You know you’re a parent when it’s a bank holiday Monday and you’re in the cinema at 10.15 am. Before I had children I did’t even know the cinema opened at 10.15am! However, Little Miss B had been desperate to see the remake of The Jungle Book ever since we saw the trailer for it.
Little Miss K thought it would be too scary for her and decided to give this one a miss. It was however lovely, as it always is, to get to spend some one on one time with any of my children. Undivided attention is valuable for everyone but especially important for Small People and I’m guilty of not making time to do it enough.
I went with a dubious mindset as I have always loved the original cartoon version of the film and sometimes feel that messing with a classic should be left well alone. However, as soon as the opening sequence aired I was hooked, it’s still a Disney movie, so all the nuances of the original format were there. It has just been updated, both in terms of content and style and seemed a lot more grown-up in many ways.
I think it’s worthy of a ‘stand alone status’ and is not just necessarily niche to a children’s audience. I think little Miss K was right to be worried about being scared as some parts were a little anxiety provoking even for a grown-up and Little Miss B and I jumped out of our seat more than once!
The film takes CGI to a new level with the only physical actor being Neel Sethi who plays the man-child Mowgli, who does an amazing job.
The hero of the film for me was Bagheera voiced masterfully by Ben Kingsley, Shere Kahn is voiced by Idris Elba, a devilishly accomplished baddy. The whole film had a touch of the ‘Lion Kings’ about it, with the action adventure sequence – especially the Wildebeests scene.
Christopher Walkin plays a ‘Don’ of a King Louie in a very grown up and creepy version of ‘I wanna be like you’, Scarlett Johansson seers as the snake Kaa and Bill Murray takes on the part of Baloo.
I loved how the film had captures some of the scenes from the original cartoon and replicated them as film, it was stunning to watch.
It had us gripped, made us smile with nostalgia and weep a little, it takes a few slight twists away from the original format, but sticks pretty solidly to the story. I totally loved it and would recommend it to anyone (not just kids). Depending on what sort of disposition your child is I would say probably not for the under sixes (unless you know they can handle mild peril and scary tigers roaring loudly.)
Rotten Tomatoes has this to say about the 94% Fresh Rating it has given the film: “Critics Consensus: As lovely to behold as it is engrossing to watch, The Jungle Book is the rare remake that actually improves upon its predecessors — all while setting a new standard for CGI.”
And according to the Disney Jungle Book’s Facebook page “…The Jungle Book the #1 movie in the world 2 weeks in a row!”
Have you been to see it? What did you think? It’s still showing at Harrogate Odeon at the moment, although I’m not sure for how much longer.