Fresh Prince Ali

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Pfhorrest
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Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Tue Jun 04, 2019 10:29 pm UTC

So this weekend I saw the new live-action adaptation of Aladdin.

Will Smith apparently cannot sing, which was kind of disappointing. But he got the spoken banter part of Genie down pretty good.

Jasmine has a more active role in the story, without really changing it much, which was nice to see, though her new song was kinda meh.

They didn't really patch up the gaping plot holes of the original much, though they did lampshade a few of them, and they made a few other subtle changes to e.g. the song lyrics that fixed some "wtf" moments from the original (like instead of "he's got slaves, he's got servants and flunkies", it's now "he's got thousands of servants and flunkies", because wtf kind of hero keeps slaves?).
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby rmsgrey » Mon Jun 10, 2019 3:40 pm UTC

Something that someone pointed out elsewhere, is that either the Genie screwed up Aladdin's first wish and didn't actually make him a prince, or he really was a prince after all (just like Jafar became Sultan).

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Chen » Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:04 pm UTC

rmsgrey wrote:Something that someone pointed out elsewhere, is that either the Genie screwed up Aladdin's first wish and didn't actually make him a prince, or he really was a prince after all (just like Jafar became Sultan).


That was a plot hole in the animated one too.

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Mon Jun 10, 2019 5:17 pm UTC

Yeah, that's one of the plot holes from the original that I expected they would have patched up (a la the Beauty and the Beast remake), but instead they just lampshaded.

In the original, Aladdin wishes to become a prince, and Genie nominally grants that wish and and they have the big parade and all, but then for the rest of the movie it's treated (by Aladdin and Genie themselves, and then everyone else when they find out) as though Aladdin isn't really a prince, he's just pretending to be one, in which case his first wish wasn't really granted at all. Some people have suggested that the whole scheme to help him woo Jasmine and end up married to her is the fulfillment of the first wish, because at that point he would be a prince, of Agrabah. Others have suggested that if Genie really did make Aladdin a prince, then either he altered the minds of everyone in some country into believing Aladdin to be their legitimate prince (which would then constitute a change of the social fact of his title, that consisting in nothing more than what people think it to be), or else created a whole new country out of nowhere that considered Aladdin to be their prince, or else altered history somehow such that Aladdin had always been living the right circumstances for him to have wound up prince of somewhere. But if that were the case, then Aladdin wouldn't be pretending, he wouldn't be lying, that whole "tell her the TRUTH" drama plot would be nonsense, because he would really be a prince.

In this remake, they lampshade the issue by having Aladdin ask Genie where he is prince of now, and Genie mumbles "uh buh bwuh" and that's where the fictional place of Ababwa comes from. But it's clear from the rest of the movie that Ababwa isn't a real place, nobody's ever heard of it, it wasn't on any maps (until Genie altered one to avoid the question), so Aladdin can't really be the prince of that nonexistence place, which just means that Genie hasn't granted Aladdin's first wish yet. I was kind of expecting them to then circle around to the first fan theory above, that getting Aladdin and Jasmine hitched was the granting of the first wish, but they never spelled that out, so it still just leaves this gaping plot hole where it seems like Genie got away with not actually really granting Aladdin's first wish.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby rmsgrey » Tue Jun 11, 2019 4:00 pm UTC

To be fair, of Aladdin's four granted wishes, only one of them is entirely legitimately made and granted. And two of Jafar's wishes, it can be argued, weren't legitimately granted either - he was legitimately made a powerful sorcerer, but it's debatable whether he was legitimately made Sultan, and he had a point about whether a genie has more or less power than the genie's master...

