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Mulan
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Reviews & Ratings for
Mulan More at IMDbPro »

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27 out of 37 people found the following review useful:

I loved it...

Author: Chris Engelbrecht from Copenhagen
29 December 2000

Ok... I've read through most of the posted comments posted before this about this movie; I find that some people love the music, but think the characters are thin; some hate Eddie Murphy's presence, and think the love story is stupid. Well, your experience with a film is individual, I guess.

That said, I'll follow the trail and state why I loved watching this movie not once, but several times:

First of all, I'm far from being a fan of animated Disney classics. I'm in that age between child and adult(currently 23), where everything is a rebelry. Most of my viewing pleasures is action or its like.

My original incentive for seeing this movie was to please a friend of mine, who has a long-life fascination for oriental culture (read: karate films!). When Mulan was released in Denmark, a single copy with the original voices track (usually all animated Disneys are dubbed into danish with good result) was shown in a local theater. Asking a couple of girls out, we went and saw it. Ok, I was blown away. Before I had left the cinema that day, I too was captured by chinese history and culture. The singing and music I was prepared for; I knew The Jungle Book and Aristocats from childhood. The songs didn't mean anything to me, other than that they were few - good for me. (Some of them do kling to the ear - irritating for me!) I quickly realised Eddie Murphy was on the voices cast. I started liking the movie right then. Some find him malplaced in a Disney epic, but fact is that the business of animating classics is profiting well these years in bringing in already established names to the animations; Tom Hanks in the Toy Stories, Mel Gibson in Pocahontas, Robin Williams in Aladdin, and who else I don't know of. These names sell the film before the film have a chance to sell itself. (The danish producers, by the way, have stolen this idea when dubbing the films, using local media stars for the voice cast.) Well...it did work for me. Eddie Murphy is not as funny in this production as he is in others, but what the heck...he can't exactly use too much harsh language, it IS a children's flick. But with the room he got, his speedy tongue made me laugh again and again. I have later seen Aladdin, and find Eddie Murphy's achievement as funny as Robin Williams'. That Eddie Murphy chose this project was an interesting and probably very clever career move. Later, when I studied the rest of the cast list, I noticed a lot of chinese names. That very much pleased me. Who other than Chinese people to tell a Chinese tale to Westerners? I found some old friends, Soon-Tek Oh and James Hong, people who had worked with Chick Norris in the 80's. Pat Morita as the emperor made me smile. B.D.Wong I remembered from Jurrasic Park, but Ming-Na was new to me (had to look her up in IMDB, was stunned not to have known her before (Ok, I went wow!)). Harvey Fierstein as a ploppy little soldier and Miguel Ferrer as the Hun leader I found the perfect voice-choice for their characters...other names rang also. Anyway, a lot of the above have only value after you've seen the film. When you are an Atlantic ocean from most of the sales pitch, the film had to sell itself. It did - for me, anyway. Before then, I knew little about China and her history apart from things here and there (read: karate films!). Meeting angient China like this totally threw me away. Wership of the ancestors, the power and position of the emperor, I found myself lost in the dream of a world long gone; I loved the image of a China with different traditions but still found myself attracted to the pro-Disney story about a girl standing up to a culture's sexist prejudice. (I do find the plot a bit silly, actually, but I let myself be taken away...it's just a Disney.) Agree, the characters lack a little bit, the love story of Mulan and Shang should perhaps have had a few more frames to play with. The project was a little bit tuned down from the Disney board of directors, but honor to all who worked with it: You people did a good job! The computer animation used for the Great Wall and the attack of the Huns startles me again and again; Not many live movies can do the job as good.

So that's what Mulan is for me...The dream of ancient China and Eddie Murphy's speedy tongue. I accept the term classic. I have the damn thing on video now (English language) and must prevent myself from seeing it too often, in fright of one day getting tired of it.

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15 out of 16 people found the following review useful:

The flower that blooms in adversity is the most rare and beautiful of all.

8/10
Author: Lady Targaryen from Brazil
21 January 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

One of the reasons why I like Mulan so much, is because she is independent and braver than many of the female characters from Disney, who looks always to be searching for a man to be the reason for them to live or to be happy. Mulan is lovely, but also a tomboy what always gives her problems. Since the story takes place in a China of more than 1.000 years ago, women from that time, more than in the present days, needed to have an outstanding behavior all the time and with everybody.Being the only kid her parents had in a time where women didn't have many rights,Mulan is pressed to marry with a good catch. One day, she is going to see the matchmaker but everything goes wrong,since she is clumsy and not very graceful. Being accused that she '' will never bring honor to her family'', Mulan stays sad and depressed, and so stays her parents. But the chance to change that awful prophecy comes quick when the Emperor's men started to call one man from every family to serve in the Imperial Army: since Mulan's father was no longer young and healthy, Mulan reported to the army with a new name and looks. But she needed to make this a secret, because it was against the Chinese laws to a woman be a soldier, so, with the help of the dragon of the family called Mushu,one of the coolest adventures from Disney's starts.

