Critic Review - Boston Globe

The story line is a Joseph Campbell hero-quest so stripped down to its basics as to become dull.

September 15, 2011 Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Comments (103)
Boston Globe
Top Critic IconTop Critic


Stephane C.

Stephane Choquette

"But it's still a post-production 3-D job"
Well you mean they should have shot the movie right away with special cameras or something like that?
Isn't it an animation picture?!

Sep 15 - 04:20 PM

Andrew I.

Andrew Imrie

I think he means they shouldn't have even attempted converting it to 3-D at all.

Sep 15 - 05:24 PM


Amanda Morris

You're absolutely right! I hate when they kill awesome movies with this 3D bullshit. 3D DOES NOT MAKE A MOVIE ANY BETTER!!!!! Our founding filmmakers are turning in their graves with the crap we come up with and pay money to see these days. All 3D does is ruin your eyes. It doesn't even provide anything close to a fresh perspective even and does nothing for the story line. So for all you parents out there who take your kids to see every single thing in 3D I hope you have a savings plan created for when they need eye surgery. Either that, or their eyes are just going to damaged the rest of their lives, which will be passed down to their kids. Thanks for starting the shitty eye sight epidemic. 3D movies= entertainment for simple-minded people. Yay for Lion King though lol.

Sep 21 - 02:06 PM

Manny Montes

Manny Montes

Just FYI but 3D is perfectly safe for your eyes, they've done plenty of studies on it. Especially because you're only watching it for short periods at a time

Sep 21 - 10:11 PM

Toblerone Rapnikov

Toblerone Rapnikov

Interestingly enough, motion picture was a gimmick to begin with... as much a novelty to people then as 3D now. And even in the early days, making as much money with a movie was always the case.

So I don't think founding filmmakers are turning in their graves. Some of the first people who experimented with motion picture were scientists.

but i hate 3D too. just thought I'd spit out stuff FYI.

Oct 9 - 11:58 PM

Andrew Kopec

Andrew Kopec

"motion picture was a gimmick to begin with... as much a novelty to people then as 3D now. And even in the early days, making as much money with a movie was always the case."

Not really. Motion picture was never a gimmick and was a huge improvement over what preceded it, like every important technology. 3D on the other hand, is purely a gimmick that does nothing to advance film. As for making money, I suppose profits have been a factor, but not as much as it is today, especially with the 3D fad going on. The point of art is expression, not personal gain. The only purpose of money in any art form is to use it as fuel for film. You don't make movies to make money, you make money to make movies. You have it entirely backwards.

Also, by 'founding filmakers', I think he means directors, not the guys who invented film. But yes, I'd imagine they are rolling in their graves right about now.

I understand what you're trying to say, but you're making these false equivalencies, it's hard to take your argument seriously.

Jul 3 - 02:25 AM

Ilia Orkin

Ilia Orkin

Way to give a negative review to the Lion King. Idiot.

Sep 28 - 09:54 AM

Cole Walsh

Cole Walsh

i love you

Apr 5 - 04:59 AM

Steven S.

Steven Smith

The 3D conversion should have a separate page all-together. It's unsettling to see the movie's score go down because critics have issues with the new visuals.

Sep 15 - 05:39 PM


Rob Humanick

If you'd have read his review, you'd know he's also not crazy about the movie. *headslam*

Sep 16 - 07:21 AM

Kid F.

Kid Fox

It still shouldn't have an effect on the overall rating. Storytelling changes as cinema changes. What was once thought great could be considered just okay by another generations standards. Lion King was a great film when it was originally released. Still is in my opinion.

Sep 23 - 02:06 PM

Jacob H.

Jacob Holmes

The story is WEAK?! It's freaking Hamlet for kids you hack! Haven't you ever read Shakespeare in your life? And this is the first negative thing I've heard for the 3D.

Sep 15 - 06:16 PM

Jaho K.

Jaho Koo

For your information this is very loosely based on Hamlet; none of the Lion King characters represent any character from Hamlet in terms of personality.

Sep 16 - 12:52 AM

Jacob H.

Jacob Holmes

yeah but a lot of key plot elements come from it. its the kind of thing where once kids in high school start reading Hamlet, they'll go "holy crap, this is kind of like The Lion King!"

Sep 17 - 10:14 AM

Julian Tabron

Julian Tabron

You mean a copy of Kimba the White Lion right?

