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In the 14th century, the malevolent Maleficent (not dissimilar to the wicked queen in Disney's Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs) taunts a king that his infant Aurora will fatally prick her finger on a spinning wheel before sundown on her sixteenth birthday. This, of course, would deny her a happily-ever-after with her true love. Fortunately, some bubbly, bumbling fairies named Flora, Fauna and Merryweather are on hand to assist.
It's not really all that much about the title character--how interesting can someone in the middle of a long nap be, anyway? Instead, those fairies carry the day, as well as, of course, good Prince Phillip, whose battle with the malevolent Maleficent in the guise of a dragon has been co-opted by any number of animated films since. See it in its original glory here, alongside Maleficent's castle, which, filled with warthogs and demonic imps in a macabre dance celebrating their evil ways, manages a certain creepy grandeur. --David Kronke, Amazon.com
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