I've been anticipating this one so hard for so long that I think I may have even mentioned it here. I've at least made it clear, I'm sure, that the original is one of my favorite movies of all time. So yeah, I wasn't under any illusions -- turning it into "live action" was a Disney money-grabbing gimmick from the beginning and it was destined to lack the love and inspiration that made the first one a masterpiece.
I also knew I'd be going to see it no matter what. I even had some hope that the realism would help expand the world by considering the kinds of questions that interest me, like "How does a lion grow into a healthy adulthood subsisting entirely on insects?", or that there would be some cool new music or more of a spotlight on my favorite character, Nala. I'm not into Beyonce, but I thought it was a good sign when she was cast...and then I found out that "Shadowland" (from the Broadway show) wasn't going to be added in and my hopes pretty much crashed.
Anyway, it was worth the price of admission, and I can concede that there were a few small improvements. Timon and Pumbaa are far less annoying, and I loved Donald Glover as adult Simba. I might want to see it again at some point, but I probably won't buy it, and mostly it just made me want to rewatch the original yet again. There were too many missed opportunities, and while I was willing to suspend judgment on the expressionless faces of the animals when we saw them in the trailers, now I can only say that yeah, a little bit of sclera really wouldn't go amiss here.
Speaking of Disney's live-action remakes, I couldn't even get through this one. How is it so hard to just let the animals talk, especially when it's clearly a fantasy plot to begin with? Sure, the baby elephant is cute, but that was probably the easiest thing for the special effects to achieve; a little bit of magic or some wholesome characters or a terrifying random acid trip song shouldn't have been too much to ask.
Barely appeared on my radar when it came out, but at some point I saw a few seconds of it and realized it was a musical with Hugh Jackman, so I made it one of my in-flight choices on the way to (or coming back from?) Europe. It had its moments but I really didn't care for most of the music, which is kind of important in a musical. Also, this was right after I'd given up on Dumbo. Maybe I was somehow craving the circus?
Probably as good as the first one. Chris Pratt's voice acting is full of joy. I was pretty tickled by the queen's suspiciously specific denials of her evilness actually being true. Ready to keep watching these movies, at a moderate delay, for as long as they keep making them.
Okay so I watched the first half of this on a plane, like, a year ago? And actually loved it, much more than I expected to, yet somehow didn't finish it up until I was on another flight that had it. It's very different from the original (a childhood favorite of mine, definitely), but I felt like it had the same kind of energy. Friendly and silly and kids being kids. The way they pulled off the genderbend without being mocking or analytical about it was excellent.
How many DC movies do you have to like before you're considered a DC fan? Ah, well, forget it, I know I'm not a DC fan...but this is the second DC movie I've liked! Granted, I would rather have Jason Momoa here on our side, but if that can't be, then at least he's ferocious and upbeat and dripping wet over on the other side. There were some cool sea creatures, and I kind of liked the lighthouse romance of his parents, but mostly this movie is about Jason Momoa and his smile and his eyebrows and his muscles, and I don't see why any of us should have a problem with that. I might wanna go check out one of those ensemble movies now that I can be looking for both Aquaman and Wonder Woman.
There have been so many CG animated sequels I missed, and some of them I have to keep waiting on for one reason or another (definitely need to rewatch The Incredibles first, for instance), but this one was kind enough to show up on Netflix, and while I loved Wreck-It Ralph, I felt like it was fresh enough in my memory. Felt good to return to this very weird setting, probably moreso than it did to return to the cute but unremarkable characters. I had already known Groot was in it, plus all the princesses, but the surprises in the rest of the references, cameos, and digs were awesome. I'm sure there's been a lot of pausing to inspect the stillframes -- if anyone knows of anything especially funny that I missed, I'd be happy to hear of it. :) Oh, and hi Gal Gadot. You look like...Gal Gadot!