Jumaji: Welcome to the Jungle is an enjoyable comedy… just don’t watch the trailers.

3 and a half stars
Jumaji: Welcome to the Jungle was a film I was looking forward to seeing since I first saw the trailers.
Directed by Jake Kasdan, The film looked funny and inventive and I wanted to see how good it was.
However, because of how busy I have been over the Holidays, I did not go to see it until very recently.
Still, were my expectations meet?
Yes… I just wish I had not watched the trailers.
If you want to watch Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, please, do not watch the trailers because 90% of the jokes from the first half of the movie are in those trailers.
I knew what I was watching was funny but it was certainly much less enjoyable because I knew the jokes were coming.
My viewing experience would have been so much better if I had not watched them.
But, aside from that, the film is pretty enjoyable.
The plot of the film is that, 20 years after the first movie, four teenagers stumble across Jumanji, which has transformed into a video game.
They start playing but are sent into the game into the bodies of the characters they were playing as, Dr Smolder Bravestone (Dwayne Johnson), Shelly Oberon, (Jack Black) Franklin Finbar (Kevin Hart) and Ruby Roundhouse (Karen Gillan).
They must then complete the game if they want to escape Jumanji, without losing all three lives or it is game over.
The film definitely has fun with its concept, with so many inside jokes for video gamers, but it the funniest parts of the movie are the characters themselves.
Watching a teenage nerd inside the body of Dwayne Johnson is very funny.

Dwayne Johnson is funny as a teenage boy stuck in a heroic adventurer’s body.

Best of all though is Bethany in the body of Jack Black’s Shelly Oberon.
Watching a beautiful, popular girl in an “overweight middle aged man’s” body led to some very funny scenarios.
The ending of the film, for me, was a highlight because of how the characters had grown through the story and the results of that.
It is not all good though because the film does have its problems.
There were some interesting areas of conflict that the film did not really go in depth with when they could have.
Also, up until the characters are transported into Jumanji, the film was not very funny and the jokes fell flat.
Then there is the villain.
He is one dimensional, boring and, since we know he is just a video game character and not a real person, he does not hold much investment.
This could be an inside joke about how one dimensional a lot of video game villains are but if it is, once again, they do not go all the way with this idea.

Bobby Cannavale as Russel Van Pelt, the villain of the movie.

Honestly, I do not think the film needed a villain.
They could have just had the characters be attacked by random animals and bad guys and it would have played out pretty much the same.
But, even with these problems, the film is still enjoyable.
Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a fun time that will leave you laughing… if you have not watched the trailers.

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