Number of Times Seen – 1 (24 May 2019)
Brief Synopsis – A young street rat in ancient Agraba is given the opportunity to make his dreams come true when he encounters a magic lamp containing a Genie who can give him his heart’s desire.
My Take on it – As a HUGE fan of the Aladdin (1992) animated film from nearly 30 years ago and also as someone who thinks that making live-action Disney films of the great slew of animated films of yore, I went into this film with a somewhat negative attitude.
Once again, Disney has proven to us, that even with today’s modern special effects, they can’t manage to top the work done with animation from years ago.
This adaptation is better than I expected, yet still is far from being able to find a way to come close to giving off the amount of energy and excitement that the original one has throughout it’s less than 90 minute run time.
This movie tells almost an exact replica of that story using live action and effects and the way that things are stretched out to over two hours makes it harder to enjoy because there are too many scenes that drag slightly too much.
Will Smith is a great actor, but even he should have been aware that no matter how great he can be in this role, he will never be able to touch the performance of Robin Williams that is iconic and will forever e etched in moviegoers minds as The Genie in the Aladdin story.
The few additions to the story are mostly ways of giving more empowerment to the character of Jasmine who didn’t have enough to do in the original.
She is given a song of her own, an a very feminist #metoo personality that fits with the times today much more than they did 28 years ago when the original was made.
The rest of the songs are almost exactly like they are from the original, yet the singers used here (including Will Smith) feel as if they are straining to grasp the same performance energy that was quite apparent in the original yet is lacking here and it shows.
This film would probably be received much better if it wasn’t a remake and things would feel more unique and original but the fact that we will never be able to erase the work of Williams as The Genie from out minds will make it almost impossible to surpass the energy and impact of the original film. Recommended!
Bottom Line – Better adaptation of the animated film than I expected yet still far from being able to match the energy and feel that the original gave us. Smith does a fine job as the Genie, but no matter what he does here, he isn’t able to erase from our minds the fact that Williams was spectacular in the same role. The story pretty much follows the same path as the original one and the few additions are quite small, yet significant. They expand the part of Jasmine and even give her a song and a very feminist #metoo personality that is much more in step with the world toady as it was back when the animated original was made. The songs mostly felt a bit strained here and none of them were actually able to even come close to being presented as well as they did in the previous version which hurts things a lot. The energy is apparent and unfortunately if this wasn’t almost an identical remake, it would have been much more fun to watch. Recommended!
MovieRob’s Favorite Trivia – When the Genie shows Aladdin a floating scroll, the drawing contains Aladdin, the Genie and the Sultan in their animated forms from Aladdin (1992). (From IMDB)
Rating – Globe Worthy (7/10)
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Ah I’m glad at least you enjoyed it more than you thought you would. I really loved it but I’ve been enjoying most of the remakes so far 🙂
I feel exactly the same way as you do about this one Rob. Just out of curiosity what did you think of the Aladdin character performance? As I felt he was very wooden.
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