Culture Street

Film

The Little Boy Raised by Wolves

On April 18, 2016

To commemorate the birth of Rudyard Kipling 150 years ago, Disney has released a live-action film. Based on The Jungle Book collection of stories first published in 1894, the film captures Mowgli’s adventures in the wild where he grew up as a man-cub surrounded by animals of the forest.

The Jungle Book stories were based on Kipling’s life in India where he grew up during British colonial rule. The wildlife depicted in the books live in what is now the Kanha and Pench National Forests. They are home to the three main characters in the stories, Shere Khan the tiger, Baloo the bear and Bagheera the black leopard. All three befriend Mowgli,the central character in the stories.

Mowgli (newcomer Neel Sethi), a man-cub who’s been raised by a family of wolves finds he is no longer welcome in the jungle when fearsome tiger Shere Khan (voice of Idris Elba), who bears the scars of Man, promises to eliminate what he sees as a threat. Urged to abandon the only home he’s ever known, Mowgli embarks on a captivating journey of self-discovery, guided by panther-turned-stern mentor Bagheera (voice of Ben Kingsley), and the free-spirited bear Baloo (voice of Bill Murray).

Along the way, Mowgli encounters jungle creatures who don’t exactly have his best interests at heart, including Kaa (voice of Scarlett Johansson), a python whose seductive voice and gaze hypnotizes the man-cub, and the smooth-talking King Louie (voice of Christopher Walken), who tries to coerce Mowgli into giving up the secret to the elusive and deadly red flower: fire. The all-star cast also includes Lupita Nyong'o as the voice of the fiercely protective mother wolf Raksha, and Giancarlo Esposito as the voice of wolf pack’s alpha male Akela.

The wild adventure swings into theatres in 3D in April, 2016.

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