The Lion King: Exclusive Movie Review By A Teen

The Lion King has been a beloved musical for many while growing up. And it's come back to attempt to become a beloved of your child. But does this remake hold a candle to the original?

By Vanshika Devuni Kalanidhi  • 6 min read

The Lion King: Exclusive Movie Review By A Teen

Rating: ★★★☆☆

I’ll admit it. When it comes to age, I’m on the younger side. I grew up with a phone permanently stuck to my hand. I don’t get why Amitabh Bachchan is a big deal. And, I haven’t seen the original Lion King. Did this movie make me fall in love with it? Read on to find out.

The plot

Mufasa is the king of Pride Rock. But like any king, his power comes with problems. When Mufasa gets killed by his scheming brother Scar, will his cub, Simba, be able to handle the responsibility of being a king?

This movie might just be a bad remake, but I don’t get why The Lion King is so hyped up. To me, this is just another movie. It wasn’t too bad, but it didn’t seem worth the love everybody shows for The Lion King. There was no ‘OMG’ factor. It was underwhelming. Maybe the original was better!

The animation 

I don’t hate this movie, though. I think this movie has one of the best animations I’ve ever seen. This realism might have affected the characters’ expressions and the way they talked, but I didn’t know what was animated and what was real. Simba was super cute in the first half, and all the animals were drawn very elegantly. 

I also love the subtle changes in the animation to express the mood. For example, Pride Rock is colorful and beautiful in the first half, but starts to get greyer and more devoid of color as we go ahead. And the difference in the way characters are depicted is also important. Mufasa is bulky and looks healthy and well-fed; Scar looks bony and has a ‘I hate you’ look.

The sound and the music

The sound effects and the songs were amazing. They added the right amount excitement or terror in you. I can now see why ‘Circle of life” and “Hakuna matata” are such beloved songs. However, after some research, I believe that the original songs have a better vibe to them. The new songs were appealing to hear, but the accompanying visuals were quite boring.

The villain 

I want more appreciation for Scar as a character. Chiwetel Ejiofor does a great job bringing out Scar’s jealousy and general Slytherin-ness. He’s so talented as a voice actor that even I was a little lured in by Scar’s arguments and methods. Scar is beautifully written. His allies being creepy hyenas, him “accidentally” giving Simba precious information, and his other actions make the story richer. To be honest, Scar is better written than most other main characters.

The missing humour 

I think the people who made this movie should have spent more time making it more enjoyable and funny. The movie goes too long without jokes (and heavily relies on Timon and Pumba for said jokes) and gets boring to watch. And while there were some jokes, nobody in the theatre laughed at them. Humour is not the only thing that makes movies worth watching, but it certainly helps.

All in all, The Lion King was a good watch, but did not capture the appeal of the original movie and it won’t hurt to skip this one. A cash grab by Disney, this one’s a disappointment compared to the original.

Takeaways from the The Lion King movie:

  1. A true king searches for what he can give rather than what he can take.
  2. We are all connected in the great circle of life.
  3. To change your future, you need to leave your past behind.
  4. Hakuna matata – live without worries.
  5. A true king’s power lies in his compassion.

Watch the The Lion King movie trailer: 

The Lion King Cast:

Donald Glover: Simba

Beyoncé Knowles-Carter: Nala

James Earl Jones: Mufasa

Billy Eichner: Timon

Seth Rogen: Pumbaa

Chiwetel Ejiofor: Scar

Alfre Woodard: Sarabi

John Oliver: Zazu

Also read: 15 Best Animated Movies for Kids to Watch

The author is a writer/blogger who blogs at

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