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The Jungle Book Opens With a Roar

Jorge Sette By Jorge Sette Published on April 17, 2016

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Mowgli is many boys’ favorite Disney character. He is cool, independent, lives among animals, and doesn’t have to go to school. He has all the freedom in the world, plays in trees, rivers and caves, and has a funny bear and a wise panther as best friends. Not even Peter Pan and the Lost Boys can beat that, although they come close.

Directed by Jon Favreau, the remake of the 1967 popular animated movie THE JUNGLE BOOK – based on Rudyard Kipling’s famous stories - has just opened in theaters all over the world, boasting a dazzling combination of live action and state-of the-art CGI - computer-generated imagery - which deserves to be experienced in the full potential of its 3D version on IMAX. One of the top openings of all time for the month of April.

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Mowgli, played by the extremely charismatic young actor Neel Sethi, who bears an uncanny resemblance to the character of the 1967 animation, is the only living character in the movie; everything else, including animals and settings, is digitized. The visual effects are breathtaking: the jungle and its animals look absolutely realistic and gorgeous.

Top Hollywood actors, such as Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley and Scarlett Johansson, lend their voices to the main characters, adding to the attraction. The film is a feast for the eyes from the very first minute to the end of the final credits – don’t leave before the very end: extra animations and great renditions of the three movie songs accompany the credits.

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In broad brushstrokes, this is the story a human baby (a man-cub) found alone in the jungle and raised by wolves. He is respected and looked after by the pack, which follows precise laws concerning when one is allowed to hunt and what is allowed to be killed. Mowgli does not really fit in, though. He has a terrible enemy in the tiger Shere Khan (menacingly voice by actor Idris Elba), who had trouble with humans in the past, and, therefore, is determined to get rid of the man-cub. Shere Khan argues with the other animals that Mowgli will grow up to become a threat to the jungle – which is not entirely wrong! Mowgli’s closest friends, the magnificent looking black panther Bagheera (voiced by Ben Kingsley) and the clumsy and lazy good-hearted bear Baloo (channeling Bill Murray’s voice), have the difficult task of persuading the boy that it’s time to leave the jungle and go back to the men village, where he belongs. 

Watch one of the movie trailers below:

https://youtu.be/C4qgAaxB_pc

The movie keeps the same characters and themes of the original book, but the stories and emphases are slightly different. While the movie focus on non-stop action, stunning images and a few jokes (there could be more to please the adult audience), the original book is a lot darker, exploring, in more depth, themes such as loneliness, the inability to fit in, the need to grow up, and the privilege of being a man and to be able to explore all the potential of the human mind.

There are a number of great moments in the movie, but three of them will surely stick with the viewer far longer: the chilling seduction of Mowgli by the sibilant and hypnotic giant snake Kaa (beautifully voiced by Scarlett Johansson) - warning: this is bound to scare even adult viewers!; the musical number performed by Baloo and Mowgli, who dance and sing a new and funkier version of the famous Oscar-nominated song Bare Necessities; and the face-off between Shere Khan and Mowgli at the end of the movie: certainly one of the most thrilling sequences in movie history.

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After all the excitement, I will leave the reader with the relaxing lyrics of Bare Necessities, whose wisdom we can still use:

Look for the bare necessities
The simple bare necessities
Forget about your worries and your strife
I mean the bare necessities
Old Mother Nature's recipes
That bring the bare necessities of life
Wherever I wander, wherever I roam
I couldn't be fonder of my big home
The bees are buzzin' in the tree
To make some honey just for me
When you look under the rocks and plants
And take a glance at the fancy ants
Then maybe try a few
The bare necessities of life will come to you
They'll come to you!
Look for the bare necessities
The simple bare necessities
Forget about your worries and your strife
I mean the bare necessities
That's why a bear can rest at ease
With just the bare necessities of life
Now when you pick a paw-paw
Or a prickly pear
And you prick a raw paw
Next time beware
Don't pick the prickly pear by the paw
When you pick a pear
Try to use the claw
But you don't need to use the claw
When you pick a pear of the big paw-paw
Have I given you a clue ?
The bare necessities of life will come to you
They'll come to you!
Oh, man, this is really ...
So just try and relax, yeah cool it
Fall apart in my backyard
'Cause let me tell you something little britches
If you act like that bee acts, uh uh
You're working too hard
And don't spend your time lookin' around
For something you want that can't be found
When you find out you can live without it
And go along not thinkin' about it
I'll tell you something true
The bare necessities of life will come to you
Look for the bare necessities
The simple bare necessities
Forget about your worries and your strife
(yeah, man!)
I mean the bare necessities
That's why a bear can rest at ease
With just the bare necessities of life
(yeah!)
With just the bare necessities of life
(yeah, man!)



Jorge Sette

Jorge Sette is Bookwitty's Regional Ambassador for South America. He represents the company, writing relevant content for the region, recruiting contributors, contacting partners and ... Show More

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