The Jungle Book (2016)

May 6, 2016

Starring: Neel Sethi, Ben Kingsley, Bill Murray, Idris Elba
Director: Jon Favreau (Iron Man, Chef, Elf)

Bottom Line: Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book was borderline amazing. Favreau and his team of computer VFX geniuses bring the Disney animated classic to stunning life in this “live action” adaptation. I quote “live action” because all the characters – with the exception of Mowgli – and all the locations are computer generated – and you can barely tell. Of course, motion capture technology has drastically increased the realism of these artificial performances. The voice acting is all A-listers (Bill Murray, Scarlett Johansson, Ben Kingsley, Giancarlo Esposito, Idris Elba) and top notch throughout. I didn’t hate the kid that played Mowgli, but Favreau got a much better performance out of the kid in his last movie, Chef.

While this version of The Jungle Book is far more intense and scary than its predecessors, it should still be suitable for most families, especially those with older kids. The Jungle Book was absolutely gorgeous and a testament to how far animation has come – in fact, it’s the new bar for CGI film making.

Replay Value: I would be happy to watch this again. A must own for families.
Sequel Potential: Crushing the box office = guaranteed sequel (already announced).
Oscar Potential: A strong favorite for any Visual Effects awards – this is really superb work here.

Grade: 7.5 (Must See/Excellent)

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