Disney’s latest live-action remake of one of its classic animated movies, Aladdin, is now in theaters, just in time for the Memorial Day long weekend in the United States. But is it any good?
Directed by Guy Ritchie (Sherlock Holmes, Snatch), the film features Mena Massoud as Aladdin, Naomi Scott as Jasmine, and Will Smith as the Genie in a role that mixes CG and live-action shots.
The film follows the same basic story of the acclaimed 1992 film where the “street rat” Aladdin finds a lamp containing the Genie who grants him wishes. The new movie features a number of songs from the original, including classics like “A Whole New World” and “Prince Ali.”
Ahead of Aladdin’s release, reviews for the film have been published online. We’re collecting excerpts here to help you get an idea for if the movie is worth your time and money. For more on the critical reaction to the film, head to GameSpot sister site Metacritic.
- Directed By: Guy Ritchie
- Written By: John August, Guy Ritchie
- Starring: Mena Massoud, Naomi Scott, Will Smith, Marwan Kenzari.
- Release Date: May 24 (United States)
- Runtime: 128 minutes
“Aladdin is good. It’s not perfect, but it’s a big, extravagant musical that’s filled with fun performances, bright colors, and some exciting moments. Will Smith’s turn as Genie isn’t better than what Robin Williams brought to the character, but it’s different enough that it stands on its own merit. And, if you’re into this sort of thing–and you should be–Smith has a new rap over the end credits that is themed to the movie.” — Chris Hayner [Full review]
The Seattle Times
“It’s got a flying carpet. It’s got an enchanted lamp. It’s got a shape-shifting genie. But alas, Aladdin lacks real magic. Instead, Disney’s misconceived live-action remake of the studio’s 1992 animated classic offers the audience overstuffed musical-production numbers that look like they’ve been edited with a meat ax. Chop, chop, choppy.” — Soren Andersen [Full review]
“It still holds up as a tale whose central couple’s deceptions and entrapments and self-discoverings have a pleasing symmetry to them, and whose ‘it’s what inside that counts’ morals are in the right place. That’s really all anyone wanted out of a new Aladdin: not a whole new world, just a slightly updated old one.” — Steve Rose [Full review]
Certainly there was a lot of room to bring a contemporary perspective to this material—to counter the original’s problematic representation of its Middle-Eastern milieu and deepen its characters. Instead, the film settles for telling you a joke you’ve already heard and botching the delivery. — Jake Cole [Full review]
San Francisco Chronicle
“Aladdin, the live-action remake of the 1992 Disney animation, is more than a pleasant surprise. It’s a complete delight that stands on its own and is, in many ways, an improvement on the original.” — Mick LaSalle [Full review]
“There’s still noting that this Aladdin does better–or as well–as the original. Even the parts pulled directly from the 1992 Aladdinby Ron Clements and John Musker, like the songs, have lost something in translation. (The whole new world of ‘A Whole New World’ now looks like a generic CGI city.) The nicest thing I can say about 2019’s Aladdin is in its best moments it reminded me of a movie I liked a lot as a kid.” — Matt Singer [Full review]
“Ritchie’s Aladdin doesn’t sing or soar like the 27-year-old cartoon still does, and headier themes might bypass little moviegoers, but it’s nonetheless quite a cool and nostalgic magic carpet ride.” — Brian Truitt [Full review]
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