Five questions we still have for “Sleeping Beauty”
Disney’s Sleeping Beauty is a classic. In fact, although Cinderella’s Castle at Disney World is probably the most famous Disney Parks castle, Walt Disney modeled the focus of Disneyland – the original Disney Park – after the castle from Sleeping Beauty. If Walt choosing this film as the center of his original family fun space doesn’t solidify its high status, I don’t know what does.
Maybe it’s the adorable fairies. Maybe it’s the handsome prince Phillip, who slays a dragon for his beloved instead of just offering kisses and shoes, like previous Disney princes. Or maybe it’s the presence of the most iconic Disney villain of all, Maleficent, whose impact on pop culture is so grand she got her own live-action film – one whose soundtrack includes Lana Del Rey’s hauntingly enchanted version of, “Once Upon a Dream.”
At the very least, Sleeping Beauty is a beautiful film to look at, and fantasize along with. But like all Disney animated films, it has its “Seriously, WTF?” moments. Without further ado, here are five questions we still have.
What was with these fairies’ “gifts”?
As a 15-year-old girl, Aurora looks like a 20-something model and can sing like a bird – probably because, as an infant, she was given the gift of beauty by Flora and song by Fauna. These totally come in handy when nabbing a prince in the fourteenth century. I get it.
But really, are those are the first things you can think of that a girl might need in her lifetime? What about intelligence? Courage? The ability to put on a bra without having to clasp it in the front first, then rotate it around and finish the job? Maybe Merryweather had it up her sleeve before she had to, you know, save Aurora’s life with her gift. Maybe Merryweather should’ve gone first.
How did Maleficent not notice her minions were only looking at babies for 16 years?
Maleficent lays into her minions about 15 minutes into the movie because they haven’t found Aurora after 16 years of searching for her. Via a two-sentence conversation, Maleficent soon discovers that it probably has more than a little to do with the fact that they were just searching for cradles — which wouldn’t have been a thing after, like, a year into their search.
But why did it take 16 years for her to deduce what the issue was? Were meetings not a regular occurrence between Maleficent and her minions? At the very least, she probably needed a better screening process for those guys. And to make the raven their manager.
Why did the other fairies let Fauna bake Aurora’s birthday cake?
So Fauna has never cooked and Flora has never sewed, and they choose Aurora’s biggest birthday to decide it’s the right time to try their hand at these skills.
WRONG AGAIN. The poor girl needs perfection to wear back to the castle for such a momentous occasion – not to mention a cake that will definitely not poison her after 16 years of the fairies slaving to keep her alive. And Merryweather insists on using magic, but of course her requests go ignored by the other fairies. You do you, Merryweather. We know you’re the one with her head on straight, even if no one else does.
Why didn’t they wait a couple more days to bring her back to the castle?
So this curse said Aurora would touch a cursed spindle before the sun set on her 16th birthday. Cool. That’s pretty clear. So why, then, did the fairies bring her back to the castle on her birthday instead of the day after – or even at, like, 8 p.m.? It seems like a lot of hassle could have been avoided if they just stuck it out and had her birthday dinner at home, and maybe picked up a bottle of wine on the way to the castle to bring the party over there later.
Semi-related: Why didn’t Stefan and his wife go visit Aurora at this cottage over the years and just let her know the deal up front? What about her knowing she was royalty and hanging with her parents sometimes was going to interfere with her staying away from cursed spindles?
Why is King Hubert so offended about Stefan’s hesitance to let Aurora marry and move in with Phillip right away?
There’s a scene where Phillip’s dad, King Hubert, is like, “So…they’re ready to shack up, right? Let’s get this deal going, I already have a starter castle built for them and they can move in tomorrow, because grandchildren.” But Hubert’s BFF King Stefan is patiently like, “Pause. My daughter is 16, and I literally haven’t seen her since she was like a day old, so maybe let’s wait.”
And Hubert actually has the gall to get annoyed that his son’s 16-year-old betrothed wife might not get to run off and live with him immediately. Eventually, they laugh drink wine and get over it – and we all know Aurora and Phillip do live happily ever after. We do wonder if they ever upgraded that castle, though, because 40 rooms is total chump space by Disney standards.