Directed by Jon Favreau

With Neel Sethi, Bill Murray, Ben Kingsley

For many, the animated 1967 film is not only Disney’s finest film, but one of the greatest of all time. When news broke the Jon Favreau wanted to remake it, this seemed not only audacious but frankly unnecessary. Fortunately, Favreau has answered his critics in the best way possible, by producing a film as close to perfection as one could reasonably suppose is possible.

Embracing elements of the original film, but also Kipling’s Jungle book stories, Favreau’s version is every bit as charming, but with considerably more emotional heft and dark menace. Ben Kingsley’s Bagheera is marvellous, Baloo Bill Murray is the equal of Phil Harris, while Idris Elba’s truly menacing Shere Khan puts George Sanders in the shade. But for all the major voice talent – Christopher Walken, Gary Shandling and Scarlett Johansson all make fine contributions – and for all the truly astounding animation work, it’s Neel Sethi’s debut performance as Mowgli that is the glue holding it all together.

Exciting, funny, exhilarating and life-affirming, this is a movie not just for the young, or even the young at heart. It’s masterly storytelling is for anyone who appreciates moviemaking done with love and care, pushing the boundaries of what cinema is capable of, to produce something not far short of a masterpiece.

By David Vass

To book a ticket for the film on the 30 August click here