Disney is currently in the process of remaking many of its classic animated films with modern visual effects and live-action casts. Some have been more successful than others, but few, if any, have been as highly anticipated as The Lion King. How could it possibly live up to the original, which many consider to be the preeminent entry in Disney’s animated canon? What’s the point of a “live-action” remake without any human characters?
Needless to say, fans of the animated film were trepidatious about 2019’s The Lion King, but as early reactions from critics begin to roll in, everyone can breathe a sigh of relief. According to those who saw the first press screenings of the movie, The Lion King not only lives up to the high expectations, but might even surpass them.
Reviews won’t be posted until closer to the film’s release, but thanks to social media, we got a flood of reactions last night as critics left their screenings. Nearly everyone seems to agree that The Lion King is a stunning achievement on a technical level, with several going as far as to say that the visuals set a new high-water mark. As for the storytelling, the response was mixed, but appeared to lean toward the positive side:
At the very least, it sounds like everyone who was concerned that Disney would ruin their childhood can take a step back from the ledge, as even the critics who didn’t fall in love with the remake still found things to like about it. This is shaping up to be yet another massive hit for Disney, but what else is new?
The Lion King hits theaters on July 18th, 2019.