Mulan: Positive first impressions from adaptation critics


The Mulan film was the first blockbuster affected by the new coronavirus pandemic. Scheduled to open on March 27, it suffered successive postponements until it reached the Disney + platform, this Friday (4). Subscribers to the studio’s streaming will be able to rent the live-action for $ 30. And the first reviews say the investment is worth it!

“Mulan has a vibe that we haven’t really seen in a Disney movie since Cinderella, 2015, that was also confident to move away from its source material and focus more on production designs and luxurious costumes,” wrote Matt Goldberg of Collider. “It is an exciting and well-crafted action film and, after a slow start, Niki Caron maintains his energy until the end: a battle in multiple locations between Mulan’s group and Bori Khan’s army,” reported Josh Bell of CBR.

Chinese actress Liu Yifei appears to have been the perfect choice for the title role. “Liu’s performance could have been more powerful if she had been a little more emotional, but the rigidity and physical strength that she exhibits makes her a convincing fighter,” wrote Christy Lemire, at “Liu is a success. Even if you don’t believe that a bunch of muddy guys would confuse Mulan as one of yours, the actress cleverly uploads the film. Her flirtation scenes with colleague Chen (Yoson An) are very good and, in combat, she imposes a cold determination and a vulnerability ”, praises Johnny Oleksinski, from the New York Post.

No songs or talking animals

The absence of songs and the Mushu dragon were recalled by some critics. “There are no musical numbers, although some army training exercises still resemble large-scale dance routines,” said Josh Bell of CBR. “Musical numbers would have looked strange. When was the last time you saw an action movie with music and dance? ”Asks Johnny Oleksinski of the New York Post.

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In the place of the dragon, the film places a phoenix, which represents Mulan’s ancestors. However, the most talked about change was the insertion of the witch Xianning. “It’s the film’s most vibrant creation and an original addition to Mulan’s chronicles. Although her haughtiness and her flowing costume bring Maleficent to mind, Xianniang is indeed a somewhat more severe substitute for the animation dragon, ”says The New York Times’ Manohla Dargis.

The film should please those who grew up watching the animation. “Dark and serious, the live-action Mulan is a film that grew up alongside its original audience, which is presumably old enough to want something heavier in their entertainment diet,” analyzes The Washington Post’s Ann Hornaday. “Mulan defines the model that other Disney live-action should aim for, being a careful adaptation rather than a pale imitation,” says Collider’s Matt Goldberg.


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