Watch at Home: ‘Maleficent: Mistress of Evil’ & more from female filmmakers

Angelina Jolie in Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. Photo credits: Walt Disney Pictures.

FF2 Media’s new “Watch at Home” columns list the new films written and/or directed by women filmmakers that are newly available each week on DVD, Video On Demand &/or streaming services.

Here are the new films written and/or directed by women filmmakers now available at home as of 1/17/2020 (with links to FF2 Media reviews posted the week of their theatrical release):

DANIELLE’S TOP PICK OF THE WEEK

Maleficent: Mistress of Evil takes place five years after the events of the 2014 predecessor.

Both Maleficent and Aurora see their lives going in different directions in the sequel.  Aurora, serving as Queen of the Moors, is set to get married to Prince Phillip–the marriage will also serve as a union of both the Ulstead and Moors kingdoms.  The marriage aside, there is still a strong hatred between both man and fairies.  Before we know it, Maleficent and Aurora’s relationship is put to the test during the Great War.  The two of them, once godmother and goddaughter, now find themselves on opposing sides.  Will their relationship survive or is fate taking them in another direction?

Joachim Rønning directs from a script written by Linda Woolverton and Noah Harpster & Micah Fitzerman-Blue.  The writing team of Harpster and Fitzerman-Blue also co-wrote the script for A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.  Angelina Jolie, Elle Fanning, and Michelle Pfeiffer give worthy performances but much like the first film, but this one still has issues with the plot.  It goes without saying that the makeup and hair-styling is certainly award-worthy.

When it comes to these Disney live-action remakes, it’s already at a point in which the studio needs to step back and reconsider their approach.  Maleficent: Mistress of Evil was the fourth live-action Disney film based on animated content to be released in theaters.  I’m not about to rank the live-action adaptations but let’s just say that I’m lukewarm at best on this particular franchise.  This isn’t to say that I don’t give them credit for trying because I do.  They’re able to take a step back and look at it from a different point of view.  But at the same time, the storytelling needs to be improved should Disney decide to make a trilogy.  It’s because of this that Maleficent: Mistress of Evil isn’t quite at the same level of its predecessor.

© Danielle Solzman (1/17/20) FF2 Media

Featured photos from Maleficent: Mistress of Evil EPK
Photo Credits: Walt Disney Pictures

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Danielle Solzman is a Chicago-based film critic and an aspiring filmmaker if she can ever put enough time aside to work on her feature-length trans-led political comedy script. When not in Chicago, she attends various film festivals such as Sundance, SXSW, Tribeca, and Toronto. She graduated from Northern Kentucky University with a BA in Public Relations while earning a Masters in Media Communications from Webster University after writing a thesis paper on comic books against the backdrop of the American political culture.
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