Disney remakes continue to flounder as ‘Dumbo’ fails to take flight


Walt Disney Studios

Dumbo the elephant looks out at the circus crowd as they laugh at him. Dumbo is back on the big screen in Disney’s live-action remake, which was modernized with top-quality technology but lacking anything fresh.

Jordan Owens, Staff Writer

“Dumbo” is the newest Disney live-action film to arrive in theaters, and there is no doubt that this low-flying film probably should have stayed animated.

There wasn’t anything in the movie that would make me say it was great.

— Staff Writer Jordan Owens

The decades-old story tells the journey of a baby elephant with oversized ears. When Dumbo’s mother is taken away after being deemed a mad elephant for trying to protect her child, Dumbo is forced to face the cruel circus world alone. That is, until he befriends Milly and Joe Farrier, two siblings who help Dumbo escape the circus and reunite with his mother.

This remake to the 1941 animated film came to theaters on March 29. Despite scoring less than 50% on Rotten Tomatoes, “Dumbo” made $116 million globally in the first weekend.

Based on the profits made, it seems much of the world enjoyed this reimagining, but I found it decent at best. There wasn’t anything in the movie that would make me say it was great. Even though it did have a good and understandable plot for any age group, there still seemed to be something that “Dumbo” lacked.

Disney has to realize that not all of its movies are meant to be live-action.

— Staff Writer Jordan Owens

Disney has to realize that not all of its movies are meant to be live-action. Movies like “Dumbo” are great as animations, but once they become real, they can turn into something creepy or just fail overall in lacking anything special.

It does make sense that Disney would want to make these live-action movies to keep the younger audiences interested, but they could do it so much better. For one, Disney has to make sure they keep all of their audience excited for the newest movie, which means not releasing a movie every single year. At a certain point, it gets boring and expected, and does not really make viewers want to go out and watch the newest movie.

With all the new live-action movies Disney has produced since “Maleficent” in 2014, I think Disney is no longer bringing classics to life for some of the older generations, but only bringing them to life to show that Disney can keep up with the realistic demands that cinema now presents. This in turn causes some audiences to dislike what was once their favorite movies.

Even with this remake not being a really good movie, the classic “Dumbo” is still one of Disney’s films that tugs on your heartstrings. This 2019 version is another successful Disney live-action film that will help its other animated films become live-action as well, for better or worse.