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“The Lion King” is a pointless disappointment

“The Lion King” is a pointless disappointment

“The Lion King” is a pointless disappointment
July 21
15:04 2019

“Simba, you must remember who you are.”

“The Lion King” is Disney’s third live action remake in 2019 and eleventh one since 2010’s “Alice in Wonderland”. Besides their very evident idea to basically print money with these remakes, there also seems to be a desperate lack of creativity and originality pumping through the walls of Disney.

Look, I get the viewpoint that these remakes are for a new, younger generation of kids to enjoy on the big screen because they obviously are not able to enjoy the animated ones on the big screen, but why not show them the original animated films instead of these creatively bankrupt remakes? A few of them have been quite good, I will not lie but they still do not hold a candle to their original counterparts.

And unfortunately, this new remake of “A Lion King” pales horribly in comparison to its animated original. I know they are their own movies with different creative teams, but I just simply cannot separate them from their originals simply because so many of them do almost nothing different.

The biggest glaring problem in “The Lion King” is the lack of emotion and soul in just about every scene. These CGI animal designs obviously cannot emote or show any real sign of emotion, so I never felt any type of emotion either. Anytime there was a scene of imminent danger, I never felt fear for the characters or anything of the sort because they do not look fearful themselves. Even though I knew what was already going to happen in these scenes, I never felt any real emotion from any of these pivotal, important scenes because it was not onscreen to begin with. How do you expect that to be properly translated to an audience when it cannot even be captured properly onscreen?

Speaking of proper translations and adaptations, all of the most important, funniest and charming bits of the original film are either not present or are butchered badly because this is not a film that can properly adapt the great animated aspects to a live action screen. The movie overall is just horribly pointless and what a shame it is.

Despite its number of flaws, there are a few things it has going for it. Namely, Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen as Timon and Pumbaa. They actually bring a sense of some emotion into the void of emotionless nothing that the film is. Whether it was humor or heart, at least they brought something that the rest of the film failed to bring. The rest of the voice cast just seems totally miscast though. None of them bring the flair that the original voice cast of the animated film brought. I thought maybe they could reach those heights because they are all very talented, but they never even come close.

I obviously cannot fault the story either, because it is literally almost a shot-for-shot recreation of the original story and it worked there, so in a technicality, it works here. Also, the film is an absolute visual masterpiece. It will seriously push the boundary of what CGI is capable of and I can say that confidently. It is so photo-realistic it looks like a nature documentary, instead now with awkward voiceovers.

Unfortunately, the positives seem to stop for me there. The hyenas are here, but they were totally wasted here. They were one of the best parts of the animated film and they are worthless here. The “Be Prepared” sequence was also a huge slap in the face. That is one of the best Disney Villains’ songs and sequences and here it is an aesthetically muted, rushed production that fails the animated
sequence in literally all regards. Not only is the “Be Prepared” sequence horribly rushed, the rest of the film itself felt totally rushed. It breezes past the things that should have taken time to build up, but instead it rushes past everything in a bid to quickly get to the finish line.

“The Lion King” is an utterly soulless and lifeless retread of a bonafide classic. It is utterly insignificant in about every way. There is not an ounce of real, earned emotion in the entire thing.

How is it even possible that I never felt an ounce of emotion in the emotion-shattering scene of Mufasa’s death? How am I supposed to feel emotion when nothing in the film has emotion, let alone show any of it? On nostalgia alone? I do not think so. There are so many questions that it needlessly raises that never get answered. This film should not have me asking these questions anyway. It should be able to work on its own merit and breakthrough from its source material, but it never once does.

Rating: 2/5

Featured Image courtesy of Gamespot

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Spencer Kain

Spencer Kain

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