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The Lion King Reviews

Desmond Ryan
Philadelphia Inquirer
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The Lion King, complete with jaunty songs by Elton John and Tim Rice, is undeniably and fully worthy of its glorious Disney heritage. It is a gorgeous triumph -- one lion in which the studio can take justified pride.

Full Review Source: Philadelphia Inquirer | Original Score: 4/4

July 31, 2013
Terrence Rafferty
New Yorker
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Between traumas, the movie serves up soothingly banal musical numbers (composed by Elton John and Tim Rice) and silly, rambunctious comedy.

Full Review Source: New Yorker

July 31, 2013
John Hartl
Seattle Times
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It's perhaps the closest Disney has come to creating a consciously mythical entertainment in the style of Star Wars. Yet like that film it keeps its sense of humor and fun.

Full Review Source: Seattle Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

July 31, 2013
Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times
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Even with its flaws, this latest Disney animated feature once again delivers what its audience wants. Too bad flesh and blood films can't be this consistent.

Full Review Source: Los Angeles Times | Original Score: 3.5/5

July 31, 2013
Gene Siskel
Chicago Tribune
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It bears repeating that The Lion King is quite entertaining as children's fare goes these days. But Disney has established a standard so high on animated features that anything less than a classic leaves you feeling that something's missing.

Full Review Source: Chicago Tribune | Original Score: 3/4

July 31, 2013
Jay Boyar
Orlando Sentinel
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The rest of The Lion King alternates between grand-opera melodrama and low-comedy hi-jinks, superbly blending the two approaches.

Full Review Source: Orlando Sentinel

July 31, 2013
Elizabeth Weitzman
New York Daily News
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Everyone, young and old, will find something to appreciate in this Shakespearean tale of a young lion discovering his rightful place in the world.

Full Review Source: New York Daily News | Original Score: 4/5

September 17, 2011
Ty Burr
Boston Globe
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The story line is a Joseph Campbell hero-quest so stripped down to its basics as to become dull.

Full Review Source: Boston Globe | Original Score: 2.5/4

September 15, 2011
Desson Thomson
Washington Post
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A computer-animated scene featuring a stampede of wildebeest is positively breathtaking.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

March 4, 2008
Owen Gleiberman
Entertainment Weekly
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The Lion King, more than any of the recent wave of Disney animated features, has the resonance to stand not just as a terrific cartoon but as an emotionally pungent movie.

Full Review Source: Entertainment Weekly | Original Score: A-

March 4, 2008
Jonathan Rosenbaum
Chicago Reader
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The result is a step toward multiculturalism and ecological correctness, though not without a certain amount of confusion.

Full Review Source: Chicago Reader

March 4, 2008

Time Out
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A winner.

Full Review Source: Time Out

February 9, 2006
Glenn Abel
Hollywood Reporter
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A crown jewel of modern Disney animation.

October 14, 2003
Stephen Holden
New York Times
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More so than the exuberant movie miracles that came before it, this latest animated juggernaut has the feeling of a clever, predictable product.

Full Review Source: New York Times | Original Score: 3.5/5

May 20, 2003
Peter Travers
Rolling Stone
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A royal treat.

May 12, 2001
Jeremy Gerard
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Some of the richest imagery the studio's animators have produced and held together.

Full Review Source: Variety

February 13, 2001
James Berardinelli
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There clearly has been a conscious effort to please adults as much as children. Happily, for those of us who generally stay far away from 'cartoons,' they have succeeded.

Full Review Source: ReelViews | Original Score: 3.5/4

January 1, 2000
Peter Stack
San Francisco Chronicle
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It's all calculated to be wonderfully entertaining and almost every frame hits the mark.

Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle

January 1, 2000
John Hartl
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An ingenious mixture of themes from narrative sources as ancient and varied as Hamlet, the Old Testament and The Odyssey.

January 1, 2000
Richard Corliss
TIME Magazine
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Winning and gorgeous.

January 1, 2000
Hal Hinson
Washington Post
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An impressive, almost daunting achievement.

Full Review Source: Washington Post

January 1, 2000
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times
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A superbly drawn animated feature.

Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times | Original Score: 3.5/4

January 1, 2000
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