The Lion King Special Edition DVD


Disney's 1994 animated feature, The Lion King, was a huge smash in cinemas and continues to enjoy life in an acclaimed stage production. The story finds a lion cub, son of a king, sent into exile after his father is deposed by a jealous uncle. The little hero finds his way into the "circle of life" with some new friends and eventually comes back to reclaim his proper place. Characters are very strong, vocal performances by the likes of Jeremy Irons, Nathan Lane and Whoopi Goldberg are terrific, the jokes are aimed as much (if not more) at adults than kids, the animation... is sometimes breathtaking and the songs from Tim Rice and Elton John, accompanied by a colourful score, are more palatable than in many recent Disney features. --Tom Keogh On the DVD: The Lion King Special Edition is a superb restoration: take a look at the serviceable but dull film clips incorporated in the plethora of extras and compare them to the vivid gorgeousness of the film presentation. This special edition also adds a 90-second song ("Morning Report") that originated in the lavish stage musical. To Disney's credit, the original theatrical version is also included, both restored and featuring two 5.1 soundtracks: Dolby Digital and a new Disney Enhanced Home Theater Mix, which does sound brighter. As with the Disney Platinum line, everything is thrown into the discs, except an outsider's voice (the rah-rahs of Disney grow tiresome at times). The excellent commentary from the directors and producer, originally on the laser disc, is hidden under the audio set-up menu. The second disc is organised by 20-minute-ish "journeys" tackling the elements of story, music and so on, including good background on the awkward Shakespearean origins at Disney where it was referred as "Bamlet". The most interesting journey follows the landmark stage production, and the kids should be transfixed by shots of the real African wildlife in the animal journey. Three deleted segments are real curios, including an opening lyric for "Hakuna Matata". Most set-top DVD games are usually pretty thin (DVD-ROM is where it's at), but the Safari game is an exception--the kids should love the roaring animals (in 5.1 Surround, no less). One serious demerit is the needless and complicated second navigation system that is listed by continent but just shows the same features reordered. --Doug Thomas [show more]

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  • DVD Details
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31 October 2003
Walt Disney Home Video 
85 minutes 
Animated, PAL, Special Edition 
  • Average Rating for The Lion King Special Edition [1994] - 4 out of 5

    (based on 2 user reviews)
  • The Lion King Special Edition [1994]
    Stephanie Davies

    A film which can be enjoyed by three generations simultaneously with amazing music and storyline to take you on a gripping adventure. Everyone will be saying "hakuna ma ta ta" by the end of the film!

  • The Lion King Special Edition [1994]
    sean sutherland

    One of disney's best films yet. With music from elton john, like the circle of life, can you feel the love tonight etc. it is a story about a young lion cub that runs away from home after being threatened by his uncle to be blamed for his father's death. He runs as far away as he can where he meets some new friends, with whom he grows up with. until one day he bumps into an old friend who persuades him to go back and take his rightful place as king. there he goes to fight his uncle and his army of hungry hyenas

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