If anyone believes the film Jack the Giant Slayer is for children, I warn parents to think again before taking the tiny tots, as it is not Jack in the Beanstalk. According to the Warner Bros. information I have received, this film is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for “intense scenes of fantasy action violence, some frightening images and brief language.” The giants in this story by Darren Lemke and David Dobkin do not like humans and enjoy eating them. Once they discover there is a connection between the two worlds again after a long period of time, the giants are ready to tear up the human world. Amidst this, there is a budding romance and is one part of the story that is a bit predictable. No matter, I like this film.
The screenplay by Lemke, Christopher McQuarrie and Dan Studney is directed by Bryan Singer (X-Men: First Class (2011) with plenty of action to keep the viewer engaged. Much of it involves fighting the giants or running from them, but it is not so dramatic that it gets boring, as there are some very humorous scenes. One of my favorite humorous scenes is with Knight Elmont (Ewan McGregor) who finds himself in the kitchen and not as the cook, but rather the soon to be appetizer.
The film boasts of a great cast aside from McGregor; Stanley Tucci does an excellent job as Roderick, the man the King Brahmwell (Ian McShane) has chosen to marry his daughter, Princess Isabelle (Eleanor Tomlinson). Roderick is not the fine, upstanding man who the king thinks he is and he has no plans of being a good husband to his future wife. He tells his sidekick, Wicke (Ewen Bremner), he did not care if she “walked right off a cliff,” so early on the film viewers will know he is not to be trusted.
Actually, when Princess Isabelle has an encounter in town with a common man, Jack (Nicholas Hoult) and later as she escapes the castle again looking for adventure, the chemistry is there for the two, despite the ruling she is not to be with anyone who is not a royal. This romance develops within the harshness and violence, thus it can appeal to viewers who might otherwise think it is a children’s tale.
While I do not recommend running to be the first in line for this film on opening weekend, it does make for a good escape from dull times at home or elsewhere either early morning or afternoon. Although I do not recommend paying for price for this feature, it certainly is worth the price of admission to see Tucci, McGregor and of course, the two headed giant, General Fallon (Bill Nighy) and General Fallon’s Small Head (John Kassir). Enjoy the escape!
[Source: Warner Bros./New Line Cinema]