Josh Hutcherson in "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island"; photo
courtesy of Warner Brothers
“Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” (Warner Brothers)
There is an assured audience for family films especially when they are presented with as much adventure and humor as that found in “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island.” Dwayne Johnson and Michael Caine lead an exuberant cast on a wild adventure. It is fine for the family and fun for everyone.
The center of the story is Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson). He was previously seen as the same character in “Journey To the Center of the Earth.” In this film he is living with his mother Liz (Kristin Davis) and stepfather Hank (Johnson). Hank and Sean do not get along too good. Hank is continuously trying to connect with his stepson but there are some anger issues there.
Eventually they do connect over a coded message Sean gets, which he thinks is from his adventurer grandfather Alexander Anderson (Caine). It gives hints that lead to a map of “the mysterious island.” Hank and Sean immediately hop a plane to the island of Palau where they hire a helicopter pilot named Gabato (Luis Guzman) and his daughter Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) to take them on a hunt for the island they are seeking.
During a storm they crash on the island and immediately find Sean’s grandfather. They are impressed with the beauty of the island but there is danger lurking there too. It becomes a matter of life and death that they find a way off the island and back to civilization.
The adventures this group run into provide fun and excitement for the audience. The cast is also likeable with Johnson showing he is the emerging star of family films. He can be strong, warm and funny and that is what every hero of this type movie should be.
Caine is also good as the crusty adventurer who draws them all there. His back and forth repartee with Johnson is one of the highlights of the movie. The budding romance between Sean and Kailani is another. Hutcherson and Hudgens make it fresh and engaging.
This is a true family film as there is no profanity and just some mild violence on the island. It is rated PG but it could just as easily have earned a G rating.
If you want a movie that all members of the family can enjoy then “Journey 2” is the movie to see. Johnson and the rest of the cast give it their all in order to make the movie total fun for everyone.
I scored “Journey 2: The Mysterious Island” an inhabited 6 out of 10.