Netflix has really been pumping out the festive movies this year. Many are licensed through companies like Hallmark or Lifetime, but there are a couple of Netflix Original gems, and Jingle Jangle is one of them.
Starring Oscar winner Forest Whitaker, Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey is a Christmas musical that revolves around Jeronicus Jangle, a toy inventor.
Directed by David E. Talbert, it's a magical movie that will entertain the whole family.
What Is Jingle Jangle About?
Jeronicus's life couldn't be going any better. He has a great family, business and has just created the first magical toy.
But in an instant, it all changes when his apprentice Gustafson, tired of being overlooked, steals the toy and Jeronicus's book of inventions.
When his wife dies, Jeronicus's world comes to a halt. Distancing himself from his daughter, his business fails, and soon, all that is left is a shell of a man working as a pawnbroker with the bank knocking on the door for repayment.
That is until Jeronicus's granddaughter Journey (Madalen Mills) arrives at his door. With her optimism and belief that things can get better, she awakens a spark of hope in Jeronicus.
She also gets the last unfinished invention working – the Buddy 3000. But Gustafson has run out of ideas and plans to steal Buddy.
So, can Journey and the once joyful toymaker save their invention and start again?
Jingle Jangle Official Trailer
Is Jingle Jangle Worth Watching?
Everything about Jingle Jangle is visually stunning. It is a feast for the eyes, from the costumes to the set design. Similarly, the music is beautiful, though one or two songs are better than others.
It has been compared to The Greatest Showman, but that's not surprising, given they are both musicals about family, love, loss, and hope.
The difference is the use of animation in Jingle Jangle. Bridging stories and time-lapses are the most fantastic stop-motion and CGI animated scenes, narrated by Phylicia Rashad.
It's quite a feat to blend so many styles into one movie seamlessly.
Forest Whitaker (How It Ends) is a joy to watch, which isn't surprising as he's one of the finest actors working today. But special mention has to go to Madalen Mills for her spirited and joyous portrayal of Journey, especially when she sings ‘Square Root of Possible.'
Overall, I loved Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey. It is a beautifully crafted holiday tale about surviving and rising from the ashes with a lovely magic sprinkle, making it the perfect Christmas family movie.
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey Cast
Forest Whitaker as Jeronicus, a toymaker who creates a magical invention
- Justin Cornwell as Young Jeronicus
Madalen Mills as Journey, the adventurous granddaughter of Jeronicus
Phylicia Rashad as Grandmother Journey
Keegan-Michael Key as Gustafson, the apprentice of Jeronicus
- Miles Barrow as Young Gustafson
Hugh Bonneville as Mr. Delacroix, a banker
Anika Noni Rose as Jessica, the daughter of Jeronicus and the mother of Journey
- Diana Babincova as Young Jessica
Ricky Martin as the voice of Don Juan Diego, a sentient matador doll
Did The Cast Members Do Their Own Singing?
Yes, the cast members showcased their singing and dancing talents in the film.
They received training and worked with choreographers to perform the musical numbers.
I'm sure it helped that John Legend is a producer, so the musical was always going to be on point.
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