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  • This probably applies to Sleeping Beauty as well. Haven't seen it in years and years and years. Scenario: Your daughter has a sleeping curse laid on her that will take effect on her 16th birthday after pricking her finger on a spinning wheel spindle. At what point does the solution to this problem become something other than: Toss all spinning wheel spindles out the window and keep her in the castle where you can look after her and make sure she's safe?
    • Or how about: telling your daughter ahead of time that she has a curse on her, and all she has to do to live through it is not go near any spinning wheel spindles?
      • The film actually has an answer to that- all the spinning wheels in the kingdom are burnt and their remains locked away, and Aurora is told about the curse the day before her 16th birthday- but the curse gives her an irresistible compulsion to prick her finger, she is led to the locked room, which is magically opened, and a spinning wheel re-forms from the wreckage. The curse will NOT be outsmarted!
      • The king got security backwards. He destroyed the spinning wheels and locked them inside the castle, and sent aurora outside? You're supposed to remove the spinning wheels from the castle and lock aurora inside! A travelling spinning wheel salesman could have triggered the curse.
      • And that is also in line with the animated movie—all the spindles were burned and so on, and Aurora was ultimately enchanted to prick her finger, so telling her wouldn't have made a single difference.
      • Exactly, they knew it wasn't going to be that easy to stop Maleficent, which is why all the extra precaustions were taken. The fact that those weren't enough justifies that they weren't over-reacting.
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    • The real question is if all the spinning wheels are made of wood and meltable metal, how did "burning them all" still leave a gigantic pile of them in the castle?
      • If you look they're all burnt and broken. Nothing counts as a spinning wheel or a spindle until the magic repairs one.
      • It s hard to prick yourself on a spinning wheel, how did she manage that? There aren't many sharp bits on it, and certainly not the spindle itself. And how did the economy survive with no thread for cloth?
      • The first question is easily answered: Both Disney movies got the meaning of „spindle“ wrong. This is by no means a part of a spinning wheel, but its predecessor, i.e. a different, older tool which was used for spinning before the latters invention. And a spindle had a sharp needle at the bottom by design, so that if it fell down (which happened quite often), it would dig itsself into the ground, preventing it from tipping and soiling the freshly spun thread. One can assume that getting said needle to prick ones foot when falling down was also a common accident, and hence inspiration for the curse.
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    • Also, locking her up in a castle is pretty much the start to any other fairy tale story. More over, the whole point of the curse is that no power could prevent it from happening. As in this movie and in most fairy tales, this means that any precautions will usually get circumvented by - if all else isn't possible - Deus ex Machina which will force the issue. Lastly, one of the major points of the story is that tragedy can be averted not by stubbornness, blind pride and arrogance, brute force methods, and denial of responsibility but by MENDING wounds and peaceful methods - the best and most practical method of stopping the curse would have been simply to tell Aurora and allow her to live her life, free and pure, so that she could find love. And as shown in this movie, that love included all forms - including parental. So something as simple as Stefan LOVING his daughter would have broken the curse at the right time. Or even him tending to Leila so that she might have lived and be able to do it if he could not.
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    • Or they could cut off Aurora's fingers. Just saying.
      • If the curse can create a working spinning wheel out of broken pieces and defy Maleficent's attempts at revoking it, I wouldn't be surprised if her fingers grew back just for the occasion of pricking them.
    • The most likely explanation for why Aurora was sent away? It's because Stefan doesn't believe True Love exists, any more than Maleficent did when she cast the curse. He sent the girl away because so far as he was concerned, she was doomed from the start, and banishing her from the castle was the surest way of ensuring he wouldn't form an emotional attachment to a child he'd inevitably have to mourn. Note that he and his wife didn't have any other children after her, presumably expecting Maleficent would just curse them too.

