The Radical Review: The Lion King 3D

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Well hiya there everyone, it’s definitely been awhile hasn’t it? From the old days of reviewing the odd few Professional Wrestling Pay-Per-View events, it is I, RadicalRhys, here once again to spend a good hour to two to write this simple review out of my busy University Life to tell you about one of the greatest things to happen to me since I got here The Lion King in the three of Ds!

Now immediately I know what to expect from some people, “Why go and see it when it’s clearly on Youtube for you to see every day of the week?!” “You’re in University, you should be spending your money on a children’s movie, your eighteen for God sake!” “Why see it in the cinema when it’ll be released again in Blu-Ray in a month’s time?” you know all the usual questions that one would get from going to see this all-time classic in the cinemas. Well to answer some of the many questions, first of all it’s The Lion King, so that automatically makes the showing a win, and if anyone has never seen it when it was in cinemas for the first time, I think it’s worth going there and say to people you know, or even children around you, maybe even your own someday, and tell them ‘I got to see The Lion King in the cinema!’, cause I know I wouldn’t have been able to see and remember it at the age of 1 at 1994 that’s for sure.

Then when questioning my age, it doesn’t matter, I mean of course the film is targeted at the whole family, children based, its Disney don’t we know! But this film was during the early 90s, what some people would say one of the best times for Disney movies to be created! The Lion King, Aladdin, Pocahontas, Tarzan, Mulan, all of these and many more movies from the 90s all had one thing in common they were all amazingly good! For the animation, the music, the voice work, everything involved in these films always made me get caught into them so quickly, especially now as I am much older, and I am not ashamed to say that I am a 18-year old guy who still likes to watch these prime-time classics, because they are that good. But that’s not putting down some of the modern day films, I mean films like a Toy Story 3, Tangled, The Princess and the Frog, these too are classics in my opinion, but having grown up with that I listed earlier, it just takes me to a happier day where Hakuna Matata ran wild during my younger days and I didn’t have a worry in the world, so of course it’s nice to forget about all the stress and worry that follows with life of university, and money issues, social problems, anything you can think off and just forget about it all with an all-time classic.

And I’ll only mention this quickly, because yes, I know the film will be in Blu-Ray soon I believe, but it is only in the cinemas for a short time, and then it might not be for a good few years/decades even, that that film won’t makes its cinema appearance again, so again, it’s definitely worth saying ‘I saw The Lion King in 3D’ when other people may have never gotten the chance.

But oh would you look at me, dragging this out more so than it should have been! I might as well get started with this wonderful day, it was on Sunday 23rd October 2011 and at 2:30 in the afternoon to be precise, and when I saw the MASSIVE line of kiddies under 7 with their parents, I immediately thought “I’m SURROUNDED by idiots!” (Scar reference), but when I managed to look around in the cinema, I saw a surprising number of people around my age, students if you will. So I sat by a few of them and I didn’t feel so awkward, which is always a good think.

Now I COULD explain the movie bit by bit and bore you all with a film you’ve already seen a good 2 dozen times or more no just me? *sigh* Oh well, instead I’ll just tell you all of some of the comparisons I noticed from seeing it in the cinema in 3D to watching it on VHS or DVD, or even soon to be Blu-Ray. The first thing I should mention, of course, is the actual 3D aspect. Now surprisingly, while I have said all the praise in the world for the film so far, the actual 3D aspect of it fell a little short of my expectations, and even they were at a good 60% in terms of excitement. There were definitely parts of the movie which looked so well done with the use of 3D, and there were even a few extra bits which I didn’t originally pick, but still managed to look rather good with it. But of course, there are these moments in the film where you expect the characters or certain effects to just JUMP OUT at you, but then they don’t, and then I get sad. =-( So the actual 3D aspect of the film could have been a lot better, but it was decent enough to be fair, and I didn’t mind as much cause I mostly wanted to see The Lion King for that simple reason to see The Lion King. I mean sure the ‘3D’ part pushed me more towards it, but not that much since I just wanted to see The Lion King, nothing too wrong with that is there?

