Published On: Wed, Dec 18th, 2019

‘Jumanji Next Level’ brings back the laughs, but loses a bit of heart

Audiences were thrilled with Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, an entertaining and fun sequel to the Robin Williams led 1995 film. Now the next installment, Jumanji: Next Level puts characters back into the dangerous game.

Stars from second film, Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, all return in the new film with Danny DeVito and Danny Glover entering the game with the other players. Alex Wolff, Ser’darius Blain, Madison Iseman, and Morgan Turner also return as the teen players from the first sequel, with Wolff’s Spencer setting the events in motion by finding a way to repair the game in attempt to relive the positive, heroic elements of being Dr. Bravestone (Johnson).

Needless to say, as revealed in the trailers, the characters don’t end up in the same bodies as before with Glover and DeVito’s Milo and Eddie joining the fray.

This adventure is revealed immediately to be different and more challenging in some ways. The story doesn’t stay tight enough to make sense like the first film as the Big Bad is pretty weak and forgettable.

It’s hard to be disappointed with a childish plot when the premise is about players being “sucked” into a board game/video game. That said, the character develop lived out in each avatar delivered a rewarding finale for each teen player. In Next Level, the biggest comes with Milo and Eddie, their unresolved feud from years earlier and the we deal with aging and retirement.

To illustrate my point, at the start of Next Level, all of the teens are in different places than we Welcome to the Jungle started: Bethany (Madison Iseman) is no longer the narcissistic blonde: brainy Martha (Morgan Turner) has found her confidence; Fridge (Ser’Darius Blain) is busy with classes — all big strides created from the Jumanji experience.

When Next Level wraps, there is less meaningful development for the teens.

All of the stars are fantastic again, even changing their controlling characters in spots to give each actor even more room to experiment and entertain. That said, Hart’s character, Mouse, just doesn’t get the good lines…those big laughs which filled gaps in the first sequel.

There is plenty of action and fan service to warrant a viewing, but this is less satisfying.

With a credit scene, Sony can keep the speculation of another film goes and, frankly, could be super interesting IF there was a way to get this CAST INVOLVED.

Jumanji: Next Level earns 6 out of 10 stars

‘Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle’ links to Robin Williams character, explains Jack Black

‘Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle’ is the ‘Jumanji 2’ title, Karen Gillan’s costume linked to Lara Croft

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About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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