Video: The Lion King (2019)

The Lion King is directed by Jon Favreau, who directed the Jungle Book, and has much to love about it! The plot is the same as the original and in case you’ve been living under a rock: Mufasa voiced once again by James Earl Jones is king of the Pride Lands and is raising his young son Simba to one day be King. Uncle Scar played by Chiwetel Ejiofor wants to take over the Kingdom and in order to do so he must betray Mufasa which eventually forces Simba into exile where he meets friends Timon and Pumba, hilariously voiced by Seth Rogen and Billy Eichner.

The voice acting is tremendous. Young Simba and Nala voiced by JD McCrary and Shahadi Wright Joseph are adorably portrayed. The two cubs sing I just can’t wait to be king which sounds great!

Donald Glover and Beyonce play grown up Simba and Nala and the highlight song is easily Can You Feel the Love Tonight? The two harmonize beautifully together!

Most people will have a good time watching this 2019 rendering.The animation is great, the music is wonderful, and it is recommendation for those who love The Lion King or even for anyone who finds this story to be interesting.

I do not think this is better than the animated movie. It could be because I’ve seen that movies hundreds of times that nostalgia is convincing me that it’s better but I have two main reasons that I’d like to discuss as to why the Animation is better than this photorealistic remake.

A story about Lions who can talk, sing, and dance lends itself to an animated movie because cartoons have the luxury of being exaggerated because they’re not aiming to look and feel like real life. With this movie, the animation is so advanced it mirrors reality and anything that doesn’t look real could have come off as cringe-worthy. Luckily, everything does look real but the unfortunate aspect is that there’s some sequences that are more well pulled off in the cartoon version because they could afford to do some really extreme things with its characters that added to what made that movie so magical. For example, Be Prepared is shortened in this movie because Hyenas walking the way that they do in the cartoon would look silly. The visuals are breathtaking but lack those ultra saturated greens, blues, and pinks often seen throughout the animated version. Additionally, I just can’t wait to be king sounds great but has the ability to be a whole lot more epic as a cartoon as you have more animals intertwined.

The second reason I like the animation more is it is tighter on the pacing. The cartoon is an hour and a half whereas this new version is 2 hours. I don’t mind them adding things. There’s an extra scene with Nala leaving Pride Rock to find Simba and there’s a scene with Timone and Pumba having a conversation with Simba about their beliefs about the Circle of Life. They’re not bad scenes at all; they’re honestly fine but as someone who’s seen the classic I personally prefer a shorter film that gets to the point faster.

Nonetheless, I do very much enjoy both versions of The Lion King but I did want to explain two specific reasons why I personally prefer the animated over this. I do not regret seeing this. It was a ton of fun. Even if the original is better, it was amazing to see all the attention to detail that was put into the ambitious attempt to making this movie come alive.

Final Verdict:Beautifully animated, well-voiced, and lovely music! An ambitious adventure that pays tribute to the original; although, not quite as magical as the 1994 classic!
Rating:B+