One thing that irks me about Hollywood these days is the overwhelming amount of remakes that are churned out. We have become so inundated by reboots, retellings and retries that we sort of just accept it as the way things are. When a guy like Michael Bay sets out to ruin our childhood by butchering Transformers and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, we don’t get that upset about it because we expect to be disappointed.
My girlfriend tells me that I’m too cynical when it comes to movies and that is probably true to an extent, but often times these remakes are shameless cash grabs. There’s no effort to honor the spirit of the original story or to enhance it in any way, because they know people will go see it regardless of how much care is taken to produce a quality film. The same could’ve easily been true for The Jungle Book and considering how difficult it must be to create a successful live-action adaptation of a boy hanging out with talking animals, I’d say my skeptical attitude was well-founded.
Which is why it thrills me to admit that The Jungle Book is the rare remake that put all of those fears to rest. There’s no better feeling than to brace yourself for the worst and then receive the best.