Animals in the Wild

October 11, 2010 § 5 Comments

Although Call of the Wild isn’t a Disney Film, there are many similarities with Disney films such as the Lion King and Bambi. To begin, all of these stories involve an animal and follow this animal throughout their lives. They all begin when the animal is just a baby and end at the end of the animal’s journey to adulthood. They also are all constantly in nature. In both of the Disney movies, there are no people shown at all, but in all three they are predominantly in the wild. Even though there are humans in Call of the Wild, there aren’t in a civilized developed environment and instead are in the animal’s habit.

 

Even though I don’t believe that there is one moment in which an individual “comes of age”, in all three of these stories there is a distinct turning point. In Bambi, when he fends off another male deer to save the woman he loves, he finally matures and becomes the man that he needed to be. In Lion King, Simba sees his father in the sky and is told to return to Pride Rock, which is when he realizes his fate and responsibility to save his people. In Call of the Wild, Buck sees his best friend dead and it triggered him to become savage and a killer, which he continues for the rest of the book. Each of these moments change the course of their respective stories and change the main characters.

 

In all of these stories, the main characters must attack another animal to survive and show their worth. In Bambi he fights the other deer, in Lion King Simba must fight Scar to save his people and in Call of the Wild, Buck must fight off the attacking wolves to show that he can fight with them. Along with the moments mentioned earlier, these are all pivotal turning points in the story and help them all survive.

 

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And then we begin to love.

October 1, 2010 § Leave a comment

Families are the center of support in our society. Parents bring up their children who then bring up their own children. It is as Lion King states, “the circle of life” that keeps the world continuing. Eventually as children grow up and discover the crazy world of love, they create their own families. It is this transition from thinking kissing is gross to looking for sexual attraction and eventually repeating the role of their parents that marks the change from child to adult. This transition phase is know as:

THE TEENAGE YEARS.

The Lion King makes this point quite vividly through Nala and Simba. As children they are best friends. When told they are going to be married one day they respond with “EWWW!” As children, they find love to be a yucky thing. But then after being apart they find each other again as teenagers. Right away their relationship is different. They begin to “feel the love” for each other…

This scene marks the first time we begin to see Simba and Nala as mature lions. It shows they are taking the steps towards growing up. Beginning to discover love as a teen.

Love is an essential part of our society. It marks the change from child to teen to adult. It keeps our society maturing and continuing in “the circle of life.”

Children of Men

September 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

Disney films often chronicle a character’s journey, be it a beast or a man, from childhood to adulthood.  The Lion King is no exception, and it follows Simba’s journey from being a young prince as a child to becoming the eventual king as an adult. This is evident in his behavior and word choice, as they both parallel that of children and adults we.

However, not even animals can become adults without passing through adolescence first.  Teenage years may be recognized as the most formative and significant span of an individual’s life,  and The Lion King seems to epitomize this fact.  In the modern world, they are so important to us because they are spent in highschool and are subject to the fickle issues originating from their social lives.  However, it is these issues and conflicts that, once they arise, ultimately help all teenagers create their identity and finally recognize who they are.   I believe the film captures this perspective of teenagers perfectly.

Consider when Simba was debating with himself about whether or not he should go back to pride rock to reclaim his rightful throne and eventually, with the help of Rafiki, chooses to return.   This scene seems to parallel teenagers and their volatile, ever-changing mindsets as they wrestle with their decisions and their identity.  Ultimately, Simba matures into an adult and makes up his mind to return to pride rock, effectively formulating his identity as Mufasa’s son and heir to the throne.  Though Simba’s teenage mentality was evident for only a brief amount of time,  it shifted the entire course of his life.  sǝɹıɟ & sɹıɟ‘s post does mention Disney’s portrayal of “adolescents and responsibility,” and I agree with the presented view that the teenagers in Disney films seem to have a lack of responsibility.  Just considering Simba’s Hakuna Matata style of living alone exiled from society radiates the lack of responsibility or duty that he carries with him in his teenage years.

Some may believe that the teenagers presented in Disney films are rather weak characters desiring a life of bliss and fleeing from their duties.  However, I believe that they are only experiencing adolescence in its simplest form: coping with the vast, oncoming responsibilities that they must constantly carry around with them in any way possible.  Eventually, they all face the intimidating prospect of adulthood head on, whether they like it or not.

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