Mowgli’s in for a lot of close shaves, made all the more adrenaline-pumping by how realistic the scenes look. The intensity and action shown in the preview are reminiscent of another movie starring a lone boy surrounded by other dangerous animals, including a tiger: 2012’s Life of Pi, which won Academy Awards for its cinematography and visual effects. Like Life of Pi, The Jungle Book seems set to be a heart-pounding adventure for viewers. It’s not surprising considering that the movie comes from the studio behind Pirates of the Caribbean and the director of Iron Man, Jon Favreau.
Not every moment in the trailer is fast-paced, but there’s tension everywhere, even as we’re simply being introduced to Mowgli’s jungle home. For much of the trailer, we hear Scarlett Johansson speaking soothingly, but the effect is the opposite. It’s eerie to hear her say things like, “Are you alone out here? What are you doing so deep in the jungle?” and “I’ll keep you close. Let go of your fear now. Trust in me.” The last line is the most chilling because as she delivers it, it’s revealed that she’s the voice of Kaa, the snake.
While the live-action version appears to be less kid-friendly than the animated film, the trailer does allude to its predecessor. In a rare quiet moment for Baloo and Mowgli, the two relax in the river while we hear the tune of Bare Necessities being whistled. There’s no accompanying dance number, but it’s nice nonetheless.
Several other well-known actors join Johansson in voicing some of the jungle’s creatures; Bill Murray, Idris Elba, Christopher Walken, and Lupita Nyong’o are all among the cast. Meanwhile, Mowgli is played by Neel Sethi.
The Jungle Book is set to hit theaters on April 15, 2016.
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