The Jungle Book

Movie review by
Nell Minow, Common Sense Media
The Jungle Book Movie Poster Image
Kids will like that Mowgli can talk to animals.
  • NR
  • 1942
  • 108 minutes

Parents say

age 11+
Based on 3 reviews

Kids say

age 2+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this movie.

Violence & Scariness

Mowgli's father killed by a tiger (off-screen), Mowgli subdues cobra and kills tiger with a knife, hunter kills cobra, fire in the forest, bad guys kill each other and person eaten by crocodile (not explicit).

Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism
Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this version is in sharp contrast with the Disney animated movie, with a real sense of the danger in the jungle and the different kinds of dangers in the "civilized" village.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 9 year old Written bySonofKatieElder January 4, 2012

You are never to young or too old to enjoy the wJungle Book

Disney has created a fun interpretaion of Kipling's masterpiece. That said I'd encourage everyone with children of around 10 upwards to read the book... Continue reading
Adult Written byT K December 25, 2017

Underrated, ahead of its time...

watching this movie, it is hard to imagine it was made in 1942, during the War... many reviews say that the fun factor is missing...perhaps a younger, cuter, Mo... Continue reading
Teen, 14 years old Written byjw1709 October 11, 2011

What's the story?

In this film version of Rudyard Kipling's book, Mowgli's father is killed by Shere Kahn, the tiger. The toddler boy wanders into the jungle, and is raised by wolves. Mowgli (Sabu) returns to the village in his early teens. Once his mother recognizes him, she socializes him and teaches him the native language. Intent on killing Shere Kahn, Mowgli buys a knife from Buldeo (Joseph Calleia), who hunts for reasons of pride instead of need. Though Buldeo tells his daughter Mahala not to talk to Mowgli, she goes with him into the jungle, where he shows her an abandoned palace filled with gold and jewels. A cobra warns them that the jewels are deadly. Mahala takes one coin, and when her father finds it, he wants Mowgli to show him how to get more. Other locals find out and want to find the palace, too. They find the place, but a battle over the treasure ends in deaths and a fire. Mowgli saves his mother, and returns to the jungle forever.

Is it any good?

Visually lush and striking (it was produced by some of the same people who made Thief of Bagdad), this version is in sharp contrast to the Disney animated movie. It has a real sense of the danger in the jungle and the different kinds of dangers in the "civilized" village.

Like other "fish out of water" stories, this movie provides an opportunity to deconstruct "civilization" a bit by looking at it from the perspective of an outsider. Mowgli compares of the values of the "wolf-pack" and the "man-pack," and finds it hard to understand why someone would take something of no inherent value (money) in exchange for something of value (a knife), or why someone would kill an animal to display its hide. Children will enjoy Mowgli's ability to talk to animals, and the way he treats them with respect and affection. He is clearly more at home with the animals than he is with the humans.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how this movie compares to Disney's animated and live-action versions, and also how it compares to Kipling's orginal story.

Movie details

For kids who love adventure

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