  • So, according to the voice-over, this is the story as we've never been told or some such, implying the 'original' Disney movie is the current accepted tale. At the end of this movie, King Stefan is dead, and the queen as well. Who spread the original tale, then?
    • Flittle, Thistlewit, and Knotgrass?
    • It could have simply been altered for the more pleasing rendition—a prince's kiss of true romantic love is more appealing than a witch's kiss of true motherly love. An evil sorceress slain and punished sounds better than an evil (human) king slain by a redeemed (fairy) sorceress.
    • Disney.
    • Those that remained loyal to Stefan or, at the least, to his mad ways. With such maddening hatred, it would be very easy to distort the events in one's own mind as Maleficent corrupting Aurora, driving Stefan to his death, and becoming an evil influence behind the throne. The sleeping aspect might have been re-interpreted as Aurora being blind to Maleficent's influence until Philip opens her eyes to her evil. Things like that.
      • So, these anti-fae zealot loyalists to the king, spun a version of the events as propaganda, taking the three stupid fairies that they saw their king yelling and slapping around and making into heroic and competent characters? Man, those are some nice extremists.
      • Every story needs its heroes and do-gooders. It's like people who are lionized for acts of sheer luck or even incompetence, simply because they were there.

  • Okay, so Stefan can't bring himself to kill and decapitate Maleficent because he loves her, or something. And yet, horribly maiming her by cutting off her wings, leaving her alive to suffer, is somehow better?
    • He felt it was. Most people feel it's better to be crippled and alive than dead, anyway. Especially with magic powers.
    • He didn't just leave her alive, he had her Death Faked for You, thereby ensuring that nobody else would come out to kill her. If he had just abandoned his plan, other assassins would have come after Maleficent.
      • The problem with that being the question: who else could have gotten that close to Maleficent in the first place? The Moors were pretty well-guarded even before King Henry's attempted invasion. To the extent that young Stefan stealing a single gemstone attracted the guards! Afterward, one has to assume that the only reason Stefan could get in at all was because he was known for his long-standing relationship with Maleficent. Any other assassins would never have gotten anywhere near her! At best it's a rationalization that Stefan might have used to justify himself, but there's no reason to think she was in real danger from other assassins.
      • That assumes that young Stefan stealing a single gem did attract guards as opposed to a young boy entering their land with limited if any training was about as stealthy as a buffalo and the guards simply politely left him alone until he broke a law. The guards themselves may have been too large to go in and get him but they had the means to get him instead of summoning Maleficent.

  • On a related note, Stefan probably noticed his 'trophy' was not drying out or rotting as normal wings would... so once his father in law keels over why not try to, if he cannot bring himself to return them personally, at least have them smuggle them back to the edge of the Moors? He knows Maleficent is alive, has serious magical power, and enjoyed flight; so such a peace offering would at least blunt her revenge even if she could not reattach them.
    • He was probably afraid she would kill him. He might have been paranoid that Maleficent would be even more insulted by him trying to give her back the wings he cut off.
      • That explains why making the hand-off himself is a bad idea. However kings have minions for this sort of thing, and how much more angry/violent can she get?
    • Bear in mind that Stefan isn't concerned with peace, just power. He knows, if nothing else, that returning her wings would make her more powerful. Besides, returning her wings would have to be only the start of a peace offering - the wound was not only physical, it was the betrayal of trust and love. And it wasn't even a justified betrayal - it was done purely for his own selfish reasons. More over, it's unlikely he would even allow such an action - Stefan rose to power on the back (no pun intended) of the 'conquering' of the fairies and he likely has many around him who felt just as justified in their hatred. Brokering peace by being the first to act would likely be a rather unpopular opinion among the nobles whose favor he cares about.

  • Why would a benevolent being be named Maleficent? Weird that the peaceful Moors would give a name meaning "evildoer".
    • It sounds a little like 'magnificent'.
      • "Maleficent" is an actual word, though. It doesn't just sound as if it means something bad, it does.
    • It's possible that her trickster nature was part of the reason it was given. Another part (granted after the fact) may have been the fact that she is and was effectively their war queen. In this sense, she does evil (go to war, kill other beings) but it's a necessary task for a race of normally benevolent people.
    • Maleficent is derived from the Latin "malum," which can mean "evil," but it can also mean "apple." Clearly, Maleficent was intended to be the fairy of apples.
    • Or, y'know, "Maleficent" just means something different in at least one fairy language and just happens to match up to a human word.
    • What is odd is that this problem had a very simple solution - have the fairy have a normal birth name and then take on the name Maleficient after she was mutilated, as a seal on her Then Let Me Be Evil deal.