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Sizik » Tue Jun 11, 2019 6:37 pm UTC

It seems like Genie can manipulate things physically, but he can't (or doesn't) really mess with people's minds very much. So, his wish granting regarding positions of power just puts the idea in people's mind that "this guy is a prince" or "that guy is the sultan", but that doesn't force people to continually believe that is the case.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby maybeagnostic » Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:47 pm UTC

I don't understand this claim that the genie didn't "really" turn Aladdin into a prince- he obviously interpreted the wish and granted him what he actually wanted. Being a prince isn't something inherent and there isn't a strict definition but to Aladdin being a prince meant lots of servants, ostentatious displays of wealth and the fawning regard of the regular people which is exactly what the genie gave him. Being the oldest son of a monarchy's ruler with corresponding education and responsibilities obviously isn't what he had in mind when he made his wish.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:56 pm UTC

Then why does Aladdin, for the rest of the movie, fret about Jasmine and everyone finding out he's not "really" a prince? That shows us that Aladdin doesn't think he is a prince, just that he's pulled off pretending to be one, for now. If Aladdin isn't a prince by his own definitions, then what he wanted in wishing to become a prince hasn't been granted yet.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby EdgarJPublius » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:51 pm UTC

Impostor syndrome is a thing. People who really are things, fret about other people finding out they aren't really those things (the things they really are, remember) all the time.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Jun 13, 2019 1:39 pm UTC

EdgarJPublius wrote:Impostor syndrome is a thing. People who really are things, fret about other people finding out they aren't really those things (the things they really are, remember) all the time.

But it's not just Aladdin who treats it as though he's not really a prince - it's also Jafar, the Genie, the Sultan and Princess Jasmine - in other words, everyone who discovers that Prince Ali is actually the street rat Aladdin under the effects of a wish acts and talks as though he's not really a prince. Okay, the Genie is open to interpretation - he more fails to contradict Aladdin when he says he's not a real prince than outright says he isn't one (and his lines about only changing the surface could be taken either way) - but how hard would it be for the Genie to argue that Aladdin really is a prince? Particularly compared to needing to change the law (and tradition) in order to allow Jasmine to marry him.

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Chen » Thu Jun 13, 2019 2:30 pm UTC

At the end, the Genie even tells Aladdin to use his last wish to make him a prince AGAIN. It makes zero sense.

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Zohar » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:17 pm UTC

There are still people today that Barack Obama is not a citizen and is not a legitimate president. There are people today calling either Nicolas Maduro or Juan Guido the legitimate president of Venezuela. It is not surprising at all to me that people would argue the legitimacy of Aladdin's claims.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Chen » Thu Jun 13, 2019 6:29 pm UTC

Zohar wrote:There are still people today that Barack Obama is not a citizen and is not a legitimate president. There are people today calling either Nicolas Maduro or Juan Guido the legitimate president of Venezuela. It is not surprising at all to me that people would argue the legitimacy of Aladdin's claims.


The Genie who granted the wish shouldn't be though...unless he's actually admitting he didn't actually fulfill the wish or that he just pretended to make him a prince. As I said its even more nonsensical since he offers to make him a prince AGAIN at the end of the movie. I mean what somehow reverted the first wish in that case?

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby rmsgrey » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:03 pm UTC

Chen wrote:
Zohar wrote:There are still people today that Barack Obama is not a citizen and is not a legitimate president. There are people today calling either Nicolas Maduro or Juan Guido the legitimate president of Venezuela. It is not surprising at all to me that people would argue the legitimacy of Aladdin's claims.


The Genie who granted the wish shouldn't be though...unless he's actually admitting he didn't actually fulfill the wish or that he just pretended to make him a prince. As I said its even more nonsensical since he offers to make him a prince AGAIN at the end of the movie. I mean what somehow reverted the first wish in that case?


Apparently some wishes get reversed when the genie changes hands? Just not the one that saved Aladdin from drowning, nor the one that got them all out of the Cave of Wonders (if that counts)...

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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:28 pm UTC

The impression I got (of the original animated movie) was that all Genie did when he "made Aladdin a prince" was dress him up in a fancy costume etc. Jafar stripped away the costume with his magic, and so undid that wish. When Genie offer to "make him a prince again", it's basically an offer to restore the costume. See also how when Jafar wished to become Sultan, the Sultan's robes got stripped off of him and tailored to fit Jafar instead. Title is costume, apparently, in their world. Though none of that explains everybody talking like Aladdin isn't really a prince when he's still wearing the costume.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Zohar » Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:56 pm UTC

I have not seen the movie so I can't comment on it. My point was, even though Obama, for instance, was a legitimately elected president, there was no shortage of people who didn't believe it and didn't consider it true. So he could have been a prince, maybe even somehow turned into the son of a king or something, and people (including himself) could easily have not believed it.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:49 pm UTC

You haven't seen the original, or just the remake? We seem to be talking more about the original here, though the remake pretty much follow suit exactly.

