred of humanity in him, and he instead cuts off her wings.

Nooo

Fastfoward King Stephen and the Queen have a daughter-Aurora. Maleficent does the curse-not nearly as epic as the cartoon and everything progresses as in the film. Except the fairies suck at everything as only focus on themselves-and Maleficent watches over her-becoming a mother to her.

King Stephen has gone crazy and when his daughter and Maleficent come and the curse is played out there is this big fight, blah, blah, blah.

Meh.

I found it so boooooooring.

I actually fell asleep as I just could not stand this character of the film. They acted like it was “new” “never done before” “told in a brand new light”. But it wasn’t. You knew what was going to happen, you knew the ending.

Rather not watch

The only part that was funny was my friend and I were kind of bashing on the betrayal of men, and how Aurora and Maleficent are happy-until a man comes along, Prince Phillip.

Then I saw him, and said “he’s a cute man-but still stay away”-my friend just looked at me and we both started laughing.

I couldn’t help it-he reminds me of a guy I had a crush on ten years ago when I was a teenager.

Very cute

But even without that, I love Prince Phillip-he was always my favorite prince.

Prince Philip

So yeah, I did not care for it-espechially Angelina Jolie. I don’t like her at all as an actress, I don’t think she is good and especially dull in this. Maleficent was powerful, evil, terrifying, the stuff of nightmares. And in this, she was none of that, nowhere near that. Eleanor Audley is the true queen of darkness.

To start Horrorfest VII from the beginning, go to It’s the End of the World: The Birds (1963)

For the previous post, go to Will We Survive the Night?: Rawhide (1951)

For more Sleeping Beauty, go toI Would Go Through Anything for You: Sleeping Beauty (1959)

For more Disney, go toI Can Show You the World: Aladdin (1992)

Night on Bald Mountain: Fantasia (1940)

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Musically and dramatically, we have here a picture of the struggle between the profane and the sacred.

I know I have already reviewed an animated film with The Corpse Bride, but did you really think I was going to let Horrorfest go by without reviewing a Disney film or TV episode?

NO ONE

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I can’t remember when I first watched Fantasia, but I know I was young because I became very antsy during the watching. In fact I remember trying to leave part way through…

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And my mom stopped me and made me finish watching it.

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Out of all the scenes, there are three that have remained firmly stuck in my memory. The Sorcerer’s Apprentice by Paul Dukas, of course, as it starred Mickey Mouse. Who doesn’t love Mickey?

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Then the ballerina part with the Hippopotamuses, the Dance of the Hours by Amilcare Ponchielli.

Reminds me of Degas

Reminds me of Degas

And the part with the Devil.

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I saw that and had only one reaction:

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

AAAAAAAAHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

It was an amazing short, but so terrifying. He was just so EVIL.

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And apparently I wasn’t the only one horrified. To this day Disney receives letters complaining about how terrifying this part is for kids. Because of such massive complaints, Disney actually removed this part from the initial video release, but later restored it.

He is probably the scariest of all Disney villains and animated creations.

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I’m getting shivers

So the piece is actually a combination of two musical pieces: Night on Bald Mountain by Modest Mussorgsky and Ave Maria by Franz Schubert.

The Night on Bald Mountain is about witches and demons worshipping their master, the Devil, also known as Chernabog. He comes out of the mountain

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And awaken all his supporters. From witches:

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To zombies in their graves:

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To skeletons and ghosts:

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And they all praise and dance around him. His pure evil is terrifying and frightening.

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Nothing can stop him except for one thing. The church bells ring and a choir sings Ave Maria by Franz Schubert. It’s message of hope, Mary, and Christ destroys the power of the devil and sends him back into the Earth.

“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.” John 1:5

The music is fantastic, the animation exquisite, and an all around great experience; check it out.

