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Alternative Reality, Fantasy

Jumanji: The Next Level (2019)


Duration 2h 3m Rating (UK) 12A
Source of story The first movie and characters
Director Jake kasdan
Writers/Script Jake Kasdan, Jeff Pinkner, Scott Rosenberg
Starring Karen Gillan, Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Awkwafina, Kevin Hart, Danny DeVito, Nick Jonas, Rory McCann, Danny Glover,

Elevator Pitch: The game is on again and the avatars Dr Smolder Bravestone, Dr Shelly Oberon, Mouse Finbar and Ruby Roundhouse are back. Spencer has gone back into the game and his friends feel the need to go in to help him, but this time Spencer’s grandfather and his estranged partner Milo accidentally find themselves occupying the bodies of Bravestone and Finbar, making the task that much more difficult as they search for Spencer and then attempt to complete the game without being permanently erased.

Content: There is some setting up. Spencer goes home for the hols and communicates with his friends by social media, and his grandfather meets with his old friend Milo. But Spencer can’t resist going back into the game now part dismantled in his cellar. Friends and relatives follow and once in the game there are numerous set pieces. There is a dune buggy chase, the avatars being chased by a flock of ostriches, a complex traverse of a ravine while being attacked by baboons, interaction with villains in the oasis town and finally the climax in the icebound castle of Jurgen the Brutal.

A View: The writers were faced with the problem of how to make this outing different from the last and while the idea of getting the old guys into it seemed fine, it took the edge of the action and finally things had to change, which was just a bit contrived. The actors did a great job, yet again, this time some of them being two or three people. But the increased real world emotional involvement made the plot points of the game less important. We never really felt that they were at risk of losing their third lives, for instance. So if you saw the last one, which was my favourite film of 2018, give this one a go, but it won’t be my favourite of 2019.

Additional Info: Some filming was done at Glamis Dunes in California. While you will find it on a map of USA, the only building is a petrol station and restaurant.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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