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Robin Williams, Kirsten Dunst and Bonnie Hunt star in this phenomenal adaptation of the award-winning children's book. When young Alan Parrish discovers a mysterious board game, he doesn't realize its unimaginable powers, until he is magically transported before the startled eyes of his friend, Sarah, into the untamed jungles of Jumanji! There he remains for 26 years until he is freed from the game's spell by two unsuspecting children. Now a grown man, Alan Williams reunites with Sarah Hunt and together with Judy Kirsten Dunst and Peter Bradley Pierce tries to outwit the game's powerful forces in this imaginative adventure that combines breathtaking special effects with an enchanting mixture of comedy, magic and thrills.
After the success of Jurassic Park in 1993, the floodgates opened for digital special effects, and Jumanji is nothing if not a showcase for computer-generated creepiness guaranteed to give young children a nightmare or two. Whether that was the filmmakers' intention is up for debate, since this is a PG-rated adventure revolving around a mysterious board game that unleashes a terrifying jungle world upon its players, including gigantic spiders, huge mosquitoes, a stampede of rhinos, elephants, and every other jungle beast you can imagine. Robin Williams plays a man-child who's been trapped in the world of "Jumanji" for 26 years until he's freed by two kids who've discovered the game and released its parade of dangerous horrors. A chaotic and misguided attempt at family entertainment, the movie does offer a few good laughs, and the effects are frequently impressive, if not entirely convincing to the eye. --Jeff Shannon