Princess Jasmine steals spotlight in Aladdin

Disney’s latest female protagonist Princess Jasmine (Naomi Scott) is a modern-day powerhouse as she enters a whole new world in Guy Ritchie’s live-action remake of Aladdin.

The Princess of Agrabah returns to the big screen alongside Aladdin (Mena Massoud) to bring Disney’s animated classic to life with a freshness that fits the times.

Unlike the original 1992 film, the updated version gives the Arab princess a role as significant as her love interest and the movie’s title character.

The audience first meets Jasmine disguised as a commoner in the marketplace before Aladdin’s quick wits save her from being prosecuted from stealing.

On face value, she is a ‘damsel in distress’ rescued by a man, but upon her return to the palace, her true colours are shown when she is courted by yet another prince (Billy Magnussen) wanting to marry her.

She is strong-willed and bold, believing in her own ability to rule the kingdom without another by her side.

Disney’s princess culture has been criticised for being harmful towards young girls and promoting gender stereotypes.

But Jasmine is a great role model; she is ambitious in her hopes for herself and does not stop fighting for the freedom of choice in a place where the odds are against her.

She is respectful even when she disagrees with the Sultan, and empathetic and compassionate to the subjects of her kingdom.

The princess’ wardrobe in the film is vibrant, beautiful and includes her iconic blue-green two-piece, which is given a more modest makeover in the film negating views from the original movie that she is oversexualised.

Image: Disney

Princess Jasmine has an admirable depth to her and a character arc that is an enhanced reminiscent version of the character we already know and if you did not already, fall in love with.

Naomi Scott embodies Jasmine’s beauty inside and out. 

A pivotal moment is when she sings original song and feminist anthem, ‘Speechless’, about not staying silent and instead, speaking out against injustices regardless of the obstacles thrown your way.

Genie mentions early in the film, “The more wishes you have, the more you want.” 

Aladdin shows everyone young and old how there is more to life than power and fortune.

The film reminds its audience there is magic in friendship and staying true to yourself.  

The classic remake features original characters Genie (Will Smith), Jafar (Marwan Kenzari), Abu and Rajah, as well as its hit musical numbers like Friend Like Me, Prince Ali, and favourite A Whole New World.

Disney’s live-action Aladdin is in cinemas now.

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The Hobbit: Battle of the Five Armies

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Rated: M

J.R.R Tolkeins cinematic adventures have finally come to a close with the final Hobbit movie. Originally titled There And Back Again and renamed by director Peter Jackson as the Battle of The Five Armies was the nail-biting close for The Hobbit franchise.

I hate to say it but I didn’t leave the theatre thrilled. The first two Hobbit movies were definitely waaaayy better than this. I was so engrossed by the first 2 films and there was heaps to love! The actors gave wonderful performances again this time, but unlike the actors, their characters had very little character development throughout the movie. Besides Thorin who overcomes dragon’s sickness, all the characters are kind of just existing.

I know many fans were disappointed in the romance between elf Tauriel and dwarf Kìli as it wasn’t originally in the book, but I didn’t mind it and thought it added some substance to the story and the feels got real. I did think that significant deaths were rushed… SPOILER ALERT! Fìli was next in line for the throne after Thorin and his death was portrayed like a squashed bug’s: minimum sadness and importance. Both Fìli and Kìli were two of the favourite characters in the trilogy and I don’t think enough significance was placed on their characters role in the film and subsequently their deaths, which was the result of fighting for their uncle.

The intensity was high throughout the entire film. The movie showed off priorities, bravery, courage, loyalty, love, and friendship tremendously which I liked a lot. I was satisfied and enjoyed the happy ending amongst all the tragedy and grief.

Rating:

***