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Film ► Say something NICE about a Disney live-action remake



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WaltK

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In the words of a certain shiny YouTube crab:

"I hate these live-action remakes, but I will acknowledge that they are not 100% worthless experiences" -Schaffrillas Productions, "Mulan is the Worst Disney Live-Action Remake So Far" (2020)

There's gotta be something you like about these soulless cash grabs, and this is where you can rave about them. If you can't think of anything nice to say, and only want to bang on about how awful they are, please take that vitriol elsewhere. If you want to start a counteracting thread to talk about these films' problems, by all means do it. I'll even chip in a few grievances of my own, because by golly do I have them!

Let’s get started:

-Maleficent:
You gotta give them credit for doing something outside the box on this one, and I honestly prefer these versions of Maleficent and Aurora.

-Cinderella:
I do like that, unlike the original, we actually get to see Cindy's formerly-happy life fall to pieces in real time rather than just having it exposited to us by a narrator. It makes it that much more devastating when Lady Tremaine and the stepsisters show their true colours after her father dies.

-Jungle Book:
Bill Murry is a good Baloo, Idris Elba is a good Shere Khan.

-Beauty and the Beast:
The already iconic Kevin Kline's take on Maurice is honestly really sweet and wholesome, I'd even go as far as to say he's better than the animated Maurice (coming from this steadfast BatB stan, that's really saying something!) "Evermore" is also a decent new song, though I much prefer Josh Groban's version from the end credits to the one Dan Stevens sings in-movie. Celine Dion also shows that she's still got it in her version of "How Does A Moment Last Forever".

-Dumbo:
As far as photorealistic Disney animals go, Dumbo himself is actually animated pretty decently. Arcade Fire's cover of "Baby Mine" is also oddly haunting.

-Aladdin:
One of the few remakes that I honestly think is a good movie in its own right. I love Naomi Scott as Jasmine, Will Smith does a great job of making the Genie his own, I love his version of "Friend Like Me", and I love this version of "A Whole New World".

-Mulan:
…I liked Ming Na Wen's cameo toward the end. That was neat, I guess.

-Pinocchio:
Joseph Gordon-Levitt absolutely nails Jiminy's voice; it actually blew my mind a when I realised it's the same guy who voiced Jim in Treasure Planet.

-Little Mermaid:
Right up there with Aladdin imo. Halle Bailey is fantastic as Ariel, Malissa McCarthy is a really great Ursula, "For the First Time" is an absolute bop, I think may actually prefer this film's version of "Kiss the Girl" (that one BS lyric change aside), and Ariel and Eric honestly have better chemistry in this version. Flounder is also kind of cute in an ugly sort of way. Oh, and Jodie Bendon's cameo, and the subtle symbolism behind it. Live-action cameos from the original, still-living Princess voices should really be reoccurring thing in these remakes.
 
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Soldier

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I haven't seen all of them, but the ones I have seen have some stand out moments to me.

Maleficent: I LOVE the fact that they bring up the fact that fairies are weak to iron. That's a classic staple in mythology that a lot of people either don't know or don't bother bringing up because it's so obscure. But when you're pitting humans against ethereal/magical forces, how do you expect them to stand a fighting chance? Helps that the medieval setting fits right in with the iron age, when iron would be used in weaponry. (For pokemon fans, that's why fairy types are weak to steel if you didn't know)

Dumbo: I thought the story was pretty good, Danny Devito is still a national treasure and the whole setting is perfect. With the setting being 1919 you'd expect a lot of people to be going to circuses than the original's 1941 setting. The original was my favorite movie growing up, so perhaps there's some bias but I think they did a good job modernizing it.

Pinocchio: Monstro is a good design. Yes, really I am dead serious.

Mind you, the original Pinocchio didn't have a sperm whale, instead it had "the terrible dogfish" (which is another term for shark for those who don't know) which was just another obstacle for him to overcome. The remake makes him a whale/squid fusion that is actively pursuing the heroes with malicious intent. Early nautical maps often drew sea monsters in the margin to convey that there are uncharted waters beyond the edges of the map, and that dangerous creatures might lurk out of port. So making him a sea monster with various traits actually works here because of the fictitious nature of such a creature. Perhaps squid/whale hybrids enjoy the taste of boats?
 

Luminary

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While not a direct remake, Cruella is an excellent film. It’s one of the few I’ve gone out of my way to rewatch multiple times. To me, it’s the blueprint for how they should be handling any live action spins on the animated properties.

If we get any live action versions of Disney characters in KH4, I would love to see this version of Cruella. She could be running a fashion boutique in Quadratum or something.
 

MATGSY

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Aladdin making Iago into this devil's advocate/the real mastermind is an interesting change-up to the Jafar/Iago dynamic. Since the upcoming sequel supposedly won't be a retelling of Return of Jafar, I'm curious to see if they expand further on that.

While not a direct remake, Cruella is an excellent film. It’s one of the few I’ve gone out of my way to rewatch multiple times. To me, it’s the blueprint for how they should be handling any live action spins on the animated properties.

If we get any live action versions of Disney characters in KH4, I would love to see this version of Cruella. She could be running a fashion boutique in Quadratum or something.
IDK, films trying to portray villains in a positive light sound fiffy to me. Like she's still gonna become a dogskinner later on in life.

Besides, I much rather have Glenn Close.
 

PikaPal

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Guess it was nice to see them get Frank Welker back as the Cave of Wonders for Aladdin.
 

Luminary

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IDK, films trying to portray villains in a positive light sound fiffy to me. Like she's still gonna become a dogskinner later on in life.

Besides, I much rather have Glenn Close.

I think of it more like an AU (which it obviously is) and we don’t know that she will go down that path in this version. But they also didn’t paint her in a fully positive light either.

Glenn is perfect as classic Cruella, but Emma bodied this version and the casting could not have been more perfect.
 
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