B! went to the preview for Jungle Book just prior to it opening in the theaters, and loved it! It is directed by Jon Favreau (Iron Man) and based on Rudyard Kipling’s book that inspired the previous Disney classic. Now, if you are familiar with Disney’s original version, you’ll find the story line very similar but not with near as much music. There is a generous share of new angles taken to give it its own unique spin on the tale. Some of the voices are a little different than what you might expect, and younger kids could find it a little frightening because although some of the animals talk, it has a very real element to it (and they’re not always getting along). As you’re watching, you completely get immersed in the depths of this jungle, which is amazing to watch on the big screen in 3D.
It is an adventure about Mowgli, a man-cub who’s been raised by a family of wolves. But Mowgli finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere, who promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat.
Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli starts on a journey of self-discovery. He is guided by a panther named Bagheera, and the free-spirited bear Baloo. Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa, a python, and the smooth-talking King Louie, who tries to convince Mowgli into giving up the deadly red flower: fire.
- The characters are creations of Rudyard Kipling and first appeared in a collection of stories called The Jungle Book in 1893-94. Several versions of the popular book have come up in the form of cartoons and films, but it was Walt Disney’s rendering of the stories and the characters in his 1967 animated film, The Jungle Book, which made it so wildly popular around the world.
- It was the last animated feature Mr. Walt Disney oversaw. When Disney died on December 15, 1966, the studio closed for a single day. Then they got back to business working on the last animated feature Disney had a hand in. It was released on October 18, 1967.
- Kipling chose different pronunciations. According to a guide written by Kipling, the main character’s name is pronounced “Mowglee” (accent on the ‘Mow,’ which rhymes with ‘cow’), not “Moe-glee,” which is how Disney chose to say it. In addition, Kaa the snake is supposed to be “Kar;” Baloo the Bear should have been “Barloo,” and Colonel Hathi is really “Huttee.”
The Jungle Book blends live-action with photorealistic CGI animals and environments, using up-to-the-minute technology and storytelling techniques. The wild adventure opens in theaters in 3D on April 15, 2016. Hope you get a chance to see it!