Disney has been on a roll with its plan to release live action versions of many of its classic animated movies, with huge hits for Beauty and the Beast, The Jungle Book and Aladdin. Now it’s the turn of Dumbo and Tim Burton takes the helm of this live action version starring Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito and Eva Green.
This new live action version doesn’t just retell the story scene by scene, its taken the main core story, added new elements and brought it up to date. There are many noticeable differences in the story, since there are some scenes from a movie from the 40’s that just wouldn’t work today, especially the Pink Elephants scene. I was impressed with how this movie included it, but didn’t need to get Dumbo drunk to see it, which wouldn’t have gone down well with modern audiences.
Unfortunately, the new live action version of Dumbo never hit the same level at the box office as other releases like Aladdin or The Jungle Book. But I’m really hoping that with it’s Disney+ release, this movie will find an audience. Because I was someone who skipped seeing it at the cinema and its a shame since its a lovely entertaining movie, it has a fantastic cast and the movie looks stunning, especially Dumbo, as they’ve done an incredible job in making him so cute and adorable. And that’s what makes the movie work, when someone is mean to him, you feel it.
While the movie has a darker undertone, which I would have expected from a Tim Burton movie. He usually manages to find a way to make a mainstream Disney movie, but it isn’t super glossy or sugary sweet, until the very end.
Dumbo has an impressive line up of actors, while Michael Keaton stood out as playing the scheming villain and Danny DeVito just stole over scene he was in, as the Ring Master Max Medici. But the film seemed a little stuffed with a few too many characters, just to fill out the story. Which is one of the problems with the movie, since the movie is almost double the length of the original animated movie.
Did this movie need to be made? No! However, when watching Dumbo, I was completely entertained and thought it was charming. It will never match the original but it was never going to be able to live up to that.
With an all-star line up, amazing visuals and a cute baby elephant, this is a perfect sit at home and watch type of movie, where you can just grab the snacks, snuggle in and just enjoy a charming family movie. It makes the perfect movie for Disney+.
Rating – 3 Stars
Roger has been a Disney fan since he was a kid and this interest has grown over the years. He has visited Disney Parks around the globe and has a vast collection of Disney movies and collectibles. He is the owner of What's On Disney Plus & DisKingdom.