Thursday, May 19, 2016

Thinner (1996) Review:

In the mid 1980s, fans of the horror genre were introduced to an up and coming director that showed promise in his career. That man was Tom Holland. Moviegoers will remember him best for directing two films that now have a cult status; that being Fright Night (1985) and Child's Play (1988). Other than this and directing a few episodes to TV shows, Holland hasn’t done much else. He did go on to make one more horror film before he was diagnosed with Bells-Palsy (putting him out of Hollywood's spotlight for a decade), and that film was this, based off of horror novelist Stephen King's best selling novel (one of them at least) of the same. Unfortunately, several viewers do not find this to be that entertaining. It's weird because this film does have its flaws but it's not a harrowing experience to sit through. This may also be one of Tom Holland's lesser appreciated projects but that's not saying a lot considering there are ton of other films that have bottom of the barrel quality.

"Why you no thin yet?"
Adapting Stephen King's novel was also director Tom Holland and Michael McDowell (the writer of Beetlejuice (1988) & The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)). The story is about Billy Halleck (Robert John Burke), a gluttonous 300lb obese lawyer whose all about himself and food. One day after winning a big case, he accidentally kills the daughter of gypsy witch doctor Tadzu Lempke (Michael Constantine) in a drive by. Angry that Halleck was not properly prosecuted, Lempke places a curse on Halleck that rapidly sheds his weight at an alarming rate; to a point where it continues no matter how much he eats. Not realizing until it's too late, Halleck looks to find Lempke and have him remove the curse. Meanwhile, Halleck suspects his wife Heidi (Lucinda Jenney) is cheating on him with his friend Mike (Sam Freed). The issues that arise among these plot threads are convenient twists that get placed throughout the running time. How is it that Lempke knows certain pieces of information when he was never around? How does he have the power to curse people?

Moments like these feel strangely placed more than proper timing. There are also a few continuity errors that don't make a whole lot of sense either. One minute someone is irreversibly damaged; a scene later that exact thing that was damaged turned out being completely fine. Lastly for those who are really looking for some nasty imagery, this isn't that kind of film. As a whole, the movie just isn't that scary. This is one of the tamest "body horror" genre films and it's still rated R. That doesn't mean it doesn't entertain though. It's just that because the plot device is thrown into the light so quickly, there isn't much to be scared over, especially with all the plot contrivances that occur. However if one can get past that, the actual experience is quite the captivating thriller. Seeing Halleck go from a whopping 300lbs to less than 150 is shocking. The makeup effects were done by Greg Cannom, the same man who worked on A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987), Dick Tracy (1990), The Shadow (1994) and The Mask (1994).

The acting is acceptable by all cast members too. Robert John Burke as Billy Halleck was fun to watch. Taking into account he could have dropped out of acting after the critical and financial flop that was RoboCop 3 (1993), he demonstrates he's still a credible actor. Burke also had a number of good scenes that show just how deranged his character becomes.  Michael Constantine as Lempke isn't that deep in motivations but is good at being a crusty old man, with a wicked sense of humor. There's also appearances from Howard Erskine (a court judge) and Daniel von Bargen (a police officer) playing friends of Halleck. Bethany Joy Lenz as Halleck's daughter and Lucinda Jenney as Heidi act like an ordinary family as well. There's also a gangster named Richie Ginelli (Joe Mantegna) who knows Halleck and uses his connections to help him out. If there's one thing to say about anybody else other than Burke, it's just that his or her characters aren't that engaging. They can act but their character arcs aren't as magnetic as Halleck's.

Robert John Burke
Plus like many of his other adapted books, author Stephen King himself has a small part in the movie as a store clerk. Behind the camera to this picture is cinematographer Kees Van Oostrum. Van Oostrum has a lengthy filmography but the two projects he might be best known for are Ronald F. Maxwell's war epics Gettysburg (1993) and Gods and Generals (2003). Even though this film does not have any epic scope, many scenes are competently lit and confidently show the troubles of the bloated lawyer. The music was another added bonus. Composed by Daniel Licht, the same composer to the impressive score to Hellraiser IV: Bloodlines (1996), the film score to this feature is a great listening experience. Licht composes a memorable main title motif for the movie using majority strings and tambourines to emphasize the gypsy context of the plot. There's also a few tracks involving the piano with unsettling tunes that are cued when Burke's character begins having emotional bursts of anger. It's a film score that should not be overlooked.