Sep 18 - 11:00 AM



@ Julian T
There is hardly any similarities with the two,
the name rhymes, so what? Simba is swahili for lion and add to that Kimba's actual name in Japan is LEO. There's a lion who will be king, again big deal, there is just not much, especially from a story perspective to say it copied it. The only thing it truly copied was Hamlet, but intentionally of course, besides it wouldn't matter, nothing against Kimba, but this is still far better than Kimba.

Sep 19 - 11:49 AM

Tyler P.

Tyler Pope

@ Doctor P. I can see arguing that The Lion King stands on its own, but I'm not sure about saying there are "hardly any similarities":

(If you don't care to read all that, I recommend checking out the comparison images.)

Sep 26 - 09:33 PM



@ Tyler P.
Some of these images are new to me but nonetheless I stick with what I said there's hardly any similarities the fact of the matter is that people find the smallest bit of similarites and make them seem larger then they are, the first image compared is changed (The Lion King) since it's shown there mirrored obviously to make it seem like it's copied, while many others (the villain on the ledge with the hero dangling for example) can be labeled as coincidental considering it doesn't look copied, it's just a similar moment, but lets be honest here, was kimba the first to feature a moment like this and was Lion King the last? nope it's common in stories, it's changed from time to time, but we've more than likely seen something like that scene, and a hero getting disgusted by what he's eating in many stories, and a figure guiding someone from beyond the grave, and up in the stars. It's a bunch of hullabaloo over small things exaggerated.
As for other small things
1) Matthew Broderick thought he was working on Kimba, that doesn't mean it was, actors aren't heavily involved in films (unless they're producing or such) so it can be taken as a small mistake on his part because of the rhyming name.
2)Simba was white in concept art, just one that has been released anyway, and concept art is not finished so it's likely that they had still been developing what he would look like and avoided the coloring on him for such reasons
3) I skimmed through what was on the article you give me the link for, which by the way was nicer than the usual "NO!!! you're wrong" type of response I've gotten when this subject pops up , but alot of the "Facts" seem to just be a paranoid fans interpretation of the story considering not much there seems to have substantial proof aside from what is constantly mentioned.

So yes there are hardly similarities, most of which are scenes that have been done elsewhere as well, but most importantly it's the story that really has no similarities aside from some small bits perhaps that have also been done elsewhere.

Oct 1 - 09:16 AM

Robert Perkins

Robert Perkins

So, you're saying Scar (Simba's uncle) isn't akin to Claudius (Hamlet's uncle) who killed Mufasa/The King(Simba's/Hamlet's father)? And you're also denying that Timon and Pumbaa are basically Rosencrantz and Guildenstern? Personalities? Maybe. Based off the characters/plot of Hamlet? You betcha.

Sep 18 - 03:24 PM

Julian Tabron

Julian Tabron

Yeah but even Matthew Broderick thought it was similar to Kimba the White Lion. There are still a few scenes that appear to be taken from Kimba the White Lion like when Mufasa stands on the pride rock which was similar to Panja standing on the rock. You didn't have to give me the origin of the name lesson. I'm well aware that Simba is swahili and Kimba's japanese name was Leo but American's called him Kimba.I don't know why people love this movie so much when it's just takes the premise from Hamlet and adds in a bunch of animals singing hit songs with each other throughout. Let's not forget the subliminal messaging it was accused of.

Sep 20 - 03:07 PM

Jacob Ferguson

Jacob Ferguson

They're just scenes and depictions... Regardless of the similarities, the story is different. That's like saying Star Wars sucks because Flash Gordon did the scrolling words first...

Sep 20 - 06:07 PM



Still thats not much to go by cause like I said from a story point of view, it doesn't offer much similarities, though it is similar to Hamlet, but lets face it, the movie does it well enough to feel like it's own story, it's great which is why I'm tired of the constant complaints on small similarities to Kimba. yes we get it they rhyme, move on.

Sep 20 - 10:19 PM

Steve Contos

Steve Contos

Are you kidding me? Simba is Hamlet Jr. Mufasa is Hamlet Sr. Scar is Claudius. Sarabi is Gertrude.

Jan 31 - 05:09 PM

Jon J.

Jon Johannesson

Why, oh why did you lower the rating just because you didn't like the 3D? It's 89 now, happy?

Sep 15 - 06:41 PM

Nathan F.

Nathan Frederick

How about you read the freakin' review instead of just going off the RT blurb? He doesn't like the movie overall, it's not just the 3D.

