Written and directed by David E. Talbert, this is the kind of Holiday movie that should be watched to put one in the spirit. It’s fun romp in a place that is not quite real, at a time that is not quite clear. It’s a fairytale with a little girl who doesn’t need saving at its center. It’s a tale of love, adventure, and curiosity. The film is lively and gives the leading lady her space to shine and become one that is loved through her presence and performance. The story has its ups and downs, creating just the right balance and giving the viewer exactly what they need. A big part of this story is the music, with even a few dance numbers to make it feel grandiose.
All of this being said, this is Madalen Mills’ movie, her performance as Journey is the center of everything here and she makes it fun with her infectious joy and sense of curiosity. Her work is better than just about everyone else in the movie and that is saying something as everyone else is also great. From Forest Whitaker as her grand-father to Keegan-Michael Key as the evil toy seller to Kieron L. Dyer as Edison to just about everyone and anyone in this movie, there is a joy in their performance and a love for what they are doing that shows and grabs the viewer from the first scene. This joy is felt throughout the film and it makes it one of those Holiday movie that should become a classic fast.
The visuals of the film are provided by cinematography by Remi Adefarasin and special effects by large team that would be hard to name all here, but must be thanked for making the digital effects work and not overdoing them. It’s a visually stunning film that makes it all kinds of magical.
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey is one of those holiday films that are easy to watch, make you happy, and give you just that little bit of Christmas/Holiday spirit. It’s not heavy with the messages or with the pushing of the “Spirit” so it makes it work in an effortless manner. This is a really fun watch and it should be on the schedule for everyone, kids or not.