The Lessons Behind J.R.R. Tolkien’s “The Lord of the Rings” and Disney’s “The Lion King”
“Once upon a time….” the ideal beginning that conceives every child to know there will be a happy ending in a story. Fantasy is a gift that is given to us as a child and is lost as an adult, what we do not realize is that fantasy never leaves us. The classic heroes, villains, princesses and evil demons will forever remain in our lives, one day after escaping into the real world, these fairy tales we were once told, become our reality. J. R. R Tolkien’s Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring is about a boy named Frodo Baggins receives a powerful ring that can control the world along with all the living creatures. Frodo must go on a mission, along with some new friends to destroy the ring before Sauron’s minions kill him and take possession of it. Frodo must go on a quest along with some new friends he meets along the way to destroy the ring before Sauron’s minions kill him and take ownership of it. Disney’s The Lion King is a classic children’s film that deals with the courage of the classic figure of lions. Young Simba the lion flees home after his father dies, he then creates a new life for himself until when found by a member of the pact, he has two options: to return home and challenge his uncle Scar and move toward becoming king or to continue with his new way of life. Simba has two choices: to return home and challenge his uncle Scar and become king or to continue with his new lifestyle. Despite the fact J. R. R Tolkien’s Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring ensures a more mature take on unexpected adventures than Disney’s The Lion King, both films manifest the significance of imagination for the growth and development of a child’s mind, which leads the main characters Frodo Baggins and Simba to learning three critical important life lessons on their journey: to face your fears, to remember friends will help get you through everything and to never underestimate yourself in any given circumstance.
It is said that if we truly believe in something, then something great will happen. Fear is an idea we all tend to run from, but never realize that the best way to avoid our fears is to face them with strength. Frodo Baggins in The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring realizes this valuable lesson when approaching the journey to destroy the ring of Sauron. Frodo fears the ring from the earliest starting point of the film when the ring is put his hands, he has two options: to run from fear or to ascend from fear. “I will take it! I will take it! I will take the Ring to Mordor. Though… I do not know the way.” Frodo chooses the best way to deal with the given situation would be to take the Ring to Mordor himself to get the ring destroyed. Frodo knew on this journey he could end up dead, but he let courage overcome fear and continued despite all the obstacles faced. Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring demonstrated a matured version of overcoming your fears, although the film The Lion King has an easier intake that would be more understandable to a child of potentially using courage when facing obstacles. Young Simba, after losing his father, flees from home. Simba fears his past due to the death of his father King Mufasa and knows going back there would be a walk of shame, Simba does something no one would expect him to do which leads him to the result finding himself again. “I know what I have to do. But going back means I’ll have to face my past. I’ve been running from it for so long” (Disney’s The Lion King). Simba realizes that he cannot keep running from his past as it is not getting him anywhere in life. Simba decides his fate is to go back home and challenge his uncle Scar, to take his rightful place as king. After years of letting fear run his journey through life, Simba rises from fear and promotes courage. J. R. R Tolkien and Disney proved that fear to be nothing but the sound of our insecurities stopping us from trying the impossible, which teaches children to not fear, but to believe.
Friends can come and go, but true friends are those who you will never be able to get rid of. The influence of those around us such as friends and family is what makes us who we are. Friends are there to help lift our heads up when they fall, they are there to give us strength. J. R. R Tolkien shows the strong relationship between betrayal and love when it comes to friendship. After being told by Galadriel that someone will try taking the ring from him, Frodo loses his trust in his friends and believes the only way to make sure that the ring is destroyed, would be to face the mission on his own, but one friend never turned against Frodo and even risked his life to make sure he would keep his promise to always protect him. “I made a promise, Mr. Frodo. A promise. “Don’t you leave him Samwise Gamgee.” And I don’t mean to. I don’t mean to.” (Sam Gamgee, The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring) Sam shows his love for Frodo by walking into the river when he is aware he cannot swim, to stay with his dear friend Frodo. Frodo did not trust his help, but the second he walked into the river, risking his own life for him, he knew that Sam was not there to steal the ring, but to help him destroy it. Friendship is not about those who have been there the longest, it is about those who have stood by our side. Simba in Disney’s The Lion King was not necessarily shown by a friend, but by both a friend and a father. Mufasa would always tell young Simba as a child that the stars were the previous rulers of the land watching over him as he grows when Mufasa died, Simba stopped believing in happy endings. Simba felt as though his father left him when he died, he was told he would always watch over him. He was devastated and believed there was nothing left on earth for him when his father had died, until he saw the ghost of his father, reminding him of his “tomorrow”. “So whenever you feel alone, just remember that those kings will always be there to guide you. And so will I” (Ghost of Mufasa, Disney’s The Lion King). Mufasa’s ghost helped remind Simba that he is out there, in the stars along with the rest of the rulers, watching over him and that they are there to help Simba take back what is rightfully his. The two films J. R. R Tolkien’s The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring and Disney’s The Lion King demonstrate that only those who care about you will be able to hear you fall and be able to lift you back up.
