The premiere of The Lion King is still a week away but the first reactions to the highly anticipated remake of the 1994 animated classic are finally here. Not surprisingly, people are loving what Jon Favreau has done in the reboot.
Film critics who were treated to an early screening of the Disney film simply couldn't stop raving about Donald Glover's performance as Simba, the young lion who encounters tragedy as a cub and is forced to go into exile. In addition to that, people are loving Beyonce as Nala, Simba's childhood friend who tries to convince him to take back what is rightfully his.
The Lion King is a wonderful adaptation of an iconic classic. It has a few small changes which enhance what was already great and everything else is right on point. The CG can be slightly distracting at times but the emotion quickly covers that. Loved it. pic.twitter.com/9QmsP3PmNh— Germain Lussier (@GermainLussier) July 10, 2019
So #TheLionKing was the first movie I ever saw in theaters and this reimagining hit all the same notes. LOVED IT. Idk if it was Beyonce, Donald, the animation, Jon Fav... no it was probably Beyonce.— Trey Williams (@Trey3Williams) July 10, 2019
Critics are also praising Billy Eichner and Seth Rogan, who play Timon and Pumbaa, respectively. To be honest, they might be doing something truly special if they could manage to steal the scene from Beyonce.
#TheLionKing is truly breathtaking!@donaldglover continues his streak of being awesome in everything.@beyonce is a queen. As she always was.— Jacqueline - ROTTEN TOMATOES WROTE A BOOK! (@THATJacqueline) July 10, 2019
Real talk tho, @Sethrogen & @billyeichner stole every scene.
I’m not exaggerating y’all
They killed it!
#TheLionKing is a breathtaking visual cinematic achievement. I can’t believe this is a CG animated movie. Timon and Pumbaa steal the show. It’s a good Disney remake but was it necessary? Maybe not, but it’s enjoyable and families are gonna love it.— Peter Sciretta (@slashfilm) July 10, 2019
#TheLionKing is visually and audibly astounding! I’ve never seen anything like that on an animation level. It’s so beautiful.— Brandon Davis (@BrandonDavisBD) July 10, 2019
Seth Rogen and Billy Eichner really steal the show. Chiwetel Ejiofor is brilliant as Scar! It is so much fun. Great movie. pic.twitter.com/v62LHFIM7W
Although most of the reviews have been positive, some have also pointed out that The Lion King has certain shortcomings. For instance, one critic pointed out that lions simply can't emote.
#TheLionKing is a landmark *visual* experience. I’ve never seen anything like it, and I think it’s going to change how we look at movies forever.— Adam B. Vary (@adambvary) July 10, 2019
As an *emotional* experience, though…I’ll put it this way: It turns out lions can’t really emote.
The film also stars Chiwetel Eijofor as Scar, Alfre Woodard as Sarabi, John Kani as Rafiki, John Oliver as Zazu, Florence Kasumba as Shenzi, Keegan-Michael Key as Kamari, and Eric Andre as Azizi. The remake brings back James Earl Jones, who previously voiced Simba's father Mufasa in the animated classic.
The synopsis for The Lion King reads as follows:
"Simba, the son of Mufasa and the Prince of the Pride Lands, hopes to follow in his father's footsteps. Mufasa's brother, Scar, plots to betray Mufasa and take over the Pride Lands, forcing Simba into exile, where he meets Timon and Pumbaa. Simba must fight his past and rebuild himself fully to take what is rightfully his."
The Lion King will hit theaters on July 19.