MIFF Review – Jungle

For anyone who loves adventure, loves the outdoors or loves a true story film, Jungle is for you. Headlining this years Melbourne International Film Festival Jungle takes you on a journey through the jungles of South America and everything that it has to throw at you. Unforgiving and aided by the frightening true story not only of being lead to the depths of the Bolivian Jungle but also left to fend for yourself as you get further and further lost.

Jungle is the true story of Yossi Ghinsberg who has taken a year to travel and experience what South America has to offer. Making friends and being offered a once in a lifetime adventure into the heat of the Bolivian Jungle his wonderful adventure takes a turn. One of his friends manages to fall ill and has to go back to the nearest village.

Craving further adventure Yossi and his American Friend build a raft to float down stream and immerse themselves before it’s all over. After running into some bad luck they become separated and Yossi get’s lost in the jungle while his friend tries to find him despite being told he is most likely dead.

Directed by the guy who brought Mick Taylor the Australian outback serial killer that no one has ever been able to find or prove exists from Wolf Creek. And the role John Jarrat was born to play, Director Greg McLean manages to bring a true story about adventure and survival back to life.

McLean has a unique ability to bring the scenery and landscape to life adding another character to the cast. And as you immerse yourself in the friendly and inviting jungle it slowly turns as it opens up and consumes you.

Leading the cast is everybody’s favourite childhood actor, Daniel Radcliffe who plays Yossi. Having clearly broken away from his Harry Potter days, Radcliffe put on a stellar performance. He lost a great deal of weight for the role and put on an Israeli accent making you forget he was ever an English wizard.

Aussies Alex Russell (Chronicle, Unbroken, Carrie) and Joel Jackson (Deadline Gallipoli, Peter Allen: Not the boy next door) also put on a performance so believable you’d forget they were Australians.

Overall this is an amazing film full of adventure and horror with a truly remarkable true story. Aided by some powerful performances and brilliant direction this is a must see.

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