Discussion in 'Charts, rates etc' started by Animalia, Apr 10, 2017.
Well, it's been a long long long battle.
But we must crown a victor.
The time has come.
The Little Mermaid (1989)
5 Points: @HollyDunnSomething, @DJHazey, @GhettoPrincess, @GimmeWork, @Weslicious
4 Points: @Lost Boy, @Sideout, @Lost In Japan., @Robsolete, @MamaHazey
3 Points: @2014, @Daniel!, @Subwaykid
2 Points: @Reboot, @Mikl C
1 Point: @MollieSwift21
There it is, folks. All that vocal campaigning, all that relentless stanning and all those gifs of Ariel crying and huffing her hair out of her face over the past nine months, all for nothing. The Little Mermaid leaves Popjustice without a crown to her name, poor thing. She put up a damn good fight though, and if nothing else she commands our respect – The Little Mermaid is like the mother of all Disney. Well I guess that’s Snow White actually, uh… Ariel’s like… the Miss Honey to the The Bronze Age's Ms. Trunchbull. The studio had been a bit of a disaster since ol’ Walt passed away, and by the time the ‘80s rolled around they’d clearly used up all the project ideas he had left behind, I mean: The Fox & The Hound, The Black Cauldron, The Great Mouse Detective and Oliver & Co.? That’s a rough decade, by anyone’s measure. It was time for a change. Directors Ron Clements & John Musker suggested adapting the famous Hans Christian Anderson story and were initially turned down as Disney were making a sequel to Splash at the time and thought it would be too similar (Ariel was only changed from a blonde to a redhead to distinguish her from Daryl Hannah’s character in those films, fun fact).
Anyway, I guess they realised no one gave a singular fuck about "Splash, Too" and The Little Mermaid was given what they were waiting for, what they wanted – that green light. So, Disney were going back, back, black to their roots (real live footage of me shoe-horning in niche RuPaul references no one will get) with their first fairytale adaptation since Sleeping Beauty thirty years ago, and what made those movies so special? Music. Thus, in possibly the single greatest decision in the history of film, Howard Ashman was invited back to work at Disney after having written Once Upon A Time In New York City for Oliver & Co. A new era had begun.
Ashman’s suggestion to turn The Little Mermaid into a Broadway extravaganza by rewriting the plot to focus around a few key musical scenes was a dangerous one, but Disney took that risk and quickly realised they’d struck gold. Ashman became the key to the film’s greatness, pitching in on every department, working on character design, casting, writing entire non-musical scenes himself and eventually being promoted up to co-producer. The Little Mermaid is his legacy, and Disney owe him a hell of a lot for it. Before its release, studio execs warned that it would probably flop and do worse than Oliver & Co. because it was a girls’ film. AhahahahahahafuckYOU. Earning just shy of a hundred million dollars in its original North American release, The Little Mermaid was an unprecedented success for Disney; one that would shape the future of both the company and the animated film industry as a whole for decades to come. The depth of characterisation that creates lovable, realistic heroes like Ariel and equally lovable, exciting villains like Ursula; the intelligent storytelling that transforms the simplest of plots into emotional spectaculars that capture the hearts of their audiences; the respect for aesthetic and attention to detail that on top of the hundreds of thousands of background and character drawings, more than one million bubbles were individually hand-drawn for the film. That love, that care – that’s the magic of the Disney Renaissance, and ‘twas The Little Mermaid that cast the first spell.
I used to make my mum sing the AAAAAH bit where Ariel sings and gets her voice captured by Ursula all the time to me as a kid. I was obsessed with this movie. It’s just so magical to me.
My younger cousin used to be obsessed with this film and watching it whenever I went to see her maybe would've got tiring if it was another film, but every time there was something new that caught my eye. I never realised just how scary Ursula's death scene was, and that was always my cousin's favourite bit! Brilliant film.
This final spot was tough one to pick. There were a lot that are very close in quality to me. In came down to Aladdin, Beauty & Beast and The Little Mermaid. In the end I had so go with Little Mermaid. Jodi Benson as the voice and singing voice for her is just specular. I’ve always loved Flounder dopey but supportive self. Ariel’s impulsive, bright, and determination makes for such a fun character. Part of Your World is sensational, especially the reprise. Her longing for the human world and having such a big collection only for Triton to destroy it was terrible. In many ways relatable for when your passion is something that isn’t so welcomed. Under the Sea & Kiss the Girl are such fun songs. Prince Eric is a wonderful prince too. In the top 3 overall. I love that in the first introduction of him Ariel saves him. Ursula plays the part of sea witch so well. All things considered it is easy to how this propelled Disney into the Renaissance period.
