“ The Jungle is no longer safe for you.”
While the jungle isn’t the safest place for some, remaking an animated Disney classic has shown to come with its own perils. Those dangers come from the fans of the originals that are not very accepting of the modernization of these classics. Last year’s Cinderella calmed everyone down after it came out, as many believe it was a somewhat better version then the beloved animated film. The latest two films to cause the “Why are they remaking it” screams are “Pete’s Dragon” and Rudyard Kipling’s classic “The Jungle Book.” As someone who enjoyed both films, I too had my worries, that was until I saw who was behind them.
For “The Jungle Book” you have Jon Favreau (Iron Man) who has been the right man for pretty much everything after his success in the Marvel universe. The hero in this story doesn’t wear a costume, but instead is just a man cub that tries to do the right thing. Mowgli (Neel Sethi) has never known life as a boy, instead he was found be Bagheera (Ben Kingsley), a panther, who leaves the young boy to be raised by wolves. While normally that might not be a good thing, in this instance, the wolves raise Mowgli as one of their own. Mowgli grows up, and as the dry season comes, the animal truce is almost broken up by Shere Khan (Idris Elba), a tiger that fears what Mowgli can become. The pack wants to protect Mowgli, but knows that he is safest with his own kind, something he reluctantly agrees to. When Shere Khan attacks, Mowgli escapes only to run into more troubles. After being saved by a bear names Baloo (Bill Murray), he agrees to help the bear get ready for his hibernation with the collection of honey. Soon again though, Mowgli must face his greatest enemy if he wants to survive.
Anytime something like an animated Disney film is remade, it is always going to have some with their pitchforks ready to storm the gates. I hope with this review, and the many more one might read, we can calm the mob and let everyone know, everything is going to be all right. While not as happy and musically as the animated film, writer Justin Marks takes the story to a more mature origins. While the film has darker elements, it still is safe for children, especially when Murrary and Walken enter the film and lighten it up. With a great tone set, the film itself looks wonderful as it makes you feel like it’s a jungle out there for real, in other words the bare necessities are there for a very good film. It’s set up to make a gazillion dollars, and while that doesn’t always equal quality film, in this case it would be fitting. So don’t look at what this was in the past, instead turn your eyes to the future, and enjoy a classic that just been made anew for us all to enjoy again.