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20 out of 26 people found the following review useful:

A surprise pleasure to watch

7/10
Author: Kristine (kristinedrama14@msn.com) from Chicago, Illinois
20 November 2006

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

I really held back from Disney's later animated features, most of them started to slid down hill after The Lion King, excluding The Hunchback of Notre Dame, but it seemed like Mulan was going to be a disappointment for Disney. It turned out to be an actual pleasure watching this film. It had great animation, a good soundtrack, and a wonderful story about courage and strength.

Mulan is a girl in China who is ready for marriage but seems like she isn't ready to settle down in this man's world where she must have permission to speak and only cook and please her husband. When her father is called to war, she fears for his life and dresses like him and fights in his place disguised as him. Mushu, her "guardian" dragon per say, comes to help her out and make sure she doesn't get herself killed out there in battle. She also falls for the captain that doesn't kill her when he finds out her secret.

It is a visually stunning masterpiece that I am glad that I had a chance to watch. It had great morals and values for children, even if it was a bit unrealistic, we have to let go. Still, I don't think a film will compare yet to The Lion King or Beauty and The Beast, but Mulan is a treasure of it's own.

7/10

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7 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

Delightful Animated Girl Hero who Breaks with Disney Traditions

7/10
Author: noralee from Queens, NY
8 November 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

"Mulan" is not quite a chick flick and it's much better than "Pochantas."

It has terrific animation and I forgot I was even watching animation. The script has some funny lines.

The music is not great (the writers didn't ring any bells with me as to their past work) but good lyrics. I was disappointed that the music wasn't as Asianish as "Lion King" is Africanish. And the final rap is a bit off-putting, though the segue into the Stevie Wonder song was fun.

Eddie Murray isn't Robin Williams but he's fun. At least they do use quite a few Asian actors' voices - Wing Na Wen ("E.R."), George Takei ("Star Trek"), B.D. Wong ("Oz") Pat Morita ("Karate Kid").

I think "Mulan" is the first Disney animation post-Katzenberg and there's a couple of digs at him and responses to the criticisms of how he did the girl stars. There was a lot of criticism of how Katzenberg personally insisted on Jasmine in "Aladdin"s impossible Barbie shape and "Mulan" takes that on with a line about how stupid it is to want such a narrow waist. Definitely a much more positive body image movie than under the Katzenberg regime.

There's no dead mother syndrome here, well for Mulan anyway. The Captain's mother isn't mentioned. Not only is there a mom, but even a grandmom. The father is still Freudian - he's wounded. All the Disney dads of daughters have some incapacity or other or tragic flaw.

Refreshingly, there's no wedding at the end with birds chirping as a canopy. The courting is assumed and the grandmom invites the captain to live there forever--but Mulan shuts her up.

(originally written 7/23/1998)

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7 out of 8 people found the following review useful:

Young lady poses as a man to save her father.

10/10
Author: from Tacoma WA
28 October 2004

What I wouldn't give to be able to see this movie for the first time again. This Disney Musical/Comedy/Drama was a delightful surprise for both me and my

daughter. The artful animation(watch the smoke) the terrific songs like "Be a Man", the laugh out loud antics of Eddie Murphy's Mushu, and a heroic, feisty, and really likable Mulan help make this movie truly special. Every time I take it down from the video shelf I'm surprised at how good it is. Some of the subject matter isn't appropriate for small children. The movie does remind us of the historical repression of women and the sorrow of war, which adds meaning to

the story. But overall the film is lots of fun. So "Be a Man" and watch this movie!

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

I really liked this Disney flick that seemed to slip between the cracks

9/10
Author: planktonrules from Bradenton, Florida
10 June 2007

In the 1990s, I felt that Disney made quite a few undistinguished cartoons following Aladdin. Unlike most of the world, I wasn't all that enamored with THE LION KING and subsequent offerings such as the wretched HUNCHBACK OF NOTRE DAME and POCAHONTAS were huge disappointments. Sure, POCAHONTAS is a lovely film to watch, but it's so wrong historically and it's so politically correct and hokey. And as for HUNCHBACK, the story was so dark and unappealing, I have no idea WHO the intended audience was. So it was in this context that I expected to hate or at least be underwhelmed by MULAN. Instead, it seemed fresh, well-made, humorous and fun--something distinctly missing from these other films. While the anachronistic aspect of having a lady warrior is problematic, for once Disney had another strong and likable female lead following Belle in BEAUTY AND THE BEAST. This was a definite home-run for Disney and well worth your time whether you are a child or an adult.

