When you think of Jumanji you invariably think of the late great Robin Williams, so naturally I went to Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle with a certain amount of trepidation. I needn’t have worried, I will go out on a limb and say that I prefer this version to the original.
Four teenagers stuck in detention find an old video game they’ve never heard of. They are immediately plunged into the game’s jungle setting and the bodies of their alter egos, played by Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, and Karen Gillan. What they discover is that you don’t just play Jumanji, Jumanji changes you. They must go on the most dangerous adventure of their lives, or they’ll stay in the game forever.
There is not a weak link in this film from the amazing performances from all the actors to detailed direction from Jake Kasdan ensuring that each actor is totally believable and well matched to the film character.
The cinematography from Gyula Pados is lush, well lit and highlights the action whilst still giving us an insight into each character’s inner thoughts.
Mention should also be made of the score from Henry Jackman and highly entertaining script by Chris McKenna, Erik Sommers, Scott Rosenberg and Jeff Pinkner which contains some of the best one-liners I have ever heard.
Some of my favourite moments include – Jack Black’s portrayal of a teenage self centred teenage girl who discovers his/her true worth. His/her crush and kiss of life to pilot Alex (Nick Jonas) is truly memorable.
Also, Dwayne Johnson’s ability to laugh at his body image while channelling his inner nerd is a brave career move and it certainly pays off. His character is multi-faceted and drives the film.
There are many other clever performances, too many to highlight here who all contribute to the film’s success.
A film for the whole family, even though it had a PG rating, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a total delight!
Check out the official site here.