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To start Horrorfest V, from the beginning, go to Who You Gonna Call?: Ghostbusters (1984)

For the previous post, go to Have You Checked the Children: When a Stranger Calls (1979)

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For more Disney, go to Fan-do or Fan-don’t. There is No Fan-try

For more animated films, go to He’s Married to a Corpse. He Has A Corpse Bride!: Corpse Bride (2005)

For more Classic Disney, go to For She Filled Their Lives With Sunshine

For more Disney villains, go to There’s No One Like Gaston

Redone Done Right

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Day 29) Best Disney Remake

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The Jungle Book (1994)

So I’m not a huge fan of the remake. You probably recall seeing this:

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But there are a few films that I truly enjoy that are not the orginal. Such as The Shop Around the Corner and You’ve Got Mail. But this is probably by far, my favorite disney remake ever.

the jungle book

So this film came out in the ’90s and is based on The Jungle Book novel by Rudyard Kipling and the Disney film The Jungle Book (1967). It is similar to the cartoon except it is live action and tells the story of an older Mowgli. Actually, this is what Disney’s Tarzan was based on. While Tarzan is not an almost exact scene by scene ripoff,  like Atlantis is of the film Stargate, it is still extremely close.

Anyways, so the film starts off in the Victorian period with a group of English people going through India. They have many Indian guides helping them, one of which is Mowgli’s father Nathoo. Mowgli is one of the few children who is with the group, and his best friend is his wolf cub, Grey Brother. Mowgli soon meets one of the other kids there, Katherine “Kitty” Brydon, daughter of Colonel Geoffrey Brydon who is in charge of the trek and played by none other than the very handsome, Sam Neil.

Mowgli gives Kitty a flower to show his interest in her and Kitty gives him her mother’s bracelet. But the two’s friendship gets cut short as Shere Khan ramapages throughout the jungle. In this version of the film, Shere Khan is king of the jungle (as Khan means leader/king), and he watches the jungle for balance. When he finds somene killing for fun instead of food he takes them out. As he is going after one specific person, others get in the way and die. He kills Nathoo, and in the shuffle to escape Mowgli amd his wolf get left behind.

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Mowgli is befriended by the animals of the jungle as Bagheera, the panther, takes him to the wolves to be raised by them. He also befriends Baloo the bear and a variety of other animals.

Twenty years into the future, Mowgli is a man and runs with the different animals of the jungle. They are even able to comunicate with each other. In the story there are a group of monkeys, Rhesus macaque, who are the foot soldiers of the lord of all apes, King Louie (an orangutan). They are called the Bandar-log an they steal Kitty’s bracelet for King Louie’s treasury.  

Mowgli is enraged and follows them to get his bracelet back. He finds the city of the monkeys where King Louie rules. He goes in and demands his bracelet back. King Louie agrees to give him the bracelet back, if he can fight the snake Kaa and win. Mowgli pulls out a jeweled dagger and uses it to fight against Kaa. And wins the appreciation of all the apes

Meanwhile, Kitty is a woman now, back in India and engaged to Captain William Boone, played by the very sexy Cary Elwes.

The jungle book

Unfortunately, Boone, while being hot, is a cruel, sadistic, gold-digging, ladder climbing, hunter. 😦 Oh well. One day Kitty and co. are out in the jungle painting and hanging out when she runs right into you-know-who…Mowgli.

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Mowgli is all dressed up, part of his trophies from winning against Kaa, and play-attacks/play-saves Kitty from Baloo. But she takes off.

