Disney has made another classic book a classic movie. This delightful film is a must see for everyone in the family.
Raised by a family of wolves since a toddler, Mowgli (Neel Sethi) must leave the only home he’s ever known when the fearsome tiger Shere Khan (Idris Elba) unleashes his mighty roar. Guided by a no-nonsense panther, Bagherra (Ben Kingsley) and a free-spirited bear Baloo (Bill Murray), the young boy meets an array of jungle animals, including a slithery python, Kaa, (Scarlett Johansson) and a smooth-talking ape, King Louie (Christopher Walken). In his final role, the marvelous Gary Shandling has a small role as the voice of Ikka, leader of the wolf pack.
Neel Sethi, the only real actor that appears in the film, is amazing. This young boy carries the film with ease. Acting is always easier when you have another actor to play off of. Sethi’s performance is incredible. You just want to hug him and take him home with you he’s so sweet and adorable. I did spend an inordinate amount of time worrying about him running all over the jungle barefoot.
The screenplay for “The Jungle Book” was written by Justin Marks adapted from the book, “The Jungle Book” by Rudyard Kipling and is very faithful to the original story.
Jon Favreau directed. Favreau is a character actor whose face you would immediately recognize if you don’t recognize his name. This is not his first adventure in directing. He also directed “Iron Man” and “Iron Man 2” and “Elf” to name a few.
This is a beautiful film. I saw it in 3-D and IMAX and was just amazed at the combination of cinematography and animation. This enchanting film has it all: great acting, a beautiful screenplay and story, great directing, wonderful animation, and fabulous sound and it can be seen and enjoyed by everyone in the family. It doesn’t get better than this.
Talking with several children after I left the film, they all loved the movie. The girls thought little Neel Sethi was extremely cute. I couldn’t agree with them more.
“The Jungle Book must be seen on the big screen to experience the splendor of the animation. If you see it in 3-D, you will feel like you are in the jungle with Mowgli.
“The Jungle Book” opens Friday at AMC Showplace Edwardsville 12, AMC Eastgate Showplace 6 and Dougherty Theatres Jerseyville Stadium.