Despite all the technical wizardry, Disney’s carbon copy of their own 1994 animated film fails to fly. The Lion King (2019) undeniably pushes the boundaries of modern animation, providing a stunning and new visual experience. Unfortunately however, no amount of technical prowess can save the film from a feeling of blandness. The emotion and energy of the 1994 original absent throughout. While the Elton John and Tim Rice soundtrack lacks the bite, wit and power of the original. Many of the core problems in this remake come from placing the emphasis on effects over story. While others come from voice performances feeling subdued and at odds with ultra real animals on screen. It is here that The Lion King creates a problem of its own making. The realism of a CGI wildlife film and colour of a musical never truly finding harmony together.
The Lion King (2019) feels unneeded, its purpose and position unclear apart from a purely financial return. The 1994 hand drawn film still shining through all the effects and CGI Disney can muster. Showing that technical ability is not, and never will be a replacement for vibrant story telling, characterisation and energy. The Lion King may be beautiful to watch, but for all its beauty it is sadly forgettable and bland.
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