DisneyToons review: The Jungle Book 2

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My opinion right after watching movie

My opinion right after watching the film is that I feel like they had to rehash a lot to come up with a cohesive plot for the film. The characters are still not that impressive, nothing is explored on or learned, and while it is appealing to look at, and there was some effort put into the story, it is still not a standout or deserved to be released in theaters.

Production

Apparently in the 1990s, the original draft that was submitted for this film was about Baloo saving his romantic interest from a poacher….. Easy to see why it was denied and changed. For legal reasons, the character King Louie from The Jungle Book was not allowed to appear in this film.

Story

So we start off the film with Mowgli (Haley Joel Osment) explaining to his adopted family about his journey in the last film, and we can clearly tell that they are building an attraction between him and Shanti (Mae Whitman). Everyone goes to bed, and I instantly notice that he calls his father “sir” and never “dad”. It is morning time, and Mowgli takes his adopted brother Ranjan (John Rhys-Daviens) to the river side to scare Shanti (who is getting water) by telling a story of the jungle, which pisses her off, and causes her to tell Ranjan that he is not a good influence.

Just by how they are setting things up, with Mowgli being obsessed with the jungle, Shanti hating the jungle, and how they are arguing about it to Ranjan, they are making her the foil to his ideaologies to stir conflict. I am sure we all know where things are going. Anyways, Mowgli somehow gets the children of the village to sing and go to the jungle (which she tells them to stop, since it is not allowed). Anyways, Mowgli gets in trouble by her father (who overhears her), and he blams her for him getting in trouble.
Just by how they are setting things up, with Mowgli being obsessed with the jungle, Shanti hating the jungle, and how they are arguing about it to Ranjan, they are making her the foil to his ideologies to stir conflict. I am sure we all know where things are going. Anyways, Mowgli somehow gets the children of the village to sing and go to the jungle (which she tells them to stop, since it is not allowed). Anyways, Mowgli gets in trouble by her father (who overhears her), and he blames her for him getting in trouble.

I have a serious question. How long is the time gap between the two films? We are not introduced to him meeting his family and settling in, and it seems like he has been by the village for a while. It is a bit hard for me to understand some of the conflicts of the film without knowing the gap between the films.

Things get even worse when the camera narrative takes us to the jungle, and we see Baloo (John Goodman) is obsessed with missing Mowgli, and even has a coconut named after him. He goes to get Mowgli from the village (which has been a pattern), which Bagheera (Bob Joles) tries, and fails to stop. Holy crap, Baloo has only known Mowgli for a few days, and after an undetermined amount of time, he is really that invested to kidnap him?

Shanti sees Baloo kidnap Mowgli, and yells loud enough for the neighbors to hear. She tells them to get the monster, but Sheer Khan ends up behind her, and they go after him instead. Shanti ends up following the duo into the jungle.
Shanti sees Baloo kidnap Mowgli, and yells loud enough for the neighbors to hear. She tells them to get the monster, but Shere Khan (Tony Jay) ends up behind her, and they go after him instead. Shanti ends up following the duo into the jungle.

Mowgli is bitching and moaning about how there is a bunch of rules at the village to Baloo, and of course he co-signs about everything. Baloo ends up starting to dislike Shanti for being no good for him. I wonder if the wolf family that raised him for 10 years is going to be paid a visit by Mowgli. They sing a reprise of Bare Necessities, and I tune out. Shanti ends up being hypnotized by Kaa (Jim Cummings), and is followed by Ranjan, who saves her from the snake. We learn the motivaitons from Shere Khan when he is speaking to Kaa, saying that he wants revenge on Mowgli, and wants to rid of him.

Bagheera sees some humans in the jungle, knowing that they are looking from Mowgli, so he goes to Baloo, who is literally holding Mowgli behind him, denying everything. This is utterly pathetic and redundant. Ugh.
Bagheera sees some humans in the jungle, knowing that they are looking from Mowgli, so he goes to Baloo, who is literally holding Mowgli behind him, denying everything. This is utterly pathetic and redundant. Ugh.