Sep 15 - 09:10 PM


Aaron Yovanovits

Even the blurb makes it clear the negative review is for the story. Jon J is a moron.

Sep 17 - 09:23 AM

Max Harkness

Max Harkness

hey faggot studios, don't keep churning good movies through atrocious 3D god damn it.

Sep 17 - 03:32 PM

Moises Ortiz

Moises Ortiz

butt hole

Sep 15 - 06:43 PM

Rodney Cerrone

Rodney Cerrone


Sep 21 - 10:50 PM

Andrew Bee

Andrew Bee


Sep 15 - 06:43 PM


Aaron Yovanovits

He didn't like the original story.

Sep 17 - 09:24 AM

Brian W.

Brian Wachs

I can't wait to take my daughter to see the movie. Lion King in 3-D is kinda like pizza. Even if its bad, its still pretty good. How dare you give a negative rating based on the 3d. If thats what it takes to get this brilliant movie with a phenomenal message of bravery, strenght, will, passion, love, etc. back into the theatres...I am a happy man.

Sep 15 - 08:14 PM


Aaron Yovanovits

His negative rating isn't based solely on the 3-d he also didn't like the story. Read the review dodo.

Sep 17 - 09:25 AM

Dustin M.

Dustin Miller

Get over it, the movie is great the 3D is simply the cherry on top.

Sep 15 - 09:40 PM

Marcos Villarreal

Marcos Villarreal

I'm just gonna say this. The Lion King is without a doubt, one of the greatest movies ever made by Disney, But If a movie was made in 2D then It should stay in 2D. Don;t get me wrong, I would love to see it in 3D but I would prefer if it was 2D only

Sep 16 - 02:15 PM

Jennifer Tucker

Jennifer Tucker

You really need to ACTUALLY go and see it. I felt the same way but went to see it in 3D and they did a wonderful job. I don't know WTF the critic is referring to regarding the 3D quality, but it's one of the most excellent 3D movie thus far

Sep 20 - 01:13 PM

JC Martel

JC Martel

3D is the worst thing ever.

Sep 16 - 10:20 AM


Aaron Yovanovits

Melodramatic baby.

Sep 18 - 01:46 PM

Peter W.

Peter Winters

Even worse than 4D?

Sep 21 - 09:25 AM


Norman Dostal

this guys an idiot-The Lion King is not hand drawn-the last hand drawn Disney cartoon is Little Mermaid-there are no "cells" from Lion King in existence.
The msuic is great, the story is heart felt-the flcik is beyond reproach

Sep 16 - 10:25 AM

Matt R.

Matt Ralyea

You are incorrect.
The Lion King was mostly animated by hand, pen and paper style- except for the CGI sequences such as the stampede.

It was NOT hand painted however, but colored by computer. The Little Mermaid was the last to be mostly hand painted. This is why there are original cells for The Little Mermaid, but none for the Lion King.

Sep 16 - 01:02 PM

Finn O'Connell

Finn O'Connell

well maybe you haven't realized that its a children's movie and a pretty damn goo one at that, sir.

Sep 16 - 03:33 PM

David Weisberg

David Weisberg

Who doesn't like The Lion King? Feels like hipster nonsense.

Sep 16 - 08:11 PM


Phil Jacobs

are you fucking kiddin me?

Sep 17 - 06:55 AM

Connor Nordstrom

Connor Nordstrom


Sep 17 - 10:51 AM

Sebastian Jackson

Sebastian Jackson

Seriously, Ty Burr???
You damn dirty ape.

Sep 17 - 12:09 PM

Bao Tran

Bao Tran


Sep 17 - 12:35 PM

Brian Mrtnz

Brian Mrtnz

Your stupid grade damaged The Lion King's RT score, if you do not like it, go, watch, and enjoy crap animated franchises like shrek, madagascar and the ice age series

leave this masterpiece in peace.

Long Live The King!

Sep 17 - 03:02 PM

Drew D.

Drew D

Oh my gosh, the rating went down! It's the end of the world! Horrors! Life is over as we know it!

Get a life, it's just a movie.

Sep 18 - 09:25 AM


Cherry Pop

Did you even watch the Lion King? Probably not.

Jan 6 - 07:19 PM

Haider R.

Haider Rizvi

OK, I can see critics criticizing the 3D, but the STORY? This movie is a classic.

Sep 19 - 05:29 AM

Find us on:                     
Help | About | Jobs | Critics Submission | Press | API | Licensing | Mobile