Jumanji: Next Level Debuts New Characters, New Adventures, and New Comedy Heights
In 2017, a sequel to 1995 classic, Jumanji released with a brand new storyline and characters to love. Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle starred Kevin Hart, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, Jack Black, and Karen Gillan who were led in big adventure saving Jumanji which updated into a videogame from its original board game. Most don’t usually get excited about reboots of classics with the film raising a few eyebrows but turned out to a successful adventurous comedy with a new storyline while still nodding and respecting the original film. The movie was truly a sequel to the storyline versus trying to redo what was already done. Due to its success, a third film has been released, Jumanji: Next Level. I was able to finally watch the movie this week and want to share with you my thoughts about the film. I won’t be spoiling any major plot points but sharing my highs and lows of the film. Let’s get into it.
In Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, we were introduced to the characters Spencer, Fridge, Bethany, and Martha who all met in detention, but had their worlds turn upside down when they get stuck in the Jumanji video game. They must beat the game and save Jumanji in order to leave the game. During their adventures, they learn more about themselves and each other as they are forced into their avatar’s bodies with different strengths and weaknesses. They even met a kid named Alex along the way who was a boy who got stuck in the game decades before they started playing. All were saved and able to leave the game. Now they have returned for a new adventure in Jumanji: The Next Level.
In the last film, they swore to they never return to the game and even destroyed it to make sure of it. However as each character is dealing with young adulthood and college, things don’t always turn out as expected. Through unexpected events, the gang found themselves back into the game once again having to save Jumanji in order to leave. The original four enter the game throughout the movie, but we are also given a new twist with two new characters playing the game as well, Spencer’s Grandpa and his old business partner, Milo.
Watching the film, since we were introduced to more characters in the game than just the original four, I was curious about how the avatar set up was going to work out. In the trailer, you see that Spencer’s grandpa actually becomes Bravestone, his business partner Milo becomes, Finbar, Fridge is now Professor Shelly and Bethany stayed as Ruby Roundhouse. This leaves the audience wondering about the avatar fate of Spencer and Bethany. Without spoiling too much, I will just say the game added new characters we meet in the film so Spencer and Bethany still get to play. the movie does leave you guessing though to figure out how things are going to play out since we don’t see the core four all together right away or in the same way as the last movie.
This ended up being one of my favorite parts of the film because it left me guessing the fate of the main characters. I would predict and think I had it all figured out, but the movie continued to surprise me. Let me just say it is really hard to do that because I am very good at predicting a storyline or how things are going to end. It actually makes watching movies or shows with me annoying sometimes, but can you blame me, things are predictable a lot of the time. I was shockingly wrong a lot of times in this film though so I loved being surprised and seeing how things turned out.
Other than their additions of new characters and twists in the storyline, there was one thing that stayed the same thankfully, the comedy. The comedy in this movie did not disappoint one bit. I remember Jumani: Welcome to the Jungle being one of my favorite films of that year due to its comedy and the actors’ great portrayal of their young characters. This sequel definitely did not disappoint and stood up to its comedy charm in the last film. Jack Black is beyond amazing and probably still ended up being my favorite character, but all the actors do a phenomenal job. Comedy can be a really tricky thing in movies especially for actors who primarily showcase themselves as a comedian. I say this because there are a wide number of comedians who get known for their “shtick” and then get trapped in this box who can’t really act as a variety of characters. Sometimes it works out in their favors and other times it doesn’t. However, a great comedic actor can usually play a number of different characters including serious ones but still, make it their own (i.e Jim Carrey and Robin Williams). I think all the actors in this film did a great job of doing this. Since not all of the core four ended up in their original avatars, this left the actors having to portray a new character than the ones they were in before. Therefore, it was up in the air if the actors could still deliver a funny, entertaining, and believable performance as before. I don’t think they disappointed at all.
I and the whole audience in the theatre were laughing non stop from beginning to end so I appreciate the film being able to continue their standards. I think this a great film for the whole. family, but keep in mind there is violence and strong language throughout the film. Like actually a lot more strong language than I thought, but I am 24 so not a big deal. Other than that, a great film which I would give a solid A. I mean I would certainly buy it on Blu-Ray, but again I really enjoyed the first one. Which if you have not seen the first one, I don’t think you will understand this one so I definitely recommend watching both. I don’t think you will be disappointed. Also if you have not seen this film but are planning to, just to let you know there is an additional scene in the credits you don’t want to miss. 😉
Have you seen the new Jumanji film? Who is your favorite character in the film? Who would you choose as your game avatar? Do you think it was smart to reboot Jumanji into a film series? Let me know in the comments below and be sure to like, share, and subscribe to get notified of new posts. I know I sound like a broken robot, but trust me just subscribe. You can also follow Bombshell’s social media pages where I tell you when posts are coming and share other thoughts and photos. You can follow on Facebook (@bombshellgamingandstyle), Twitter (@bombgame_style), and Instagram (@bombshellgamingstyle). Until next time my Bombshells, Bye!