The Jungle Book

 

Well, if anyone was brave enough yesterday, they saw the horrifying thing that was the Sonic the Hedgehog trailer. While Jim Carey is just as funny as always, the leads of the film (James Marsden and Sonic’s Mirror Universe, deranged evil twin) leave an unsavory taste in everyone’s mouths. And do I really need to talk about the Gangster’s Paradise thing?

Of course, really, people are more troubled by the blue, human-teethed abomination than the actual human. Of all the CGI characters that fans have bawked at, Sonic definitely takes the cake.

In recent years CGI has become more and more popular in films, and while some are widely successful (The Jungle Book) others have far more mixed reactions (Alvin & The Chipmunks and sequels). Why are some CGI flicks revered when other ones become the terrible memes for months? (Looking at you, sad clown Dumbo.)

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At the end of the year, we like to look back and take stock of our movie going lives. It was a rough year, no question. Many of the movies we were looking forward to most over the last 12 months took every opportunity to disappoint, but, as always, we can at least make a list of 10 films that stood out above all others in the realms of sci-fi, action and horror, and 2016 was no exception. From mercs with mouths to guys who are nice, from good alien invasions to bad alien invasions, from childhood quests both real and animated, and from remembering your heroes to remembering the dangers of being alone in the woods, these are the Top 10 Nerdy Movies of 2016… (more…)

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As soon as one thinks about The Jungle Book, the classic 1967 animated film pops into your head. Sure, it’s a cross-generational Disney film that is almost a rite of passage for any child to watch. The animation was crude and the songs were catchy like most Disney films. For some reason, this film resonated with generations upon generations of moviegoers for its liveliness, and its ability to just bring a smile to your face. The film was so successful that it’s been re-released theatrically many times. Instead of releasing the film yet another time, Disney Pictures continues its current trend of live action remakes to their classic films. Writer Justin Marks and director Jon Favreau (of Iron Man fame) have been tasked with creating a more up to date remake of the classic Disney film. This time, instead of rudimentary 2D animation (which Disney has all but abandoned at this point), the classic tale gets a stylized CGI-enhanced 3D remake full of all the bells and whistles that would make Avatar blush. The film is almost 100% CGI, with the exception of the star of the film Mowgli (Neel Sethi), but we still get our talking animals, great musical numbers we know and love, and it’s a completely great film!

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From the footage that’s been released, director Jon Favreau’s adaptation of Disney’s The Jungle Book, which hits theaters in a few weeks, is taking the original story of home, family and belonging to a whole new level. Favreau has stated in the “Legacy Featurette” video included later in this post that, as a huge fan of the original film (based on the novel by Rudyard Kipling), he didn’t want to do a re-telling without a reason behind it. The intent this time around is to utilize today’s technology to provide the story with “photo-real animal animation” that will fully immerse viewers into Mowgli’s world. (more…)

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When Disney made the decision to repurpose much of their classic animated film stable as new live action films, the choice was met with a bit of trepidation. Entire generations of children were raised with these timeless films, which all began with Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, back in 1937, so many hold these movies sacred.  Still, when Disney began their experiment with 2010’s Alice in Wonderland, which was part reboot of the classic Disney animated film and part sequel to the same, audiences flocked to the cinemas to see the film, driving the global box office total to over $1bil. Being the money making machine it is, Disney took the ball and ran with it, and quickly followed up with Maleficent and Cinderella.  The next live action adaptation on the slate is The Jungle Book and if the new trailer is any indication, it may be the best animated to live-action adaptation that the studio has produced. (more…)

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The live action adaptation of the legendary Anime classic Ghost In The Shell, has moved a few steps closer towards its final destination on the big screen. This is in part due to the studio locking down Scarlett Johansson to play the lead role of Major Motoko Kusanagi. However, although the film is moving forward production wise, there is still a long way to go before the big-budget live-action feature Ghost In The Shell makes it to the theaters. (more…)

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As I’m sure you’re all aware, there are two competing versions of Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book in development. One has Jon Favreau and the resources and abilities of Disney behind it, and the other has the motion capture spellcasting of Andy Serkis in the director’s chair. The former has the considerable voice acting talents of Christopher Walken, Ben Kingsley and Bill Murray, but the latter is collecting some impressive voice talent of its own. Trading one Khan for another, Benedict Cumberbatch has been hired to voice Shere Khan in Serkis’ Jungle Book. (more…)

The Jungle Book (1967)

If you’ve been paying attention (and actually care), you may know that there are two new live-action Jungle Book movies in the making right now. One is being put together by Warner Bros. and the other by the almighty owner-of-everything, Disney. This news involves the Disney flick – The Jungle Book (the other one is minus the “the” in the title). The movie will be directed by Jon Favreau and has already cast the ever-in-demand Idris Elba and now it looks like two new big-name stars might be jumping on board – Scarlett Johansson and Academy Award-winner Lupita Nyong’o. (more…)

Andy Serkis Directing WB Jungle Book

In the case of the dueling Jungle Books, the Warner Bros version has taken another step forward with the hiring of director Andy Serkis. No, there aren’t two Andy Serkises, the director in question is also the man famous for his motion capture performances as Gollum in the Lord of the Rings movies, and the titular character in King Kong. But on The Jungle Book, Serkis will now be calling the shots, filling the director’s chair recently vacated by Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu (Babel, 21 Grams). (more…)