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Netflix’s Wish Dragon is an animated version of Aladdin set in modern China.
Featuring a voice cast of East Asian actors including Constance Wu (“Crazy Rich Asians”) and John Cho (“Star Trek”), Wish Dragon (produced by Jackie Chan) is an animated feel-good movie by Sony Pictures Animation that has a striking resemblance to the Aladdin story we are all acquainted with.
Wish Dragon is a Beautiful Best Friend Movie
Wish Dragon is primarily a story about two best friends. How refreshing when there isn’t any romance between the two lead characters. Din (Ian Chen) and Li Na (Alyssa Abiera) are two young children who meet at school and instantly become best friends when they discover they drew similar pictures of a dragon. Fast forward many years and Din (Jimmy Wong), a working class student, goes in search of Li Na (Natasha Liu Bordizzo) who is now a successful model living in a posh part of town.
With the help of Long (John Cho), a dragon who must serve ten masters granting each 3 wishes before he can go to heaven, Din must decide what is important in life.
Of course just as Aladdin had to fend off Jafar, Din must fend off a team of three goons (including Bobby Lee and Jimmy O. Yang) who use their martial art skills to combat each other. You can see Producer Jackie Chan‘s influence in the fighting but because this is a kid friendly movie, it is not graphic and usually will illicit a laugh or two.
Worried things will be too dark? Wish Dragon makes sure Din’s Mom (Constance Wu) and her neighbors and customers keep things lighthearted and sweet whenever they are on screen.
Check out the trailer for Wish Dragon to get a taste for the movie’s humor and likability.
Is Wish Dragon Appropriate for Young Children?
Despite the PG rating, The Joyous Living suggests that this movie is best viewed by parents with their kids who are mature enough to handle cartoon violence, death and classism. Characters use words like “stupid” and “dirtbag” to insult each other.
Wish Dragon Discussion Questions
- If you could make 3 wishes, what would you wish for?
- Do you know anyone who is of a different ‘class’? Are you friends with anyone from a different social status?
- Is it ever okay to lie to your parents?
- Who is your best friend? Would you do anything for your best friend?
- How can you combat greed in your own life? What can you do to give back and help others?
- Would you sacrifice your life for someone you loved?
- Where will you go when you die?
Wish Dragon Cast and Characters
Din – Jimmy Wong (Ian Chen)
Li Na – Natasha Liu Bordizzo (Alyssa Abiera)
Mom – Constance Wu
Long – John Cho (Max Charles)
Mr. Wong – Will Yun Lee
Tall Goon – Bobby Lee
Short Goon – Jimmy O. Yang
Wen – Gabriel Lee
Other Voices – Alexandre Chen
Buy the Wish Dragon Soundtrack
More Netflix Movies
- Blue Miracle
- The Sons of Sam: A Descent into Darkness
- Why You Should Give Persuasion on Netflix (2022) a Chance
- The Alarming Controversy about Netflix Cuties Movie
Release Date: 11 June 2021 (USA)
Where to Watch: Wish Dragon on Netflix
Thanks to Sony Pictures Animation and Netflix for the screener but all opinions are my own.