Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle Review & Parental Guidance

Since seeing a trailer for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, my daughter was asking to see it. We saw it today and I wanted to share our Jumanji review and some parental guidance for this PG-13 movie. 

Jumanji - Welcome to the Jungle

(l to r) Nick Jonas, Dwayne Johnson, Karen Gillan, Kevin Hart and Jack Black star in JUMANJI: WELCOME TO THE JUNGLE.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle Review

Neither my daughter nor I have seen the original Jumanji (1995) or read the book by Michigan native Chris Van Allsburg. This movie modernizes the story with a video game replacing the board game and instead of the animals being transported to our world, the players are transferred to Jumanji and placed into the bodies of the avatars that they play. This body swap provides a lot of comedic moments as 

  • Spencer, an awkward, non-athletic video gaming “geek” is placed in the body of Dr. Smolder Braveheart (Dwayne Johnson)
  • Fridge, a tall, athletic football player becomes considerably shorter, non-athletic zoologist Moose Finbar (Kevin Hart)
  • Martha, a highly driven, intellectual becomes Ruby Roundhouse, a scantily clad martial artist, dance-fighting “man-killer” (Karen Gillan)
  • Bethany, a stereotypical, superficial pretty girl who is obsessed with her phone and social media becomes Dr. Shelly Oberon, a portly, middle-aged man (Jack Black)

I thought Jack Black did a great job playing a teen girl trapped in his body. He was by far the best of the actors at dealing with the change. Karen Gillan also did a great job, particularly when the characters try to teach her to flirt. I also liked the way the they incorporated elements of a video game into the story. 

I also wish that they had done less backstory on the teens and spent more time on the various game levels.


It was definitely a light, fun movie to see over winter break. It’s perfect for the tweens and teen audience.

Jumani: Welcome to the Jungle Trailer

About Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

Sony Pictures provided the following description of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle:


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…

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle opened in theaters on December 20, 2017.

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is currently available on home video.

Parental Guidance for Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is rated PG-13. There are some fight scenes and some suspense. The bad language was fairly mild for a PG-13 movie. 

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

(l to r) Kevin Hart (Franklin “Moose” Finbar), Dwayne Johnson (Dr. Smolder Bravestone), Karen Gillan (Ruby Roundhouse) and Jack Black (Professor Shelly Oberon)

When the teenagers are transported into the video game, one female character is placed into a male body. There are several humorous scenes where she adapts – receiving instructions in urinating and reacting to being attracted to another character.

I would recommend the movies for ages 8+.

Final Thoughts on Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle is a fun movie that the kids will enjoy. With frigid temperatures, it’s a perfect activity for winter break or other days off from school.

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Anna Mae

Anna Mae owns & operates Ann Arbor with Kids, a website dedicated to Family Activities in Ann Arbor. My husband and I moved to Ann Arbor in 2003 and our daughter joined the family in 2006.

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