Mowgli follows the group into the city, sneaking into Kitty’s room. Her screams rouse her bf and the guards, but before they come after him, she recognizes the bracelet he’s wearing as her own.  The guards chase Mowgli throughout the town and he ends up getting thrown in jail

Kitty frees Mowgli and she and Dr. Julius Plumford (John Cleese) try to help re-civilize him. (This scene is just like Tarzan, especially  the projection of images).
Mowgli begins to be able to talk amd act like those around him, but does not feel at home with the aristocrats, that is except for Kitty. He starts falling for her again, even though she is already spoken for. Mowgli also tells Kitty how he survived all these years and introduces her to all of his animal friends and tells her of the rules of the jungle.
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Meanwhile Boone and his friends  are eager to find the famed City of Gold (Monkey city) but don’t know the way. Everyone who has ever tried to find it has never returned. Boone decides to get Mowgli to help him find it.
Boone convinces Kitty to give him a day to hang out with Mowgli, apologizing for having been so mean. He brings Mowgli to his hunting trophy room, but after Mowgli sees that he doesn’t keep the jungle law, he refuses to help him out at all.
There is a ball, and Mowgli is excited to be there with Kitty. Unfortunately, that is when he hears the announcement of their engagement and hears of the plans they have for India. Mowgli decides to leave the city as he could never belong there, and decides to spend the rest of his life in the jungle.
But unbeknowest to him, Boone has other plans for Mowgli. He and his minions try to capture him, but Mowgli is saved by Baloo. Unfortunately, Baloo’s intervention causes him to be shot. Mowgli rushes to the city to get Dr. Plumford, but finds out that he and recently unengaged Kitty are headed for England.
While Mowgli chases after them, Kitty, her father, and the doctor are ambushed by William’s men. Mowgli is able to save the Doctor and sends him to help Baloo, and continues after the Brydons. He agrees to help Boone if Boone will ensure the safety of the Brydons.
The next day, Mowgli is able to get rid of one henchman, by tricking him into some quicksand. He also sends Kitty’s dad to safety on an elephant.
The other henchman is disposed of by more of Mowgli’s knowledge of the jungle. Soon all that is left is Mowgli, Kitty, Boone, and Boone’s remaining minoin. However, as they have finally reached the Monkey City, his minoins accidentally sets off a booby trap and finds himself a goner.
Only Boone, Kitty, and Mowgli make it to the treasure. Boone and Mowgli fight, but Mowgli wins and takes off with Kitty. Boone starts filling his pockets and bags with gold, not realizing that he still has Kaa to deal with.

Shere Khan confronts Mowgli and Kitty as they exit. Khan still does not trust Mowgli, and the two stare at each other a long time before Khan is stared down and leaves in submission – the fulfillment of a dream Mowgli had where he, already a ‘half-tiger’ in spirit, would stare Shere Khan eye to eye and become a ‘whole tiger’.
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Shere Khan recognizes that Mowgli another creature of the jungle and allows him to live. Mowgli and Kitty reunite with their friends and family, including Geoffrey and Baloo, both cured by Plumford. Kitty and Mowgli are now together (just like Tarzan and Jane)
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I just love this movie and thought it was amazing. It is far better than the animated sequel as it doesn’t retell te orginal story too much, and still keeps all the elements of it when going in a new direction.
For more on both versions of The Jungle Book, go to Snakes on a Post
For more on Disney, go to Once upon a Dream
For more films based on books, go to Second Star to the Right
For more films based on cartoons, go to Disney Lesson

Wake Up, Dad

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Day 22) Saddest Disney Death

The Lion King

Mufasa’s Death

Ok, so I tried to go a different route, because I knew you all were thinking this. I mean it had some pretty hard contenders; Quasimodo’s mother’s death scene, Tarzan’s parents, Kala’s baby, etc; but Mufasa’s death will always win out as being the saddest because of these two reasons

1). Betrayl

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Mufasa is betrayed and murdered by his brother! His own brother! The very man he thought loved him and had his back, the guy he thought was his best bud, the guy he trusted to help raise his children, the man he loved more than almost anybody; that man betrayed him.

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2) Scar made it Seem Like It Was Simba’s Fault

To make thing even worse than betraying your brother, this evil , horrible guy made Simba believe that he killed his father. That everything was all his fault. This makes this death the worst, as Simba now has all this guilt and trauma surrounding his father. Besides it is so heartbreaking to see Simba try and wake his dad up.

