The Jungle Book is an action-packed live-action/CGI adventure based on Rudyard Kipling's classic story of young Mowgli (Neel Sethi), an orphaned "man cub" raised as a wolf and hated by the jungle's most vicious predator, tiger Shere Khan.
Parents, note that Common Sense Media says it's much more intense than the 1967 Disney animated musical with several "jump-worthy, intense moments (including one sudden and particularly sad death and several vicious animal fight sequences involving fangs, fur, claws, snarls and roars) that are very likely to scare younger viewers." Recommended for ages 9 and up.
Boasting an all-star voice cast (including Idris Elba, Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley, Christopher Walken and Scarlett Johansson), The Jungle Book offers families plenty to talk about. Try these topics/questions to get started:
- Which scenes startled you? Were you expecting them? What tells us to expect something scary when we're watching a movie? How much scary stuff can young kids handle?
- Which characters in the movie do you consider role models? Why? How do they demonstrate courage and teamwork? Why are those important character strengths?
- What mistakes does Mowgli make? What are the consequences of those mistakes? Why is it important for kids to see consequences in movies?
- Do you agree with Bagheera that Mowgli belongs in the man village? How do his talents and skills affect the characters around him? Is it wrong to change the way the jungle animals have always done things?
- How does this Jungle Book compare to Disney's classic animated one? Which do you like better, and why? The original has been criticized for the culturally insensitive way it depicts the apes. How does this version depict them?