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Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Zathura: A Space Adventure

Zathura: A Space Adventure
Dir: Jon Favreau
Starring: Josh Hutcherson, Tim Robbins, Jonah Bobo, Kristen Stewart, Dax Shepard

Zathura is based on a book written by the author of Jumanji, and the two have very similar scenarios: two kids discover a board game with a funny name, play it, and it kind of comes to life, meaning they have to dodge and fight various invading people/objects/creatures who pretty much destroy their lovely house. The only way they can get out of the game is by completing. The differences between the two are that Jumanji is all about wild animals and safari type things, and the children are a girl and boy, whereas Zathura is all about space (obviously, see the title) and the children are two boys.

Both films are excellent. OK, now I'm just doing a comparison rather than reviewing Zathura. Sorry.

Zathura is excellent. Firstly, because of the casting. I don't know how they found those two boys but they are incredible. Walter, aged ten, the eldest, is pretty mean towards his little brother Danny, and generally thinks he's better and cooler. This does not go down well with Danny or their dad. Anyway, Josh Hutcherson, as Walter, is scarily old for his age (in mind, not body) and he is generally quite amazing. As is Jonah Bobo (I'm sorry, what kind of name is that?) as Danny, and he is also very sweet.

Zathura is directed by Jon Favreau, more commonly known as an actor than a director (he was that millionaire who then gets interested in wrestling that Monica dates in Friends. Remember?). He seems to really understand kids and how siblings behave towards each other, because the two boys are very believable as brothers.

The story is so-so, but the dialogue is very good, and very witty for a kids' film. The astronaut who comes visiting and older sister Lisa are both very good and extremely funny.

The special effects are very good, but not hugely noteworthy. It's all very realistic though.

Zathura is basically very similar to Jumanji but with a but more about family and siblings in, although amazingly, it isn't too sentimental. It makes a very good family film which everyone can enjoy becasue the screenplay is genuinely funny, and the cast is genuinely good. It's probably to scary for younger children (I remember being absolutely terrified at Jumanji when I was about six, and this is almost as scary, but not quite) .

Therefore, I recommend it, although it is not a must-see. It's comforting to know that good quality family films are still being made.


Talliestar xxx

Dad: By the way, it makes me uncomfortable when you say "hooking up".
Lisa: Why? It's not like it means anything.
Dad: Hope it doesn't.
Lisa: It doesn't. It's just an expression.
Dad: Hope it is.
Lisa: It is! God, when should never have rented Thirteen.


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