New Delhi: 'Jumbo 2' has the makings of a great potential video game but the story is predictable and therefore boring.
The sequel to 'Jumbo', 'Jumbo 2' carries on the story of the lovable blue elephant Jumbo who has now become the royal elephant of his kingdom, leading his prince to victory in several wars.
Jumbo has a pink elephant Sonia for his wife and thanks to his royal duties, he has no time for her. Miffed at being left all alone, Sonia decides to return to her own village. Jumbo back from a victory tries to reason with her – but as he is called away for another war – she sways her way away with her mother-in-law trailing her. The mother promises her son that his wife will be well taken care of and Jumbo must fulfill his father's wishes and do his royal duties.
Away for two years, Sonia has two calves – Luv and Kush (predictable? Welcome to the first of the cliches!). The two adorable elephant calves have their set of colourful friends in the happy state of affairs.
Their bliss is disrupted by the neighbouring kingdom. The enemy king sends in his army, directed by an evil wizard to gather more slaves to build his weapons. The ruthless army descends upon the helpless villagers, take prisoners, set fire to the village and even take the elephants captive. In the fire, Jumbo’s mother dies trying to save one of the calves. Sonia, Luv, Kush and their friends are taken away by the enemy.
Far away while other elephants of the elephantry celebrate, Jumbo is distracted by Dildar, the little blue bird who has been the messenger for Jumbo. Hearing the news of his mother's demise and his familys' capture, Jumbo gives up the royal amulet on his tusk, abandons his duty and goes on his journey to save his family.
What comes next is just as predictable. Fight sequences amongst the men and the beasts, the beasts and the beasts, the royal espionage kicking in with some action and the antics of the young elephants that helps Jumbo save the prisoners and his family.
But the war is not over – the evil wizard attacks Jumbo's camp with his army of zombie soldiers and elephants. And after battling the odds – Jumbo not only saves his kingdom, but destroys his arch enemy – Zoravat and is restored his honourable position in the royal elephantry.
Set in the south east, the best guess could be Malaysia or Burma, the characters speak in a mixture of Hindi and convenient English words. Though they seem to have discovered the powers of gunpowder and one odd soldier even sports a pistol, swords and spears are their weapons of choice, absurdly. The illustrations are well done and the fight sequences seem to come to life – it would make an excellent video game. The movie can also hit the mark in 3D. The dubbing is rather terrible for the dialogues do not match the lip movements of the characters.
The humour is tried and tedious and it only works on children who perhaps have not seen too many Disney animated flicks. For Disney has graduated to a sleek and sharply intelligent level of sarcasm and social criticism that Indian animation will take years to come to.
Assuming this is perhaps one of the very few animated Indian films – the effort is admirable. It is meant to entertain kids – and it may succeed, but as an adult accompanying the children – get ready to be very bored.
Animations should have the power to enthrall audiences of any age. Indian animated movies clearly do not think so. They need to grow up.
Instances in the movie have such strong Hollywood reflections that it is all the more 'irritating' (for the want of a better word). The bird Dildar is a clear copy of the toucan Zazoo from 'The Lion King' – only that Zazoo was more intelligent. The evil wizard reminds one of Jafar from 'Alladin' – the only difference being that this wizard has no evil designs that involve the princess or the kingdom.
The scene where Jumbo trumpets out in anger and pain on a cliff when he hears about his mother’s death as the raindrops fall on him and his mother’s voice comes in through the clouds – it is Disney's 'The Lion king' all over again.
If you know the Disney classics by heart – avoid this movie completely. You will be horribly disappointed.
Directed by Taweelap Srivuthivong, the movie seems to thrive on a dose of soap serial type lessons, a cliched husband wife squabble, a momentary out of body experience for Jumbo who sees his dead parents in heaven but comes back to life for he hears his Luv and Kush calling him 'Papa'.
The movie does not have the voices of Akshay Kumar or Dimple Kapadia or Lara Dutta unlike the first installment. Unless your children demand to see the movie – give these colourful pachyderms a miss. Cartoon Network has better stuff.