‘The Lion King’ Praised in First Reactions: ‘It’s Going to Change How We Look at Movies Forever’

The first reviews for Disney's "The Lion King" remake are overwhelmingly positive, which signals that the studio has a giant hit on its hands.
"The Lion King"
"The Lion King"

Following “Dumbo” and “Aladdin,” it appears Disney has saved its best remake of 2019 for last with “The Lion King.” The first reactions for Jon Favreau’s adaptation of the 1994 animated classic began pouring in after the movie’s July 9 world premiere and to say they are positive would be an understatement. Critics are already hailing the film as a “visual masterpiece” that quite possibly has the best visual effects in film history. Favreau’s “The Jungle Book” won the Best Visual Effects Oscar and now “The Lion King” looks like the clear frontrunner for 2020.

“‘The Lion King” is a landmark visual experience,” wrote Buzzfeed’s Adam B. Vary. “I’ve never seen anything like it, and I think it’s going to change how we look at movies forever. As an emotional experience, though…I’ll put it this way: It turns out lions can’t really emote.”

Favreau recruited an all-star voice cast for the film, including Donald Glover as Simba, Beyonce Knowles as Nala, Seth Rogen as Pumbaa, Chiwetel Ejiofor as Scar, Billy Eichner as Timon, John Oliver as Zazu, and Alfre Woodard as Sarabi, among others. Original Musafa voice actor James Earl Jones returns to voice the character in the 2019 remake.

Disney has already enjoyed massive success this year with its live-action “Aladdin” adaptation, which has grossed over $920 million worldwide. “Aladdin” managed to be a massive box office hit with middling reviews, so the sky could be the limit for “The Lion King” based on these first overwhelmingly positive reactions.

“The Lion King” opens in theaters nationwide July 19. Check out the first reactions below.

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