Not all of it's characters are inviting enough to be fully captivated (even though the cast can act), there are a couple of storytelling issues in the script and the overall feeling isn't that scary. However, it still has some thrills thanks to the makeup effects, notable film score, camerawork and a compelling performance from Robert John Burke.

Points Earned --> 6:10

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Maniac Cop 2 (1990) Review:

Slasher / horror films throughout the 1980s were a big thing in its time. Many popular icons arose from that decade of which many still resonate with fans today. Several moviegoers remember the mainstream villains but there are also groups of people that remember the lesser known ones too. Of those, William Lustig's Maniac Cop (1988) was one of them. Although the concept itself borrowed ideas from past films like Halloween (1978), the idea of having a killer cop on the streets causing hysteria among the citizens of the local police force was rather inventive. The premise of corrupt cops has long been used before in movies, but an undead cop was another story. The other component that made it captivating to watch was that it played out like a mystery thriller. The maniac cop wasn't actually figured out until much later in the movie, which helped build tension to the reveal. And like any other successful movie opening, a franchise was created. Let's see how it holds up.

Laurene Landon & Robert Davi
Larry Cohen (the writer from the original) pens the continuation of the story. William Lustig also returns in the director's chair, yet there are noticeable problems, this time a little more than the first. As it was revealed at the ending of the first movie, Matt Cordell, the maniac cop (Robert Z'Dar) is alive and returns to exact his mission. The only people who still believe he's around are the cop from past events Jack Forrest (Bruce Campbell) and Teresa Mallory (Laurene Landon). Unconvinced of what they say, their captain, Edward Doyle (Michael Lerner) sends them to cop psychiatrist Susan Riley (Claudia Christian). Instead, Forrest and Mallory work to persuade Riley that Cordell exists. The only other person to think their actually telling the truth once he starts to see the puzzle pieces align is Detective Sean McKinney (Robert Davi). This is fine for a premise, but as soon as this is set up Lustig and Cohen add extra unnecessary elements.

Cohen and Lustig's biggest mistake was mixing in an assistant to the maniac cop. Leo Rossi plays a serial killer named Turkell and he ends up teaming up with Cordell; to a point where he can communicate with him (via one-sided conversation). This would have been much more entertaining if Rossi wasn't so over the top in his performance. There's actually more focus put on Turkell than Cordell at certain points. This movie is called Maniac Cop 2 (1990) right? Also at one point, Turkell asks Cordell about his past and viewers are given the exact same flashback from the original Maniac Cop (1988) film. Even another jail mate named Blum (Clarence Williams III) joins Turkell and Cordell, but has very little significance. This is all just padding, it's not story telling. Lastly, there's a rushed subplot about some inside conspiracy dealing with Cordell and his death. The problem is that it comes from nowhere so abruptly; it's confusing as to why Cohen didn't mention it in the original movie script.

Among these problems, everything else is commendable. The cast can all act well together. Bruce Campbell and Laurene Landon are still believable in their roles, Robert Davi and Claudia Christian make nice additions and there are a number of other actors that have small roles. Charles Napier, Danny Trejo, Marco Rodriguez and even Sam Raimi make quick appearances and it's enjoyable to see that. Robert Z'Dar as the title character continues to intimidate with his stature and presence. It's still confusing as to why nobody ever thinks of shooting Cordell in the face though. Everyone aims for the abdomen; not the face, why? For violence, nothing is seriously gore heavy but there are still some good kills. There's even a scene with a chain saw that may catch people off guard due to what's expected. One thing's for sure, the maniac cop loves snapping necks. Cordell's face is much more hideous this time too. There was only one scene though where it looked like a cheap mask.

"No hard feelings, but I'm taking over..."
For cinematography, James Lemmo handled the camerawork. Lemmo was also the cinematographer to director Abel Ferrara's Ms. 45 (1981), Fear City (1984) and also to the original Maniac Cop (1988). Like the first movie however, there are very few (if any) daylight scenes. It's fine to show night time, but it gets a bit difficult to see things when everything is shrouded in the dark city. Nonetheless the camera is always steady and gets what it needs to show. Jay Chattaway returns as well to compose the film score. Much like his previous effort in the franchise, Chattaway thankfully maintains the main theme of the series with synth keyboard and drawn out ominous horns. There are added themes though, which may not have been crucial to include. This involves a church-like choir in the background for some tracks. Yeah, there's always that idea that putting in holy or childlike songs in a minor key sounds creepy but it makes the film feel like it was supposed to have a religious tone. Not sure.

