"Mulan" is a Disney classic. The film was ahead of its time and did not follow the typical Disney formula: Princess and evil villain trying to wreck confusing romance with prince. "Mulan" shows young women in a light that not many Disney films do and this film should be more celebrated.
1. Mulan is not a princess.
Mulan is more average than any other Disney characters because she is not and will never be a princess. She marries a war hero, not a prince. Mulan works hard to achieve what she does, and that is something to aspire to.
2. Romance is just a perk for Mulan and it is not "love at first sight."
Mulan's duty is to her family and her country over everything else. She happens to meet a nice man along the way, and their relationship take an extended period of time to grow throughout the film.
3. Friendship and family are more important than romance in Mulan.
Mulan sacrifices her life to save her family and their honor. Her father reinforces this by saying, "The greatest gift and honor is having you for a daughter."
4. Mulan saves Shang, her father, her fellow soldiers, and even China and The Emperor.
This is one of the few Disney movies that a woman does not need to be saved by a man constantly. She not only saves her father and her family, she saves Shang twice (he saves her once as well), and she saves China and The Emperor. She saves men repeatedly with her courage. She is the ultimate warrior.
5. Mulan wakes up and doesn't look #flawless.
She is relatable. She wakes up and looks just like you do when you wake up: Messy, sleepy, in need of a brush and in need of coffee. #IWokeUpLikeThis is actually realistic in this film.
6. Mulan eats.
Who knew females ate? So many Disney movies neglect showing females eating. FYI, boys, girls eat, too! Especially when they need to fuel up to be standouts at their job.
7. Mulan does not need magic.
Mulan doesn't rely on magic or a fairy godmother to help her. Instead, she trains and works hard to prove herself and get what she desires. She looks to her ancestors and family members for advice, but who doesn't?
8. The film "Mulan" blurs gender roles.
When the men dress in traditional female garb and Mulan dresses in traditional male garb, who is to say that cannot happen any day?
9. Having intelligence is the major key.
Being beautiful is not of the most importance here. In fact, Mulan trades out makeup for her brains and work ethic, and it pays off. She is a great role model because she uses her brain to scheme, excel and be more than just a "bride."
10. Mulan has a full family (no evil step-mother).
Surprise! A woman can have a full family! Not that that is the only type of family, but, hey, not all stepmothers are evil, and not all women are missing a mother.
11. The film draws attention to your outward appearance versus how you really feel.
Mulan struggles with her inner desires and feelings versus how she portrays herself. She, like many women and men, doesn't know how people will react to who she really is and worries she will not be good enough. It is nice to have a Disney character who struggles with the pressures placed on her by society and know it is something that many people face.
12. She's a total badass (determined, selfless, and relentless).
Mulan is someone that children should aspire to be like. She follows her gut, she cares for her family and she gives it her all.