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Sleeping Beauty
6.9/10 by 3283 users
 
Title:Sleeping Beauty (1959)
Release: Feb 17, 1959 (United States of America)
Runtime: 75 min.
Genre: Fantasy, Animation, Romance, Family
Stars: Mary Costa, Bill Shirley, Eleanor Audley, Verna Felton, Barbara Luddy, Barbara Jo Allen
Plot: A beautiful princess born in a faraway kingdom is destined by a terrible curse to prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into a deep sleep that can only be awakened by true love's first kiss. Determined to protect her, her parents ask three fairies to raise her in hiding. But the evil Maleficent is just as determined to seal the princess's fate.
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John Chard

Review by John Chard

John Chard

"Beautiful Disney Production Of A Wonderful Fairytale. When an evil witch places a curse on an infant princess that will cause her to fall into eternal sleep on her 16th birthday, her three fairy godmothers whisk her away to a life of normality and ignorance of her birthright. But can they stave off the curse when the 16th year of age arrives? It upped the ante in costing for Disney, also taking a decade to produce. The ambition was high as new techniques were being used such as rotoscoping, while the musical score is brilliantly devised from Tchaikovsky's Sleeping Beauty ballet. The story itself is a pure joy, based on Charles Perrault's ever enduring fairytale, it's awash with rich characters, led by the delightful three fairy godmothers - Flora - Fauna and Merryweather, all plumpy and sweet, while evil witch Maleficent is brilliantly produced, with a long pointy chin and devil horns on her head. There's a whole bunch of charming fun on show, as the three ladies bring the magic and potter around while gently ribbing each other, but it's with the drama where Sleeping Beauty most soars. The nightmare sequence luring Briar Rose (Princess Aurora) to the dreaded spinning wheel is unnerving, and the battle between Prince Phillip and Maleficent is exhilarating and shows the animators at their best. As for the colour? Spanking! Upon release it wasn't the roaring success Disney had hoped and planned for, but the decades since then have been very kind to Sleeping Beauty. For it's a magical film for children and adults to dreamily get lost in. 9/10"

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