Disney films now hit two birds with one stone

Disney films now hit two birds with one stone

The latest of the remakes, The Lion King, is leaving a flurry of reactions

The responses to Lion King has been wige-ranging, from anger to laughter to nostalgia to self-deprecation. And social media is lapping it all up.

The makers of remakes have a double-edged sword to deal with. Not only must they make a good film, they must also make sure they don’t tick off fans of the original film, who make up a large number of the enthusiasts.

Very often, it’s they who first signal the arrival of the remake for the rest of us; they are also often the first to throw in the towel and say, “They have ruined *insert name of the original* for me”.

The critics are considered an unhappy lot. Very few remakes make them happy, and most of us can’t tell the last time when a remake made a critic happy.

The majority clearly seems happy with remakes, the most recent of which is ‘The Lion King’, which is creating ripples in theatres around the world. In India alone, the film went on to smoothly cross the Rs 50-crore mark within three days of its release.

The responses to the film are varied, from fan art to memes to GIFs. Some scenes lend themselves to these more than the other, and none more than the one where Simba is trying to wake up Mufasa’s corpse.

There are others who are tearing up all over social media over how they missed this or that element.

One user said she will not forgive Disney for not including the scene where Timon asks Simba how he could possibly distract the hyenas, “What do you want me to do? Dress in drag and do the hula?”, and then goes on to do just that.

In fact, the grumbling over the “missing” scenes was so persistent that the parodies started coming in.

One Twitter user shared an altered video of Rafiki, during Simba’s presentation, throwing the cub off the Pride Rock cliff and said he “missed that scene”.

Some of the great enthusiasm came from youngest viewers who came to the new ‘Lion King’ without the cultural baggage of the original, which Disney released in 1994.

Metrolife even found someone who loves the 25-year-old original despite being all of seven years, ever ready to narrate, in excruciating detail, any of her many favourite scenes.

“My first favourite part is when Rafiki holds little Simba up to the light. And when junior Simba tries to roar and he goes gaaaarh!,” Megan roars.

“I love it when Simba roars and takes over the kingdom,” and follows it up with another equally impressive roar.

“I hate it when Scar pushes Simba down the cliff,” she says. Her mother interrupts her: “Simba or Mufasa?”. But Megan is not confused, she knows her Lion King: “Simba. Simba also he’ll push, right?”.

But her mother’s question has roused her interest; she is more than happy to clarify on any queries.

“Mufasa will be climbing and he will ask, right? ‘Brother, help me’ but he (Scar) will hold with the sharp nails and that’s it, ‘Long live the king’ and he will push him down the cliff.”

Since no one should have any doubts after so fine an explanation, Megan returns to her main point: “Then he will push Simba down the cliff and tell (now Megan shifts to an imitation of Scar’s whisper) ‘I killed Mufasa’.”

Anne laughs and asks her “That you hate?”. Megan is convinced of her feelings: “I HATE it”.

Megan even has favourite songs from the movie, a list that practically covers the whole playlist of the movie.

Going by the enthusiasm of one of their youngest admirers, it looks like we can safely say that Disney has successfully planted the seeds for another Lion King remake 25 years from now.

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