10 Movies like ‘The Lion King’ (2019) | TheReviewGeek Recommends

The King Has Returned

Have you watched The Lion King so many times you can recite the entire movie by heart? As one of Disney’s most beloved animated films, the 1994 version of The Lion King set the bar high for stunning visuals, memorable music, and a timeless story of good vs. evil.

The 2019 version used a slightly different canvas for the vibrant colors of the jungle and it brought a refreshing feel to our favourite lion story. The remake grossed a hefty amount at the box office and while it’s not as good as the original, it certainly has its fans.

If you’re looking to relive the magic of Simba’s journey (without watching the animated classic again), check out these 10 epic movies like The Lion King we have rounded up for you. As usual, you can drop your thoughts in the comments below:

Best Movies like The Lion King
The Jungle Book (2016)

2016’s The Jungle Book is a live-action remake of the animated classic that stays true to the heart of the original. It follows the story of an orphaned boy named Mowgli who is raised by animals in the jungle.

Instead of the fun, light-hearted musical numbers of the cartoon, this version aims for a more realistic take on life in the Indian jungle. The visuals are stunning, with jaw-dropping CGI that brings the lush scenery and menagerie of creatures to life. You’ll see familiar characters like Bagheera the panther and Baloo the bear, as well as threatening villains like the tiger Shere Khan.

Best Movies like The Lion King
Madagascar (2005)

If you enjoyed The Lion King, you’ll love Madagascar. This fun family film from 2005 follows a group of Central Park Zoo animals on an adventure in the wilds of Madagascar.

When Marty the zebra escapes the zoo on his 10th birthday, his friends Alex the lion, Gloria the hippo, and Melman the giraffe follow in hot pursuit. After a failed attempt to return Marty, the animals end up shipwrecked on the island of Madagascar. Several sequels followed. 

Best Movies like The Lion King
Kung Fu Panda (2008)

Another memorable animated film is DreamWorks’ Kung Fu Panda. This 2008 film features the vocal talents of Jack Black, Dustin Hoffman, and Angelina Jolie.

Like The Lion King, Kung Fu Panda teaches important life lessons about believing in yourself and pursuing your destiny. The story follows Po, an enthusiastic fan of kung fu who is unexpectedly chosen as the Dragon Warrior. Although Po is overweight and lacks skills, he doesn’t let that stop him from achieving his dream.

Best Movies like The Lion King
Balto (1995)

The 1995 animated film Balto tells the true story of a wolf-dog who helps save children from a diphtheria epidemic in the small town of Nome, Alaska. Balto is the underdog who doesn’t quite fit in with the sled dogs or the wolves, but his courage and kindness make him a hero.

When a deadly diphtheria outbreak occurs, the only way to get life-saving medicine is by sled. But a massive snowstorm has hit, and the regular sled dogs aren’t able to make the dangerous journey. Balto, who is part wolf, is initially shunned by the town. But when he proves himself as a capable sled dog, he joins the team to help transport the medicine.

Best Movies like The Lion King
Brother Bear (2003)

The 2003 Disney animated film Brother Bear is another heart-warming movie like The Lion King. Set in prehistoric North America, the story follows Kenai, a boy who is turned into a bear after killing one. To become human again, he must travel to a mountain where the Northern Lights touch the Earth.

Along the way, Kenai befriends a talkative cub named Koda. Though they get off to a rough start, the two bears eventually bond over their love of fish and adventures. Similar to Simba and Timon in The Lion King, Koda acts as comedic relief with his silly antics and jokes.

Best Movies like The Lion King

Mulan (1998)

One of Disney’s most memorable films, Mulan tells the story of a brave young woman who steps up to take her father’s place in the Imperial Army. To save him from having to serve in the army despite his age and illness, Mulan disguises herself as a man so she can enlist instead.

With the training camp and battles, Mulan proves herself as more than a match for any soldier. She uses her wit and intelligence to outsmart the enemy, even though as a woman she was told she could never be as good as a man.

Best Movies like The Lion King
The Land Before Time (1988)

The Land Before Time is a heartwarming animated film from 1988 that will appeal to both kids and adults alike. Set in a prehistoric landscape, the story follows a group of young dinosaur friends who get separated from their families.

Littlefoot, a longneck Apatosaurus, teams up with four other little dinosaurs—Cera the Triceratops, Ducky the Saurolophus, Petrie the Pteranodon, and Spike the Stegosaurus. Though they are all very different, they band together to search for their families, learning the importance of teamwork and friendship along the way.

Best Movies like The Lion King
Finding Nemo (2003)

Finding Nemo is a heartwarming tale of a father clownfish searching for his missing son. Set in Australia’s Great Barrier Reef, the story follows Marlin, an overprotective clownfish who loses his son Nemo on his first day of school. Despite his small size and inability to swim well due to a “lucky” fin, Nemo is eager to explore the ocean.

After being captured by divers, Nemo finds himself in an aquarium in a dentist’s office. He meets other sea creatures also longing to be free, including Dory, a kindhearted but forgetful blue tang fish, who helps Marlin search the vast ocean to find his son.

Best Movies like The Lion King
Bambi (1942)

Bambi is another classic Disney film that tugs at the heartstrings. Released in 1942, this coming-of-age story follows a young deer named Bambi as he learns valuable life lessons from his parents and friends in the forest.

Bambi’s tale begins with his birth and first steps in the meadow. Under the guidance of his mother, Bambi starts to navigate the forest and make new friends like the rabbit Thumper and the skunk Flower. However, Bambi’s world is turned upside down when his mother is shot by hunters. He is then left in the care of his father, the Great Prince of the Forest.

Hamlet (1997)

If you enjoyed the epic story and Shakespearean themes of The Lion King, you’ll love the 1997 film adaptation of Hamlet. This movie brings the famous tragedy into the modern age.

Set to a soundtrack of pop/rock music, Hamlet follows the story of a Danish prince whose uncle murders his father, the King, and marries his mother Gertrude. Hamlet is visited by his father’s ghost who urges him to avenge the murder, and he aims to do just that.

There we have it, our list of 10 best movies like The Lion King. What do you think about our picks? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below:


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