I'm a little kid, don't remember exactly how old, elementary school age. My teenage cousin promises to take me to see *The Jungle Book*. She falls asleep. Minutes are ticking down to show time. I poke at her but she snoozes on. Elders tell me to leave her alone. I stand over her and glare, using my powers of mind control to will her awake. It works!
I was just desperate to see this movie. I loved all the Disney animals stories and *The Jungle Book* turned out to be my favorite. The lively songs, lush animation, compelling characters, and strong storyline left quite an impression on me. Can never forget the loving and gentle Bagheera, that kooky monkey, and Baloo, Baloo the lovable bear. Ooh, and that sinister Shere Khan striking fear in the hearts of all and the slithering sneaky snake always up to no good. The voices used are wonderful and fit the characters to perfection. I was in heaven, and it has stood the test of time by remaining one of my favorite animated films.
I just wanted so badly, just longed to be a girl version of Mowgli. Raised by wolves, living wild and free in the jungle, playing with the bears and apes. Climbing trees and swinging from vines. Yep, that was the life for me. I sobbed at the end, crying: No, Mowgli, don't leave your animal friends behind and live with people. You are making a big mistake! Would he return to his original home? I wondered, why of course he would!
As an adult, I understand Mowgli's decision to join the village and live with his own kind. The girl in me, though, still doesn't get it and yearns to run free.