The Jungle Book Review #JungleBook

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Disclosure- I was invited by Disney to attend this all expense paid press trip but all opinions are 100% my own.

thejunglebook568ece7e1354bThe Jungle Book is now in theaters and I had the opportunity to screen it earlier this week when I was in Los Angeles on the Captain America: Civil War press trip. I loved this new version that features live action, amazingly realistic CG scenery, and photo-real animal characters all blended seamlessly to create an experience for the senses. We watched it in 3D and it felt like being deep in the jungle with all the animals. The Jungle Book is based on the timeless story by Rudyard Kipling and inspired by Disney’s class animated film.
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“The Jungle Book” is an all-new, live-action epic adventure about Mowgli, a man-cub raised by a family of wolves. But Mowgli finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere Khan, who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat. Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli embarks on a captivating journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera, and the freespirited bear Baloo. Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa, a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie, who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire.

image006This new version of The Jungle Book has all the same characters and storyline as the animated classic but it is somewhat darker with characters like Kaa, Shere Khan, and King Louie all having sinister intentions.  There were a few intense scenes but nothing my 10 and 12 year old couldn’t handle. I think like with all movies you need to know your own children but none of the children in the theater with us seemed bothered by any scenes. There are times where viewers young and old will be on the edge of their seats rooting for Mowgli and hoping for his safety.  There aren’t any scenes where death is shown on screen but there are some intense fight scenes and chase scenes. The movie takes viewers on a wild ride where they become invested in what happens to this young boy. I loved The Jungle Book and can’t wait to take my girls to see it. It is funny, full of adventure, suspense, and just a fun, heartwarming film. If you have the opportunity to see it in 3D I highly recommend it as it will make the experience even more submersive.

The all-star cast includes Bill Murray (“Lost in Translation”) as the voice of Baloo, Ben Kingsley (“Learning to Drive,” “The Walk”) as Bagheera, Idris Elba (“Star Trek Beyond”) as Shere Khan, and Lupita Nyong’o (“12 Years a Slave,” “Star Wars: The Force Awakens”) as the voice of mother wolf Raksha. ScarleƩ Johansson (“Avengers: Age of Ultron”) gives life to Kaa, Giancarlo Esposito (“Breaking Bad”) provides the voice of alpha-male wolf Akela, and Christopher Walken (“The Deer Hunter”) lends his iconic voice to King Louie. Newcomer Neel Sethi stars as the film’s only human character, Mowgli.

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Neel Sethi is adorable as Mowgli. I’m sure we’ll be seeing more of him on the big screen.

Some fun quotes from The Jungle Book:

Many strange tales are told of this Jungle. But none so strange as the tale of the cub we called Mowgli … –Bagheera

“That’s the Mowgli way. That’s the Baloo way. That’s our way. That’s how we get things done.” —Baloo

Poor, sweet little cub. What are you doing so deep in the Jungle? —Kaa

The elephants created this Jungle … They made all that belongs. The mountains, the trees, the birds in the trees. But they did not make you. That is why you must go. —Bagheera

Because the Jungle is no longer safe for you. You’re being hunted by a tiger. Only Man can protect you now. —Bagheera

A man-cub becomes Man, and Man is forbidden. —Shere Khan


image004 (1) Here’s a video highlighting the voices in the film including Bill Murray (“Baloo”), Sir Ben Kingsley (“Bagheera”), Lupita Nyong’o (“Raksha”), Scarlett Johansson (“Kaa”), Idris Elba (“Shere Khan”), Christopher Walken (“King Louie”), Giancarlo Esposito (“Akela”) and Neel Sethi who plays Mowgli, the only live action character in the film!

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THE JUNGLE BOOK is now playing in theatres everywhere in 3D, RealD 3D, and IMAX 3D!

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