Casting, music and violence all make this sequel watchable. It is disappointing however when majority of the original crew members return and shift the focus from the title character to some other forgettable over the top one. There's also a rushed subplot about Cordell's case and it gets wedged in way too quickly. Still decent though.

Points Earned --> 6:10

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Jungle Book (2016) Review:

With Hollywood updating, rebooting and remaking past movies all the more frequently now, one would think to take note of how Disney has done it thus far. At least from what has been presented, it seems that the producers of Disney have figured out a way to revamp their old properties into live-action territory and maintain the hype about them.  Disney's The Jungle Book (1967) has remained one of the most popular family children films around, most notably for its comedy, simple story, memorable characters and catchy music. So who would have the credentials in order to jumpstart the movie and do the original justice. Enter Jon Favreau, a director but mainly actor who earned his stars by igniting what people now know as the Marvel Cinematic Universe with Iron Man (2008). Favreau also directed Elf (2003), a holiday film that also has a strong fan base. To have Favreau again starting another series feels appropriate. The real question is though, does he do it right? Mostly yes.

Bagheera, Mowgli & Baloo
The screenplay was written by Justin Marks, who surprisingly only wrote for one other theatrical production. That film was Street Fighter: The Legend of Chun-Li (2009), so it is very surprising how well this story was crafted compared to Mr. Marks last effort. For the most part, the story setup is the same. Abandoned man cub Mowgli (Neel Sethi) is found by the panther named Bagheera (Ben Kingsley) and has him raised by the wolf pack led by Akela (Giancarlo Esposito) and Raksha (Lupita Nyong'o). But one day, Shere Khan (Idris Elba) the tiger notices Mowlgi's presence and demands he is rid of. From there, it's up to Bagheera and another friend named Baloo (Bill Murray) the bear to get him back to the man village. Aside from plot, there are some added layers to the characters and their motivations. Shere Khan, Akela and Raksha receive much more development in their relationship to Mowlgi. Meanwhile, Bagheera and Baloo remain likable and well developed in their main roles.

The only character who doesn't have a significant presence is Kaa played by Scarlett Johansson. Kaa in this film is more a plot device than any other use, but the knowledge that she also has comes into question. How did she know where Khan got his scars from? Was she there when it happened? Another weird thing is that only some animals in the jungle can communicate with Mowlgi. Why can't the elephants, vultures or monkeys? Then again, the reason why this is called the "jungle book" and why a bear is in a jungle never made sense either even for the original. Christopher Walken plays King Louie and at certain times rips off The Godfather (1972) and himself. Just for fun, Favreau, Russell Peters and even Sam Raimi have small voice roles. When it comes to voice work (and acting) though, everyone performs well. Neel Sethi as Mowlgi is a great child actor and looks seriously engaged in his role. For some voice actors though, there could have been better choices.

As stated before all voice actors do very well though. The best actor who fit his role was Ben Kingsley as Bagheera. Kingsley is no Sebastian Cabot but he gets very close. Scarlett Johansson as Kaa in replace of Sterling Holloway was a unique choice too. Johansson's voice makes Kaa sound even more seductive than before with her hypnotic eyes. Both Giancarlo Esposito and Lupita Nyong'o make their characters likable too with their calm performances. The only two characters who probably could have been cast better were surprisingly Baloo and Khan. Since this movie supposed to be grounded in tone, having Elba as Khan is understandable. Unfortunately, Elba misses some of the class George Sanders gave in his performance as Khan. For Murray, it's obvious that he wanted to lighten the mood but that shouldn't include his voice. Phil Harris fit Baloo very well, and even though it's not as popular, John Goodman from The Jungle Book 2 (2003) would've been a better choice.

Khan =O
In spite of this though, the visuals were on point in this film. The special effects were groundbreaking with the amount of detail that went into each animal. Even for a 2D viewing, the animals look as though one were at a petting zoo. That's how authentic the pelts of these animals look. The layering from the furs to the jungle surroundings is just breathtaking. The director of photography was Bill Pope, the same man behind Darkman (1990), Spider-Man 2 (2004), Men in Black 3 (2012), The Matrix (1999) and its sequels. Every shot, whether it's a clear or rainy day, every scene has the right lighting. Composing the film score was John Debney. Having worked with Favreau before, this is a natural pairing. Debney easily morphs the 1967 original themes into a much bigger sound and bravado. The only two songs to actually be sung by characters are "Bear Necessities" and "I Want to Be Like You", but this is only for a brief time. Definitely not as lengthy as the original.

