The Jungle Book is a American fantasy film directed by Jon Favreau, from a screenplay by Justin Marks, and produced by Walt Disney Pictures. Based on Rudyard Kipling's eponymous collective works, the film is a live-action/CGI remake of the 1967 animated film of the same name.
Directed by Jon Favreau (Iron Man), based on Rudyard Kipling's timeless stories and inspired by Disney's classic animated film, The Jungle Book is an all-new live-action epic adventure about Mowgli (newcomer Neel Sethi), a man-cub who's been raised by a family of wolves. But Mowgli finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere Khan (voice of Idris Elba), who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat. Urged to abandon the only home he's ever known, Mowgli embarks on a captivating journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera (voice of Ben Kingsley), and the free-spirited bear Baloo (voice of Bill Murray). Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don't exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa (voice of Scarlett Johansson), a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie (voice of Christopher Walken), who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire.
Mowgli is a "man cub" raised by the Indian wolf Raksha and her pack, led by Akela, ever since he was brought to them as a baby by the black panther Bagheera. Bagheera trains Mowgli to learn the ways of the wolves, but the boy faces certain challenges and falls behind his wolf siblings, and Akela berates him for using human tricks like building tools instead of learning the ways of the pack.
One day, during the dry season, the jungle animals gather to drink water that remains as part of a truce called during a drought that enables the jungle's wildlife to drink without fear of being eaten by larger, more predatory beasts. The truce is disrupted, however, when a scarred Bengal tiger, Shere Khan, arrives, detecting Mowgli's scent in the crowd. Vengeful against man for scarring him, he issues a warning that he will kill Mowgli at the end of the drought. As the wolf pack debates whether they should keep Mowgli or not, Mowgli voluntarily decides to leave the jungle for the safety of his pack. Bagheera agrees with the decision and volunteers to guide him to the nearby man village.
En route, Shere Khan ambushes them and injures Bagheera, but Mowgli manages to escape. Later, Mowgli meets Kaa, an enormous Indian python, who hypnotizes him. Kaa's hypnosis triggers in Mowgli a vision of his father protecting him from Shere Khan and being killed as a result. The vision also warns of the destructive power of the "red flower". Kaa then attempts to devour Mowgli, but he is rescued by a sloth bear named Baloo. Together, they form a close bond after realizing their teamwork allows them to get things easily, and Mowgli agrees to stay with Baloo until the winter season arrives. Meanwhile, Shere Khan confronts the wolf pack, but upon learning Mowgli had left the jungle, he kills Akela and takes over the pack to lure Mowgli out.
After learning from Bagheera that Shere Khan is hunting for Mowgli, Baloo realizes he cannot guarantee Mowgli's safety and agrees to push Mowgli away in an effort to get him to continue onward to the man village. However, Mowgli is kidnapped by monkeys, who present him to King Louie, a Gigantopithecus, who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret of the red flower. Baloo and Bagheera arrive to rescue Mowgli, resulting in King Louie chasing Mowgli through the temple. During the chase, King Louie informs Mowgli of Akela's death. His rampage eventually causes his temple to crumble on top of him. Furious that Baloo and Bagheera never told him about Akela's death, Mowgli decides to return to confront Shere Khan.
Finding the man village, Mowgli steals a lit torch to use as a weapon and heads back to the jungle, accidentally starting a wildfire in the process. He confronts Shere Khan, who points out that Mowgli has made himself the enemy of the jungle by causing the wildfire. Mowgli throws the torch into the water, giving Shere Khan the advantage. Baloo, Bagheera, and the wolf pack intervene and hold Shere Khan off, giving Mowgli enough time to set a trap in the burning jungle. He lures Shere Khan up a tree and onto a branch, which breaks under the tiger's weight, and the tiger falls to his death into the fire below.
After the wildfire is extinguished, Raksha becomes the new alpha of the wolf pack. Mowgli decides to utilize his equipment and tricks for his own use, having found his true home and calling with his wolf family, Baloo, and Bagheera. In a mid-credits scene, King Louie emerges from the rubble of the destroyed temple.
