Your Guide to Disney Sequels: Part Two

We’ve done it again. The rankings are in on five more Disney sequels! I have spent hours of painstaking research (a.k.a. sitting on my bed watching movies) to give you brutally honest critiques. In case you missed the first roundup of the best and worst sequels, click here.

1. The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride

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Rating: 10/10

The Lion King is definitely up there with the most popular Disney movies of all time. Given its success, it would be impossible for a sequel to meet those high standards. However, The Lion King II: Simba’s Pride comes pretty close. Like the original movie, which is based off of “Hamlet”, this movie follows the story of the famous Shakespearean play, “Romeo and Juliet”.

The two main characters, Kiara and Kovu, befriend each other as children, but are separated by the feud between their two lion prides. They realize that to be together, they’ll need to resolve the rivalry between their families—a task that seems impossible. What’s great about a storyline like this is that while it ties into the first movie, it can also stand on its own! It may never be as good as The Lion King, but it’s certainly a close second.

 

2. Brother Bear II

 

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Rating: 8/10

Brother Bear, which was released in 2003, is a pretty underrated Disney movie that many people have forgotten about. It’s about a young Inuit man named Kenai who makes a journey of self-discovery after being turned into a bear. It emphasizes man’s relationship with nature, as well as the importance of family. Overall, it’s a really good movie!

Brother Bear II focuses a lot on what was absent from the first movie: romance. For all of those people who enjoy a good romance story, Brother Bear II will satisfy any questions you have about Kenai’s romantic life. What’s great about the sequel is that it doesn’t forget what the first movie is all about, as it includes the important concepts of family and nature in addition to all the romance.

 

3. The Lion King 1 ½

 

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Rating: 6/10

The Lion King 1 ½, which came out 6 years after The Lion King II, tells the story of the original movie from the perspective of the movie’s most lovable characters, Timon and Pumbaa. The movie is what is called a frame story, as Timon and Pumbaa go to a movie theater and watch the story of The Lion King on screen from their point of view. The movie is much less serious than its counterparts, as the two characters frequently stop the film to add in some entertaining commentary. The only downside to this is that it makes the movie seem a little childish to an older audience. At one point, Pumbaa even changes the channel! It definitely gives off a different mood than the other two movies of the franchise, but it’s still a fun watch.

 

4. Tarzan II

 

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Rating: 5/10

Tarzan II was released in 2005, three years after the disaster that was Tarzan & Jane, which I talked about in part one of the Disney sequels review. Luckily, the animators realized their mistakes and tried to make up for it in this prequel. The animation quality returned to the original standards set when making Tarzan, which was already a major step up from Tarzan & Jane.

The story centers around a young Tarzan, who feels like he doesn’t belong with his gorilla family and goes on a search for acceptance. It’s not a bad story, but the main issue with the movie is that it is definitely meant for a younger audience. It lacks the depth of the original storyline and is pretty cheesy. Overall, I’d recommend it, but only to someone ten or younger.

 

5. Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch

 

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Rating: 4/10

Like Tarzan II, Lilo & Stitch 2 is a sequel that lacks the complexity of its counterpart. The movie centers on Lilo’s hula competition, which she wants to win because her mother had once won that same competition. Meanwhile, Stitch worries that he will turn bad again, and starts to have strange glitches, hence the title of the movie.

While the same themes of family and choosing to be good found in the first movie are still present in the sequel, the overall storyline is just not as engaging. In addition, Daveigh Chase’s very recognizable voicing of Lilo is missing from this sequel, and it’s quite noticeable. Unfortunately, this is another movie that will probably only be enjoyed by a younger audience.

 

As you’ve read, it’s hard for a sequel to ever measure up to an original Disney movie. Some have found success, while others have severely lacked in any depth or quality. Hopefully this article has helped to distinguish between worth watching and what’s not! All that’s left to do is have faith that the sequels coming out in the next few years (including Finding Dory and The Incredibles 2) will be able to hold up to everyone’s high standards and leave everyone satisfied.

What do you think of my analysis? Do you agree or disagree? Comment below!