In 1995 we were introduced to a board game that was a fully immersive experience for its players. The game didn’t suck its players into its world; however, a new reality in the players world was created that forced them to complete each stage of the game. So, does “Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” live up to the original or is this game better left on the shelf? Lets dive in and take a look in this review.
The film begins by showing us how the game evolves from a board game to a video game. From there, the story is off and running. In fact, the story is actually written so well that, despite its impossible situations, it makes sense. I was pleasantly surprised by the attention to story-telling that takes place. Everything from characters in the game being unable to say or do anything contrary to their programming, to how the main characters revive after dying, to using their special abilities, to level challenges, it all worked for me. It felt like I was actually watching a video game come to life and because of that, I enjoyed this movie more than I thought I would. Literally, the majority of the story is moving through video game levels without losing all 3 of there avatars lives. It was so much fun.
The characters were also so different from each other that the onscreen chemistry really played well. The teenage actors and the adult actors all bought something special to their role and while nobody really delivered a knock out Oscar worthy performance, they weren’t supposed to. This movie is action, adventure and comedy from almost beginning to end. And to the credit of the movie, each actor was enjoyable in their role.
“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” is in theaters now! I’m definitely recommending a big screen viewing of this film. I do want to warn parents with small children that there are some scenes with the villain that might be a bit scary. He controls all the animals and insects on the island the game takes place, and from time to time, he has insects and scorpions crawling in and our of his face. So, if you don’t want your kids to have nightmares, you may let them skip this one in theaters. If your kids saw “Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom” this probably won’t be a bother. If not, you have been warned. Otherwise, I hope you all enjoy this film on the big screen. I know I did and I’m looking forward to a second viewing. Check this movie out!