One would think that rebooting beloved classics is a risky choice. However, Jon Favreau showed many were wrong. The writing is just as equally flawed in some places like its original but it still has an enjoyable story. More thought could have been put into casting the voices for certain characters but it's not a huge issue. The robust film score, acting, special effects and camerawork really shine in this live-action reboot.

Points Earned --> 7:10

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Raggedy Ann & Andy: A Musical Adventure (1977) Review:

Many people of the latest generation just are not fond of dolls. Dolls have gained a reputation for being ominous and foreboding, with creepy smiles and endless stares. However, this is only seen in the horror genre of movies. Rarely are dolls seen in any other form of light when it comes to cinema. If there are any recent mainstream productions that come to mind, majority would likely recollect Toy Story (1995), which involved dolls / toys. Even then, there were some dolls that were portrayed in a relatively grim and unsettling light. Yet for some reason, not enough youth know of Raggedy Ann and her brother Andy. Created by Johnny Gruelle for a series of children's books, would become a timeless piece in history. Then in one of the biggest years of the 20th century, Raggedy Ann would receive her first animated feature in 1977. The weird thing is for anyone who has seen it; people only call it a “trippy film”. Is it really that seizure inducing? There really is more to look at here because it's not all LSD and flashing lights.

"Not sure if I should laugh or flee in terror...."
Interestingly enough, the introduction of Raggedy Ann and friends starts out a lot like Toy Story (1995). Immediately when Ann's owner Marcella (Claire Williams) leaves the vicinity, all the toys and dolls come to life. Written by Patricia Thackray and Max Wilk, two people who didn't have much experience with theatrical cinema are perhaps why the story doesn't have much priority in the running time. It's Marcella's birthday and she receives a new doll named Babette (Niki Flacks) who is then greeted by Raggedy Ann (Didi Conn), her brother Andy (Mark Baker) and several other side characters. However Babette thinks she doesn't belong because of her class (which is a pricey doll), but is soon snagged by The Captain (George S. Irving). The Captain's reason for taking Babette hostage was for being in love, but it's up to Raggedy Ann and Andy to save Babette. On their travels, they make friends with The Camel (Fred Stuthman) and run into more characters that pose as obstacles.

It is this part of the movie that serves no purpose. Originally what looked like might be a Toy Story (1995) movie, ends up having an Alice in Wonderland (1951) twist. It really doesn't further the plot any. Adding to that are the strange character motivations that just bring up further questions than resolutions. The Camel continues to be in some kind of a hallucinogenic trance to find his way home and is never explained why. Apparently Raggedy Ann has a "candy heart" but that doesn't change how problems are solved. Babette has strange opinions on whatever situation she's in, which conflicts with her development and the same could be said for The Captain. There's also an individual named King Koo Koo (Marty Brill) who looks to increase his height by laughing but can only do so by laughing at others. He too has no significance. Plus, there is no translation of these characters when the story focuses on the world Marcella lives in. What were they in reality? Obviously The Camel was real, but what about everyone else?

This is what undoubtedly brings the viewing experience down, but it isn't entirely a waste. In fact, there is an indefinite amount of things to admire. Directing this feature was Richard Williams; a two time Oscar winner for animated films, one of which being Who Framed Roger Rabbit (1988). He also headed The Princess and the Cobbler (1993), which people feel is another underrated gem. With that said, the animation being the late 1970s looks fantastic and will surely engage its audience and not just because how strange some of the characters move. Unfortunately that's why people call it "trippy" but that's what gives its characters personality. The most creative animated sequence should go to when Ann and Andy meet The Greedy (Joe Silver), a gluttonous sludge creature who indulges on sweets. The way the character moves is so elaborate that it can be quite overwhelming to think of just how much time and effort when into actually making that scene work the way it did.

The Greedy
The voice work was laudable for all entities. Didi Conn was the perfect choice for Raggedy Ann. Her sweet, high pitched voice makes Ann look and sound completely amiable. The rest of cast also does their jobs well but other than Conn, nobody takes second place. There's also roles played by Arnold Stang (who is best known for Hercules in New York (1970)) and Alan Sues. The songs and music was composed by Joe Raposo. Of other big productions, Raposo is known for making the music to Nashville (1975) and The Great Muppet Caper (1981). For the score its main theme is "Rag Dolly", which is sung later and is highlighted by harps, horns and music box like bells that help give it the child-like sound. For songs, all actors in their roles can sing the lyrics well and there are moments where the tune might tug on a few heart strings. The songs themselves aren't as collectively memorable as other soundtracks to some musicals, but there are some like "I Look and What Do I See" and "I Never Get Enough".

