Under the Sea: New and improved “The Little Mermaid”


Jordyn Robinson, Opinion Guest Writer


The new “Little Mermaid” movie, starring Halle Bailey as Ariel, is a visually stunning film that captures the magic and wonder of the original animated classic. The film follows Ariel, a young mermaid who dreams of exploring the world beyond the ocean, as she falls in love with Prince Eric, played by Jonah Hauer-King and sells her voice to the sea witch Ursula to go on a journey above the ocean.
Bailey, known for her work as one half of the musical duo Chloe x Halle, brings a fresh energy to the role of the curious mermaid who dreams of a life on land. Joining her in the cast are a talented group of actors, including Awkwafina as Scuttle, Javier Bardem as King Triton and Daveed Diggs as Sebastian.
One of the standout features of the film is its incredible visuals. The underwater world is brought to life with CGI, creating a vibrant and colorful world that is very immersive. The design of the mermaids and other sea creatures is also impressive, with the filmmakers taking care to make them look realistic. Despite the controversy over having mermaids of differing races, the diversity was well received and refreshing. It only makes sense that the mermaids have a variety of nationalities when they are supposed to represent the different parts of the world, and I don’t see why this was such a big controversy in the first place.
Bailey is a fantastic choice for Ariel, bringing an energetic performance to the role. Her rendition of “Part of Your World” being an iconic moment in the film. Hauer-King is also a great fit for Prince Eric, bringing charm and charisma to the role.
The supporting cast is also strong, with Melissa McCarthy delivering a memorable performance as Ursula the sea witch, with an absolutely terrifying and funny persona during her moments of glory.
One of the film’s strengths is its reimagining of some of the classic songs from the original movie. While some of them stay true to the original versions, others are given a more modern arrangement that adds a new dimension to the music. One of the new songs, “Wild Uncharted Waters” sung by Prince Eric, helps better relate him and Ariel. It presents their shared conflict of wanting to escape the world they live in, and explore a new, exciting life.
My only criticisms throughout the entire movie was Sebastian’s accent. In the original animated film, he has a Jamaican accent and while Diggs was exceptional in his portrayal of the role, I couldn’t help but notice how inaccurate it was. Eventually, I learned how to tune out how terrible it was and focus more on Sebastian’s comedic value.
Overall, “The Little Mermaid” is an enjoyable film that is sure to entertain both fans of the original and newcomers to the story. The impressive visuals, strong cast, and great music make it a must-see for anyone looking for a magical adventure on the big screen.