Hakuna Matata my ass.
With the latest installment of Disney’s never ending series of live action remakes, Lion King, being a very passable/mediocre movie, we here at Kolwaka decided to investigate the reason behind these movies being made.
Let us clarify tho, they do succeed in making money, a lot of money. They surpass their break-even point in their opening weekends, hell, they make way more than surpass it.
But, this is not about how much money these movies make, it’s about why they are truly, truly terrible.
Take Lion King and Aladdin for example, both movies have a star-studded cast, great visuals, and good source material. Yet, something feels very off about them.
Here’s shot for shot comparison between the trailers of both the animated and the live action versions of the movies:
After a thorough research, which is basically seeing what other people have said about how they feel about these movies, we found out that these remakes mainly bank on, you guessed it, nostalgia. And as big as their budgets, it seems that very little goes into the story and the narrative.
Such films lack what made their animated counterparts enjoyable in the first place, and that is the dreamy, colorful, and imaginative aspect of it.
Meaning that real counterparts of such animals and places look A LOT grimmer than their animated versions.
In their defense tho, some of these movies were done in a different yet clearly better way. Take Maleficent for example, they retold the story of Sleeping Beauty from another perspective, and it worked really well.
Just think about how good the Lion King would’ve been if we got to experience it from Scar’s point of view, or how good Aladdin if we got to experience it from Jafar’s point of view.
Understanding how these characters got to where they are, and where the defining traits of their characters came from would’ve given these movies a lot more substance than they had.
Hell, at least they could’ve done what they did with The Jungle Book.
And on the contrary, the point here is not to claim that there aren’t any original ideas at Disney. Original ideas are way more risker than tried-and-true ones, yet, Disney continues to produce movies based on original ideas, like Coco, Moana, and Wreck-It Ralph. All of which are great movies which made Disney a TON of money.
All in all, these remakes can be made into something much more beautiful than what they are. Something that will resonate with those who watched the original animations, AKA us here in the office, and to those who are watching them for the first time.