In any case, Chen's point was that the Genie himself, who supposedly made Aladdin a prince, also acts like Aladdin isn't a prince. In your analogy, that would be like if someone were in charge of appointing presidents, and that person appointed Obama as president, but then didn't believe that he was really the president. Or, maybe slightly more realistically (and possibly a better analogy too), if Obama's campaign manager, after successfully winning him the presidency, didn't believe that he was president.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby EdgarJPublius » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:56 pm UTC

Isn't it in Jafar's interest to discredit Aladdin since he represents an obstacle to Jafar's goals of marrying the princess and seizing the throne?

I haven't seen the new movie, and it's been many years since I saw the animated one, but didn't Jafar also have a lot of influence over the Sultan? Anyway, why wouldn't the Sultan trust Jafar, his trusted adviser?

As for Jasmine, she could be reacting to the relative confidence between the two sides. If the Sultan doesn't believe Aladdin is a prince, and even Aladdin doesn't think he's a prince, then why should she?
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Thu Jun 13, 2019 10:54 pm UTC

Here is the scene from the original animated movie where Jafar reveals Ali is Aladdin:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UBXU8-P5EY4

It's after Jafar has already turned against the Sultan (wishing himself to be Sultan, and then wishing himself to be the most powerful sorcerer in the world too), so whatever confidence the Sultan or Jasmine might have had in Jafar before is pretty irrelevant at this point. Jafar also isn't scheming to marry Jasmine at that point, because he's already Sultan by then.

He basically just magically changed Aladdin back into his street rat clothes, and then suddenly everyone can recognize him, because apparently this world works like Superman and a few accessories make a face unrecognizable. The live-action remake at least has Genie say briefly that Genie magic is keeping people from recognizing his face.

In any case, if Aladdin really was turned into a prince by the Genie, whatever that means, then recognizing that the prince is the same person previously believed to be a street rat wouldn't actually make him not a prince any more, so Genie would still have no need to offer to make Aladdin a prince "again". Unless, I guess, the effect of granting that wish was some kind of mind-control, like the remake's thing about face recognition: Genie made everyone believe Aladdin was a prince, and that constituted a change of the social fact of his princeliness, making him actually a prince; and then Jafar broke that spell, but Genie can put it back into place again. Except, in the remake at least (more than I remember in the original), there's plenty of suspicious about where exactly Ali is supposed to be prince of, with multiple claims that Ababwa is not on any map, so it really doesn't seem like everyone was magically made to believe in his princeliness, because they're all skeptical about it.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Zohar » Fri Jun 14, 2019 3:00 pm UTC

Pfhorrest wrote:You haven't seen the original, or just the remake? We seem to be talking more about the original here, though the remake pretty much follow suit exactly.

I have seen the original, not the remake, I didn't remember the Genie offering to make him a prince again.

I suppose there's no guarantee the Genie's wishes will work forever... Like he could make Aladdin into a prince, but then he's discredited and loses his wealth, essentially becoming a street rat again.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Pfhorrest » Wed Jul 31, 2019 10:48 pm UTC

Something I forgot to mention in my first post, but something just reminded me: am I the only one who thinks the new Jasmine looks weirdly like Buffy the Vampire Slayer? Like obviously they're different races and when I actually try to compare the pictures side by side I can't find a pair that I think looks convincing but nevertheless I keep seeing Jasmine and suddenly feeling recognition of her as Buffy.
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Re: Fresh Prince Ali

Postby Zohar » Thu Aug 01, 2019 2:41 pm UTC

Hmm, if I really try I could say the eyebrows or overall face structure looks a bit similar, but I'm also pretty bad at these things...
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