The Lion King

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For more on The Lion King, go to Hair Today, Hair Tomorrow

For more on Disney, go to He’s My Brother

For more on being betrayed by one you love, go to Betrayer’s Kiss

For more on Disney Animals, go to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

For more on Disney Princes, go to Prince of a Man

For more on Disney Animated Films, go to The Boys Are Back in Town

For more on Disney Villains, go to There’s No One Like Gaston

For more on cats, go to That Darn Cat

The Boys Are Back in Town

Day 20) Your Favorite Disney Sequel

Toy_Story_2_Soundtrack

I think this is the best Disney sequel ever! And you know why, because it had its own unique storyline. It didn’t rip off the first one (*cough* *cough* I’m looking at you Little Mermaid II); take place during the first film and completely reconstruct it (*cough* *cough* I’m looking at you Bambi II); or make the characters act like jerks (Lion King II); or are insanely stupid (Cars 2). Instead it did what every great sequel should do; take the story further, develop the character, and be able to stand on its own.

So the first film was about the rivalry between the two toys, as Woody is jealous having been tossed aside for the new guy, Buzz. Woody gets rid of him, only to have to go after them and in the process both go through changes as Buzz has an existential crisis and Woody realizes that he has been far too judgmental. They team up, take out the bad guy, and become best buds!

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So the second film we take a different approach. In this one Woody has been preparing to go with Andy only to get injured and has to stay behind. In this film he gets stolen, and while orginally wants to return to Andy, he is presented with the question of what will happen when Andy grows up. This took the film in a brand new direction that was just amazing, as it deals with the complicated question. Is it better to go back to the person who loves you, who will only have a limited time with; or should you go on to be loved by all forever, but never form a personal connection again?

We also see the growth of Buzz, as he has to help lead the team taking Woody’s place in instructing the other toys. This is amazing as we see how much Buzz cares for the others now instead of being all about himself and his “mission”.

We also get new characters; the adorable Jessie who ends up with Buzz, and Bullseye the incredibly adorable horse.

As this is a sequel we get double the villians, Al the greedy guy who steals Woody, and Stinky Pete; jealous of the adoration that Woody has had over the years as no child ever wanted or loved him.

Plus we have the amazing Star Wars reference.

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

Noooooooooo!!!!!!!

 

For more on Toy Story 2, go to A Horse’s Tale

For more on Buzz and Woody, go to They’re Alive

For more on Disney, go to Mr. Toad’s Wild Ride

For more on my favorite songs, go to Diamond in the Rough

For more on Disney Villains, go to  There’s No One Like Gaston

For more on sequels, go to Just Follow the Screams

There’s No One Like Gaston

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Day 13) You Favorite Villain Song

Gaston

Now I know there are many more scary and mean villian songs, but this one is my favorite. I love Gaston, but let me clarify, I love Gaston like how I love Draco Malfoy. They have some the best lines, they are so egotestical that they are hilarious, and you just know the story would be a snooze-fest without them. Gaston’s song is so awesome because it is so silly, egotestical, manly, and a total laugh riot.

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I mean this is like the ultimate pep talk. Next time you have a friend who isn’t doing well, just change the words around and add their name in. They’ll thank you for it. 🙂

Gosh it disturbs me to see you, Gaston
Looking so down in the dumps
Every guy here’d love to be you, Gaston
Even when taking your lumps
There’s no man in town as admired as you
You’re ev’ryone’s favorite guy
Ev’ryone’s awed and inspired by you
And it’s not very hard to see why

No one’s slick as Gaston
No one’s quick as Gaston
No one’s neck’s as incredibly thick as Gaston
For there’s no man in town half as manly
Perfect, a pure paragon
You can ask any Tom, Dick or Stanley
And they’ll tell you whose team they prefer to be on

