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WHEN THE 'LION KING' ROARS

      

For Hicksflicks.com, Friday, July 19, 2019

So how afraid are the major studios of Disney’s “The Lion King”? So afraid that nothing is opening the same weekend, well, except for an art house film in just three local theaters. “The Lion King” is opening ion several screens of every multiplex in the Salt Lake Valley, save the Broadway Centre Cinemas, the art house downtown.

“The Lion King” (PG). The original 1994 “Lion King” was praised at the time as being a groundbreaker in realistic animation but this new version is being touted by the studio as a “photo-realistic computer-animated remake,” and if you saw Disney’s 2016 “Jungle Book” remake, you have an idea of what that means. This one is helmed by the same director, Jon Favreau (who is also an actor, most recently playing Happy Hogan in “Spider-Man: Far from Home”). James Earl Jones is the only original voice-cast member to return, joining Donald Glover, Seth Rogan, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Alfre Woodard, John Oliver and Beyoncé, among others.

“The Art of Self-Defense” (R). After a timid bookkeeper (Jessie Eisenberg) is attacked by a motorcycle gang he begins taking karate lessons in a neighborhood studio. But his instructor also recruits him for an after-hours class where he discovers a sinister world of hyper-masculinity and brutality. (“Fight Club” anyone?) With Imogen Poots.