Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle

Music Composed By: Henry Jackman

Distributed by: Sony Classsical

Reviewed by Melissa Minners


                In 1995, two kids find and play a magical board game called Jumanji and are accidentally sucked into the game.  In Jumanji Welcome to the Jungle, four teenagers discover an old video game console with a multiple player action-adventure game called Jumanji.  They select their avatars, press start and are immediately sucked into the game.  In order to escape the game, the four teens must use the avatar bodies they have selected (Dwayne Johnson, Jack Black, Kevin Hart and Karen Gillan) to conquer the most dangerous adventure of their lives…or risk being trapped inside the game forever.

                The musical score of Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle was created by British composer Henry Jackman who began composing his first symphony at the age of six.  Studying classical music at Oxford and singing in the St. Paul's Cathedral Choir, Jackman found himself becoming involved in the underground rave scene.  He would go on to work with artists such as Seal and The Art of Noise, creating electronica music and dance remixes before catching the attention of composers Hans Zimmer and John Powell in 2006.  He wrote additional music for Kung Fu Panda, The Dark Knight, The Da Vinci Code and the Pirates of the Caribbean films, before branching out on his own.  Solo composing projects include X-Men: First Class, Captain America: Winter Soldier, Kingsman: The Secret Service, Kick-Ass, Winnie the Pooh, Wreck-It Ralph, Big Hero 6, Pixels, Captain America: Civil War, Kong: Skull Island and more.

                The Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle score is full orchestral, featuring brass, woodwinds, strings and percussion.  Lighter and quieter moments in the score mostly take place outside the game, with the exception of First Kiss Jungle scenes feature some adrenaline pumping percussion on heavy bass drums and, sometimes, conga drums.  Action scenes, in which our heroes find themselves embarking on yet another adventure, are fast-paced and rise in crescendo.  Each new level or achievement is heralded by brass. 

                The music on the Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle Soundtrack is fast-paced and fun with never a dull moment.  I have no doubt the music is a great accompaniment to the visuals of the film, but this score makes for a great standalone album as well.


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