“Jumanji: a game for those who seek to find a way to leave their world behind.”
The Breakfast Club meets Tropic Thunder in this reboot of iconic 1995 Robin Williams movie, Jumanji. However, gone is the dated jungle board game, replaced with a slightly less dated board game – and rather than bringing the jungle out to meet the player, sucks the player into the role of an explorer within the game.
This trailer gives us a taste of the film’s plot – with the basic takeaway being that, aside from the name of the game, there’s very little to tie this to your childhood favourite.
We see schoolkids ‘Fridge’ (Ser’Darius Blain), Martha (Morgan Turner), Bethany (Madison Iseman) and Spencer (Alex Wolff) in detention. Their punishment? Clearing out the basement, apparently. And while they do, they find a mysterious videogame: Jumanji.
But, after they half-heartedly pick their avatars, things begin to change – and they game pulls them in. However, they don’t necessarily arrive as themselves, inhabiting the forms of their avatars – weedy Spencer becomes goliath Dr. Smolder Bravestone (Dwayne Johnson), jock Fridge shrinks down to become Moose Finbar (Kevin Hart), timid Martha becomes kickass Ruby Roundhouse (Karen Gillan) and popular Bethany draws the short straw, transforming into “overweight, middle-aged man” Professor Shelly Oberon (Jack Black).
Beyond that, there are some jungle hijinks, which see our team fight off the worst that the jungle has to offer – showing that this Jumanji is a game of survival. No doubt this plot will all work towards the end of having the teens realise that there’s more to life than their social status, and that these are their real friends – you know, the usual – but with witty banter we saw from Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart in Central Intelligence, and Jack Black from…well, most of the movies he’s been in.
And though it may still be difficult to separate this reboot from the original movie that both terrified and thrilled a generation of kids, it remains to be seen just how this film will separate itself from its predecessor.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle comes to cinemas 20th December this year.