‘Aladdin’ –A Good Remake Of A Great Animated Classic
Robin Williams’ voice of the genie in ‘Aladdin,’ produced by Disney in 1992, still resonates in the memories of those who watched this classic animated film on VCRs. 26-years later, Disney has brought to us the remake of this classic movie with the same name, which to be honest, was dull at some points. This fantasy film, directed by Guy Ritchie (‘Sherlock Holmes’ and ‘RocknRolla’) brings back a lot of childhood memories.
The protagonist, Aladdin, is played by Mena Massoud, who performs the role brilliantly. He fits into the role and many of his facial features do resemble those of the animated Aladdin. Although this movie is Mena’s fourth role in a feature film, he has been performing in television series since 2011. The same is the case with Naomi Scott (Princess Jasmine), who has appeared in four movies but has done justice with her role in ‘Aladdin’. Her recent role was that of Kimberly Hart/Pink Ranger in ‘Power Rangers’ (2017).
While Navid Negahban plays The Sultan, which he did quite effectively, the role of Jaffar, played by Marwan Kenzari, however, was not that great as compared to the Jaffar from the 1992 animated version. Perhaps they had to tone down Jaffar’s character in the 2019 version so it could look more, say, human.
Apart from Mena’s role as Aladdin, Will Smith’s role as the Genie was the best. Smith blended in the role and he performed it naturally and effortlessly. Moreover, Smith sings the popular Aladdin song “Friend Like Me” to add some rap to it. “A Whole New World” is also produced akin to the original version and blends beautifully with the story. The song “Arabian Nights” adds the right direction when the movie begins while “Speechless” narrates the will of Princess Jasmine to rise beyond being a princess and lead her kingdom with justice and courage. “One Jump Ahead” is also a groovy song that explains Aladdin’s life as a street rat but someone who wants to aim big in life.
The movie also discusses a key point that why only a man should become the Sultan of a kingdom and why a woman cannot take up this position? Will Jasmine become the Sultan or will she end up as a princess is for you to find out by watching this movie.
‘Aladdin’s story is similar to the 1992 version, however, one difference is the fight scene between Aladdin and Jaffar to get hold of the lamp which includes Lago, Jaffar’s scarlet macaw, magically growing into a large evil bird. Some scenes from the original version including Jaffar using his power to shift the palace’s location is not included along with some scenes from Agrabah’s marketplace.
However, with Will Smith’s hilarious one-liners, Mena Massoud’s depiction of Aladdin and the comical facial expressions of Abu, Aladdin’s monkey, the movie is a real treat for children. Although no one can compete with Robin Williams as the Genie, Smith comes pretty close. While those who watched the 1992 version will wonder if the remake was good enough for them. I believe, the magic carpet was perhaps the only character from the original that retained its essence in the remake.