Honestly even outside of Disney this is my second favourite film ever. I'm not going to tell you my number 1 (okay it's Never Been Kissed, kii). This holds so many important memories for me, I remember watching it in the cinema at 4 years old, I remember introducing several of my nieces and nephews to it too. It just has such a special place in my heart. Feeling like you don't belong, falling in love, having your voice stolen by a drag queen sea witch, it's all just so relatable.
Thankgod for that Justice in the end.
Deserved to be number 1.
Which means your winner is...
Write-up following shortly x
The Lion King (1994)
5 Points: @send photo, @ohnostalgia, @2014, @aniraz, @Lost In Japan., @MamaHazey
4 Points: @DJHazey, @Reboot, @Mvnl, @Weslicious
3 Points: @iheartpoptarts, @Sideout, @Robsolete, @Conan, @MollieSwift21, @kalonite
2 Points: @Subwaykid, @Animalia
1 Point: @Serg.
There was never any other winner. While the song leaderboard jumped around with every few sets of votes, The Lion King barely broke a sweat sitting atop the film rankings for the entire voting period. It seems funny that we’ve spent so much of the rate celebrating the work and legacy of the dynamic duos Musker/Clements and Ashman/Menken, only to then crown one of the only Renaissance movies neither of them had a hand in, but rest assured girls; this is absolutely, categorically, undeniably the correct result. Every skill Disney have built their empire upon – animation, storytelling, characterisation, musicality, tone, theme, violent knock-out emotional gut punches – The Lion King is the epitome of it all. The Little Mermaid showed that Disney were beginning to look forward, to move on from the death of their hero and carve a new path for themselves. The Lion King was proof that they had blazed that trail, that they had mastered that art and that they had succeeded. Why yes, I am blatantly trying to find a segue into the film’s plot. Thank you for noticing.
The Lion King has one of the deepest, richest plots in the Disney catalogue, and every aspect of it is delivered with love, attention and glorious visuals. From the Circle of Life opening, to Simba’s carefree childhood, to the reunion with Nala, to the bohemian revelry of Timon & Pumbaa, to Scar’s hostile takeover of the Pride Lands, the subsequent battle and its climax, every moment of every scene of this film is as charged with emotion as it is entertaining to watch – and its centre…
Fuck. I lied when I said every scene is fun to watch. The heartbreak. The devastation. The way Simba tries to wake Mufasa up by nudging him and tugging at his ear. The tone of his voice changing from that scared-but-hopeful whimper to sheer desperation in seconds. The music – oh god the music. This film has hands down the greatest score of any animated film; the strings and choir carry the emotional weight of the story at every twist and turn, swelling up at just the right moments, and then they have the nerve to hide the woodwind melody from This Land (the greatest piece of music ever written for film, if you were wondering), in there too just to make sure those shivers go all the way up my neck and send me hurtling over the edge into uncontrollable sobbing every damn time. I lost my dad at a very young ago too, and my empathy for that loss and my experience of the effect it has on one’s childhood no doubt plays a big part in why the slightest cue from The Lion King can set me off, but there’s so much power in how that scene is presented to the audience, it’s no wonder it’s one of the most universally loved hated iconic scenes in animation history.
Years ago, I saw someone online saying that they rate Disney films on three metrics:
Does it make you smile?
Does it make you laugh?
Does it make you cry?
This film excels in all three; it’s the perfect storm of what makes Disney special, and that’s why it’s is your champion.
The Lion King.
Kii pure nostalgia, sorry. My best friend and I wore the hell out of our VHS tapes.
A classic and one of my all time favourite films, it still makes me feel every emotion that I felt watching it for the first time when I was little; Mufasa's death honestly makes me a total wreck EVERY. TIME. And the music is fantastic too, Timon and Pumba were my favourite things in the world for ages (remember their spin-off Disney series? I was hooked!) Just a classic film, in every film, no competition really.
The start is just astonishing. Circle of Life is one of the best Disney songs. Simba being raised up by Rafiki is one of the most iconic moments in Disney. Simba’s one of my favorite characters too. I love how mischievous and playful he is fully displayed in I Just Can’t Wait To Be King. Be Prepared is one of the best Disney Villain songs with scar being so conniving. Mufasa’s death was heartbreaking and I think my first real experience with death as sheltered as that sounds. Simba seeing it all happen and thinking he was the cause of it leaves me in a stream of tears. Especially when he tugs at the ear. The journey that Simba then goes on with doubting himself and feeling underserving. When Nala returns and Can You Feel The Love Tonight starts it play it is just magic. Remember Who You Are followed by don’t leave me and the past can hurt are such special scenes. The final battle is truly suspenseful and to see Simba fully overcome everything is truly gratifying. The movie itself is deserving of what most consider the pinnacle of Disney.