Everyone has their own strengths and weaknesses which make them unique in their own way, but sometimes it takes a while for us to realize that we are worth more than we might suspect. Frodo was just a boy when he was chosen to be the keeper of the Ring of Sauron. Frodo feared the ring and all the ring was capable of. He even wished that the ring was not given to him and instead was given to someone else, but despite doubting his capabilities, there was someone who helped guide Frodo to never underestimating his own capabilities. “Even the smallest person can change the course of the future” (Galadriel, The Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring). Frodo knew what he must do, he knew the ring was his obligation, and the only person that could get rid of it, would be himself. Frodo accepted Galadriel’s pledge of advice and launched an idea that ended up driving his conscience to bravery, where he never doubted his capabilities again. Learning to accept yourself is the biggest challenge in life to face. Disney resembles the purity of never underestimating yourself when young Simba finally remembers who he is. Simba believes that he betrayed his people but receives a good awakening when visited by the ghost of Mufasa “You have forgotten who you are and so have forgotten me. Look inside yourself Simba. You are more than what you have become. You must take your place in the Circle of life”. Simba learns that he is worth more than he thinks and to be a strong and noble leader just like his father, he must stop doubting himself first. Simba heads back to his land where he is ready to accept himself and his past to create a glorious future for him and his people. J.R.R. Tolkien and Disney resemble young children, never doubting yourself as finding who you are, as this is what ultimately leads to strength conquering weakness.
To conclude, although both films differentiate in their story, they do remain similar in fantasy as both main characters in the film Frodo Baggins and Simba are able to learn three important words of wisdom on the way of their journey: to face your fears, true friends will always remain and to never doubt yourself in any given circumstance, in which show how important fantasy is when dealing with the growth and development of a child.
One of the most basic human emotions is known as fear. Fear alerts us from danger and helps us avoid sticky situations. Frodo Baggins and Simba both show fear as a strength, when they face their fears to achieve their dreams. Fear prepares us for real, it is important that a child experiences fear as young children who experience the emotion of fear later on become parents with fear on their own children, which ensures rational decisions are being made towards the future.
Early friends are what play an important role in the development of the mind. Friends influence us into making rational decisions and most importantly true friends are there to give you a helping hand. It is said that we are copycats of the people around us, our childhood playground moments are where it all begins, we learn and make decisions based on the people around us. Frodo Baggins and Simba both were unsure if they should trust their friends, they both came to the realization that true friends are ones that will never leave our side, through life and through death.
To live in the glorious high ark of achievement, we must learn to never question our own capabilities. Frodo and Simba learn this golden rule when on their journey, they realize that just because they are both small, they still hold special characteristics within them that allow them to be able to achieve the impossible. It is important for children to set goals and be optimistic in order to dream for a bigger future. These three life lessons help influence children to grow into respectful individuals who can one day “rule the world”.
Fantasy holds the desire of imagination and reshapes it into the impossible. Childhood is the start of this, without films such as Lord Of The Rings: The Fellowship Of The Ring and Disney’s The Lion King to help wield us into dreaming, our lives would have no desires. Dreams are what determine us to do our best and help us discover our identity in this world, as in the end of our journey, we will too, become stories.
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