Now while I don’t want to spoil much, I did notice a few differences in terms of the animation and the layout of some of the scenes in the film. I won’t mention too much as I said, however I will mention 1 just to tease you a little bit, and I do mean ‘little’ as in the part of the film where Simba is talking to the spirit of his father in the sky, originally during the part where he says “How can I go back? I’m not who I used to be!” his eyes always used to change from yellow to white and then back to white. However they covered this up and his eyes never truly changed colour, which I found a little depressing since I always used to like to giggle to myself at animation errors in Disney films. Even though I will say that when Mufasa’s eyes do it during Simba’s ‘Pouncing Lessons’ in the original film, they too did this in the cinema, and I got my little giggle out of it.

Speaking of which, I am so glad that we didn’t get to see the ‘Morning Report’ song in this showing of the film, for while I actually liked the song and I would sing it if I were ever in the shower or something similar to this, I felt like that it wasn’t really necessary to be in the film. But thankfully this was only in the Special Edition DVD release I believe and the original scene wasn’t even replaced, since it basically shown to this very day of how Zazu is Mufasa’s little you know what, and this makes to so much funnier as we get older and we get all these dirty and filthy mind-sets and such in our minds oh great, now I made a children’s classic seem dirty! I’m such a great influence.

Now this as well I may as mention, after re-watching this film once again after a good 18 or less years (can’t remember films from 2 years old now can we?) you get to see so many references that may have even created some events in later Disney films, like Timon’s definition of a starry night sky after watching the film “The Princess and the Frog”, do I need to really explain this? And with that, as we get older, we too realise that in reality that stars are balls of burning gas billions of miles away instead of the kings of the past we were told to believe I’m sorry if anyone reading still believed this, but you had to know at some point I’m afraid. =-O

The overall picture quality of seeing this in the cinema, and with darkened 3D glasses might I add was not that bad. I mean sure there is much brighter quality from watching a random special screen showing of it on the tele, but I wasn’t as bad as some people have made it out to be from reviews I’ve seen online, it was still rather clearer and I could see everything shown in the seconds of animation that was used, from the actual moving characters to even the background images, I could see it all clearly so I don’t have anything bad to say about this.

Now if anyone is basically a fan of the phenomenal music composition skills of the likes of a Hans Zimmer (If you don’t know of this Music God, then you need to look him up and listen, I’m sure you’ll be in awe by his works of art), or if you find listening to the acting styles of Matthew Broderick, James Earl Jones, Jeremy Irons and all the many other amazing voices used in this, then I cannot emphasise enough on how brilliant it is to hear all of these voices in surround sound speakers in a massively filled room, you get to hear much more emotion and sounds from music and actors better than you normally would hear on the tele or on your laptop from iTunes, and that is always a good thing to get out of going to the cinema in my opinion.

So now I believe I may have come to an end with this little review of The Lion King 3D, but it wouldn’t be a proper review without Statistics now would it! Don’t worry, I’ll only just how I thought the whole thing was out of 100, so with that said I believe a good 84 out of 100 would be alright with me. The music (both songs and soundtracks) were the key features in this film, and I’m sure many more will agree with me on this. The voice acting within it was also a key feature as well; the humour used was appealing to the whole family as well as the more logical humour from an older viewer’s perspective. The animation style I always approved off, and they did a decent job of replacing and/or adapting some scenes which needed it, even though something’s could have still been improved. And while I didn’t particularly enjoy the 3D aspect to the film, I still loved re-watching one of my all-time favourite childhood films despite this.

So there we have it, that was my Lion King 3D experience, so with that all I have to say is if anyone is tempted to see it during the week as it is still running in a few places, at least here in Aberystwyth, then see it while you can, IF you just want to see it in the cinema. If you just want to see it for the 3D, you MIGHT be disappointed, depending on how high or low your expectations are, but if you go in with low expectations I’m sure you’ll enjoy the 3D that is there. But that’s all I’ve got to say about that, if I end up going to the cinemas in the future, this will be the first place to hear my opinion on those showings and such I would see, but you never know, maybe you’ll see more from me in the future, but I’m not making any promises since I’m a Uni student now but I’ll find a way, I always do. 😉

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