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'A Whole New World' and 5 other Disney songs we can't help but belt out at the top of our lungs

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Legendary lyrics; magical melodies; a ruined larynx. We can only be talking about one thing: Disney songs.

With a seemingly innate ability to conjure catchy chords and toe-tapping tunes, no one makes music quite like Disney. Their illustrious playlist boasts some of popular culture's biggest hitters: countless tracks that continue to gift even the most tone-deaf of listeners the ability to hit notes and reach decibels beyond any and all scientific reasoning.

Next month – mark the 22nd in your diaries, folks – the second of Disney's 2019 live-action remakes swoops into Cineworld cinemas. Aladdin, the tale of a lowly street rat smitten with a Sultan's daughter, has imagination and enchantment in abundance. But in a film of genies, sorcery and riches, arguably one of the most spellbinding components is its music.

'A Whole New World', Aladdin's shining, shimmering, splendid central musical number, will also be returning, ready to sweep you along on a magic carpet ride all over again. So, to help warm up those vocals, we're belting out five other rousing Disney classics we can't help but sing along to. Hairbrush microphones at the ready.

Aladdin Disney movie poster


1. 'Let It Go' – Frozen (2013)

A 1000 years from now, when historians define the year 2013, they will do so by uttering three simple words: Let It Go. If you found yourself anywhere on Planet Earth at that time – or anywhere in the universe, for that matter - it's almost certain the voice of the hugely talented Idina Menzel won't have been far away.

The enduring, endearing gift of Disney's beloved record-breaker, Frozen, 'Let It Go' is musical caffeine. Empowering and timeless in its message, it's an infectiously joyous song that never fails to raise hairs and help souls soar. It might exist within a fantasy world of ice and snow, but 'Let It Go' is unrivalled in the fiery warmth it emits. Every. Single. Time.


2. 'I'll Make A Man Out Of You' – Mulan (1998)

Disney's 1998 animated take on the celebrated Chinese legend is an adventure packed full of memorable 'M's: Mulan, Mushu and music. The film boasts a brilliant blend of whimsical humour, complex themes, beautiful visuals and some proper powerful ballads.

The pick of these is the fist-pumping 'I'll Make A Man Out Of You': a song worthy of only the finest accompanying training montage. Like the film's clever inversion of the male warrior hero trope, the song is both inspiring and deeply ironic. The lyrics, while stirring and energetic, are equally poetic: "Tranquil as a forest but on fire within"; "swift as the coursing river"; "mysterious as the dark side of the moon". Mulan is great, and rarely have similes sounded so good.




3. 'Circle of Life' – The Lion King (1994)

No chatter about belting Disney numbers could be complete without acknowledging the studio's feline-themed take on Shakespeare's Hamlet. The quintessential Disney song, The Lion King's 'Circle of Life' has, well, come full circle.

First rousing viewers while the inhabitants of an orange-drenched African plain bear witness to unveiling of the new-born king in the 1994 film, the track – a gorgeous blend of English and Zulu vocals - then transitioned seamlessly to the stage, captivating millions of theatre-goers worldwide in the hugely popular musical.

Now, in 2019, 'Circle of Life' will once again return to the silver screen in Disney's live-action remake of their own classic, which roars into Cineworld cinemas on 19th July. Beautiful, enchanting and soulful, thanks to 'Circle of Life', sunrises will never be the same again.


4. 'How Far I'll Go' – Moana (2016)

As much as they appear to relish churning out banger after certified banger, there is something the folks over at Disney might just adore even more: the ocean. From The Little Mermaid to Finding Nemo, the seven seas have provided a seemingly limitless source of inspiration for the studio to weave their storytelling magic.

And sailing into the animated Disney canon in 2016 was Moana: a watery fantasy epic set around the Polynesia region of the South Pacific. There is a boatload of reasons we love the film: the strong, courageous hero; the wonderfully whacky rooster; Dwayne Johnson as the voice of god Maui. But perhaps the real jewel of this here ocean is the infectiously uplifting soundtrack - namely, the spirit-soaring central song 'How Far I'll Go'.

Performed by actor Auli'i Cravalho in the movie and released as a single by Alessia Cara, the song is about destiny and ambition; a stirring ode to a life of liberty and adventure. The messages are universal, and its elevating melody will instantly make you want to ditch the mundane desk job and follow your dreams. To that, both Johnson and Disney would likely say (or sing, rather), "You're Welcome".




5. 'Under The Sea' – The Little Mermaid (1989)

If life beneath the waves is even half as good as Sebastian and co. claim it to be, we're dusting off our snorkels without a second thought. Fusing Caribbean calypso with reggae and throwing in tides of razor-sharp rhyme, Disney struck gold with 'Under The Sea': a celebration of all things aquatic from their 1989 animated take on Hans Christian Andersen's famous story, The Little Mermaid.

In adapting source material that is at times dark and downbeat, Disney applied their distinctive charm and energy, making for a story about learning, loving and scene-stealing crabs that is a delightfully enriching paddle through the warm waters of animated greatness. The song made waves in Hollywood, too: triumphing at the 62nd Academy Awards by pipping 'Kiss the Girl' – another song from The Little Mermaid soundtrack – to win the coveted Oscar for Best Original Song.

But it received perhaps the greatest honour pop culture can bestow four years later when a parody of the song featured in the episode 'Homer Badman' from season six of The Simpsons. Now THAT is what you call recognition.

Aladdin is released on 22nd May, so tweet us your favourite Disney songs @Cineworld.

George Nash is a writer who blogs for Cineworld as part of our news team.