Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle – first trailer arrives

The first trailer has arrived for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, the reboot/sequel of the 1995 Robin Williams not-quite-a-classic children’s film based on the children’s book by Chris Van Allsburg. In that film, elements of a jungle world cause problems as they magically emerge from a board game, which the players have to finish or risk further punishment.

This time, the game takes the form of an old-fashioned games console (still looks pretty modern to me) which four players with nothing in common discover while in detention, and it sucks them into the world of Jumanji, forced into the bodies of their cliched avatars. Many were apprehensive about this new version, but given it’s a completely different take on the source material, there shouldn’t be many worries. It appears to be mashing up a couple of genres here with kids bodyswapping into adults reminding us of Freaky Friday and Big, while there are clearly hints of The Breakfast Club, which has clearly come back into vogue with Power Rangers and Spider-Man: Homecoming evoking the same vibe (really that stopped being cool when The Faculty did it in 1998).

Here’s the official synopsis from Sony:

In the brand new adventure Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, the tables are turned as four teenagers in detention are sucked into the world of Jumanji. When they discover an old video game console with a game they’ve never heard of, they are immediately thrust into the game’s jungle setting, into the bodies of their avatars, played by Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart, and Karen Gillan. What they discover is that you don’t just play Jumanji –Jumanji plays you. They’ll have to go on the most dangerous adventure of their lives, or they’ll be stuck in the game forever…

Here’s hoping that Kevin Hart and Jack Black can reign it in, otherwise it could get very Ace Ventura.
Jake Kasdan (Bad Teacher, Sex Tape) is in the director’s chair.
 Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle arrives in cinemas 26 December 2017