But no, they are booth classics in their own right that's why I had them ranked as #1 and #2, so why would I be upset? Splash, I remember that movie, the nostalgia! Also these write-ups are amazing, but not your description of Simba finding Mufasa remind me of this.
Now the crying is amplified.
The Lion King came out when I was five. It’s one of the first movies I remember seeing in theatres and I was absolutely obsessed with it. The Circle of Life sequence is a cinematic masterpiece, probably the single best opening to a movie I’ve ever seen. I remember being traumatized by the Mufasa scene, flat out devastated. But it was also fun! Hilarious! Heartwarming! Along with Hercules, I think the Lion King was truly the movie my father loved watching with me in theatres. It was for everyone. And when I got to high school English class and found out that the whole plot is lifted from Hamlet, my mind was blown. So many layers.
But it was really the soundtrack that captured my imagination and cemented a life long love of music. I would listen to the entire album on repeat in our living room, reimagining the movie in my head. Elton’s songs are stone cold classics, I remember trying to work some of them out by ear on our electric piano (which I still have to this day). I also honestly believe The Lion King’s score was responsible for my first musical love being classical, not teeny pop (I didn’t get into music with words until high school). Sure that made me the pretentious kid, but so I was having fun going to classical concerts and inventing stories to the music played.
Honestly, there’s nothing else to say. Justice was served.
Sure I wanted Ariel to go all the way and I didn't even throw a single point to the kitties but I can't be mad because reading these amazing @Animalia write-ups, user commentaries and posts I'm overcome with joy. These films obviously meant so much to all of us for different, but very genuine and grounded reasons. The true connections to these films and impacts these films have had on us is profound and should be celebrated. Thank you everyone for sharing your Lion King and Mermaid stories throughout.
(Don't think I'm still not bitter at y'all for The Princess & The Frog Tho!)
Glad Lion King won. My ultimate favorite changes by the day but is always either Sleeping Beauty, Fox and The Hound and Lion King.
Great countdown of the films!
Hmm not my winner. Still it's a great film so I can't be mad.
Excellent result. The Lion King is a cinematic masterpiece.
And does anyone remember how devilishly hard the Sega game was?
It was! I never finished it.
WE DON'T TALK ABOUT THE DAMN SEGA GAME.
On a lighter note*, Song #3 will be leaving us soon as I've eaten & made a few gifs! Place your bets!
Circle of Life
Colours of the Wind
* ... Or is it?
Well they are all 10s, so this is a bit of Sophie's Choice but I'd pick...Colours of the Wind at #3 if a gun was to my head.
It's time to find out which two songs will make it through to the Grand Finale.
Will Pocahontas redeem herself after the film's disappointment?
Can Mulan's ballad go where she herself could not?
Does The Lion King stand a chance of winning twice?
Circle of Life
Highest Score: 11 x2 (@eccentricsimply, @MamaHazey), 10 x20 (@send photo, @Mina, @ohnostalgia, @Raichu, @constantino, @Conan, @Mikl C, @Epic Chocolat, @Sideout, @Lost Boy, @Remorque, @Serg., @Robsolete, @aniraz, @funkyg, @Sprockrooster, @DJHazey, @Reboot, @MollieSwift21, @kalonite)
Lowest Score: 6 x1 (@Ironheade), 7 x3 (@GimmeWork, @GhettoPrincess, @Alouder98)
My Score: 9.5
NAAAAAAAAANTS INGONYAAAAAA-MA BAGITHI BABA
Phew, finally got that outta my system. Poor Simba will have to cope with only one crown, as Circle of Life misses out on the grand finale by two points. I’m sure he’ll cope. Really though, who would have thought an Elton John song would make Top 3 in a Popjustice rate in 20178? The Lion King’s impact! I guess it helps that this is the least Elton-sounding Elton song to ever exist (up until that mandatory piano flourish in the last chorus anyway), and that the collaborators’ influences are quite so prominent. Hans Zimmer invited South African composer Lebo M. to help him write an authentic, immersive score for the film; his, as well as those of the African choir he brought with him, are the powerful voices you’re instantly enraptured by as that sun rises. The Zulu opening lyrics above roughly translate to English as:
There comes a lion
Oh yes, it’s a lion
We’re going to conquer
It doesn’t translate quite as poetically, welp. In reality, they reflect the Masai tradition of having young men kill a lion when they come of age, delivered in a “call and response” style as is popular in African song with “ingonyama” (lion) being repeated in the background to represent the threat drawing closer. Whether the “lion” in this particular case is merely a symbol for adversity, or if it’s deliberately fore-shadowing the murder/death in Simba’s future is up for debate, but honestly does it doesn’t even matter what it means when the sound itself is so heart-warmingly impactful and iconic? My lifelong memories of cluelessly screaming those words say no ma'am. Rumour has it that Elton composed and recorded the demo for Circle of Life within an hour and half of Tim Rice handing him the lyrics, which is honestly a terrifying thought ‘cause it’s taken me longer than that to write this post. Fuck talented, successful people teebs. The good sir was justly rewarded for his efforts too, with the song being nominated for Best Original Song at the 1994 Academy Awards. It lost on the day to "Can You Feel the Love Tonight?", a decision Elton has made very clear he does not agree with in the years since – so, you could say that this result is… Pop… Justice?
