The Jungle Book (2016 USA)

Too much CGI can go stale very fast if the story cannot keep up. The seams will start to show and the minutes will turn to hours. Looking at all the frames of The Jungle Book, other than Neel Sethi as Mowgli, everything is wall-to-wall CGI. But the sense of story is so compelling I lost myself totally in this world. I was awestruck by the level of visual details of each creature that occupies the screen. The facial expressions mirroring its running gamut of emotions, the physical movements of each animal, the pitch-perfect voicing – who wouldn’t believe they possess a human soul? Jon Favreau really cemented his directing skills with this film.
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The Pack (1977 USA)

film 1It’s more effective than the movie “Dogs” which was also released in that busy period, post-“Jaws”, when a number of films about nature attacking man like this were coming out. Every year, usually during summer time, you hear depressing reports about pets that are dumped, either tied up to trees or simply thrown out of driving cars, whilst the owners go on vacation and just don’t ever look back on them. [Read more…]

Homeward Bound: The Incredible Journey (1993 USA)

Homeward.bound_dvd_coverThis is a remake of the 1963 oldie ‘The Incredibly Journey’. Surprisingly, the plot is almost identical but this one is superior. The biggest difference is that this version is more for the big screen and has far more humour. Another big difference is that the animals talk here, which is good because they only talk by telepathy. If they moved their lips like people, or like animals do in cartoons, it would be too unreal so top marks for that. [Read more…]

The Jungle Book (1967 USA)

film 5The combination of cast, roles, and music never worked as well on any Disney film from the classic era as it did, here. The great voices of Disney feature films are all present, and they all define their characters in an unforgettable way. It gets by on charm, which it has a considerable supply of. Sebastian Cabot, Phil Harris, George Sanders, J. Pat O’Malley, Sterling Holloway, and especially Louis Prima make their animated avatars come to brilliant life in this film, well-adapted from Rudyard Kipling’s book. [Read more…]

Fantastic Mr Fox (Roald Dahl)

Fantastic Mr FoxMr Dahl was one of the greatest authors to ever put pen to paper during the 20th century. It’s fast paced with enough excitement, danger and momentum to appeal to children (and adults) who are considerably older than the usual 5 year old target audience.  And with gun-toting farmers on the prowl and terrible tractors wrecking havoc on the hill, it’s a particularly good story with which to entice reluctant boys away from computer or television screens. [Read more…]

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