This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Nicolette Hogan’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
Of course I had an idea what this was about and knew a lot of the cast.
I thought the cast was fine and worked well off each other. Stand outs for me are Jacob Tremblay, but that could be just because I have a huge soft spot for him. But my favorite was Daveed Diggs. And I did really enjoy the chemistry between Jonah Hauer-King and Halle Bailey.
I'm sad to say that Bailey didn't 100% convince me that no one else could have played that role but her, but her singing was phenomenal. It could have been the writing but I found myself enjoying Bailey more when she was out on land exploring rather than the moments when she was the mermaid. But I'm super excited to watch her career grow. And I was actually pretty surprised at how perfect I found Jonah Hauer-King to be as Eric. Rewatching the animated version really made me think Ursula might be my favorite baddie, I think she is just so awesome so I think whoever played the role would have been very hard for me to like but I did think Melissa McCarthy looked phenomenal.
I loved the music besides one addition. Thought the score was lovely and happy to see they brought back Alan Menken for it. Very awesome hearing those familiar notes.
So I always complain with the MCU that it just looks so visually dull and could be so much more vibrant but I guess that's not a MCU thing but a Disney thing? 🤷🏽♀️ I really think they missed out on not making this more vibrant. Like I was legit disappointed in the Under the Sea segment. Like when I go to the Aquarium it seemed far more vibrant than the shots of the ocean here, why? I get trying to make this more realistic but come on, there are definitely parts of the real world that are very bright and colorful, it's not unbelievable to have colors pop. 😛 Like I really wish her hair was more red! I don't know just my taste I guess, I would have loved this more with popping colors. But I thought this was shot well. But this also really made me want to watch Avatar: The Way of Water again. 😂
I actually did enjoy the story. There were some nice changes. Like the mention of Ursula being related to Ariel and I loved how Ariel forgot the about the kiss being part of it so it's really just her focusing on exploring being on land and Eric is there.
One thing I will say that they had changed or worked on from the animated story was the relationship between her father. I don't know I really wish we got more time between their dynamic. I think the ending could have had me seriously bawling with him showing up like that and saying that stuff to her, but I just didn't feel anything because I didn't have a strong connection to how they were as a father and daughter. Like the scene where he is destroying her collection, that scene in the animated movie had me tearing up but here, it didn't even seem like a serious thing happening between them. Maybe if he had changed up everything he said, like how he mentioned the human killed her mom, but like the way it was delivered was like no emotion for me. I don't know just didn't feel as deep a connection for their relationship like I was hoping to. Something was missing their for me.
Also I felt like this had a very poor flow to it, like this had a way of feeling draggy. And personally I always loved Flounder and he really felt left out here which made me sad. Like I understand why he couldn't have been as involved in this version but damn I don't know, she could have build a fish tank in her room and had him there a bit? 😂 I don't know, I just missed him.
But I still had fun with this, a nice take on this story. Also there were some really great line that made me laugh. Not a need to own but I for sure could own down the line. Don't see myself getting the mood to rewatch a lot but I could see a handful more rewatches for sure. And I do think this is one of the better live action Disney remakes.