It took me awhile to see this one, but I finally saw Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. It wasn’t a movie I particularly wanted to see, nor would I say that I’m glad I saw it, but I’m not sorry I did. This movie exists in a weird, cozy in between.
My formative years took place during the 1990s, so I saw the original Jumanji way back when. People that are around my age or younger might feel some nostalgia for that movie, but let’s be honest, there’s nothing great about that flick. I think the best thing you can say about it is that it has Robin Williams in it and it was different. (The 1990s were the last days of seeing something on-screen that you’d never seen before, but I digress…) This movie, on the other hand, knows exactly what it is and doesn’t take itself too seriously. In fact, despite it being redundant in some cases, I would say that Welcome to the Jungle does almost everything right. Now that doesn’t mean that this movie is great or that it should even exist, but here we are and I can at least say that it’s an enjoyable experience.
What is there to like? Watching these adults play teenagers is a lot of fun. It’s part of the aforementioned redundancy, but it’s still the best part of the movie. Maybe the most shocking thing about Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is its commitment to the characters and their development. Didn’t see that coming. I also liked how it weaved in common video game tropes and quickly explain them for anyone who might not understand the reference.
Look, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle isn’t going to set your soul a fire and I can’t imagine it’ll be the sort of thing you need to purchase on the aftermarket so you can treasure it always (“I love [Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson]. I celebrate his entire catalog.”], but if you catch it on cable on a rainy day, I bet you watch the whole thing and have a good time. I wouldn’t say you necessarily need to stop what you’re doing and rush out to catch this as it nears the end of its very impressive theatrical run, but there are certainly worse things out right now that you could see.