Film Scouts Reviews


by Leslie Rigoulot

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If it didn't work the first time, what makes you think it will work the second? Disney should be asking itself this question. "Jungle 2 Jungle" is a remake of the French "Little Indian, Big City" that they distributed with subtitles not too long ago. It died. So they must have figured that if it were translated to English, and added "Home Improvement's" Tim Allen, it would be a hit. Wrong.

As a commodities trader in NY, Tim Allen's character must get a divorce from JoBeth Williams, a woman he hasn't seen in thirteen years, in order to marry a snooty designer, Lolita Davidovich. He is surprised when he travels to the jungle to find that he has a son, Sam Huntington (but we aren't because we've seen the TV ads) . The usual fish-out-of- water story ensues when Allen takes the boy to New York. There are no real surprises here, but even the usual hokum isn't well done, which is somewhat disappointing because John Pasquin (JoBeth Williams' husband), who directed Allen in Disney's "The Santa Clause", was able to elevate what could have been treacle in that production. I was hoping for more of the same. Even Martin Short doesn't seem to be comfortable with his role of manic sidekick. But the real responsibility has to lie with the decision makers at Disney who couldn't let this concept die. At least in French, it could die with dignity. Rated PG. Disney.

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