Despite receiving overwhelmingly positive early reactions, Jon Favreau’s not-so-live-action adaptation of The Lion King has been torn apart by critics.
Currently sitting at 57% rotten on Rotten Tomatoes, the first reviews of the Disney remake have slated the film as “soulless”, a “shot-for-shot reproduction of the original” and “boring”.
Ouch. Check out some of the first reviews for yourself:
“Unfolding like the world’s longest and least convincing deepfake, Jon Favreau’s (almost) photorealistic remake of The Lion King is meant to represent the next step in Disney’s circle of life. Instead, this soulless chimera of a film comes off as little more than a glorified tech demo from a greedy conglomerate – a well-rendered but creatively bankrupt self-portrait of a movie studio eating its own tail.”
“This new Lion King sticks very closely to the original version, and in that sense it’s of course watchable and enjoyable. But I missed the simplicity and vividness of the original hand-drawn images. The circle of commercial life has given birth to this all-but-indistinguishable digiclone descendant.”
“There are glimmers of beauty and awe in the new Lion King… They’re all moments first storyboarded in the early ’90s, when a team of artists was asked to bring an original, animated work of art to life.”
“Everything here is so safe and tame and carefully calculated as to seem pre-digested. There’s nary a surprise in the whole two hours.”
“Like too many of these recent remakes of the Disney animated library, the emphasis is on “realism” at the expense of entertainment value. At almost every turn, this redo undercuts its own melodrama by downplaying its own emotions. The key direction seems to be ‘like the 1994 version, but less.'”
The Lion King will open in cinemas on July 19.