“The Lion King” Review

Warning: Contains some spoilers!
“The Lion King,” a remake of the original animated film from 1994, now directed by Jon Faveau, shows the path Simba had to take back his homeland after it has been under the rule of Scar, Simba’s wicked uncle.

The approach of the movie was different because of how it was filmed through the use of technology. Advancements of virtual reality (VR) brought the Pride Lands to life by creating the environment through VR and camera technology. Cast and crew wore headsets and goggles that let them walk through the animated scenes made through computer-generated imagery (CGI).

The film includes the voices of Donald Glover and Beyonce who play the adult Simba and Nala. Mufasa is played by James Earl Jones, who is the same person who voiced the character in the original 1994 film. Seth Rogan and Billy Eichner play the best friends of Simba, Pumbaa and Timon.

The opening scene of “The Lion King” starts with the classic song of “Circle of Life” with the same exact animals and motions as the original movie. Differences between the remake and the original are shown early in the film when Rafiki walks out to hold Simba without his original staff.

In addition, Scar’s black mane is not included in the new animated film as many viewers thought it might have, but he does have his infamous scar. The hyenas may have gotten new names but their unique personalities remained. The original trio of hyenas were Shenzi, Banzai, and Ed, but they were renamed to Azizi and Kamari while keeping the original Shenzi. Their names were changed because of the racist characters they portrayed. In the 1994 film, the voice actors were mainly white except for the hyenas, who were minority actors. This was odd because the movie was set in Africa. According to an article by Fast Company, the hyenas from the 1994 version were played as “low-life gangsters” and spoke in slang.

Although current reviews have been mixed, it is the ninth highest-grossing animated film of all time according to Box Office Mojo.

“When I was younger, ‘The Lion King’ was one of my favorites so seeing it be remade into a more realistic movie was very entertaining,” senior Kassandra Oviedo said. “I also loved the actors they cast for the movie.”

While true “Lion King” fans will be able to notice the changes in the remake, it still manages to keep the same theme of the importance of family, how strong love is, how friendships are unbreakable, and how hope is infinite.