(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing clips and screenshots from The Jungle Book 2. "Sunday Drive" by Silent Partner plays in the background)
Doug (vo): Well, after the surprise enjoyment of Return to Neverland, a kind of good Disney sequel, I was suddenly reminded of the bad Disney sequels with Jungle Book 2. By no means an awful movie, but definitely a 100% completely pointless one. There is no reason to continue this story, there is no reason to see these characters again. The first one ended on a perfect note. Mowgli goes where he’s supposed to go, and the animals go where they’re supposed to go. So, if you’re gonna do a sequel to this, you should make it really interesting. Hell, even the original book had a sequel, and it’s very, very interesting -- in fact, it’s downright depressing! But seeing how the first film barely followed the book, I was expecting this one wouldn’t either. Not only was I right, I was really disappointingly right.
Doug (vo): Mowgli is still a little boy and still in the Man Village. A family decides to take him in, and he even manages to get a little bit of romantic acquaintance...that is, as much as boys like girls at that age...but he finds the jungle is still calling him. So, one day, after getting in a fight with his family, he suddenly, out of nowhere, feels like he doesn’t belong and decides to run away, and thus finds Baloo, Bagheera, and all his animal friends. His girlfriend decides to chase after him, but little do they all know that Shere Khan is back and wants revenge from Mowgli humiliating him in the past. Will he slice him to ribbons while they sing "Bare Necessities" a minimum four times? Oh, how I wished.
Doug (vo): As some of you know, I wasn’t really the biggest fan of the first Jungle Book -- that is to say, it was good, it was fine. I just really wish there was a better rendition of the story told. But it’s okay. It’s passable. So, obviously, in the sequel, they try to relive a bunch of scenes that you remember from the first movie.
(Several screenshots are shown as Doug describes them in a bored manner)
Doug (vo): Look, there’s Kaa. Look, there’s the elephants. Look, there’s the vultures. And that’s... really about it. The only things that are kind of new in this is the opening and ending. The opening, where you see Mowgli in the Man Village, which honestly could’ve been a little developed a lot more, I think it’s a little too happy. And the ending, where there’s a climax in the ruins of an old temple. That was neat for a bit. But aside from that, it’s literally just going from character to character, scene to scene saying, "Hey, you remember this? You remember this?" Yeah, I do remember this. In fact, I can just put on the first movie to watch it! They just go from one distracting song to another distracting song -- actually, not even a different distracting song. Most of the time, it’s just "Bare Necessities". The romance between Mowgli and the girl isn’t very interesting, the new characters they do introduce just seem kind of pointless. I get the feeling this was intended for little, little kids, and I guess as a story for little, little kids go, it’ll...entertain them for a bit. But again, it’s Disney, and it’s The Jungle Book. Don’t you think a little bit more time and effort would go into the development of this?
(Several characters are shown)
Doug (vo): I mean, on a technical level, it’s not bad. The animation is still really nice, especially on the human characters. The voice actors are good choices, with Haley Joel Osment as Mowgli and John Goodman as Baloo, as well as Tony Jay playing Shere Khan and Jim Cummings as Kaa. These are all good replacements.
Final thought Edit
Doug (vo): But it just makes you feel all the worse that it’s being wasted on a story that just has no reason to be. Nothing is discovered, nothing is really furthered, it just kind of goes back to what you did in the first film. And even then...I don’t think I’m giving anything away here...he just kind of goes back to where he belongs, which, yeah, that’s kind of what happened in the first film, wasn’t it? (The poster of the 2016 live-action remake is shown) With Disney doing another live-action remake of this story and it looks like they’re gonna stick to the animated film once again, it’s such a shame to think we will never see a movie version of this book that’s supposed to be like the book.* I just never got, outside of the Chuck Jones short, why we never got this version on the big screen. It’s interesting, and kids would watch it, and adults would watch it. It’s the one time a dark, gritty reboot would be totally welcomed. But as someone who thought the first film was okay at best, this one just left me completely empty, and I think most people forget it immediately after they watch it. I feel bad, ’cause there’s obviously a lot of work and talent that went into making it, but unless you do something new and interesting, I think I’m gonna stay out of the jungle for a while.
(Two song sequences in the film are briefly shown)
- There’s actually a more faithful version that was released in December 2018 by Netflix, called Mowgli: Legend of the Jungle, which was directed by Andy Serkis. Doug was later informed of this on Facebook.