No one’s been like Gaston
A king pin like Gaston
No one’s got a swell cleft in his chin like Gaston
As a specimen, yes, I’m intimidating
My- what a guy, that Gaston

Give five “hurrahs!”
Give twelve “hip-hips!”
Gaston is the best
And the rest is all drips

No one fights like Gaston
Douses lights like Gaston
In a wrestling match nobody bites like Gaston
For there’s no one as burly and brawny
As you see I’ve got biceps to spare
Not a bit of him’s scraggly or scrawny
(That’s right!)
And ev’ry last inch of me’s covered with hair

No one hits like Gaston
Matches wits like Gaston
In a spitting match nobody spits like Gaston
I’m espcially good at expectorating
(Ptooey!)
Ten points for Gaston!

When I was a lad I ate four dozen eggs
Ev’ry morning to help me get large
And now that I’m grown I eat five dozen eggs
So I’m roughly the size of a barge

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No one shoots like Gaston
Makes those beauts like Gaston
Then goes tromping around wearing boots like Gaston
I use antlers in all of my decorating
Say it again
Who’s a man among men?
And then say it once more
Who’s the hero next door?
Who’s a super success?
Don’t you know? Can’t you guess?
Ask his fans and his five hangers-on
There’s just one guy in town who’s got all of it down
And his name’s G-A-S- T –
G-A-S-T – E –
G-A-S-T-O – oh!

GASTON!!!

For more on Beauty and the Beast, go to Episode VI: Return of the Favorite Movie Lines List

For more of my favorite songs, go to If I Never Knew You

For more on Disney Villains, go to The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind

For more on Disney go to I’ll Make a Man Out of You

For more on Draco Malfoy, go to Even After All This Time

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In other news:

Fridaythe13th

and not just that, it is also a full moon

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Yep two things:

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Horror films!!! And…

Pizza Delivery Sabrina the teenage witch

Pizza!!!

Yep every Friday the 13th pizza and a horror flick!

If you are into scary movies then I suggest reviewing Horrorfest: 31 Day of Terror and Woe and Horrorfest II: The Oddities of October. Also keep your eyes peeled for a three-quel!

And if you want to continue in this Friday the 13th mood, check out Camp Blood: Friday the 13th (1980) and A Deliciously Creepy Tale: Butterfinger the 13th.

The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind

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Day 6) Your Favorite Disney Villain

My absolute favorite Disney villain is:

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Ratigan

The Great Mouse Detective is an animated parody of Sherlock Holmes and has mice instead of people. Instead of Sherlock Holmes, we have Basil (nod to Basil Rathbone who played Sherlock Holmes in the movies) of 221 1/2 Baker Street with his helper Dawson instead of Watson. Basil plays a violin, is a scientist, etc.

His arch-nemesis instead of being Professor Moriority is Ratigan. He is super creepy and pretty awesome for a villain. First of all, he is played by Vincent Price, one of the best horror actors/villains of all time! I love that man.

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In fact Vincent Price, said that doing Ratigan was his favorite role because he had two songs written for him. Both of which are AMAZING! The first song is The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind and Goodbye So Soon. They both show his strength, cunning, sadistic side, etc. My favorite song has to be  The World’s Greatest Criminal Mind.

Now when I say he’s sadistic, he is one crazy dude. He doesn’t like being referrred to as a rat, he wants to be a mouse, and if anyone fails to call him that he sics his killer cat Felicia on them.

While he is an elegant criminal, beneath that cool and charming exterior is fearal beast.

Uber creepy right?

But he’s just one of those criminals that you love to hate and while hate, can help but sort of admire his style.

For more on Sherlock Holmes, go to A Hunky Helping of Manwich

For more on Disney, go to The Cat’s Meow

For more on Vincent Price, go to the 25 Films of Christmas

For more films based on books, go to A Hidden Wonder

For more of my favorite songs, go to Out for Summer

For more on Horror films, go to I Always Feel Like Somebody’s Watching Me