Thursday, March 27, 2014

Lion King

The Lion King is a 1994 Walt Disney production directed by Rob Minkoff and Roger Allers. The universal message that the movie sends to the audience is that everything works and is balanced with in the circle of life. This “circle of life” message is introduced at the beginning of the movie when the song The Circle of Life plays in the background of the opening scene. Later, Mufasa, Simba’s Father, and Simba have a conversation:
Mufasa: Everything you see exists together in a delicate balance. As king, you need to understand that balance and respect all the creatures, from the crawling ant to the leaping antelope.
Young Simba: But, Dad, don't we eat the antelope?
Mufasa: Yes, Simba, but let me explain. When we die, our bodies become the grass, and the antelope eat the grass. And so we are all connected in the great Circle of Life.
However there is also evidence of subliminal messages. One message occurs when Simba first encounters Timon and Pumba. His uncle, Scar had recently banished him from the pride land and sent him off into the beyond. When Timon and Pumba found him they taught him a new concept: hakuna matata. As stated in the movie, it means ‘no worries.’ Thus, Simba puts his worries aside about his duty to return to the pride land and claim his spot as rightful king. In Understanding Movies Louis Giannetti states, “music can serve as a kind of overture to suggest the mood or sprit of the film as a whole” (Giannetti 214). The movie depicts Simba, Timon and Pumba walking along a log singing the song Hakuna Matata.
As previously states, the term means no worries, but more than that it is a symbol of irresponsibility. In this scene we see Simba mature from a young cub to a mature lion. In living by the motto “hakuna matata,” Simba in a sense wastes his life away in meaningless matters all while avoiding his duties back in the pride lands. This could send a message to the audience that it is okay to ignore one’s duties and you needn’t worry your self about matters that do not directly concern you.
In Conclusion, The Lion King does send a good message about the circle of life in that everything works together, just as Mufasa said. However there is a underlying negative message in the movie as well. As children, we would not necessarily pick up on this but now as an adult it is easy to spot it. Therefore, I give the movie two slurpees for good messages as if paid enough attention, the audience will see this other agenda. 

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