The 2020 live-action remake of Mulan will be made available for general release on Disney+ from today (4 December).
It was first available on the streaming platform in September as part of Disney + ‘Premier Access’ content after it skipped a cinematic release, but now those with a standard subscription can watch the film.
But what’s Mulan about, how does it compare to the 1998 animation, and do you sign up for a Disney+ subscription?
What is Mulan about?
Mulan is the classic Disney tale of a strong-willed girl who attempts to save her ill father from being conscripted into war in China by disguising herself as his son and taking his place.
The live action remake of the 1998 animation brings the story of fearlessness, wit and romance to life - with the starring role played by Yifei Liu.
When is Mulan available for standard subscriptions?
Disney released the movie earlier this year as part of its Disney + Premier Access content and users therefore had to pay £19.99 to watch it.
However, from 4 December it is available to subscribers as part of the standard package.
If you’re not already a Disney + subscriber, you can sign up for £5.99 per month.
Sadly, there's no Disney Plus free trial at present.
However the cost of a standard subscription is on average £15 cheaper than an adult and child ticket at the cinema, and all other Disney movies are available for free too.
Is the movie different from the 1998 animated version?
Aside from the obvious differences from animation to real-life characters, the movie largely follows the same story as the cartoon version.
Both are based on the old folk tale dating back to the Northern Wei Dynasty (386–534) called ‘Ballad of Mulan’, in which Mulan sets out on her quest to join the Chinese Army in the Battle against the Huns, while hiding her identity as she attempts to pass herself offf as a man.
The story demonstrates how a patriarchal ruler refuses women the right to fight and Mulan’s struggle to protect her father and family while battling to hide her evolving love for her comrade.
However, there is no Li Shang in 2020. Instead of falling for her commander as she did in the 1998 version, the 2020 version tells how she falls head over heels for Chen Honghui - a fellow soldier.
In 2020, the actors are less shy of conflict and the feature of martial arts is prominent throughout, taking the rating from a ‘U’ in 1998 to ‘PG’, in reference to scenes of dramatised violence.
Possibly the best evolution of the past 22 years is that Mulan no longer struggles as a warrior, as she did at the start of the 1998 version.
Instead, she is fearless and evenhas too much ‘chi’ for a girl - a word used to describe warrior energy.