Verdict: Jumanji’s latest film is a brand new adventure with leveled-up performances by the cast.

There weren’t high expectations for the reboot of a movie series based on a fictional board game, but Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle became a massive blockbuster. Two years later, the sequel Jumanji: The Next Level is one of the most anticipated films of the year and it brings new challenges for the players to face.

What’s Jumanji: The Next Level About:

When Spencer (Alex Wolff) doesn’t show up to meet his friends, Fridge (Ser’Darius Blain), Martha (Morgan Turner), and Bethany (Madison Iseman) go looking for him. They find the Jumanji game in his basement, which Spencer had managed to save without any of them knowing about it. They go back into the game to find him but Spencer’s grandfather Eddie (Danny DeVito) and his friend Milo (Danny Glover) are also pulled into the game. But it’s not the same game anymore; it’s a new level and the players have to go from arid deserts to snowy mountains to save Jumanji from a new danger and finish the game.

What Works:

Jumanji: The Next Level knows its biggest strength – the game avatars played by Dwayne JohnsonKevin HartJack Black, and Karen Gillan – and uses them to its advantage. The addition of comedy legends Danny DeVito and Danny Glover as new players give Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart the opportunity to give a different performance than what they had done in the last film. Jack Black gets to play Fridge, an athletic young man trapped in an avatar that’s his complete opposite. Although Karen Gillan plays Martha once more, even she gets her moments to shine. Awkwafina plays a new character in Jumanji and she also gives a skilled performance. Nick Jonas has a smaller role but it’s integrated well with the story.

Speaking of the story, there are a lot of surprises and twists in the film. The sequel has more of everything – from dangerous obstacles to new game mechanics and more plot points. There are a lot of throwbacks to Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, which will be an added bonus for the fans of the previous film, although you don’t need to have seen it to enjoy this one.

This sequel uses many of the same elements that were well-received in Welcome To The Jungle – the body-swapped identities, explaining game mechanics to clueless players, and action sequences that aren’t confined by real-world physics. The bickering between Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart is a highlight yet again. Jumanji: The Next Level manages to be similar to the previous film while adding fresh takes that create a delightfully fun watch.

What Could’ve Been Better:

The film has a lot going on. While it’s easy to follow the plot, some parts of the story seem unnecessary.

Why You Should Watch:

Jumanji: The Next Level has action, adventure, comedy, and even holiday cheer, making it a great watch for December. If you’re a fan of any of the actors in the main cast, you’ll be seeing them give great performances in this fun film.

P.S. Remember to stay back for an important mid-credits scene.

Need more reasons to see the film? Check out the public review below :