Coming Soon: Aladdin
This week was a big one for movie trailer releases. First, we got a new preview for "Avengers: Endgame," which was very well received by viewers. The second trailer to drop featured a blue rapper, who has inspired many memes, and was generally regarded as bad as people expected it to be. Naturally, that was the trailer that I decided that I needed to watch for Fantasy Movie League.
This week I watched the preview for "Aladdin," the upcoming live action remake of the 1992 Disney animated movie.
The story of "Aladdin" is a familiar one to most movie goers. A poor young man finds a lamp that contains a genie, and then uses his wishes to pose as a prince in order to court a princess. Aladdin isn't the only one to be interested in the lamp, though. There is also the villainous Jafar, who wants to use the genie to achieve greater power.
The clip starts off with a scene showing Aladdin running through the streets of Agrabah, presumably because he has stolen something. "Aladdin" is directed by Guy Ritchie, and if you have seen any of his movies, you will see his influence in these shots. Thieves running is definitely a Guy Ritchie kind of thing.
The next part of the preview shows Jafar asking Aladdin to climb through the Cave of Wonders to steal a lamp for him. Of course, the thief doesn't follow the evil guy's directions, and he ends up releasing a genie. If you don't live under a rock, you are already aware that the genie is played by Will Smith, and he has caused quite a stir among Disney fans. His blue makeup does come off as silly, especially in an otherwise visually-appealing movie. Add to that over the top, scenery-chewing acting, and I can get why people have been making a lot of jokes about Smith's performance. As a 90s kid, I saw the cartoon very frequently, and I have a hard time viewing the genie character as anyone other than the late Robin Williams. His voice work was so good that it really magnifies the goofiness of Smith's role.
Whether or not you enjoy Will Smith, his genie does as he promises, and makes Aladdin into a prince. The rest of the trailer covers Aladdin's glow up, and subsequent relationship with the beautiful Princess Jasmine. The costumes in the palace scenes are beautiful, as are the sets. I assume a lot of that can be attributed to the magic of CGI, but I am okay with that.
During the "Aladdin" preview, we get to experiences portions of two familiar musical numbers: "A Whole New World" and "Friend Like Me." I am not one for Disney music, and I have heard enough of the "Aladdin" soundtrack to last for five lifetimes, since my brother would listen to it on a constant loop when we were younger. The songs are decent, though, and should go over well with Disney buffs.
When it comes to "Aladdin," the big question that I have is whether audiences will tire of these live action remakes of animated classics. Disney is due to release "Dumbo" later this month, as well as "The Lion King" in July. That is a lot for the market to handle, though audiences do love familiar properties.
"Aladdin" comes to theaters the weekend of May 24-27, which is Memorial Day Weekend in the United States. I'm not personally going to be lining up for blue Will Smith over my holiday, but I think it will fair well with families and adult Disney fans.
<a href=https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=foyufD52aog">Watch the trailer for "Aladdin" on YouTube