These days it seems that Disney are bringing out remakes at an absolutely rapid rate, Cinderella, Beauty And The Beast, Aladdin and now The Lion King. Although it’s not new, Disney knows exactly what they are doing. These are crowd pleasers, these are money makers. These a facts that simply can not be denied and this live action remake of the Famous The Lion King has been talked about a lot. Saying that, I actually struggle to call it a live action remake. With there being no human characters, can you really call this anything other than a cartoon, albeit a very high definition real life cartoon. It’s all animated, after all.
With a star cast including Donald Glover, Beyonce, Seth Rogan and Billy Eichner providing the voices for these much loved characters, this remake has certainly got a lot of people interested, with a lot of people looking forward to seeing this firm Disney favoruite in all of it’s modern movie magic glory. You can not fault the quality of the animation of this movie, with each character and each setting feeling almost real.
Whilst this film is beautiful to look at, with the wilds of the pride lands brought to life in explosions of colour, you can not deny that the almost photo realism of it all makes the heartbreaking death of Mufasa even sadder if that was at all possible. We all have a soft spot for animals deep down somewhere. That being said, this does also make the cub versions of Simba and Nala even more adorable along with the gaggle of young animals that join in the fun of ‘I Just Can’t Wait To Be King’.
Whilst some say that the realistic animals can not emote at all, the emotion comes in the vocal performances of the cast and there is a lot you can add in the power of imagination. Whilst it may not be obvious, you can still feel it.
Vocally the cast live up to expectations performing numbers such as ‘The Circle Of Life’ and ‘Can You Feel The Love Tonight’ and I have to say that I loved Seth Rogan as Pumba and Billy Eichner as Timon. They are a wonderful pairing who bring a lot of light relief and comedy to the piece. Who doesn’t love Timon and Pumba, they’ve always been my favourite characters from The Lion King anyway. I am sure that the music from this new movie version will prove as popular as the original.
Whilst you can not fault the look and the sound of this remake, I have to be honest and say that it doesn’t really add anything. In the live action remakes of Beauty and The Beast and Aladdin, we saw something new added to the characters to bring it into a modern era. Belle was an inventor and Jasmine was a strong and independent women. This a modern movie magic near frame for frame remake, but to be fair, there isn’t much that can really be changed about The Lion King. It’s about animals after all.
Whilst this may not be anything that we haven’t seen before, it does bring The Lion King to a whole new generation and I guess that is what is so wonderful about these remakes. These are films that my generation already know and love and it is great to see children being introduced to them now. It’s an enjoyable film, as it always has been, but it isn’t really anything new.