Thursday, May 07, 2009

May Flowers, Sleeping Beauty

May Flowers, weeknights @ 11:00

I don't know how many of you know this since I don't talk about animation that much but Sleeping Beauty is my favorite Disney classic. I love the color palette, the villain, the Prince (hubba hubba), and Briar Rose herself: keeper of the tiniest waist since Mammy cinched Scarlett O'Hara up tight by the bedposts.


I also enjoy "their most honored and exalted excellencies, the three good fairies"... or as Maleficent memorably dubs them, "the rabble."

Each fairy can give one gift to Princess Aurora (she's renamed for this movie for some reason). Flora the lead fairy, her name drawn from plant life, is first... "Little Princess, my gift shall be the gift of beauty" and then we get trippy visuals of flowers and the cosmos and a creepy choral number, too
One gift, beauty rare,
Gold of sunshine in her hair,

Lips that shame the red, red rose,

She'll walk in springtime wherever she goes!
Fauna gives the gift of song... though I'm not sure how that correlates to animal life... oh yes, birds! Merryweather gives... well Merryweather isn't really about anything other than comic relief and her love for the color blue. But blue is better than pink, so I always take Merryweather's side.

To escape Maleficent's curse, Flora suggests turning Aurora into a flower. Fauna likes the idea "Oh, she'd make a lovely flower!" But Merryweather (the best fairy, remember) warns that Maleficent will send a frost "she always ruins your best flowers." Maleficent manages to curse the girl anyway.


Cut to the tail end of the movie, this rare beauty with golden sunshine in her hair is awoken by love's true kiss. She holds a rose to her bosom. It wasn't shamed to be seen with her red red lips.
*

16 comments:

adri said...

It's my favorite Disney classic too. I bought the anniversary DVD a few months ago. As a kid, I always identified with Merriweather. It has the best music of the classics, the Tchaikovsky Sleeping Beauty ballet score. The backgrounds were all paintings, done in the style of the Book of Hours of the Duc du Berry. What artistic soul could resist?

Derreck said...

This movie does contain proably the most beautiful Disney Princess ever...plus, the rose she holds so gently as she is in her slumber makes one hell of a exquisite sight.

But Beauty and the Beast will always be the crown jewel to me. Timeless romance, a main character who is not only beautiful but intelligent, the simply iconic image of the ballroom dance and...

the rose.

the rose locked up in a glass as a daily reminder to the Beast of his suffering and a great metaphor for the love and passion he has locked up inside of his heart until he finally learns to love.

the power of a flower. :)

Pablete said...

With all these ravishing pictures, we are going to be having some of the most pleasant dreams! Thank you very much, Nathaniel!

Fernando Moss said...

What I love about this movie is that every character gets their spotlight. The princess is not really the leading character. I think that if this was a real-life-actors movie it would be a hell of an ensemble cast work.

la Mariposa said...

God, I love Disney classics. I just watched Pinocchio last night, and it just reminded me of how films then were kinda more frightening. Kids turning into donkeys without turning back & the villains aren't even punished!

pomme said...

It's in this movie i understood i never will be a princess!!snifff! it was worse to understand Father Christmas not live!

Anonymous said...

I Agree, It's my favourite animation tied with Beauty and the Beast & The Hunchback of Notre Dame

NATHANIEL R said...

pomme -- why would sleeping beauty shatter your princess dreams?

la mariposa -- i've been meaning to watch Pinocchio again for months. MUST DO THAT.

Anonymous said...

We need a Tuesday Top 10 of favorite Disney classics.

Adam

Ted said...

Great! This is one of my favorite Disney classics as well.
Amazing animation, eye-popping use of color (when have yellow and purple ever gone so good together as in the sleepwalking scene?)and that abstract sequence representing Aurora's gifts? Amazing!
What I love most about the old school Disneys is their complete and total lack of 'hipness'. They're literally timeless which is why they still work as well as they do. Unfortunately, todays animated offerings, with their incessant, inane pop cultural references and dumbed down "humor" will ultimately rob them of any real lasting value.

john said...

In Sleeping Beauty I was always rooting for Maleficent the whole way.

CrazyCris said...

also my favourite Disney movie EVER!!! fell in love with it as a kid... bugged my parents to see any iteration of the story possible (including marionettes, plays and finally the ballet - love Tchaikovsky!). My sister gave me the special edition dvd this year for Christmas... the whole film is just a work of art, I can understand why it took them so long to weave together that tapestry!

And Merryweather is also my favourite. I get so pissed off at the Disney "Princess" collection each time I see Aurora in hideous PINK!!! grrrrrrr.... after all, she's in blue for most of the film!!! :p

NATHANIEL R said...

crazycris -- i KNOW. Merryweather lost in the end which is just F***ed up!

Wayne B. said...

adri - I feel the same, took the words out of my mouth :)

Hayden said...

I actually think Fauna is the most hilarious. Baking the cake? Priceless.

john said...

Of course, especially when she throws in actual eggs into the cake mix and you hear them crack!