  • If Stefan became king by making it look like he killed Maleficent, how come no one called him out on it when she shows up again?
    • Well maybe they didn't know it was her? Maleficent was identified by her wings and she doesn't have them when she arrives in the castle. Alternately it's still quite impressive to have cut off the fairy queen's wings and render her severely weakened.
    • He was king. What were they supposed to do? He was named heir, that was that. Hell, by then he'd even had a legitimate daughter by the queen.
      • Well, they could offer his head to the vengeful fey that walked in and set up a regency council for the legitimate daughter....
    • Because he wasn't the only one to hate the fairies. At least some of his nobles do so as well. She showing up was probably less of a "He fooled us! Let's make amends!" and more of a "Dirty fairy magic! Let's finish her off!"

  • The movie clearly shows that Maleficent interrupted when the third fairy was just about to bestow her gift on Aurora, suggesting that this is the fairy who will soften the curse, like previous versions of the tale. Except...she doesn't. The third fairy apparently never gets around to giving a gift at all. Why make the interruption so prominent if nothing is ever going to come of it?
    • Because that's how it happens in the animated film. And, honestly, if you weren't expecting it to happen because of the animated film, I don't think it really does suggest the third gift will do anything significant. She's interrupted dramatically, and that's good enough.
      • No, it's not how it happened in the animated film. There, Maleficent cursed the princess to die, and the (interrupted) last fairy softened it into sleep woken by True Love's Kiss. Same happens in the versions by Perrault and Grimm (except with more fairies).
      • She is interrupted in the fairy tale. This is what I meant. That is why it happens that way. Because in the original, she is interrupted. So they played it out with an interruption. Or, as the below person said, as a Red Herring.
    • It's essentially a Red Herring contingent on knowing the original story.
    • It could also be a Kick the Dog moment. This was Maleficent at her most evil and petty, after all.
    • Pretty much everything that can come in threes in fairy tales, does. Presumably three enchantments from the faeries was the limit for a christening ceremony, and Maleficent beat the third "auntie" to the punch with hers.
    • While I can't say why they didn't have the third fairy give her gift before Maleficent appeared, the reason they couldn't have her modify the curse was because if she could change the terms of it, then there would've been no reason for Maleficent not to be able to when she has a change of heart later in the film. They added in the "This curse will last until the end of time" bit to explain why Maleficent couldn't do anything to change it once she became fond of Aurora, but doing so meant they had to keep the other fairies from doing so as well.

  • When casting the curse, Maleficent specifies that Aurora will prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel after spotting one nearby, explaining her odd choice of "weapon"...What isn't explained is why a spinning wheel is kept in the throne room to begin with.
    • It was a gift for the princess. It was lumped with a bunch of other gifts.
      • If anything, the movie does a better job of explaining the odd choice of weapon (Line of sight item amongst Aurora's gifts, what would have been a common item for girls of the time for when they are older, that is commonplace enough to make it near inevitable to fulfil the curse) than the animated version did (Just...came up with it off the top of her head for some reason.)

  • How did Aurora, with her secluded upbringing, know what a fairy godmother is? Or how to ride a horse? For that matter, where did she get that horse?
    • The horse was shown pulling the fairies' wagon when they first take Aurora to the cottage. And Aurora is such an energetic, often unsupervised, curious child that I can't see her not learning about horses and figuring out how to ride theirs.
    • Possibly the horse thing comes from the 'grace' part of her gift. As for having a horse, I imagine the fairies needed to go into towns occasionally to get food or supplies...and if they had it, it's not impossible that she learned to ride it. I assume she was provided with books that included fairy tales as well.

  • How did Maleficent and Diaval know how to care of the baby Aurora? Even if Maleficent spent her childhood talking with Stefan, I highly doubt baby care entered their conversations. And Diaval is a raven.
    • Given that Maleficent ages from child to adult in human years, it's quite possible there are fairy babies. Maleficent is also supposed to protect the Moors, so she might have taken care of children. As for Diaval, who knows? He also speaks English.
      • Diaval is also her eyes and wings. It's not a stretch that she had him spy on human mothers and relay the information back to her.
      • So she just... looked it up? Essentially.

