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Movie Review: Jumanji (1995)

Natalie is a writer who works at her local library. She enjoys writing reviews, watching anime and TV shows, and playing video games.

Jumanji Remastered Blu-ray cover.

Jumanji Remastered Blu-ray cover.

Quick Info

Director: Joe Johnston
Distributor: TriStar Pictures/Sony Pictures Home Entertainment
Released: December 5, 2017
Runtime: 104 minutes
Availability: on DVD, blu-ray and digital

The Story is Fun, but not Amazing

I enjoyed the Jumanji (1995) film and since the sequel, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) came out with the third movie Jumanji: The Next Level (2019) to come out December 3rd, 2019, I decided to start from the beginning since the original film was playing on TV.

I understand why people like it. The story is unique and it makes for an interesting kids film.

The story was interesting and entertaining and I liked the film. Everything about it was very well done and the characters had good writing.

Jimanji Trailer - 1995

The Visual Effects are Still Impressive

One thing that I find very impressive about the film Jumanji (1995) is that the visual effects are a mixture of practical animatronics, green screen, and CGI. They manage to blend most of it seamlessly, and while the CGI does look a little dated.

The visual effects are still nice and don’t look too outdated, it does look old when it comes to the graphics because they look cartoony now.

I still like the movie and the visual effects definitely hold up.

An adult Alan Parish.

An adult Alan Parish.

The Acting is Great!

It’s very interesting to watch this film knowing that there are a few stars who are very famous now and this was still early in their careers.

Robin Williams did a fantastic job as Alan Parrish. He brings his lively energy to the character, while not being as comedic as he usually is in many films, he still knows how to act very childlike and how to portray a younger child in an adult body because he’s still lived in a game for 26 years. I think he did a great job in this film.

Bonnie Hunt did a great job in her performance as Sarah Whittle. She played off Robin William’s and they had great character dynamics between the two of them.

Bradley Pierce did a decent as Peter Shepherd. He didn’t really stand out, but he did a good job.

Kirsten Dunst really stood out as Judy Shepherd. She’s had a great career as an adult and you can see why in this film. She’s always been a terrific actress and she was still a good actress when she was a kid too. I liked her performance in this film. I hope she will cameo in one of the newer Jumanji sequels; it would be a nice shouout to the original movie.

Jonathan Hyde gave a great performance as Van Pelt. He was a great villain for the other characters to go against, because he doesn’t care about anything but his thrill of hunting humans. He’s also the great butt-end of some of the comedy in the film and he did a great job of doing that and being a terrifying villain.

Overall, the cast of this film is excellent and they all did a fine job bringing this strange story to life. It might not be the best acting ever, but I could tell everyone loved working on it and they all did their best for what their characters were in this film.

Jumanji Soundtrack - 1. Main Title (HD)

The Soundtrack is Good

James Horner’s soundtrack is good, but what makes it memorable is the musical theme for the Jumanji board game. The music itself suits the movie but it doesn’t really stick out in my head besides the theme for the game.

The theme for the game is the most memorable part of the film because the sequel movie Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) uses a variation of the theme for their movie.

It’s a decent soundtrack but not the most amazing thing I’ve ever heard.

You Do Have to Suspend Your Disbelieve because the Premise is Ridiculous

I did enjoy this film a lot, but you do have to suspend your disbelief because it’s a silly idea to have a board game come to life in the real world, but because it’s realistic creatures coming out of the board and not fantasy creatures it is a little easier to suspend your disbelief, but it viewers could find the whole premise to be silly and ridiculous.

The Jumanji board game.

The Jumanji board game.

Reader Poll

It’s a Fun Movie, but a Little Dated

The visual effects for the Jumanji (1995) look a little dated and the story might seem silly but I really enjoyed this film. I wanted to watch this film before I reviewed Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) so it only made sense for me to start from the beginning even though the sequel is a standalone film that you can watch without having seen this one. I wanted to see this film to see what people liked about it. I also enjoy Robin Williams so I wanted to watch it for that reason as well.

It’s definitely a fun film, not the best I’ve ever seen but it an enjoyable film and a way to see the late Robin Williams again.

It’s one that I enjoyed but I’m not going to buy it. I enjoyed watching it on

Quick Summary

What Works:What Doesn't Work:

Good story, characters and world-building

The premsise is sily and ridiculous

Nice visual effects still hold up

The visual effects look somewhat dated for the CGI

Good soundtrack

 

Good acting

My Grade: B

Jumanji (1995) is a fun family film that I enjoyed a lot. I do think it’s worth your time but you should only buy it if you enjoyed it, fortunately, it’s very inexpensive both as a digital and physical copy. I was happy to just record it on TV and watch it once.

I won’t be buying it, but it is a fun film to watch. It was nice to see Robin Williams in a film I hadn’t watched before. All the other actors were great too.

It might be a silly movie but it’s fun and still very enjoyable. It’s one that you can catch on cable TV or Satellite if you search for it since the sequel Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) came out the first film has aired on TV more and people enjoyed the new sequel.

I enjoyed this film a lot, although I won’t be buying it, I will definitely be watching the sequel, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle (2017) very soon. It’s worth your time and might be worth your money if you enjoyed the film since it’s very inexpensive to buy a physical copy of the movie.

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