Live-action roles Edit
- Neel Sethi as Mowgli
- Ritesh Rajan as Mowgli's father
Motion capture voice performances Edit
- Bill Murray as Baloo
- Ben Kingsley as Bagheera
- Idris Elba as Shere Khan
- Lupita Nyong'o as Raksha
- Scarlett Johansson as Kaa
- Giancarlo Esposito as Akela
- Christopher Walken as King Louie
- Garry Shandling as Ikki the Porcupine. This is Garry Shandling's very last role, since he passed away in 2016. The film is dedicated in his memory.
- Brighton Rose as Grey Brother
- Jon Favreau as Fred the Pygmy Hog
- Sam Raimi as Giant Squirrel
- Russell Peters as Rocky the Rhino
- Madeline Favreau as Raquel the Rhino
Differences between the book and the 2016 film Edit
- Tabaqui, Buldeo and Chil the Kite are once again absent.
- Ikki the porcupine is portrayed as a hoarder.
- Hathi summons everyone to the water truce.
- Shere Khan does not promise to kill Mowgli during the water truce.
- Baloo teaches Mowgli the law of the jungle, instead of thinking the poem is silly.
- Akela gets killed by the wild dholes instead of Shere Khan.
- Kaa is a female villain.
- Mowgli gets the fire from coal instead of a torch, Grey brother was also with him.
- Instead of falling into a fire, Shere Khan dies from a herd of stampeding Buffaloes.
Differences between the 1967 film and the 2016 film Edit
- Rama, Winifred, Flunkey, Shanti and the vultures are all absent.
- Bagheera first finds Mowgli after Shere Khan kills his father. In the original, he finds him on a destroyed raft.
- Rasksha has many lines while she is mute in the original movie.
- The wolves have a larger role in this movie.
- Shere Khan is heavily scarred (a trait which the original book Hathi had).
- Mowgli says goodbye to his wolf family.
- The elephants are respected creatures, rather than the comedic counterparts in the animated film. The animals are required to bow in respect.
- Neither Hathi nor his son, Hathi, Jr., have any lines.
- Bagheera and Mowgli get separated after Shere Khan attacks them, as opposed to Bagheera leaving Mowgli behind due to arguments.
- Kaa is female and only appears once in the film (unless you count singing "Trust in Me" during the credits).
- Baloo meets Mowgli from saving him from Kaa. Kaa and Baloo also never interact with each other in the original.
- Baloo lies to end his friendship with Mowgli, as opposed to being honest about the Man-Village crises.
- The monkeys don't kidnap Mowgli while he's riding Baloo.
- The other monkeys of the Bandar-log do not speak.
- King Louie is a villainous Gigantopithecus instead of a comedic orangutan.
- The Man-village only appears briefly and is never actually visited.
- Shere Khan dies in the climax, whereas he escaped alive in the original.
- Mowgli stays in the jungle in the end.
- Because Orangutans are not native to India, this iteration of King Louie will be a Gigantopithecus instead (an extinct species of ape).
- Kaa will be a female instead of male: this is the third time that a Disney character has been depicted as the opposite gender from their original Disney depiction, the first being Bagheera in The Jungle Book: Mowgli's Story, and the second being Jaq in Cinderella (not counting Rafiki's and Terk's film and Broadway versions), as well as the second time any Jungle Book character is depicted as the opposite gender from his original Disney depiction.
- This is Disney's third live-action film adapted from The Jungle Book. The other two were Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book and The Jungle Book: Mowgli's Story.
- The soundtrack album was released on the same day as the film, April 15th.
- The trailers and TV spots for the film are in 1:85.1 aspect ratio, but during the showings of Zootopia in theaters, the Super Bowl trailer is in 2:39.1 aspect ratio.
- This is only the third of many live-action remakes of Disney animated films released in the 21st century, following Maleficent and Cinderella. An upcoming one is Beauty and the Beast, with many others in development.
- This is Garry Shandling's last movie, since he died in 2016.
- This is the second of three Disney movies released in 2016 to feature the voice of Idris Elba. He previously voiced Chief Bogo in Zootopia, and would later voice Fluke in Finding Dory.
- While not a musical, The Bare Necessities is the only original song to perform in the film.