Critical Novel Study
Text 1- The Lion King
Directed by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff
Released 25th August 1994
Summary of the text
‘The Lion King’ is a heart warming film-directed by Roger Allers and Rob Minkoff-about the fictional lion cub Simba and his journey to adulthood. Simba is only very young when his father Mufasa (king of their home the Pridelands) is killed by Simba’s power-hungry uncle Scar (Mufusa’s brother). Scar tricks young Simba into believing that he killed his own father by accident and forces Simba to run away. Years later, Simba discovers he is needed back home, and is forced to choose between his new care-free life or confront his past, in order to save the Pridelands and take his place as king.
Two techniques used to shape meaning related to ‘Coming of Age’ In this film, Allers and Minkoff have used many techniques to highlight Simba’s Coming of Age. One of these techniques is humour. Humour plays a mayor part in this film by conveying innocence, personality and maturity of the characters as well as making it entertaining. At the beginning of the film, Simba is an innocent, care-free lion cub and his adventures and assumptions are funny because they are naïve and adorable. Yet as the film goes on and Simba is forced to grow up, he becomes more serious and is more intelligent-meaning he amuses us with his witty remarks rather than his innocent ideas. Another major technique used in the film is the use of music/songs. The music/songs are symbolic of the transition that Simba goes through and the challenges he undertakes. They provide insight to the storyline in the film (e.g. ‘Be Prepared’ tells the viewer that scar intends to kill Simba and Mufasa) and can manipulate the emotions of the audience (eg. ‘Just Cant Wait to Be King’ puts the audience in a bubbly, energetic mood). The music and songs help illustrate Coming of Age as each song lays out the choices Simba must make in order to find his place in ‘the great circle of life’....
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