The Lion King | Cadillac Palace Theatre | Theater & Performance | Chicago Reader

The Lion King Closing (Theater and Galleries) The Short List (Theater)

When: Wednesdays-Sundays. Continues through Jan. 17 2016

In what should be the first act’s highest emotional peak, lion cub and heir apparent Simba gets caught amid stampeding wildebeests. When Simba's father, King Mufasa, leaps to the rescue, the king ends up in the clutches of his unctuous, regicidal brother, Scar. Like most scenes in Julie Taymor’s 1997 Broadway blockbuster, this one’s dazzlingly staged, ingeniously designed, and emotionally empty (apparently no one even bothered to tell the kid playing Simba to act, you know, scared). Unlike Disney’s efficient 75-minute animated feature, Taymor’s semistatic two-and-a-half-hour pageant pays scant attention to the fundamentals of storytelling. All the inventive puppetry, glorious choral singing, and eye-popping scenery serves mostly to glorify itself. And does Patrick R. Brown really have to make villainous Scar so queeny? —Justin Hayford

Price: $32-$167

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