Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey

Certificate: PG

Starring: Forest Whitaker, Keegan-Michael Key, Hugh Bonneville, Madalen Mills, Ricky Martin

Release date: 2020

4 out of 5


An inventive, fun and really rather wonderful Christmas movie, Jingle Jangle is the story of toy inventor Jeronicus Jangle (Whitaker, plus Justin Cornwell as the young Jeronicus).

Years ago, Jeronicus had a magical toy shop filled with his creations, until his young apprentice Gustafson (Key, and Miles Barrow) stole them all one night and, with the help of pesky matador toy Don Juan Diego (Martin providing the voice), became the most successful toymaker in town while Jeronicus struggled to invent anything new.

By the time his granddaughter Journey (Mills) comes to visit, Jeronicus’s toy emporium has become a pawn and repair shop that is due to close forever. It seems, however, that Journey has inherited her grandfather’s magical inventor touch, and she brings one of his old toys to life – sparking the interest of Gustafson, who is searching for a toy to produce now he has copied all of the ones he stole from Jeronicus.

Featuring some terrific sets – including Jeronicus’s cavernous toy shop and a wild ride of a factory for Gustafson – plus colourful costumes, enjoyable musical numbers and a fun script, this is a seasonal treat for all ages that really lifts the spirits in every scene. Whitaker is a grumpy delight, Key is a fun rather than a scary enemy and Martin is hilarious as the scheming doll that wants to remain one of a kind. There’s also nice support from Anika Noni Rose, Hugh Bonneville (as the kindest bank manager ever), Phylicia Rashad and Lisa Davina Phillip.

But it is young actress Mills who steals the movie from all of them, and gives this classic Christmas movie-in-the-making its warm, lovely Yuletide heart.

Is Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...

This movie should be suitable for all ages as there is only minor peril, but very little children may be worried when Journey is trying to escape Gustafson’s factory.

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