SLEEPING BEAUTY 50th ANNIVERSARY EDITION (Blu-ray Edition)|
Disney / Buena Vista | 1959 | 75 mins | Rated G | Oct 07, 2008
Written by Brian Wylie
October 9, 2008
For the first time ever, Disney has finally revealed one of its most prized positions on the Blu-Ray format. 50 years ago Disney introduced us to Aurora, aka Sleeping Beauty, and their animation films from that moment on have evolved into must see films. With this addition to the Blu-Ray world, I expect the same trend from past and future animated films. Sleeping Beauty set a high bar 50 years ago, and again today it is setting an even higher bar on the Blu-Ray format.
Disney animators spent who knows how long of time going back through every single shot and redrew the whole film to add more picture and transform this full screen film into the much needed widescreen format. I donít think you could have a better looking animation film. At no point in the film will you ever see drawing lines like you do in the re-mastered 101 Dalmatians or in Sword in the Stone. It is truly a wonderful masterpiece that as I said before has set an almost unreachable bar.
You are brought into this story to find that the King and Queen have finally had a much-wanted child, a girl who is named Aurora. She has brought so much happiness to the kingdom that the Royal Family has invited the whole kingdom to come and see their daughter, well that is everyone but Maleficent. There are three good fairies, Flora, Fauna, and Merryweather that are there to give Aurora wishes. They are the gift of Beauty, the gift of Song, and then you are interrupted by the evil Maleficent. She has come to crash the party and give Aurora her own gift; on her sixteenth birthday before the sun sets Aurora will prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and die. Right after she disappears out of thin air, the third fairy, Merryweather, gives her last gift of deep sleep instead of death to try and save the royal princess.
So in a desperate attempt to keep the princess from ever coming close to that horrible prophecy, King Stefan burns all the spinning wheels in the kingdom. But knowing that that is not enough to stop Maleficent, the fairies come up with a new plan. They raise the child for sixteen years in a location hidden far away from anyone to keep her safe. The King and Queen agree and you then flash forward sixteen years to Aurora sixteenth birthday.
Desperate to find Aurora Maleficent sends her pet crow as a last resort to finding the child and getting her to fulfill her destiny. Maleficent pet finds the princess due to the war between colors with Flora and Merryweather. This sends everything out of control due to Rose, renamed for protection, finds out she is already to be married to someone she doesnít know and has been living a life that was a lie. Add that with the fact that Maleficent is still trying to kill her and you have a big conflict setting up.
This wouldnít be the one of the best damsel in distress stories of all time without the prince. Prince Phillip has fallen in love with a peasant girl who we all know to be Prince Aurora. The funny thing is neither one of them knows the other is royalty at first. Once the fairies find out, as they are trying to cover up the mistake of letting Aurora walk to her fate, that Aurora is truly in love with Prince Phillip they make their way to find him to have him save the day. Soon you find out that the three fairies arenít the only ones who are looking for him. He comes the great and romantic part of the movie. You get to watch as love, with a little magic, conquers evil. Watch all 75 minutes with your eyes glued to the television in amazement as this classic story unfolds in beautiful true High Definition on Blu-Ray.
I originally thought that Sleeping Beauty was a poor choice for Disney to have for its first animated Blu-ray. They clearly put me into my place. This was the perfect pick for them and I canít wait to see what they do with future classic films. Sleeping Beauty 50th Anniversary Edition is a must own in any DVD collection, and more importantly for Blu-ray owners, this is a must have milestone title for your high-definition collection.