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5 out of 5 people found the following review useful:

Mulan

10/10
Author: chrisalexa from Romania
28 April 2007

A great story..I have always been impressed by China's history,by its culture..even though this film is fiction but even so..I like it!..A girl,Mulan,who wants to save his father from going to war and die in battle...a little dragon,Mushu,who tries to convince the ancestors of the Fa family that he can do something important without messing up things around him..a bug who thinks he's lucky and it seems that he really has lot of luck..and a brave horse and companion,Khan..they all decide to help Mulan in war..that's the plot of the story...In the end everything turns out OK and Shang and Mulan fall in love.. I recommend this movie to everyone..and I hope you'll like it as much as I did..or who knows?even more..

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6 out of 7 people found the following review useful:

One of the best...

10/10
Author: ginger_sling from United States
1 June 2006

Now, I'm sixteen and I still watch Disney movies more than any other type of movies out there, so some people consider me pretty childish. I don't know if that'll hurt my opinion on this film or not, but I'm giving my opinion anyways.

Mulan is probably one of the best Disney movies of all time. It, along with the Lion King and the Lion King II are probably the only movies I can watch more than once in a day. And yes, I have watched Mulan more than once in a day. And I've rewound (it's VHS. I still live in the '90s. Get over it) some parts over and over during those viewings. This movie is just so fantastic I can hardly put it into words. The music isn't tiresome or annoying like some Disney movies, the message is strong and a good one, and there are some dark elements in it that won't scare the children but will provide a little extra entertainment for adults.

I personally think that this movie should be in every household - whether there are children or teenagers or adults watching, it's fantastic.

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

Thank you Disney, for making mulan so great!

8/10
Author: BeautifulSinner
11 March 2008

Mulan is a well-known ancient folktale in Chinese history. It tells the story of mulan, who disguises herself as a man and goes to the war to protect the country in place of her aged father, and finally returns as a national hero/heroine. Although the story of mulan was evidently modified from its original, Disney did a fantastic job at retelling the story, and delivered it through the beautiful hand-drawn animation that has been lost to us for many years. As a Chinese myself, I know the mulan story like millions of Chinese people do. Some people (espcially Chinese people) may not like the Disney version of mulan simply because Disney didn't stay true to the original, but i feel somewhat differently about this. Not only did i have no problem with Disney's decision to make modifications to mulan's story, I actually kinda appreciate that they did. Cuz Disney's retelling of mulan turned out to be rather amazing, and even better than the original in my opinion. I mean, the original story is great, but it lacks fun and humor, which you can find in Disney's mulan. In the Disney version, Mulan is an outgoing, smart, and independent young woman who has difficulty fitting in the more traditional and reserved ancient Chinese society, where a woman's value is judged by marrying into a good family and being a good wife. So naturally this creates conflict and inner struggle for mulan, and thus brings out the musical number "reflection" that expresses mulan frustrations and desires. This song is so beautifully written and the lyrics have such meaningful morals and depth that it touches me every time i hear it, and I'm a guy! This song can certainly relate to a great many of young people, not only girls but also boys, cuz its central theme is all the same, that is to be your true self regardless the environment that you in. And now back to the movie, there's a lot to love about Disney's mulan: the story, the fun characters, the songs and music, the beautiful animation, etc. The story is smoothly-paced and very believable. You have no problem understanding why things happen the way they do and why mulan has taken certain actions. And I think Disney created the characters very successfully because they made them look like real Chinese people instead of the classic Disney characters that we used to see. And they made the backgrounds in the animation look like beautiful Chinese landscape paintings, which really amazed me! And the opening of the movie is probably one of the most brilliant among the Disney animation features. I was completely blown away when i first saw it in the theater. Although Disney didn't completely stay true to the original mulan, it stayed true to the spirit of the original story and the spirit of china in most part! And as Mulan being a Chinese story, i think Disney did its best to make it look like and feel like Chinese, and i really appreciate their effort. So thank you Disney, for making mulan so great!

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4 out of 4 people found the following review useful:

excellent movie

10/10
Author: rebelnerd1 from United States
5 July 2006

I first saw this movie as a little kid, but I still enjoy it now that i'm 15. I consider this to be one of the first GOOD movies to come out of that greedy capitalist hellhole called Disney in years. Some of the arguments against it have been ridiculous.

"It's racist!" Oh come on people, it's supposed to be and adventure/war movie, not a remake of Ghandi! The Huns are bad, the Chinese are good because that's how it was in the ancient legend. A movie like this is not supposed to put political correctness before entertainment.

"It's discriminating against men!" Lighten up, please. I'm a guy and I wasn't offended by this. It's from Mulan's perspective, and I think it's safe to say she was somewhat prejudiced. Besides, Shang was cool. There was nothing wrong with him.

"It's too violent!" I hate to break it to you, but war happens. Yes, there are fields of bodies. Yes, the bad guys kill people. Yes, it might scare little kids. But seriously, the evening news is way more violent. These things happen, and if your kids never know about it then they're going to be pretty freaked out when they first encounter the real world.

In short, Mulan is a great movie for anybody who doesn't want they're kids to live in a bubble. It's got action, romance, friendship, the whole works, and would have been great even if it wasn't animated.

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