  • Why didn't Maleficent just use magic on the people attacking her? And don't give me that it's because of iron thing, she transformed the raven into a dragon while in a net of iron.
    • Sorry, I'm gonna have to give it to you: Maleficent was in immense pain under that net and panicking. Turning Diaval into a dragon was done out of desperation and as her last resort. It can be assumed that she had no more strength for more spells after something as big as that, plus being burned alive.
    • Inside the net it's because she was in incredible pain but as soon as Diaval got her out she should have utterly decimated those men. As was shown earlier in the forest iron hurts her yes but it doesn't offer protection against her. We're talking about a woman who tore down two walls by casually walking between them. It might be that she was still feeling guilty, even when her wings are returned and she begins to fight she's still very clearly holding back based on what we've seen her to be capable of.
    • Maleficent's magic may also have been impaired to some degree when her own attempt to forcibly revoke the curse backfired on her. She can still transform Diaval because she's had so much practice at it over the years, but she no longer had it in her to toss iron-clad knights around in a breeze like dead leaves.
    • It's possible that "cold iron" doesn't just burn the fae. It may also act as a sort of ward preventing fae magic from directly affecting the ones wearing it. So she could, say, turn Diaval into a dragon, or hit someone with a rock, but not use her magic directly on the knights.

  • In the opening narration, it's mentioned that Moors didn't need kings or queens, because it inhabitants got along fine without a ruler. So Moors was essentially a democracy. Then Maleficent is hurt by Stephan, and decides to become the ruler of Moors because... Because why? There is no explanation why being hurt by a man she loved leads her into wanting power over the land. And why don't the inhabitants of Moors resist? Sure, Maleficent is powerful, but nothing in the story indicates her power is so overwhelming that the other elfs and fairies couldn't overpower her if they wanted to. Then, in the end, Moors returns to the way it was before Maleficent's rule, so you'd assume they'll return to democracy... Except that Aurora is now crowned the queen. Why? If the point of that was to ensure peace between the kingdoms, well, Aurora was already sympathetic to Moors, so she should've simply signed a peace treaty between her kingdom and Moors, there was no reason for her to be ruling both. It's as if the movie wants to tell us monarchy is better than democracy.
    • First of all, a democracy is a political system in which the citizenry elect a "ruler", not a system with a lack of a ruler. "The inhabitants got along fine without a ruler" implies that their land was most likely either an anarchy or some sort of utopian socialist society. As for why they didn't try to overthrow Maleficent when she placed herself in charge... why would they? She never really did much in her capacity as queen other than shut down the border, which none of them particularly wanted open in the first place and which was done seemingly entirely with her own individual power. After the initial landscape-becoming-gloomier, life in the Moors continued more or less unchanged from the time before Maleficent came into power. As for why Aurora was crowned queen of the Moors at the end of the movie instead of returning them to "self-rule", well, following the idea that the fairies live their lives more or less independently of any sort of so-called governing bodies, naming Aurora the queen wouldn't really impact their lives in any way. On the other hand, it has a lot of symbolic value for Aurora herself; she'd expressed a desire to live in the Moors, but the fairies seemed to have a lot of distrust towards humans in general. Proclaiming her "queen of the Moors", a title that conveys no actual political power as far as the fairies are concerned, is a way of marking her as a human that the fairies have accepted.
      • Electing "rulers" is called representative democracy, and it's only one form of democracy. There is also something called direct democracy, which is what the Moors appears to have had before Maleficent proclaimed herself their dictator. As for proclaiming Aurora the Queen, saying that it was done because of its symbolic value sounds like a weak excuse. They could've just as easily named her as a "citizen of the Moors" or something, if they wanted her to feel herself as one of them. Proclaiming her to be their Queen is not accepting her as an equal, but stating that she has power over them, at least on a symbolic level.
      • This troper got the impression that the other faeries were mostly humoring Maleficent in that scene, because they felt terribly bad for her having lost her wings. If acting submissive in her presence and putting up with a darker motif will help her cope with her maiming, they'll go along with it for a while; it's not as if she was actually giving orders to anyone but Diaval on-screen. Certainly once she'd spent enough time with Aurora to recover from the sulks, the other faeries seemed thrilled that their war chieftain was finally cheering up.
      • Alternatively, they did recognize Maleficent as their leader, in a warchief sense. She doesn't have any control of the daily lives of her people, but is definitely stepping up to the task of defending the interests of her people. They see her maiming as tantamount to humanity marking itself as the enemy of the Fae, and, as such, are placing their fealty in their war queen.
    • Maleficent already had exclusive command of the entirety of the Moors' military. That's pretty much all that you need to elect yourself leader. When she crowns herself queen of the moors, the camera very specifically shows one of the sentinels growling at the other denizens so that they would kneel to her. She knew that she was going to go on the war path against King Stefan, so she was making preparations for the consequences of her upcoming revenge against the human king.
    • It's probably a leftover loose end from scenes that were cut. Miranda Richardson played Queen Ulla of the fairies - so there was a ruler of the Moors originally. The idea of course was that Aurora would become the queen to unite both kingdoms. As she's a human and the rightful heir to Stefan's throne, the people will probably accept her. And if they don't they soon will, as Maleficent enchanted her to become "beloved by all who meet her". And Aurora certainly seems like the type of queen who would force the two kingdoms to get along. As for the fairies, Aurora spent most of her childhood visiting the Moors. So it's not like they were suddenly being ruled by a complete stranger. Most of the fairies probably knew her already.

