It's been over 22 years but one beloved song is getting new airplay.
Pop star Christina Aguilera is back with another song for "Mulan," the live-action remake of the 1998 animated film from Disney, titled "Reflection." It's a new three-minute recording that's also a remake of the theme song from the animated "Mulan."
The empowering song describes a girl who is presumably Mulan, a character based off the female warrior in the Chinese folk poem "The Ballad of Mulan," and her personal thoughts and decisions. "Who is that girl I see/ Staring straight back at me/ When will my reflection show/ Who I am inside," sings Aguilera.
In the third verse, she continues, "I am now/ In a world where I/ Have to hide my heart/ And what I believe in/ But somehow/ I will show the world/ What's inside my heart/ And be loved for who I am."
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The music video features Aguilera in a light blue plume dress against a dark background sitting by a water feature. Through varying camera angles, the viewer can see that Aguilera's reflection is visible and interspersed between shots of Aguilera are clips of actor Yifei Liu as Mulan from the 2020 film.
In an Instagram post, the 39-year-old recalled the history of the song and its enduring themes. "I am at a place of new beginnings in my life and set out to embrace the woman I’ve become, having grown up in this business, till now. So this song always resonates and represents exciting and new chapters & energy for me. I hope you enjoy this fresh new take of Reflection."
Fans have been sharing their enthusiastic reactions to the new song.
"I've been a fan of Christina Aguilera since 90s, and Reflection is one of my favorite songs. But why do I feel that this version is way much better than what she did before," wrote one YouTube commenter.
"This version adds so much emotion and meaning for me," another responded.
"This song deserves to win 'Best Original Song' next year," one commented.
"Only Christina Aguilera can outdo Christina Aguilera PERIOD."
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Recording "Reflection" helped launch Aguilera's career in the late '90s.
The song peaked at no. 19 on Sept. 12, 1998 and spent 11 weeks on Billboard's chart. She went on to include the song in her self-titled 1999 debut album. She also recorded the song in Spanish, releasing the song "Mi Reflejo" the following year on her second album and her Spanish-language debut, which was titled after the song. "Mi Reflejo" won a Grammy for best Latin pop album at the 43rd annual Grammy Awards.
The five-time Grammy winner also lends her vocals to "Loyal Brave True," an original song for the 2020 film that was released in March. A Spanish version of the song, "El Mejor Guerrero," was also released. In early March, Aguilera recalled in an Instagram post that "#Mulan and #Reflection have been such a special part of my life and this film is a beautiful continuation of this legacy."
After delaying the release of "Mulan" indefinitely, Disney announced earlier this month that it would skip a movie theater release and premiere the movie on their streaming service in September.