Jungle Cruise – Movie Reviews by Ry!

Jungle Cruise – Splash So Familiar: An Amazon Adventure

The eyes of adventure.  It is something people seek in many mediums, including film.  When diving into a journey like tale, it is a kindling of the spirits for those thrill seekers.  What imbues in this kind of wonder can lift a basic script into worlds of a worthy escape.  In this review, I look at the latest Disney film that builds another idea from a theme park ride.  Even when the story plays along familiar lines, Jungle Cruise invokes the thrills of the ride.

When Lily Houghton (Emily Blunt) learns to the truth of a folklore item, she seeks the help of Frank the Skipper (Dwayne Johnson).  A tale of discovery turns into survival, as they must battle nature and mystery for the miracle of life.  The foundation is routed in the basics of an adventure tale.  You have your general character introductions, central MacGuffin and the journey.  In the first act, we are introduced to Lily Houghton.  She is an inquisitive mind that is seeking the truth about a petal that can heel any illness.  After some convenient plot elements, she learns the truth about the location of the petals: in the Amazon.  Once a change of setting, we get another introduction to Frank the Skipper.  A wisecracking Con-Artist with a secluded past, he is someone looking to live a simple life.  After a few scenes of physical humor and folly banter, the two characters team up (buddy/duo scenario) to travel deep into Amazon, seeking this miracle tree.  As we head into the second act, the story simmers within familiar adventure tropes.  As they travel on the river, you have varied moments of bombastic scenarios and methodical scenes of character reflection/heavy exposition.  The simplistic stylings can feel heavy handed at times, but it never takes away from the authenticity of the bond between the two main leads.  Ironically, the familiar aspect allows for the relationship to develop with a sense of sincerity.  With each obstacle they encounter, their bond grows within the visual prowess (of the jungle), leveling out any commonalty with a mixture of fun, action and humor.

As the crew heads deeper into the Amazon, certain revelations begin to add more gravity to their situation.  Frank and Lily are confronted with plot driven antagonists that bring folklore elements to life.  As things began to grow dire, dynamics of their relationships change that add more girth to the adventure theme.  Faced with new threats, the story pushes through a mixture of convoluted plot elements, colorful set pieces and a race against time motif.  This leads into a third act where the adventure themes begin to take over.  This creates the ultimate sandbox where the typical ‘good vs. bad’ scenario melds within the character’s backstories.  As things come to head, the combination of drama, romance and comedy create a lively but predictable happily ever after type of climax.  Jungle Cruise a simple adventure tale that provides a joyful ride.  With strong character leads, there is enough to enjoy.  If you are a fan of actors involved or adventure tales, this is for you.  It is a good time at the theaters for the family at the right price.

Full Score – 3 out of 5 (Theater Discount)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *