Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton – Week of May 22, 2023

Popcorn Perspectives with Danny Minton

Week of May 22, 2023

The Little Mermaid
Rated PG for some scary images, action and peril
Rotten Tomatoes Score: 73%
In Theaters

Disney’s latest live-action remake of their classics goes under the sea, bringing the famous musical The Little Mermaid to vibrant life. Loosely based on the Hans Christian Anderson novel, the story follows a young mermaid princess named Ariel (Halle Bailey) who dreams of living among the humans, in spite of having a father and king (Javier Bardem) who considers the land-walkers to be sworn enemies. But when the evil tentacled Ursula (Melissa McCarthy) makes a bargain with her, she is given the ability to possibly have her heart’s desire, although if she doesn’t get the prince to kiss her in a very short amount of time, she will forever belong to the villain. With most of the iconic songs from the 1989 Oscar-winning film in tact, and a story that was largely left alone, the movie is sure to be a crowd-pleaser amongst the many fans. But setting the film apart is it’s use of diversity, including an African-American Ariel and a multicultural cast of supporting characters. Also, in the original film, the prince is a two-dimensional character with little story and less to offer aside from his pedigree. But here they’ve made the prince a stronger character with a back-story and even a couple of songs to sing, all written by Lin Manuel Miranda, who added his talents to the project. Directed by Oscar-winner Rob Marshall (Chicago), the film is skillfully made with big set pieces and a lovely color pallete, and more importantly – a fast pace. While the human cast and the voice actors are all solid, it is McCarthy who steals the show as Ursula, a part that just might see her getting some nominations come end of the year. For the most part, Disney has done an admirable job with its live-action remakes and this one is no different. I didn’t much of an emotional hit with it, but aesthetically and artistically, the film pulls out all the stops and provides for a riveting and nostalgia-driven experience for the multitudes of major fans. A-