Run time: 2 hour 7 minutes
Genre: Action, Adventure, Comedy
Lily Houghton is obsessed with finding a magical cure for all illnesses located deep in the Amazon Jungle. As a woman, she doesn’t get the opportunities with her peers so she is forced to work through her brother, MacGregor. With the Germans fresh on their tail, Lily and MacGregor set off to find a captain to take them down the treacherous river.
Dr. Lily Houghton is a British woman who’s searching for the Tears of the Moon which is a plant that supposedly could heal people.
Lily is a very stubborn and determined woman who will do anything to attain her goal. There are moments when she’ll make decisions without thinking them through but overall she is quite capable and intelligent. Frank is a skipper who takes people along jungle cruises in the Amazon. Frank’s cruises involve a lot of deception and he himself is a con artist but he can also be quite brave, intelligent and he is quite strong which makes him a good guide. MacGregor is the brother of Lily and he is along for the ride as he may not like high stake adventures but he is loyal to his sister. He is quite funny but proves himself to be willing and brave throughout.
This movie was great! I thought it was tons of fun and had a lot of similar tones and ideas to other films I love. Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt are fantastic in their roles with both of them being quite funny and charismatic as always. Lily is a great character and her determination and stubbornness lead her and the group into danger sometimes but her high energy and positivity make her super likable. Frank strikes the balance between charming and a little bit of a jerk well with Dwayne Johnson portraying a conman quite well. Dwayne and Emily have great chemistry together and the banter between the characters was always amusing ad I like the direction their relationship went. All the characters were great in this with MacGregor being a constant spot for comedy and the villainous Prince Joachim struck the balance between funny and menacing quite well. The story itself is pretty straightforward in general and reminded me of a Pirates of the Caribbean and Indiana Jones film with our heroes after a mystical object and are chased by magical and non-magical threats. Of course, the film Jungle Cruise is based on a Disney classic ride just like Pirates of the Caribbean and just like Pirates of the Caribbean there are tons of references and ideas taken directly from the ride like the jungle cruise that Frank takes tourists on as many of the corny jokes and things they see are directly from the ride. Having been on the ride myself a few times I enjoyed the references and thought they were cool. This film has many more twists and turns than I expected and it actually had deeper lore than expected. This also leaves room for future installments that I would be glad to watch.
All in all, this was a fantastic adventure film in the vein of a Pirates of the Caribbean that I thoroughly enjoyed and would definitely recommend. So, check it out on Disney+ or theatres.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
My favourite moment was the first jungle cruise Frank takes the tourists on as I just enjoyed all the references to the ride, the corny jokes, and just the personality of Frank in general. It was just a funny scene.
Jungle Cruise is a love child between Indiana Jones and Pirates of the Caribbean and I love it. Emily Blunt and Dwayne Johnson are fantastic, and Jack Whitehall was really good in a lesser role. Jungle Cruise surprised me in more than a couple of ways, with the humour and the darker story. This honestly had more jump scares than Fear Street, but the unexpectedness made it so much better. Apparently, the ride at Disney is quite funny as well, but I’ve never been so I didn’t expect the number of puns and jokes that came from our fearless captain. The different tones we continually shift from are awesome, and it kept me engaged throughout.
The setting of Jungle Cruise is beautiful, and although it isn’t technically filmed the Amazon, I was convinced. The river is gorgeous, the surrounding forest is so well done. The little intricacies of the “living” jungle were super cool, and the lore that was set up was even cooler. The mix between the dangers of the Amazon that exist today, and the lore set up in this movie, plus the mystery behind the Amazon, made this feel exactly like Indiana Jones. You know it’s fiction and a little bit absurd, but because it is so well written it feels just believable enough. It’s a tough line to toe, but I was convinced. There are a few twists along the way that I didn’t even see coming, so if you are worried about a slow or predictable plot, this isn’t an issue. Also, a sub in the Amazon was fun.
This is a really good movie, another hit by Disney. I don’t see us getting a second one, so this could be one of the better one-off movies we have seen in the live-action world in a while. Our cast is wonderful, and the plot is even better. Go check this out, go support your local theatre as they try to pull out of this pandemic, and just enjoy a great movie.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
This is an easy one today. The moment where the conquistadors are reunited with the river and removed from stone was a huge twist. The jump scare got me at least a little, and it gave our story an entirely new villain. Also, the way the jungle deteriorated the conquistadors was really unique, although a little weird.
Going into this movie, I didn’t really have any expectations. I didn’t know where Disney wanted to take this movie or the direction it wanted to go, but I have to say, that I did enjoy this movie. It was a fun adventure, with great characters, solid humor, and a surprisingly deep lore. As Austin put it in the theatre, Jungle Cruise felt like a cross between Indiana Jones and Pirates of the Caribbean.
Now, I know I mentioned that this movie has great characters, and that it does, the one aspect of the characters I wished was more development of Frank and Lily’s character. Contrary to MacGregor’s development, Frank and Lily’s seemed lackluster and lacking. Besides the character development, I wish there was more to the plot in Jungle Cruise. For lore related reasons, I understand why the movie mostly stayed on the River, but I wish there could have been a bit more where the characters explore the actual forest.
Besides these small points, Jungle Cruise has some pretty great aspects. As mentioned earlier, MacGregor’s character development was one of the best that I’ve seen. Although it was some predictable changes, the flow of his change felt natural with many satisfying moments. Besides the character development, I loved the humor in this movie. The kid friendly jokes were pretty funny, but the best part was the sprinkles on adult humor here and there. The number of jokes was perfectly balanced, so both kids and parents can enjoy the movie together.Overall, Jungle Cruise exceeded my expectations. The combination of great characters, interesting lore, fun adventure, and even great humor, this is a movie the whole family can enjoy. Jungle Cruise even has more jump scares than the Fear Street series combined. Definitely give this one a watch. You won’t regret it.
Favourite Moment (Spoilers):
My favourite moment throughout the movie was the joke of punching Frank in the face. The repeated gag of Frank being suckered punch was funny, even after the many times it occurred. It also provided some breathing room in the story, which helped.