Writer: Rite Hsiao, Chris Sanders, Philip LaZbnik, Raymond Singer, Eugenia Bostwick-Singer (Screenplay) Robert D San Souci (Story)
Starring: (Voice Talents) Ming-Na Wen, Eddie Murphy, Pat Morita, Miguel Ferrer, BD Wong
Plot: To save her father from death in the army, a young maiden secretly goes in his place and becomes one of China’s greatest heroines in the process.
Tagline – This time, the princess saves the prince.
Runtime: 1 Hour 28 Minutes
There may be spoilers the rest of the review
Verdict: Fun, But Dark Adventure Film
Story: Mulan starts in ancient China with Shan-Yu and the invading Hun attack. Mulan is a young woman that hasn’t been following the traditions on the family, she isn’t ready to just be a bride, when her father is summoned to serve in the impending war, she wants to help, running away to fight in her father’s place. Spirit dragon Mushu is sent to be her guardian on this adventure, to return her safely, but Mulan has other plans.
Mulan sets out to join the army in her father’s place under the leadership on Captain Shang, in a hope to rebuild her family honour that she has disrespected.
Thoughts on Mulan
Characters – Mulan is a young woman, she has been raised to follow tradition, something she wants to break and taking her father’s place in the army shows the independence she wants to achieve. This is a strong anti-princess role which is something Disney broke the mould with. Mushu is the guardian dragon that needs to rescue and watch over Mulan, though he mostly just causes trouble for her. This character is here for all the laughs in the movie. Shan-Yu is the leader of the Hun that are attacking China, his armies are ruthless when it comes to battle, with him being a great and powerful warrior.
Story – The story follows one young woman that wants to make a difference in a world where only men can become the leaders of the armies, she breaks tradition to make a difference and become great. This brings us the idea of breaking away from the tradition just because the people tell you follow that path. For Disney this movie broke their own traditions of have a princess in distress needing rescuing and now feels like the trailblazer it wanted to be.
Adventure/Family – The adventure side of the film does give us real peril because it takes Mulan into a war battle which has taken lives of many, this could be slightly too dark for the whole family to enjoy too.
Settings – The film brings us to Ancient China which brings us a new animated setting for an American movie, we have the mountain range which looks beautiful and the towers that show the empires built.
Animation – The animation is the usual top notch from Disney never looking out of place for their level of excellency
Final Thoughts – This is a wonderful animated movie that does show us the courage one woman showed to save her country against tradition.
Overall: Disney’s last good movie of the late 90s.