This animated feature of the popular children's doll should not be seen just because past viewers have called it "trippy". The story lacks in clarity on several subtopics but the music is enjoyable, the animation is unique and the voice cast performs well. There are things to like about it no matter how flawed it may be.

Points Earned --> 6:10

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Atlantis: Milo's Return (2003) Review:

Sometimes people should wonder whether there are two Disney corporations. There's the Disney that moviegoers love and that consists of the classic titles that revolutionized the way people saw family and children films. Then there's the other side of Disney where it acts as a sellout / cash cow that churns out Direct-to-DVD sequels of their various popular films. Most of which these particular sequels either nobody asks for or just end up being despised by fans of the original. It makes no sense how such a well-respected company could have such split personality in goals. This is not to say that all of their DVD sequels are terribly made but to some, it would seem the mouse house operates solely on monetary impulse. The other odd thing is when sequels are produced to films that didn't even perform well. Of the early 2000's, Disney's Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) was one of them. Originally its sequel was for a TV series but was scrapped. Thus, this sequel feels more episodic in storytelling than a movie.

"Uhhh Kida, do you think we need to be here?"
Directed Victor Cook, Tad Stones and Toby Shelton (who have all worked on various Disney DVD sequels) and penned by six writers from various TV shows and genres, this sequel is okay but that's all that it is. Although the title suggests it's “Milo's return”, the story is actually about Milo's original crew having him come back to the surface in order to understand and resolve strange occurrences happening with no reason in the country. Kida's thoughts are that they are somehow connected to Atlantis; once weapons of destruction that her father had locked away hoping modern day man would not find. These events in question are that of a small town being terrorized by a deep sea kraken, a dust storm of spirit wolves and a mad man looking to start the end of the world.  Of these separate cases, none of them truly give any explanation to how their Atlantian connection affected history. They're really just lazy tie-ins with Atlantis and nothing more.

The voice cast behind the characters thankfully help make the viewing relatively tolerable. There's only a few replacements; for Milo, James Arnold Taylor takes over Michael J. Fox and instead of Jim Varney, Steven Barr fills in as Cookie. Every other character remains the same. Cree Summer, John Mahoney, Jacqueline Obradors, Don Novello, Corey Burton, Phil Morris and Florence Stanley all return to reprise their roles and their exchanges are still commendable as the slew of personalities they make up. There are additional voices too and they consist of Frank Welker playing Obby (a three legged volcano dog,...precious), Jeff Bennett, William Morgan Sheppard, Floyd 'Red Crow' Westerman, Thomas F. Wilson and Clancy Brown. The unfortunate part is that with these new additions, somehow not all the main characters make it into every story. Characters like Vinny and Sweet disappear at times with no notice and don't come back until another story finishes. Strange.

Another component to the writing that doesn't exactly make sense are some of the character motivations. Some of which these motivations completely contradict beliefs from the prior movie. It's another thing to also think that sharing the gift of Atlantis will bring about good and everyone will be accepting of it. If this were a real world event, the newbies to the world should think twice. Animation was handled by Toon City, a contracting company that has frequently worked with Disney in several animated TV show spinoffs and direct-to-DVD sequels. For what it's worth, the animation is nowhere close to its predecessor's quality but it isn't garbage either. There are few relaxed scenes that have some decent fluidity to them and the action scenes are engaging too. For the action there are explosions and various other character movements (kraken, dust storms or protagonists) that have natural movement to them. The difference in quality to this is more texture display than anything else.

Yeah, it's obviously lost some of its quality
Of the animation, if there's one thing that really stands out, it's all the continuity errors that litter the screen. There are a considerable number moments when these problems develop. Parts of it show up for certain sections of backgrounds, while other times it’s as simple as animating characters’ mouths when clearly there's voice over work being played. It's moments like those that just feel sloppy and cheap. Also when Milo's friends come back to Atlantis, they arrive via plane. However the first movie had everyone go underwater; great job guys. The music to this feature is adequate though. Don Harper, who normally is the conductor to score recording sessions and who's best work would come later in The Lion King 1 1/2 (2004), composed the music. Occasionally, Harper does reference James Newton Howard's theme from the original but it's not around for long. The music itself is also not as grand but this is probably due to the constraints of the budget itself. It's just okay.

