Jumanji – Welcome To The Jungle

Date Watched: – 8th December 2017 (2D) & 10th December 2017 (3D)

Director: – Jake Kasdan

Genre: – Action, Adventure, Comedy

Starring: – Jumanji World – Dwayne Johnson (Dr Smolder Bravestone), Jack Black (Professor Sheldon “Shelly” Oberon), Karen Gillan (Ruby Roundhouse), Kevin Hart (Franklin “Moose” Finbar), Nick Jonas (Jefferson “Seaplane” McDonough), Bibby Cannavale (John Hardin Van Pelt), Rhys Darby (Nigel). Real World – Alex Wolff (Spencer), Madison Iseman (Bethany), Ser’Darius Blain (Fridge), Morgan Turner (Matha), Colin Hanks (Alex) and Marc Evan Jackson (Principal Bentley)

Review: –

I saw this as an Unlimited Screening and again as an Advance Screening in 3D and I was glad I did, after seeing the trailer I thought this would be a reboot but it is set after the original film and more a sequel than a remake/reboot but not a true sequel so you don’t need to watch the original Jumanji and I think why the full title is often mentioned when it’s advertised.

The film starts in 1996 when Alex’s father finds the Jumanji board game during a run on the beach and gives it to his teenage son though he rather play video games, during the night the game lights up and a game cartridge appears in the box and when Alex puts the game in the console you see his room light up and he vanishes into the game (you don’t see this but this is very much applied). The film title then appears and you then jump ahead 20 years though this is not mention and probably one of my only criticism of the film and you see Spencer give “Fridge” his homework that he has done for him outside Alex’s old house. In class Bethany is face timing her friend when her teacher tells her to hang up and when she starts to make an excuse is given a detention, later during Gym Martha refuses to pair up to play catch and tells the teacher that Gym is basically only good if want to be a Gym Teacher and is also given a detention (see where we’re going like Power Rangers and the original Breakfast Club) and then the Principal calls Spencer into his office and along with Fridge is given a detention. The Principal gives the 4 of them a task of taking out staples from old magazines as their task for detention when Fridge finds a game console and asks Spencer what it is as Spencer is a nerd (Fridge is an athlete, Bethany is self-centred and thinks everything is about her and Martha is someone who keeps themselves to themselves and hates everyone (again similar to the Breakfast Club)). Spencer plugs the game in and joins Fridge with playing the game but are unable to select access one of the players (Jefferson) but Fridge chooses Finbar whilst Spencer selects Dr Bravestone and they get the 2 girls to join in with Bethany choosing Professor Oberon and leaving Matha with Ruby Roundhouse, once all 4 have selected Spencer starts getting transported into the game followed by the others and they’re transported into a Jungle.

When they arrive in the Jungle they have taken on their apperances of the characters they have chosen with Spencer now a handsome tall tough man whist Fridge is a short zoologist, Bethany an overweight middle age man and Martha a beautiful fighting expert. As Bethany (looks in the lake at her reflection) she is eaten by a Hippo and a few moments later falls out of the sky back to the group when they then flee and bump into Nigel who has a jeep and tells them to get in which they do and he starts to explain the game and what they need to do. Spencer notices Nigel is a Non Player Character and sticks to a script even when they asks other questions. Nigel tells them the back story and what they must do to get home. Nigel then drops them off and this is where the action really begins, in the clearing where they’ve been dropped off they find out they have 3 lives and what their strengths and weaknesses are and look at the Map that Nigel gave them but only Bethany can ready it. They follow the clue that Nigel gave them and head off to a Bazaar where whilst fighting off an attack by Van Pelt’s men (the enemy), we see some of the Rock (Dwayne Johnson for those who don’t know his wrestling past) wrestling moves of old, and are met by Alex who helps them to flee, Spencer then realises that Alex is the fifth player of the game and they soon arrive at Alex’s home base where they rest and work out what they need to do next as they’re now on the third level of the game. Whilst Bethany teaches Martha how to flirt to see if she can distract the guards that are protecting a building they need to get in Spencer and Fridge realise that Alex is the same person that went missing 20 years ago and that he has been in the game for 20 years but has not got past this level and only has 1 life left. With Alex’s help the 5 of them now get past the level but when they land the Helicopter Alex is bitten by a Mosquito and begins to die as this is one of his weekend but Bethany gives him CPS and Mouth to Mouth to save him and says she will get him home, he recovers but Bethany loses another life so she only has one left.

They make it to the last level where they have to get to the Jaguar statue and after Spencer loses his second life he manages to get one of Van Pelt’s minions bike and starts to drive up the Status whilst Fridge throws the Gem away when Van Pelt tries get it back and it lands in a pit full of snakes and Martha rushes up to it when is confronted by Van Felt, she picks up the Gem and though Van Pelt says she has nowhere to go she stamps on a snake to get biten and says venom is her weakness and she dies holding the Gem but as she falls out of the sky she manages to hand the Gem to Spencer who has now on the top of the statue ready to replace the Gem which he does but at first nothing happens before they realise they need to shout out Jumanji which they do and Van Pelt turns back in a load of rats and Nigel reappears congratulating them and when he shakes their hands they return back to the real world. The 4 of them return back to the school where they’re in detention and Bethany wonders if Alex made it back or not as he had been missing for 20 years. As the 4 of them walk home and go past the Vreeke house (Alex’s home) they notice that it has changed and they see a car pull up and see someone get out of the car and they realise it’s Alex and he sees them and walks over to them and guesses their names and tells them he was spitted back out 20 years ago to when he started the game and is married with a family and tells them they named their daughter after the girl that saved his life, Bethany. The following week they return to school and have become friends and when Spencer sees Martha he walks up to her and kisses her and then hear the drumbeats of Jumanji and Fridge destroys the game by dropping a bowling ball on it.

I really enjoyed this film as was something different to the original though like it seems many films involving teenagers seem to have a basis on the Breakfast Club with a group of misfit teenagers meeting in Detention. I liked the way it was split into 2 with the real world and the game world though I couldn’t see much difference between the 2D and 3D versions so not sure would be worth the extra to see in 3D. I did spend much of both films wondering what Marvel film Karen had appeared in so only noticed that Kevin Hart and Nick Jonas appeared in the film towards to then of the second time I watched it. I recommend seeing it even if not watched or even if didn’t like the original.

9/10

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