Nostalgia kicks in after watching the remake of Disney’s ‘The Lion King’. The 1994 animated classic movie, is brought to life beautifully and powerfully in the recent version of the movie.
Although the characters are computer-generated, they seem very lifelike especially their movements.The roaming giraffes, the grazing rhinos, the stampede of the bisons, the lush green backdrops with the flowing streams, swaying trees and gushing waterfalls, are portrayed as if it is happening in real life.
The movie revolves around ‘Simba’, a lion who is next in line to become the king of the jungle. His uncle, ‘Scar’ has his eyes on the throne too and he plans to overthrow ‘Simba’ along with his father, ‘Mufasa’, ultimately, leading Simba on a journey to search for his destiny and purpose.
The movie hits a note as it follows the original plot more closely than any other Disney classics, but lacks an emotional impact. There are moments when the character’s voice tries to convey emotions but it’s not reflected in the facial expressions.
Directed by Jon Favreau, the humour and jokes in this release feel forced, especially when in a scene hyenas bicker about personal space. The voice-overs is done by a star-studded cast.
‘Simba’ is voiced by JD McCrary as a cub and Donald Glover as an adult. While, Keegan-Michael Key does for ‘Kamari’, Seth Rogen for ‘Pumba’ and Billy Eichner for ‘Timon’. The only voice from the animated film is of James Earl Jones, for ‘Mufasa’. ‘Mufasa’ is commanding and powerful like it was in the original film, maintaining the understanding and admiration for his character. ‘Zazu’ is voiced by John Oliver who tries to add a fun touch to the character which is distracting. It’s easy to get absorbed in the playful antics of ‘Timon and Pumba’ with the added touch of Rogen’s signature laugh.
Despite Beyonce’s star power, her voicing for ‘Nala’ doesn’t overshadow the character and instead lends an air of passion and independence. She truly shines in her singing, especially in the classic ‘Can You Feel the Love Tonight’ and ‘Spirit’.
The movie stays true to the original one, with the same passion and emotion in the music. Every song, both lyrical and instrumental, effectively sets the tone throughout the film. ‘Hakuna Matata’ and ‘I Just Can’t Wait to Be King’ are just as lively and upbeat as the animated film. It’s hard not to get choked up during ‘Circle of Life’.
Ultimately, The Lion King’s live-action rendition follows closely in the steps of its predecessor. The remake gives us a very expensive cover album of songs from the original movie featuring Beyoncé and Childish Gambino. That alone makes it worth the effort. Needless to say, the Disney formula of remaking nostalgia classics is continuing to pay off.
The movie is worth a watch, only for the gorgeous visuals and technical genius, rating it three out of five!