Monday, October 27, 2008

Top Ten Movies #10 - JUMANJI

When I was a kid we loved to play board games. Every Christmas my parents would make sure that we got at least one or two and I particularly loved the ones like Moustrap and 13 Ghosts or Operation where you got alot of peices that you had to put together to play the game. For this reason a movie about a board game (albiet a sinister one) was right up my alley. Based on a children's book by Chris Van Allsburg (who also wrote ZATHURA)its the story of two children who start a game in 1969 but who are forced to finish is 26 years later when fate and the game come back into play. Like Back to the Future there was a kind of 'full circle' effect to Jumanji that I love. Everything that went wrong is put right at the end and despite all the peril the characters are put through you have that satifaction at the end that the world was really a safe and happy place. Combining Robin Williams (in what I think is his best toned down everyman role) with Bonnie Hunt creates the perfect chemistry. They are both damaged and not quite adults but are both brave and resourceful and real 'parents' to the two child actors. (One being Kirsten Duntz who has NEVER looked cuter) You somehow know that they will save the day. Sure the special effects of the animals looks dated by today's CGI standards but the filmakers never let up for an instant and you can't take your eyes away from the screen. The Hunter is a real figure of menace and its a nice touch to have him played by the same actor(Jonathan Hyde) that also plays Alan's (Robin Williams) father. And how can you not laugh every moment that David Allen Greer is on the screen. His adventures with the most unfortunate police car in movie history are comedy gold. I have seen this movie alot but for some reason like the other movies on my top ten list I always seem to make time for it when its on TV and it always makes me smile.

No comments: