Jumanji, starring Robin Williams in the year 1995 was one of our favorite films growing up. The novel concept, brilliant acting & intriguing script made it one of the most entertaining films of the year. People of all ages loved it. Is the new version of the cult favorite as good as the original?
Jumanji: Welcome To The Jungle starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson is a action, adventure, comedy story about four high school students placed in detention together, who discover the five player action player called Jumanji. The writers have smartly included all the stereotypical high school students – the nerd, the football star, the babe & the shy bookworm. Everybody who has been through high school thus has that one character they can relate to. They all end up choosing avatars who are polar opposites to their real life identities. Spencer the nerd, chooses Dr Smolder Bravestone – a 6 ft 5 inches tall archaeologist & explorer. Bethany the pretty & self centred cheer leader becomes Sheldon “Shelly” Oberon (Jack Black)-a cartographer, a cryptographer, an archaeologist . Football Jock Fridge chooses to become Franklin Finbar(Kevin Hart) – a short zoologist & weapons valet. Bookworm Martha Kaply chooses to become Ruby Roundhouse(Karen Gillan) – a commando, martial arts expert & a dance fighter. They all have three lives. If they lose all their three lives in the game, they actually die in the real world. They all have their strengths & weaknesses. They learn from Nigel, an NPC guide that Van Pelt wants to obtain a Jewel – Jaguar’s Eye, which gives him power to manipulate all the animals in Jumanji. It is up to to our four heroes & another character Alex Vreeke – who chooses the character of Jefferson McDonough to return the jewel to the jaguar statue & shout “Jumanji”.
The movie kept us entertained throughout & kept us glued to our seats. Some of the situations & dialogues were outright funny. Dwayne Johnson sticks to his strength – action. He has several action packed scenes to showcase his bravado & he doesn’t disappoint. Jack Black nails his act of a cheerleader trapped in a obese cartographer’s body. Kevin Heart is funny as the short zoologist. His scenes with Dwayne Johnson are hilarious. Karen Gillan is eye candy & plays her part convincingly.
Viewers who haven’t seen the original will find the reboot thoroughly entertaining. But those who have seen the original will be a tad disappointed. The anxiety viewers felt every time the characters in the original rolled the dice, could not be replicated in the movie. The board game provided much more fodder for entertainment as compared to the console version. Hence while the board game version became a cult favorite, the new one will be soon forgotten.
We would recommend you to not miss watching the movie at a theatre near you & not miss the 3-D effects. Do take kids along. They will love this one.
Our Rating: ****/5 stars
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