Finally, a worthy successor to Jumanji… just as I was getting worried that the cursed board game genre was nigh on fading away along comes this glittering piece of filmdom complete with a swoopy name: Zathura.
While the key to the origins of the eponymously named board game is all too likely to be at the end of a quick internet search, I’d prefer to guess instead. My instincts tell me that it was inspired by the symphonic poem by Strauss called ‘Also Sprach Zarathustra’, which was inspired by the book of the same name by Nietzsche, which was inspired by the story of Zoroaster (bored yet?), which was inspired by the ancient tradition of the Really Big Road Trip.
Which is what this movie is… a really big road trip with all the expected twists and turns… after all, it is Jumanji 2. Still, it’s far less cloying than its predecessor thanks to the chemistry of the two young actors playing brothers and the incredible amount of destruction keeps you paying attention.
As I’d made a last-minute decision to go see this movie I arrived in the theater after the previews had started and quickly landed on the second row. It wasn’t until the movie had been going for a few minutes before I realized how many kids were in the place. Silly me, seeing at 7:30pm show, what did I expect? I was amazed at how none of the kids erupted into wails of terror during some of the wilder moments of the film. If I’d been seven I’d have been squealing and hiding under my chair. If your young one is easily frightened you should think about renting something tamer or taking them to see Chicken Little or Shopgirl.
While the film’s plot followed a track as predictable as the rockets on the board game in the movie, the special effects were solid and well done though I may have seen some problems with the matchmoving…. (a joke only one person I know will understand and then proceed to pout about).
Coolest surprise of the film: Louis D’Esposito was the UPM and Alicia Accardo was Script Supervisor. Louis was the 1st AD on ‘Sweet Home Alabama’ and Alicia was our Script Supervisor on the same show. Good job guys!