My wife is a massive Disney nerd and Mulan is one of her favorite movies. So, this is a movie I heard a great deal about before it was released. This was actually the movie we were supposed to go and see before the pandemic shut down all our local cinemas. Anyway, Mulan manages to be great despite being one of the more “different” live-action adaptations Disney has done.
How to Stream or Download Mulan (2020) Full Movie Online
You can stream it or you can download the film from iTunes – click on the Download button at the end of the review. If you like Disney’s live-action movies, check out also our reviews of Maleficent: Mistress of Evil and The Lion King.
The Movie Review
The movie is directed by Niki Caro and I think the direction the movie took is quite clever. I will admit when I (well my wife) heard that there was no Mushu and the movie was not going to have much in the way of humor it sounded strange. Mushu was a massive character and the comic relief of the animated movie.
That right there lets you know the tone they are going for with this version of Mulan is very different. The starting point of the movie is basically the same. We have Mulan a strong-willed woman who wants to step in and prevent her ailing father from going to war, from which he would surely never return.
Mulan pretends to be a man and enlists in the armed forces. This is done very, very well and the few bits of humor that are in the movie are from her trying to fit in. A few things have changed in the story, Mulan is no longer in a strange relationship with a commanding officer. Instead, she has a “thing” with a fellow soldier called Chen.
We have two main villains in the movie and they are both fantastic. Bori Khan is a fierce warrior and he is out to avenge the death of his father. Bori Khan along with a powerful shapeshifting witch Xianniang are out to steamroll anything that is in their path. I think they are probably the two best villains of any Disney live-action movie.
As well as the shapeshifting witch, Mulan has another more mystical/magical element in the movie in the form of chi. Chi is like a force, literally, it is kind of like The Force from Star Wars. Usually, it is only men who have this ability, but Mulan has it too and her trying to hide it to prevent bringing “shame” to her family adds more depth to her character.
When Mulan embraces this though, she becomes the powerful warrior that we all know and love. She has faster reflexes; she is strong and she is just flat-out awesome. The fighting scenes and the action, in general, is awesome stuff. It is some of the best action of any live-action Disney movie.
I will admit that after about five minutes, I was so invested in what was going on I never once questioned that it was so different from the animated movie. Disney has been accused of either changing things too much or not enough, Lion King I am looking at you. With Mulan, everything aligned and as a result, it is not just one of the best live-action Disney movies, but one of the best movies of 2020.
We also have to address the distribution of this movie. Disney decided that they were going to add this as a premium service to their Disney Plus service. By all accounts it was a pretty big hit. I for one have always loved going to the cinema to see the latest Disney movie so I hope that once the world gets back to normal, some movies will still show in the cinema.