Jungle boy Mowgli (voiced by Osment) decides to forsake civilized village life for the "bare necessities" of the wild with his old friends. However, the evil tiger Shere Khan is looking for a little payback after Mowgli's last adventure. Trouble's a-brewing! Written by
When Shanti goes to get water for the first time, and Mowgli and Ranjan sneak out to follow her, she seems to be humming the song that first lured Mowgli into the village in the first place: My Own Home. See more »
When Shanti wipes the "war paint stripes" of Ranjan's face she cleans only one cheek - yet in the next shot, both cheeks are clean. See more »
That village was terrible. All you ever hear is rules, rules, rules and work, work, work.
Whoa, kid. Watch your language.
See more »
Part of the end credits cast shadows on a backdrop, similar to Mowgli's shadow-puppets in the beginning of the film. See more »
The Jungle Book 2 is one of Disney's most artificial movies in the last few decades and one of the most shameless cash-ins on a story, already more than thirty years old. The film is thin, vacant, free of substance, laughs, and fun. At a mere sixty-six minutes, minus credits, it somehow managed to get a theatrical release, and still charge you for a full length experience.
The film doesn't even try to hide the fact it is a cash-in because it repeats the same old story, with the same old song. Mowgli (now voiced by Haley Joel Osment) is now living in the Man Village with his crush Shanti, her brother Ranjan, and their parents. Despite being fond of his new home, he still misses the atmosphere and free spirit of the jungle and the friends he made there.
What does he do? After getting in trouble, Mowgli is frustrated (even though he was wrong in the first place) and runs away to search for his friends in the jungle. He runs in to good ol' Baloo the Bear (voiced by John Goodman), and they're off to have a number of adventures involving excitement in peril, or, whatever you can really do sixty-six minutes.
If you don't knock it for rehashing the old formula, you can at least say the film is dull and noneventful more than it should be. The first twenty-five minutes are nothing close to exciting, and the danger isn't as frightening as the film would like to believe. It's monotonous, dry, and utterly predictable.
When it comes to voice acting, the film vaguely redeems itself. Osment does a nice job as Mowgli, and while Goodman is welcomed as Baloo, it isn't close to the original Phil Harris voice, which was deep, insightful, and addicting. Not to mention, the colors are vibrant and welcoming, giving the false impression they are used in the efforts to create a fun and memorable experience.
The problem with films like The Jungle Book 2 is that they aren't healthy for children, and are relentlessly boring for adults. Mainly because they are sugarcoated, lack insight and whimsicality, mistake a gentle appearance for a sense of wholesomeness, and are too short to even find compelling or enjoyable. The original Jungle Book is a wonderful film, mainly because it is soft, fresh, and simple. The only thing hurting it is Disney's inability to keep a DVD of their classics out for more than a year before they are sealed back in "The Disney Vault" only to be seen online, commanding outrageous prices. The Jungle Book 2 is nothing more than an unnecessary rehash that should've and would've been bound for an immediate DVD release had not Disney seen dollar signs in front of the film's poster.
Voiced by: Haley Joel Osment, John Goodman, Mae Whitman, Connor Funk, Bob Joles, and Tony Jay. Directed by: Steve Trenbirth.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?