Since I am sick and tired of this, and I want this review to end,I will wrap it up quickly. Baloo and Mowgli goes to King Louie’s, and all of the animals bash Shanti and the human world, which causes Mowgli to miss his life and to walk off, only to bump into her and Ranjan. Baloo ends up running back to them, and  tries to scare off Shanti, because he told him. We get the misunderstanding plot element where Shanti is mad at him for planning this whole thing, and yada, yada, yada. As soon as he approaches them, Shere Khan appears behind him, and is defeated after a fight with Baloo and collapses under a bunch of rocks. He goes back to the man village, they learn not to be that afraid of the jungle.

Uncreative, redundant film. I did not learn anything new about the characters other than Shanti, and there was so little effort put into it. I am still confused as to what I am supposed to get out of the film.
Uncreative, redundant film. I did not learn anything new about the characters other than Shanti, and there was so little effort put into it. I am still confused as to what I am supposed to get out of the film.

Characters

The characters are nothing to go in depth into to be very honest.

He is still a bland plot device, but he did get more focus as a character when it comes to the dillema he is facing about the jungle world and the human world.
He is still a bland plot device, but he did get more focus as a character when it comes to the dilemma he is facing about the jungle world and the human world.
He has the same motivations, and he is still barely in the film. Not impressed.
He has the same motivations, and he is still barely in the film. Not impressed.
She is the only impressive character to me in the film, and we learn that she is a bit bossy, controlling, and a goody-two shoes. I am probably only impressed with her because in the last film, she had a 2 minute appearance instead of a full role.
She is the only impressive character to me in the film, and we learn that she is a bit bossy, controlling, and a goody-two shoes. I am probably only impressed with her because in the last film, she had a 2 minute appearance instead of a full role.
Annoying, ridiculous, not funny, and got on my nerves with his antics in the film.
Annoying, ridiculous, not funny, and got on my nerves with his antics in the film.
His presence is barely memorable in the film.
His presence is barely memorable in the film.
He is the typical little boy who looks up to the older little boy (Mowgli) as a role model for everything.
He is the typical little boy who looks up to the older little boy (Mowgli) as a role model for everything.

Animation

What you can definitely say is that the budget for this film is bigger than most in the canon, and that they definitely made this look like a theatrical film. The colors,textures, and the character animation is great and well-suited.

Music

The music is pretty much the same from the first film. There were a lot of rehashed songs, and the score is pretty good though it is not the most stand out.

Reception at Release

When the film came out on February 14, 2003, it made about $47,901,582 domestically, and $87,802,017 overseas, making about $135,703,599 internationally. Critically-wise, it got extremely panned, saying that it is a piece of crap, and should be released via direct-to-dvd.

Reception Today

 

Final Score

Story: 4.5/10

Characters: 4/10

Animation: 7/10

Music: 6.5/10

22/40 = 55%

Next time…

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5 thoughts on “DisneyToons review: The Jungle Book 2

  1. Yeah it isn’t very good although Baloo is willing to die for Mowgli in first one so I can see why he is sincerely attached to him. He wants him to come back at the end of the first one and not go with her. I love the first one because it is so joyful with the great songs and 2 creepy villains. This doesn’t have any of that entertainment value. Not the worst in the canon for me (at least they got good voice talent) but still not good. I actually don’t mind Piglet’s Big Movie so hopefully that one won’t be too rough for you.

  2. Can you imagine that I actually watched that one in theatres? Yeah, it had a limited theatrical release and having not really paid attention to Disney, I wasn’t aware that it wasn’t a “true” Disney movie.
    The sad thing is that the idea wasn’t even that bad but the execution was just awful.

  3. I watched this film once. Never again. I know The Jungle Book is mainly a classic due to certain songs rather than its plot, but it’s still a decent film and did not deserve this as a sequel, or any sequel for that matter.

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