  • The basis of the film is that Maleficent is caught up in the loop hole of her own spell in that she, like everyone else, falls in love with Aurora as soon as she meets her. But why didn't the fairies seem to care that much about her enough to protect her properly? Why was her own father emotionless when he saw her again after sixteen years?
    • Loving someone doesn't mean they'll change their nature. Stefan is more interested in his obsessions than Aurora. The pixies are too petty and shallow to show love in a meaningful way. This differs from Maleficent, who ultimately has a good, deep heart and I suppose Phillip.
    • Also, the fairies probably thought that they were doing a good job of caring for Aurora, unaware that Diaval was discreetly compensating for their blunders (like making sure Aurora was fed). She did, after all, seem happy and healthy. They had enthusiasm, just not skill. As for King Stefan, what happened with Maleficent, and later his own wife, proved that he is capable of caring for someone, but still does what is most important to him.
      • Indeed, the fact that he doesn't actually greet Aurora by name when she returns, but merely comments on her looks and then has his daughter locked her away in her room, suggests Stefan knows he'll come to love her if he acknowledges her arrival formally. Thus, he hastily and deliberately gets her out of his sight in an attempt to Loophole Abuse his way out of actually "meeting" the girl.
    • That does not explain why the three fairies seem so eager to abandon Aurora before or at her sixteenth birthday.
      • Because they think they're reuniting her with her father. Also, they had no reason to believe that would be the last that they ever saw of her, since they were living in isolation and oblivious to Stefan's descent into madness. Heck, they may not have even known about her mother's death!

  • Why does Stefan forget that Maleficent is vulnerable to iron at the most crucial moment, when she threatens baby Aurora? He even stands up and half-draws his dagger, but then he backs down for some inexplicable reason. The whole time she was casting the curse (which was a pretty drawn out process so he could've stepped in anytime he pleased), couldn't he have threatened Maleficent off with a dagger, a sword, or even a frying pan? If he cared enough to go down on his knees and beg, why wouldn't he care enough to fight her off?
    • Because she could only be taken by surprise. Otherwise she could just attack and kill.
    • Iron can hurt her, but it does not provide protection from her magic, as she demonstrated very clearly when she telekinetically tossed around a bunch of Stefan's armored soldiers. This is why Stefan's eventual trap involved an iron net and lots of soldiers with huge shields to fence her in along with spears and arrows to attack from a distance. Sure, he could have tried to have a go at her, or ordered his guards to. But she would have just massacred them. Stefan just wasn't brave enough, or self-sacrificing enough, to make a suicidal attack on Maleficent even to save his baby daughter.
    • There is a lot of circumstantial evidence that suggests King Stephan didn't have an iron dagger. First when Maleficent first engages the army she's ripping through them with her bare hands and wings and is only burned once by the King's something when he reaches up to block her. Then when Stephan becomes king he orders the iron workers practically around the clock to get an arsenal. Finally when Maleficent engages the soldiers in the woods she goes to inspect a helmet because she's not sure if it's iron or not. Given all that King Stephan had what was presumably a steel (or given a fantasy setting other than iron) dagger. So it not only would have been a suicide rush the only possible upside would have been maybe with him dead Maleficent would decide her grudge was over.
    • Maleficent can do many incredible things with her magic, devastating telekinesis and transfiguration with a snap of her fingers, as an example. Her powers seem to be weakened by the plot, randomly.
    • To this Troper, it appears as Stefan simply didn‘t forgot about her vulnerability and just remembered it when he glanced at his own dagger in a later scene.

