“Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle” (Columbia)
By Catholic News Service
Amusing comic adventure in which a quartet of teens (Alex Wolff, Ser’Darius Blain, Madison Iseman and Morgan Turner) find themselves magically transported into an old video game where they inhabit the avatars they chose before the start of play (Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Jack Black and Karen Gillan). Most of the laughs come from the contrast between the characters’ real-life personas and the bodies and personalities they take on within their new environment. As they face and overcome a series of challenges in their quest to win the game — the only means of reemerging from it — the ensemble learns familiar Hollywood lessons about the value of teamwork and the courage required to pursue cherished dreams.
Director Jake Kasdan’s film, more a variant on than a sequel to 1995’s “Jumanji,” and based, like its predecessor, on Chris Van Allsburg’s 1981 children’s book, keeps its conflicts almost completely bloodless. But some off-color gags and a considerable amount of vulgarity in the dialogue render this strictly grownup fare.
Gunplay and other combat violence, some of it harsh but with minimal gore, at least one use of profanity and a couple of milder oaths, sexual and anatomical humor, a single rough term, a few crude and numerous crass words. The Catholic News Service classification is A-III — adults. The Motion Picture Association of America rating is PG-13 — parents strongly cautioned. Some material may be inappropriate for children under 13.