Amanda Gardiner, Staff Writer

The movie Jumanji has been a staple in most American households since the movie came out in late 1995. The movie is about a haunted board game that locks players in and brings things like jungles, human hunters from the amazon, animals, and other haunts that take over the players’ lives until the game is completed.

For its time, the quality and the graphics are very impressive: there are lots of animated animals in the movie; while they might not look as good as some do today they are still very well made. The overall plot is gripping and draws the audience in with its action-packed script within the first few scenes.

Acting out complicated haunting scenes could be hard for some actors and actresses but those in the film did an amazing job especially the younger cast members. Other things like the camera angle also make the movie come to life with high and low angles depicting whether the actor/actress is having a powerful moment or a fearful one. Lighting does the same in the film; it won’t be a bright and beautiful scene if there is a stampede running through the mansion.

Some critics judged the movie harshly. The movie scored a 55% on Rotten Tomatoes, with one review stating “A feast for the eyes with a somewhat malnourished plot, Jumanji is an underachieving adventure that still offers a decent amount of fun for the whole family” (Rotten Tomatoes). However, on IMBd the movie got a solid 7/10 and won a Saturn Award for Best Special Effects. The high ratings and 4 won awards and 11 nominations really shows how appreciated the movie is in family homes around America.

Another huge aspect of making a movie great is the setting. Jumanji takes place in a small town called Bradford, New Hampshire. Such a small town makes the movie seem more realistic with the one singular cop who just can’t seem to get out of his own way. The soundtrack also plays a huge role, without the soundtrack the game might have never been found or played. In the beginning of the movie, the players hear a banging noise that draws them towards the game. If this noise wasn’t so suspenseful and spooky the audience wouldn’t have guessed it was a bad thing.

There is one more thing that really brings this movie to life. Costumes and props really help to make the movie seem real. In the beginning, when they first start playing, their clothes are all normal and clean and the more rounds of the game they play the more their clothes and everything around them gets messed up and ragged. If everything had stayed nice there wouldn’t have been a sense of danger in the movie.

Even after all of the remakes of the movie, the original will still be the best in my biased opinion. There is a classic, family-oriented feeling the movie brings when watching. If you are ever bored and need an engaging movie to watch I would definitely recommend grabbing a bowl of popcorn, getting comfortable, and putting on Jumanji.