Theme in Power and Revenge in “Beowulf” “Maleficent”

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In the epic poem of “Beowulf”, this is about a perfect hero who kills a monster by the name of Grendel, and in the movie Maleficent, this is about an innocent fairy girl, who experiences a betrayal that changes her life very much. Throughout both of these stories, they share themes such as power, revenge, and celebration. I will display throughout this paper these themes, and hopefully, you can understand why I believe this after reading this paper.

Power in Masculinity

When considering the similarities amongst “Beowulf” and Maleficent, it isn’t as straightforward as it may appear to be at first, although they are alike when demonstrating power in masculinity. In Beowulf’s situation it’s significant for him to constantly demonstrate his power and strength, whether or not there is a courageous act taking place, he likes to brag about past matches, and engage in swimming matches during his free time, for example when mentioning to his friend Unferth “ Well, Friend Unferth, you had your say about Breca and me. But it was mostly beer that was doing the talking. The truth is this: when the going was heavy in those waves, I was the strongest swimmer of all” (Beowulf 530-534) which displays Beowulf’s confidence and power in masculinity.

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On the other hand in Maleficent case, when she was a young girl she meets a poor boy by the name of Stefan, and the two become good friends. He eventually betrays for the desire of power, he gives her a beverage that places her into a profound rest where he then steals her beautiful wings, is his selfish way to show power in masculinity.


Another common theme throughout both of these stories that is strongly present is revenge. After having a victorious kill over the monster Grendel, all the people of Danes begin to praise and honor Beowulf with all kinds of wealth. Although little does he know that at this time Grendel’s mother, who is furious and grieving of her son’s death, is planning an attack “But now his mother had sailed forth on a savage journey, grief-racked and ravenous, desperate for revenge. She came to Heorot. There, inside the hall, Danes lay asleep, earls who would soon endure a great reversal, once Grendel’s mother attacked and entered” (Beowulf 1276-1278). This explains the mother’s journey for revenge of her son’s death. Similarly in Maleficent, after finding out about the selfish act that Stefan has done to become king, evil overcomes her and on the day when the king’s daughter is born Maleficent visits the kingdom uninvited. Maleficent way of revenge is by setting a curse on the baby so (that on her 16th birthday) she will stick herself with a needle which sets her into a deep sleep, essentially killing her. The only way for her to awaken is if she receives true loves kiss.


Finally, both of these stories share is celebration. In Beowulf, there’s yet another celebration for having successfully defeated both Grendel and his mother “Never shall you fear for a single thane of your sept’ or nation, young warriors or old, that laying waste of life that you and your people endure of yore. (Beowulf 1673-1676) Beowulf explain here how he has done his part to restore the peace and move on, and celebrate this victory. In Maleficent, Princess Aurora, she is sent by her father, the king, to live far away so that there is no chance of her pricking her finger. As Aurora grows ups she actually meets Maleficent and they become extremely close, Aurora decides the day before her 16th birthday that she wants to move out to live with Maleficent in the moors. Upon arriving back home to tell her fairy mothers about moving out, she overhears them talking about who she really is. She runs away to the castle to meet her father but sadly the curse comes true when Aurora pricks her finger placing her into a deep sleep. Once Maleficent finds out about the terrible news she goes to visit Aurora but is captured by the guards. She then has to go to battle with the king himself and kills him. Finally, Maleficent is able to see Aurora laying on her deathbed. Heartbroken once again Maleficent gives Aurora a gentle kiss on her forehead. Unbelievably Aurora awakens, and Maleficent and the people celebrate in true happiness that the curse has been lifted, and that they now have a new ruler who is truly kind from the inside out.


In conclusion, the comparisons between the Epic poem of “Beowulf” and the movie Maleficent, share themes of power in masculinity, revenge, and celebration. This may be a different perspective, to help the reader and others view the parallel’s they share in common.

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Theme in Power and Revenge in “Beowulf” “Maleficent”. (2021, Oct 25). Retrieved from

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