The Jungle Bunch is about a group of animals dedicated to keeping a jungle island safe. Maurice the Penguin is a tiger ‘on the inside’. He leads the group, which consists of his friends Gilbert the Tarsier, Miguel the Gorilla, and Maurice’s ‘son’ Junior, who’s a tiger fish. Maurice wants to be a hero like his mother, Natacha the Tiger, who used to lead the Justice Group with Tony the Sloth and Goliath the Rhino. The Justice Group has retired to live a peaceful life, and Natacha disapproves of Maurice trying to be a hero.
The jungle is under threat from a mean and nasty koala named Igor. When Natacha and her group were protecting the island, Igor burned it to the ground with explosive mushrooms. Natacha’s friend Ricky, a monkey, managed to save Maurice’s egg before dying in the fire. Now that the jungle has regenerated, Igor has returned from exile with more dastardly plans.
Here we outline any topics, issues and ideas in this movie that might upset children and adolescents, so that you can gauge whether it is appropriate for your child. For example, children and adolescents may react adversely to themes of crime, suicide, drug and alcohol dependence, death, serious illness, family breakdown, separation from a parent, animal cruelty or distress, children as victims, natural disasters and racism.
Animals in peril; good versus evil
Here we identify any violence in this movie, and explain how and why it might impact on your child or adolescent. In general, movie violence can make children less sensitive to the use of violence in real life. Alternatively, they may become fearful about the prevalence and likelihood of violence in their own world. In some contexts, it can also teach them to see violence as an acceptable means of conflict resolution.
The Jungle Bunch has a lot of violence. For example:
- Igor sets the jungle on fire by throwing mushroom bombs. These explode all over the island and cause animals to flee in panic to the shore. Ricky, Natacha’s friend, is trapped in the fire with many baby animals, which he manages to save. The scene shows Ricky clinging to a tree in flames, which collapses. Ricky is presumed dead.
- During the fire, which is a very intense scene, rocks crash to the ground. One nearly crushes a tortoise. Tony falls from a tree, but Natacha saves him.
- As the island regenerates, the apes take over and use the other animals as slaves. The apes throw things to make the animals do their bidding.
- Miguel gets into a fight with the other monkeys, and he gets hit repeatedly.
- Igor traps the Jungle Bunch in green foam and puts explosives in it. Igor’s sidekick, a crab, lights the fuse to blow them up. They are saved just in time by their friends.
- There’s an ‘illegal’ fight between Goliath and an elephant. The scene is very much like a fighting den with the crowd cheering and carrying on. The fight between the two large animals is quite intense. They headbutt each other and are thrown into the air.
- Tony fights the baboons with his claws and some martial arts.
- Igor and the crab throw a bomb directly at Natacha, Maurice, Junior and Tony. They all fall to the ground and look as if they might have been killed. Fortunately, they survive.
- The Jungle Bunch and the Champs fight the baboons. Natacha knocks out three of them. Miguel thumps them repeatedly.
- Igor sets off the explosives and the island starts to shake. Rocks fall and animals run everywhere.
Some of the violence in The Jungle Bunch is comic and is meant to make you laugh. For example:
- Gilbert invents a flying contraption to put out fires, but it isn’t quite ready to fly and crashes into the jungle. No-one is hurt.
- Animals fall over and crash into things.
Content that may disturb children
In addition to the violent scenes mentioned above, The Jungle Bunch has some scenes that could scare or disturb children under five years. For example:
- Igor the Koala is a particularly nasty creature. Sometimes his eyes glow red and angry.
- After the fire, the jungle looks very bleak. The trees are burned, and everything is grey.
- Natacha is a nice tiger, but she can sometimes appear fierce and growls quite loudly.
In addition to the violent scenes and scary visual images mentioned above, The Jungle Bunch has some scenes that could scare or disturb children in this age group. For example:
- There are some very intense scenes in this movie. These include scenes that show the island burning, a creature dying in the fire, and Igor trying to destroy everything yet again. These scenes are likely to be quite scary for children in this age group.
- The ‘illegal fight’ is particularly scary. The crowd looks scary, and Goliath’s eyes look like they’re bleeding.
- Igor kidnaps Junior and takes him hostage.
- In one scene, all of the animals have been set to work digging down to the core of the island. This is because Igor plans to blow up the island and obliterate it completely. It looks like an underground mine shaft with slave labourers. There’s glowing fire everywhere.
Children in this age group might be disturbed by scenes that show Igor wearing an explosive vest like a terrorist.
Nothing of concern
The Jungle Bunch has some sexual references. For example, a young animal is told by her parent that she can’t go out wearing a bikini. She joins her other friends, who are all wearing bikinis while she has nothing on.
Alcohol, drugs and other substances
The Jungle Bunch shows some use of substances. For example, a hippo at the entrance to the fight tells Natacha and Tony that the drinks are on him.
Nudity and sexual activity
The Jungle Bunch has some nudity and sexual activity. For example:
- A bird shows her bottom where her hair has been burned off.
- Gilbert and Batricia (a bat) kiss a few times. One time is a very long kiss.
None of concern
The Jungle Bunch has some coarse language.
Ideas to discuss with your children
The Jungle Bunch is an animated movie that might appeal to older children. It features familiar characters from the long-running French television series of the same name.
But if you’ve seen the TV series or a previous movie based on it, you might be disappointed with this one. Despite the cute-looking characters, there are some intense, dark and violent scenes that are likely to upset younger children. This movie is therefore not recommended for children under 7 years, and we recommend parental guidance for children aged 7-10 years.
The main messages from this movie are that you can be a hero even if you don’t look like one, and that good will triumph over evil.
Values in this movie that you could reinforce with your children include teamwork, friendship and courage.