Atlantis: The Lost Empire (2001) was one of those Disney films that didn't need a sequel. Is this worth any of your time - not really but it's not a total disgrace either. The music, most of its animation, and voice acting is praise worthy. Its weak plot threads are more of the problem.

Points Earned --> 5:10

Sunday, May 1, 2016

The Jungle Book (1967) Review:

Disney in general has made numerous films that are deeply layered with themes that first time viewers may not recognize. It's one of the reasons why Disney is so successful at making films. They also have their fair share of poor writing too but the entirety of them is not as voluminous as the ones many people remember and enjoy. Even with this though, Disney has also made films that weren't as richly textured and scaled up to a more complex level of understanding. That is not to say that the movies that are simpler are lower on an intellectual basis, no. Instead, they are just as influential if not more because of just how simple they are compared to Disney's other laminous movies. It would seem most of these particular types of films would go back to Disney's classical period of all their hand drawn animated features that everyone considers classics today. Of this group of films, the film that best represents the one note feature is this movie. It doesn't explore much other than one plot and that's fine.

Baloo, Mowgli & Bagheera
The movie is based off of the "Mowgli Stories" written by Rudyard Kipling. Audiences are introduced to Mowgli, an orphaned boy in the middle of the jungle who is found and observed by Bagheera the panther as he's raised by a wolf pack. After 10 years word gets out that Shere Khan the tiger is returning to kill Mowgli, so Bagheera decides to try and bring Mowgli back to the man village. The problem is, Mowgli won't go because he loves the jungle and all of his friends are there. Helping solidify his belief that the jungle is where he belongs is Baloo the bear. A lackadaisical beanbag that loves to just enjoy his surroundings. Adapted by the writers of Bambi (1942), Peter Pan (1953), Robin Hood (1973) and 101 Dalmatians (1960), it's obvious to why mostly everything about what goes on in this feature film is so amiable. The characters and the voice actors that play the characters are exceptionally fun and likable to watch on screen.

Of the cast, the only one who is still living is Bruce Reitherman who voiced Mowlgi. At the time he was only 12 and his voice matches the look of Mowlgi well. Today Reitherman has filled other filmmaking positions but mostly has appeared as himself for various documentaries. Voicing Bagheera was Sebastian Cabot, who speaks from time to time but also narrates. Some might recognize him as the narrator to all the classic Whinnie the Pooh tales as well. Phil Harris as the lazy bear Baloo doesn't stray far from his natural voice but nonetheless has made Baloo one the more memorable characters from this period in the mouse house's filmography. Shere Khan the tiger played by George Sanders was amazing. Naturally the voice matches the presence of Khan and although he's the antagonist, there's a lot to like about him too. There's also appearances from Sterling Holloway as Kaa the snake, Louis Prima as King Louie of the Apes and J. Pat O'Malley as Colonel Hathi the Elephant.

There's really only one thing that should be addressed and that's the fact of how sexism plays a small role. It's difficult to say without giving it away but there's a moment where it plays a turning point for a character. Fine, it's understandable but at the same time more than just one character could've played a part to help serve their purpose for the turning point. This was a different time when the movie was made but it seems a bit one sided. This is it though, the animation still has the Disney classic look to it and it's important to know that animating is a very time consuming task so kudos to those who worked on that part of the film. There are a number of other discrepancies that don't make sense like why is called the jungle book when it really doesn't have to do with a book except the intro. Or how is that Kaa can hypnotize his victims with his eyes so easily. At this point, these are questions that are just asking for too much, so it's not needed.

That Shere Khan presence
The songs are also very catchy. With lyrics written by Richard M. Sherman and Robert M. Sherman, the same song writers from The Parent Trap (1961), The Sword in the Stone (1963) and Mary Poppins (1964), how could one not see why the songs in this film are so timeless. It's hard to find anybody who doesn't enjoy or at least tap a toe for "Bare Necessities", "I Wanna Be Like You" or "We're Your Friends". For the film score, George Bruns composed the music. Bruns also composed the film scores to 101 Dalmatians (1961), The Sword in the Stone (1963), The Love Bug (1968), Herbie Rides Again (1974) and Robin Hood (1973). For this feature, the music again calls back to the classic Disney sound of orchestras from that time. There are a lot of strings, trumpets and drums. Plus considering the setting is in the jungle, it suitably fits. If still works, then there's obviously no reason to knock it then.

The writing is very simplistic and that is all the story needed. It does suffer from one apparent sin at a certain point in a story arc but the voice acting, animation and music make it difficult to really fault it at all.

Points Earned --> 8:10