Tonight I saw the remake of the classic Disney animated movie Aladdin. I had some doubts going in but I have to say…this remake absolutely blew me away! I don’t even know where to begin. Mena Massoud made a GREAT Aladdin! Sac religious as it sounds part of me prefers some aspects of the 2019 version over the original. Naomi Scott I was mixed about going into the movie. “A girl from London with a heavy accent playing a Middle Eastern princess? How’s this going to play out?” But no no no. She portrayed Jasmine flawlessly. I liked Mena Massoud because not only was he great portraying a “street rat” but he actually looked and played the part. And yes I know actors “play the part” for films all the time but this was a remake of a beloved Disney movie. So I think he did better than I expected.
Now let’s address the “elephant in the room” character…the Genie. I know there is some confusion as to why Will Smith as the Genie is blue in some scenes and his natural black skin tone in others. Well there is a reason for that. I’m not going to tell you what that reason is (Tom you tease!) because it’s a major plot point in the film. Now I will get into what I am sure you are wanting to hear. Will Smith’s portrayal of an iconic Disney character. I mean they hyped Will Smith up so much as the Genie you can’t help but ask yourself: will he live up to the hype? Me personally? I think he does. I will say I do not think he had the same charisma Robin Williams brought to the role but I was kind of expecting that to be the case. Robin Williams set the bar so insanely high with his portrayal of the Genie I don’t think anyone could have done better or even come close to him. But honestly I think that is why I liked Will Smith’s Genie. He put his own spin on a classic Disney character and made it his own. Will Smith did not disappoint in the slightest!
The songs were great too! Disney added two new songs for Jasmine and a semi-reprise for Aladdin. As for the classic songs from the original movie that we all know and love? They could not have been done better! I mean A Whole New World was beautifully done! A Friend Like Me and Prince Ali sung by Will Smith were great! Seriously this movie is unbelievably amazing!
One thing that made me think Disney classics are, well, classics was the audience in the theater. It was a great mix of older people, young adults like me who grew up with the original movie, and little kids! The kids were dancing to the finale of the movie. It actually made me feel younger just seeing these kids and everyone else’s reactions to the movie. The movie itself made me feel like a kid again just because I was overwhelmed by nostalgia and early childhood memories from the original.
One thing you may have noticed is that I did not compare Will Smith’s Genie too much to Robin Williams’ Genie. Why? It can’t be done! Both are so funny and so great in their own ways it’s like comparing night and day. Or apples and oranges. It’s impossible. I would not be surprised if Will Smith is this generation’s Genie. Sure the older audience and kids at heart will always think Robin Williams is the ultimate classic Genie but I think Will Smith has a shot of being the next Disney generation’s Genie. So would I recommend this movie? 100% the answer is YES! I know not everyone will have the same opinion as I do but that’s ok. For its score I’m going to give Aladdin a 5/5. I love what Disney has done recently with its old classics! Dumbo was a great remake, I have high hopes for Lion King and this movie I think will be a “new-old” Disney classic! Thanks for reading!