Of course, there’s no talking about Circle of Life without mentioning its accompanying scene. As ohnostalgia said last night, a cinematic masterpiece and in all likelihood perhaps the greatest opening to a film ever. The scope of the imagery being presented and the spirit and vibrancy with which its brought to life on-screen is simply breathtaking. The stunning artwork and animation instantly transports the audience to the heart of the film in a vast expanse of the Serengeti, while the sheer, epic grandeur of the music ensures they’re captivated by its soul. Oh, and also:
Not every Disney song has that. Yikes @ the camera cutting to Trump in the audience several times though. A mess.
“The best opening song scene.” MollieSwift21 declares, adding: “The animation is just so beautiful. The lyrics are touching too. Poor every cat that's ever lived being brought to the pose because of this movie.” I feel… attacked. That was the first thing my sister & I did with our kittens when we got them home oop. Modern science has revealed that you can actually recreate this scene sans-feline, as demonstrated by constantino: “Absolutely iconic. My friends and I went through a serious phase of shouting ‘Nants ingonyama bagithi baba!’ at every opportunity back at school, and I can’t say the temptation doesn’t still sit with me in most situations.” I can’t sing along to it without jumping into WHAAAAAAT’S ON THE MENUUUUUUU / IT’S PUMBAA-AAAA from The Lion King 1.5’s trailer, so I can’t judge. Sprockrooster has more respect for the song than I though: “This probably has the best lyrics of all the songs in this rate. Such a lyrical masterpiece.”, while send photo opts for the a-gif-tells-a-thousand-words approach: “I know you’ll get like five comments of just the starting lyrics so I’ll refrain but THAT OPENING”
You grossly overestimated these girls’ ability to google the lyrics dddd. 2014 answers his own question, correctly: “Best film opening ever? Possibly.” I mean, would the leaderboard lie? LKane: “Another great opening track. Captures the vibe of the movie perfectly.” and Raichu: “This is some truly spiritual shit. The scope of it just blows me away.” back up the claim, and I get the feeling DJHazey might feel some type of way about it too: “Dddd, that opening sequence, everyone knows it and better love it. When it first shows that rock with Mufasa majestically standing on it, well if you don't have goosebumps...check your pulse because that's you're only excuse.” NOT you judging people’s ability to feel anything after your dead-ass buffoonery, riggery and straight-up tomfoolery scoring The Louvre like that. Get outta here. Ever a woman of few words but amazing taste, Mina calls it “A classic.”, and Epic Chocolat simply describes it as “Meaningful.” Reboot came this close to giving Circle of Life ha 11, albeit for it an odd reason: “The Elton John version of this is absolutely phenomenal. I’d give this my 11 if I could, but there’s one song I like a tiny bit more…” Don’t do Carmen Twillie (whoisthat.gif) like that. As always, the last words go those of you who did give it your 11:
It's a beautiful song but more than that I can never get over how stunning the animation is during those opening sequences.
Disney has a lot of great songs, as in, songs that are extremely fun to listen to and that bring back great memories from childhood. This song, however, isn't worried about being fun or something that everybody can dance to - it's worried about being beautiful. And it reaches its purpose. It's just majestic, not to mention it being accompanied by some of the most beautiful images from the movie and The Most Memorable moment from this movie, possibly from Disney as a whole.
I suspect @Animalia keeps trolling me by putting me in the first few 10s listed so I get mentioned with every elimination that's not my 11!
But this is quite a surprise result, especially after The Lion King won the film component! Another case of PJ misandry, perhaps?
Vanessa Williams coming for two different rate wins!!!
I did the same thing so I'm not judging ha!
ddddd me tagging you and @send photo every time
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