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SECOND JUNGLE BOOK

SYNOPSIS:
Following his adventures in The Jungle, Mowgli (Jamie Williams) is living with his wildlife family: his brother Grey Wolf, his friend Baloo the bear and his protector Begheera, the black panther. Running to escape from the monkey tribes, Mowgli reaches the train tracks near the village of Waigara. The circus talent scout, Harrison (Billy Campbell), catches a glimpse of Mowgli and is desperate to tag him as the next star attraction for his show. Enlisting the help of the evil Buldeo (Gulshan Grover), they set out to capture Mowgli.

"The big problem with a story like this, is that enough attention hasn’t been spent on the story itself - or more specifically, the script. Because good storytelling is what is required to make this into a family adventure with dramatic peaks and colourful characters in exotic settings. Too much emphasis cannot be placed on the power and strength of the written word which is the starting point for any good film. True, such a tale probably lies best in the imagination, so we can bend and shape reality to suit ourselves, yet I can’t help but feel that Rudyard Kipling’s The Second Jungle Book could and should have been a much better experience for film lovers of all ages. Here, the main flaw is a lack of plot and structure as well as weak characterisations. The plot elements have great promise: young boy taught to survive in the jungle by wild animals is in danger of exploitation from evil, so-called civilised human beings. An Indiana Jones-style adventure surrounded by jungle animals with a young boy who relies on his wild friends… it sounds terrific. Perhaps it looked terrific on paper. Instead, the film relies almost entirely on the appeal of the wild animals, a cute little boy and a few colourful characters. And the animals ARE most engaging - the delightful monkeys, chimps with personality, a sleek black panther, wild wolves, the stunningly marked tiger and the big bear straight from this year’s Oscar podium. Photographed beautifully in lush exotic settings, The Second Jungle Book is undemanding underwhelming entertainment."
Louise Keller

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CRITICAL COUNT
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Unfavourable: 1
Mixed: 0
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JUNGLE BOOK 2 (PG)
(US)
(Full title:
Rudyard Kipling’s The Second Jungle Book: Mowgli and Baloo)

CAST: Jamie Williams, Bill Campbell, Roddy McDowall, David Paul Francis

DIRECTOR: Duncan McLachlan

PRODUCER: Raju Patel

SCRIPT: Bayard Johnson, Matthew Horton (based on the tale by Rudyard Kipling)

CINEMATOGRAPHER: Adolfo Bartoli

EDITOR: Marcus Manton

MUSIC: John Scott

PRODUCTION DESIGN: Errol Kelly

RUNNING TIME: 89 minutes

AUSTRALIAN DISTRIBUTOR: Col TriStar

AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: April 9, 1998







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