Premise: Mulan is a live adaptation of the 1998 movie with the same title. Mulan 2020 plot takes in 200 b.c of China. Fa Zhou (Tzi Ma), an elderly man, is blessed with two daughters, the eldest one is Mulan (Liu Yifei). She is courageous, has a warrior spirit in her. One day, the emperor of China issues orders that one man, per each family, must join the Imperial Army to defend the country from Northern invaders. Fa Zhou, the only man in their family, volunteers to participate despite his weakening health. Mulan takes the place of her father by impersonating as a man. She starts her warrior journey with many obstacles in her way.
Review: let’s begin with good points like always. The production values are decent; of course, whom I am kidding it’s Disney they have all the money in the world. The background music is surprisingly good. Some, only some of the CGI is good. Locations in the movie pretty neat. The landscape really adds to the atmosphere of the film. That doesn’t mean cinematography is good, totally different subjects. In all the amateurish acting, it is good to see professional acting by Donnie Yen, aka IP man, but the satisfaction doesn’t last long. He only has a screen time of 10 min.
Cons: Where should I start? I was laughing when the xxx (spoiler) person died. From screenplay to editing, all are horrible in their own way. I was sure that the director must be a newcomer, but she is not. Niki Caro, an experienced director, who also directed incredible movies like North Country, Whale Rider, etc. what happened to her in this movie? She doesn’t bring all the branches of the movie like script, performance, editing together at all. It seems like they do not have a clear idea of how to take the plot from A to B, and the execution also appeared the same way. They shot scenes and combined without a clear vision in mind.
Mulan 1988 already has a decent screenplay. In a nutshell, The theme is your gender doesn’t define what you are. You can be a warrior with dedication, intellect, hard work, etc. in this 2020 story, I don’t know how they did it. They really ruined it from the start. She doesn’t grow into a warrior. She’s just natural because she has Jedi powers I mean Chi. And the character-defining moments like climbing mountains, winning battles, the motivation lead for her reveal, etc. seemed silly. And also a shallowly developed character from antagonist to side roles resulting in Less exciting characters. As I said, it doesn’t know how to do from A to B. The transformation of characters, battle sequences, change of storylines, all are just thrown away in the movie just like that.
The acting was plain. There is no emotion in dialogue even from the lead actress, her blank face, expressionless acting. Even at the climax of the movie, I was like, please give some expressions.
Additional actors with their underdeveloped characters and bad Performance, outcomes roles with no personality in it. And finally, there is a kite hover in the air. Oh, my bad, they call it’s a Phoenix. Whatever I didn’t care.
(Not a review, skip it if not interested )
As a kid growing with Disney movies, now I am disappointed with how Disney turned out. This is the quote from Walt Disney ” we don’t make movies to make money, we make movies to make more movies”. Whatever Disney is doing nowadays is totally opposite to the company’s ethics and its foundation. Cashing from classics, like star wars, lion king, Alladin, Pete’s Dragon, etc, and wrecking them, and I don’t know what to say about buying all studios and taking credit for their work. There are so many original scripts out there. Disney should focus on that instead of chasing money.
Conclusion: I wanted to say at least they tried, but the only thing they tried was to ruin the reputation of the original movie. Mulan is dull, boring from beginning script to finalizing editing. It’s a sheer disappointment like most of the live-action remakes Disney did. I wouldn’t recommend it, maybe kids will like it. My rating 4/10
Director: Niki Caro
Cast: Liu Yifei, Donnie Yen, Jet Li, Gong Li, Yoson An.
(Thanks for reading)