The Little Mermaid Live Action Movie Review (Spoiler Free)

This weekend, I was invited to preview the new live action Little Mermaid movie.  It was an absolute treat to go to the historic El Capitan theater in Hollywood to see the movie. My girls were thrilled by the experience!  That said, I have some thoughts about the movie, and why you might want to skip it in the theater with smaller kiddos.  By reading beyond this point you are agreeing to my updated privacy policy, found here, and my use of commissioned links.  The Little Mermaid is in theaters on Friday May 26, 2023!

Outside El Capitan in my most mermaid dress! On sale here...

Overall thoughts on the Little Mermaid

It is very cute.  We love Ariel in my house, and there were times when I looked at Halle Bailey onscreen and I just saw it.  The shape of her face, her gorgeous eyes - she looks like Ariel!  It was so striking, particularly in the iconic scene on the rock with the ocean spray in the!  The movie was a fun adventure through the classic movie, with a few song/scene additions for the big screen.  I also think that this movie did an excellent job exploring the relationship between King Triton and Ursula, not found in the original animated film.  My girls really liked it, but were bothered by the fact that Ariel didn't get many fancy dresses or a fancy hairdo.  LOL kids are awesome.

The Music in the Little Mermaid

The cast, and particularly Halle Bailey and Melissa McCarthy as Ursula, did an incredible job staying true to the songs that we all know.  I really couldn't believe that Melissa McCarthy sang "Poor Unfortunate Souls," I truly thought that someone else had done the singing for her but NOPE.  She was fantastic.  Halle took the original score and just tweaked it enough to make it interesting.  The music was a definite win for us...for the most part.  There are three new songs by Lin Manuel Miranda, and they were a miss for me. The exception is the one by Scuttle (Awkwafina), we all loved it (and her as that wacky Scuttle).  I can't wait to hear your opinions about the music, but we all felt that those songs added time to the movie without adding anything special to the soundtrack.

The Cast

The cast for the Little Mermaid is fantastic.  Awkwafina as Scuttle was an inspired choice (but I am biased because I think she is fantastic).  Melissa McCarthy as Ursula is just as captivating as I had hoped, with a dash of her comedic genius that makes it feel unique.  Another highlight is Javier Bardem as King Triton...he is iconic.  

Is the new Little Mermaid Movie good for kids?

The only issues with taking kiddos to this movie, are there are two jump-scare scenes (one is actually pretty scary).  If you have a really little, or kiddos that get scared easily, you might want to skip this in the theater.  My youngest (she has seen Marvel movies) actually jumped and needed to hold my sisters hand. The scenes with Ursula can be intense, and (I don't want to give a spoiler) the last scene between Triton and Ursula is graphic.  Older kids and those not scared easily will be fine with the live action version. 

The length may be daunting for little kids.  At 2 hours and 15 minutes, it is almost a full hour longer than the original.  In my opinion, most of the new songs and scenes did not add much to the story, an hour longer isn't necessarily an hour better.  Even with the expanded time, they left out a particularly awesome family favorite scene (which I won't share due to spoilers).  My girls were pretty bummed out and noticed immediately, but there were a couple of scenes added for Eric to be running around while singing new songs.  Truly, I can't wait to hear if you feel the same.

Here is a link to my slightly shimmery mermaid dress, ignore the reviews.  I have had it for a couple of years and LOVE it.  They used to have a girls version, but I think its sold out.  I found this cute one on sale that will work for girls...


Should you go to see the Little Mermaid?

Well YES!  It is super cute, and if you are a fan of the original, you will like it!

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