Title:  Mulan

Release Date:  1998

Nationality and Language: USA, English

Running time: 90 min

MPAA Rating: G

Distributor and Production Company: Buena Vista, Walt Disney

Director; Writer: Barry Cook

Producer: Pam Coats


Technical: animation

Relevance to DOASKDOTELL site:  Women in the military

Movie Review: Mulan (1998); Touchstone/Disney; 90 Minutes; G; 9.0/10

Produced: Pam Coats. Directed: Barry Cook Music: Jerry Goldsmith. Story supervision/Screenwriting: Christopher Sanders

            This animated feature is a very spirited treatment of the subject of military honor and family loyalty, set historically in ancient China. Mulan agrees to go serve in the Army so that her older father doesn't have to be conscripted. Furthermore, she will pretend to be a man, and maintain a masquerade. Ultimately, she proves she can be as dependable a warrior as any man, and can actually bond her unit together even after the deception is discovered.

            Although this film was produced to appeal to families and children, it has a rather obvious adult political subtext, namely, the whole debate over military readiness and the appropriate roles for women in the military and even, indirectly, for gays. The hypothetical presumption that women and (more recently) gays will undermine unit cohesion (particularly behind the US and UK "Don't Ask, Don't Tell" policies regarding gays) may, after all, become facetious. Diversity in the ranks harms a unit only if the leadership lets it, or wants it to.



Related reviews: Latter days etc. Men of Honor


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