“Journey 2: The Mysterious Island,” released Jan. 19, is a 3D adventure the whole family can enjoy. Director Brad Peyton’s film is loosely based on Jules Verne’s “Mysterious Island” and is the follow up to Warner Bros. 2008 film “Journey to the Center of the Earth.”
The journey begins with a high-speed chase as police pursue a young individual on a dirt bike. The juvenile delinquent, Sean Anderson (Josh Hutcherson) is apprehended and released to his stepfather Hank (Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson).
After the arrest the typical conflict of young boy versus stepfather ensues. Sean insists that his grandfather (Michael Caine), who has been missing for several years, is trying to send him a radio message through a complex satellite code. Lucky for Sean his new stepfather has past experience with deciphering codes for the U.S. Navy.
Hank and Sean soon discover that it is in fact a coded message sent from Sean’s grandfather containing the coordinates to The Mysterious Island. Hank then devises a plan to bond with Sean by accompanying him on his quest to find the island.
While on their adventure Sean and Hank charter a helicopter to take them to the island. The father-daughter tour guides Gabato (Luis Guzman) and Kailani (Vanessa Hudgens) lead the expedition as their journey begins.
Hutcherson reprises his role as Sean from the original film as he once again sets off on another memorable exploration. He gives a convincing performance as he proves that he is a future star in the movie industry.
Johnson supplies a playful and entertaining performance as Sean’s stepfather. Johnson’s character delivers a multitude of hilarious one-liners as he leads the group in and out of trouble while they attempt to escape the island. Johnson reasserts himself as a leading man in Hollywood showing that he can do more than just play the tough guy role.
Hudgens, previously from the “High School Musical” films, plays the young love interest of Sean in the movie. She gives the movie a hip, young feel as she portrays the helicopter tour guide’s daughter. The chemistry between Hudgens and Hutcherson is visible, and the lighthearted and comical adolescent banter of their characters fills the screen.
Michael Caine and Luis Guzman add to the humor of the film with timely punch lines and anecdotes. There is even a small cameo from Kristen Davis, “Sex in the City,” as Sean’s mother.
The story, although predictable, is still very exciting. The scenic visuals that map the landscapes are breathtaking. With its stimulating 3D visual effects and a strong cast, “Journey 2” will have audiences immersed in this action adventure from start to finish.