The Lion King

Critics Consensus

While it can take pride in its visual achievements,The Lion King is a by-the-numbers retelling that lacks the energy and heart that made the original so beloved--though for some fans that may just be enough.

53%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 404

88%

Audience Score

Verified Ratings: 76,330
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Movie Info

From Disney Live Action, director Jon Favreau's all-new "The Lion King" journeys to the African savanna where a future king is born. Simba idolizes his father, King Mufasa, and takes to heart his own royal destiny. But not everyone in the kingdom celebrates the new cub's arrival. Scar, Mufasa's brother-and former heir to the throne-has plans of his own. The battle for Pride Rock is ravaged with betrayal, tragedy and drama, ultimately resulting in Simba's exile. With help from a curious pair of newfound friends, Simba will have to figure out how to grow up and take back what is rightfully his.

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Critic Reviews for The Lion King

All Critics (404) | Top Critics (51) | Fresh (215) | Rotten (189)

  • The most stunningly realistic CGI you have seen to date - but the soul of the traditional animation is sorely missed.

    February 6, 2020 | Rating: 6/10 | Full Review…
  • The impressive visuals and the mix of reverence and playfulness to the original make this a movie worth seeing on the big screen.

    January 21, 2020 | Full Review…
  • I was not a big fan of the original 1994 movie, and I found this one to be about the same. It is a good film, with a good story and good music. What sets this film apart, however, is the technical wizardry that makes it look like a live action film.

    January 15, 2020 | Rating: B | Full Review…
  • Another remake that is made at the Disney level of craft but at the cost of originality and soul.

    January 10, 2020 | Rating: 7/10 | Full Review…

    Julian Lytle

    idobi.com
    Top Critic
  • You're better off watching the 1994 version

    January 10, 2020 | Rating: Half Price | Full Review…
  • It's not so much this is a bad adaptation as it's one that feels entirely unnecessary

    December 30, 2019 | Rating: 6/10 | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for The Lion King

  • Dec 28, 2019
    Vulgar Display of Dour
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Nov 22, 2019
    The effects are legitimately impressive but why and for who? All of the "realism" here just undermines the fun of the original.
    Alec B Super Reviewer
  • Oct 20, 2019
    This film lacks purpose and to think it was a box office smash shows how little crowds care for quality. It is an empty shell of an incredible animated film. The voice work is uninspired and the extended characters, or added musical numbers bore. The special effects look incredible, but when the film is this shallow, it's hard to care. I'm annoyed this did so well financially and I only wish audiences wouldn't indulge Disney's current reboot structure. Between this and Aladdin, there is little to recommend either. The Lion King is a one of a kind adventure and this reboot of a not so old film showcases what is wrong with modern blockbusters. This is a carbon copy with added depth that is not relevant. The original animated film was punchy and timeless, sadly the film is not. It will provide a night in for the family, but not the film it should of been. Why did they remake it scene for scene? Nuts. 20/10/2019
    Brendan N Super Reviewer
  • Aug 08, 2019
    Well, the original was better. It's fine, and ultimately impressive. Really, there is a lot to admire about the movie, but still it can't escape the shadow of the original. The weird thing is despite being longer a lot of times it feels like it's rushing through the beats of the original. Most notably, Mufasa's death scene (spoiler's I guess) feels weirdly rushed. I remember in the original there was time dwelling on Simba looking at the body and begging for Mufasa to get up. Here, he just kinda looks at it, sniffles a bit, and the scene moves on. Look I'm not saying it needs to be a shot for shot remake, but if you are going to go through the effort of doing the exact same scenes, either do them better, or do them at least as good, don't just rush through them to check off a box. That's this films biggest flaw, and it really did bother me. It lives under the shadow of the original often doing things because "the original did it" without really seeming to have an understanding of why that worked in the original. It was different artists with different visions. However, when it's doing it's own thing, it actually kinda' works. A lots been made of Timon and Pumbaa in this movie, and rightfully so, they're one of the few things that is expanded and made to live on their own. They're essentially the same sort of characters, but Billy Eichner and Seth Rogen bring their own personality to them. They were allowed to improvise and give their own spin with new lines and humor. They even have a new philosophy and debate on Hakuna Matata versus Circle of Life that's actually genuinely interesting. I also liked how their home is inhabited by other animals and it shows how Simba became part of that community in his exile. It's expansions like this where the film does its own thing where it really shines. Yes the visuals are nice, but the animals don't show the personality like they did in the animation because Lions can't cry/smile/laugh in real life so what were left with is a really pretty Disney Nature CGI-fest. It's these narrative moments that make the film work. I ultimately give it a moderately positive review because…damnit it's still The Lion King, and yeah there were enough things it did right. But at the end of the day, if I ever want to see The Lion King again, I'm going to watch the original.
    Michael M Super Reviewer

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