Retro Review: Disney’s Aladdin


For the sake of the Blog, here are some rules that I’ve given myself for any and all Retro Film reviews. Here is the Retro Review criteria:

  1. The movies must have be at least four years old (as of right now that would include any movie that came out in 2008.
  2. I must have watched the movie that very same year, either in the theater or on DVD. I can’t review the movie if I just watched it recently.
  3. I am going to review the movie as I see it with my current mind set and not what I was thinking back when I first viewed it. I will be discussing if it still stands up or if it has lost its luster.

Retro Review

Disney’s Aladdin (1992)

Sunday night, Melissa and I got home from having dinner at my parents and she was flipping through the channels and landed on ABC Family who had “Aladdin” on. Somehow Melissa and I were compelled to watch it from beginning to end through all the commercials and flipping the channels, even the weather, which was battling against the cable giving us, at times, a flickering screen couldn’t stop us from watching this Disney classic.

I saw “Aladdin” for the first time when it came out back in 1992, when I was 10 years old, and I loved it. It would be another two years before I would see my ultimate favorite Disney film, “The Lion King”, but I’ll save that discussion for another Retro Review. “Aladdin” was awesome; who didn’t think it was a great movie?

But seeing that this is a Retro Review and I’m giving you my review of if I think the film still holds up today, I’m going to skip past all the reminiscing and get to the meat of the review: Does Disney’s “Aladdin” still hold up today?

The answer is: Yes! Most definitely! I mean some jokes by Robin Williams’ Genie were a little outdated. But I got them, if not more now than even when I first saw it.

What amazed me the most about the movie was the fact that within an hour and a half you not only saw two characters fall in love, you grew to hate the bad guy and you felt the risk of allowing a villain like Jafar to have control of the lamp and you felt like danger was imminent at every turn. Something I have felt is completely missing from movies of today.

I’ve said it many times, but there is such a big difference in the way movies are made today. Very rarely do you get the feeling that in an “end of the world” movie that anyone is in real danger. Somehow this Disney movie made me feel like everyone was in grave danger, even though I’ve seen this movie dozens of times over my lifetime. That shows a great movie, enough said about that.

The animation is, like most Disney movies from their Renaissance era, is far and above amazing. I only wish that they still made animated films like this. I know, I know, Disney made “The Princess and The Frog” along this summer’s “Winnie the Pooh” but something just doesn’t sit right with them at the moment. I wish there was the grandeur and appeal of the early 90’s to help them out. Times like this I miss the 90’s…movies were actually really good!

Speaking of the 90’s, and we can bring the 80’s into this as well, aside from some jokes that might go over kid’s head now (and even then, I mean, I didn’t get everything that The Genie said…) there is nothing in this movie that makes it a 90’s movie. Not like the “Shrek” series or most of the other Dreamworks animated movies that get most of their jokes from current pop culture references.

Like in the first “Shrek” movie where Princess Fiona takes out a band of kidnappers and she jumps up like Trinity does in “The Matrix” and the camera spins around her. If a kid sees that now they won’t know what they would be referencing. That is, unless their parents like to let their kids watch awesome Sci-Fi/Action movies that are Rated-R…but I digress.

Also, Jafar was a great movie villain. They don’t make them like him anymore. He looked evil, he was evil, with bad intentions and a great sidekick too!

“Aladdin,” in my opinion, is a great film to watch, with or without kids. And it really does stand up to time as a true classic, one that will be loved for decades to come. I wouldn’t mind watching it again, even now! It just brings you to a different place, a magical place.



Just one final note: Melissa was really surprised that I knew the lyrics to most of the songs in this movie; I even serenaded her by singing all of Aladdin’s lines from “A Whole New World”. And, no, I won’t sing for you, even if you ask me nicely…



Complete side note to the final note above, while I might speak very highly of 90’s movies, I hate early 90’s movie trailers. They gave so much away from the actual movie…

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