  • The Faerie Kingdom and the Human Kingdom have never been at good terms and Stephan clipping Maleficent wings could not have helped. King Stephan was justifiably concerned when the three fairies showed up and double so when Maleficent did. Then Maleficent cursed Aurora, adding another black page to human faerie relationship. So why after that does King Stephan trusted three fairies that he has no reason to trust with the safety of his daughter Aurora?
    • Unless it was wholly unnecessary theatrics it's clear at that point that the three fairies are genuine, whether they are defectors from Maleficent or trying to mend the fence between the kingdoms they aren't with her. Stephan knows first hand what Maleficent is capable of and pathetic as they were the three fairies likely stood a much better chance than anything else he could put in her way.
    • And a trio of fairies, however scatterbrained, at least wouldn't be tempted to do some of the things a treacherous human might do, e.g. hold the heir to the throne for ransom, sell her to a neighboring human ruler as a hostage, etc.

  • Wouldn't destroying all the spinning wheels in the country damage its economy? You need spinning wheels to make thread, to make fabric, to make clothing. Stephan's orders probably put a lot of people out of work (The reason 'spinster' is a common term for an unmarried woman is because spinning thread was a common job unmarried women took up in that era), required all weavers and/or tailors in the kingdom to have to import the raw materials of their trade from another country (Undoubtedly raising their costs significantly, and with it the price of anything made of cloth), and killed the domestic market for wool and flax. All for the sake of one person. Wouldn't that cause a lot of problems in the Moors?
    • Sort answer: yes. Longer answer: it is a further sign of Stefan's madness, and another thing he can transfer blame to Maleficent for since he did it because of her curse. Plus, she continues to deny him access to the riches of the Moors. But notice that the castle gradually starts looking darker and more foreboding (and except for the royal apartments, much less clean). This could reflect the weakening economy as Stefan empties the treasury to fund his revenge campaign, and revenues are down regardless.
    • People made thread on hand spindles for thousands of years before spinning wheels were invented. Textile workers just had to go back to the older methods when the mechanized versions were allowed.
    • Which is kinda ironic, considering that in the original fairy tale, the princess pricked herself at one of those hand spindles. Which makes a lot more sense, actually, since such spindles have a sharp needle at their base by design (while a spinning wheel in reality lacks such „features“), and getting it stuck in your foot when it fell down was likely a common accident when operating them.

  • Why couldn't Stefan just explain to Maleficent the old king's decree about inheriting the throne if he manages to kill her? If he apparently still likes her enough to not bring himself to carry out the deed, and since Maleficent wouldn't seem to be very fond of the old king and would probably want to see Stefan on the throne since it would serve both their kingdoms well...One would think that together, they could've found some way to fake Maleficent's death to the king without having to mutilate her in the process.
    • This is one of those "it made more sense with a deleted scene" things. It's established in the movie that Stefan's primary motivation is power and greed. There's a scene where he is working as a servant in the king's room, and the king walks in on him riiiiight as he puts the king's crown on. The king explains that the only reason he was able to gain power is because he was willing to sacrifice everything - even people he loved - to do it. It's presented as a kind of Equivalent Exchange, where in order to become king, Stefan must sacrifice his love for Maleficent: there is no other way.

  • Why did Maleficent wait until Aurora was born to exact revenge on Stefan? Why didn't she immediately curse him after discovering the motive behind his treachery?
    • If I had to guess, I'd say it was to hit him where she thought he would hurt the most. Usually when a child is born, the parents are over the moon and completely in love with the child, so harming/cursing the child would devastate them. Another explanation could be that Maleficent really wanted to show off how powerful she was and cause a dramatic scene.


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