With the recent release of The Lion King on BluRay, I've been thinking over and over again how much I love this film and why.
I was 4 years old when I saw The Lion King in theatres. Of course, at that young age I couldn't understand any of the deeper themes of the plot; all I could grasp at the time was the tremendous influence this Disney film had over my childhood. As a little girl, I perhaps connected with the likable characters, the unique soundtrack, and the beautiful setting with warm colors.
The movie had a constant presence throughout my youth. Even through my teen years, the film remained important to me. I never lost fascination for it, my understanding of the themes throughout only deepened as I grew in maturity.
The Lion King has shaped my life, and I will never grow tired of watching such an iconic story. The Lion King is one of the few movies I can point to and say, "that changed my life." Here's why:
The Powerful Message of "Remember Who You Are"
Every time I hear this quote, I cannot contain my tears. It pulls me by my heart strings and doesn't let go. No other book or film has a quote that has held such significance in my life. The Lion King is one of the few Disney films that introduces the importance of who we are and where we are from. Simba is reminded by his father's spirit to never forget his legacy, and where Simba comes from.
We are who we are because of our parents and our ancestors. Their journeys are what raised us to be the people we are, and they live within us.
This message also reminds us that we all come from something much greater, beyond the mortal.
The Bond Between Father & Son
It's hard not to watch this film and not reflect on the relationship we have with our parents. You can think of this in a physical sense and even a spiritual sense. The relationship that Mufasa and Simba is a perfect example of friendship, trust, honesty, and love. I just crumble thinking about this element of the storyline, so much that it constantly keeps me coming back for more.
Everyone’s Favorite Spiritual Guide: Rafiki
Though some might see Rafiki as strange, he is the voice of reason through Simba's toughest situations. And in this girl's opinion, not only can be a comic relief, but can quickly change his tune to plays a spiritual role. Every time I pay attention to his role throughout the film, I take something new from what he teaches.
In one of my favorite scenes, Rafiki whacks SImba on the head with his stick, teaching him that, "the past can hurt." It's this type of message that assures I can always move on from past road blocks, difficulties, and problems. I simply have to choose to continue forward.
even through Your Hardest Struggles, love will see you through
Oh, the power of love. The film time and time again proves that despite the adversity life may throw your way, the love you share with someone else will always become the light at the end of the tunnel.
Life changes people. Situations change people. People also change people. However, as both Simba and Nala grew into adults, the constant ups and downs of their relationship displays that love is being there through absolutely everything.
The Humor is Pure Gold
Even though it's seriously difficult to get through without sobbing uncontrollably, the film still always makes me laugh—a fighting monkey, a drag hula dancer, and three crazy hyenas, who all provide so much entertainment.
Timon and Pumbaa, who hilariously rescue Simba are arguably the best sidekicks in the Disney universe. I mean, come on, they had a groundbreaking mantra, fought their hearts out, and provided necessary laughs in an already intense atmosphere.
I Get Chills Listening To The Soundtrack
With the underlying theme of African influence, percussion instruments, and uplifting rhythms, I always come back to the soundtrack and score to feel enlivened, powerful, electrified, and invigorate my perspective on any given situation in the musical moments behind the script.
And Of Course, Hakuna Matata
I think this reason is pretty self-explanatory. Despite the dark themes, The Lion King reminds us that our lives aren't always in our control, but when you take a deep breath and let the crap go, life can be far easier to bear.
It's goes without saying, The Lion King is hands down my favorite film. With every song, every message, and all the tears I shed watching it, it is a movie I will never ever give up. And neither should you.