A group of unsuspecting office workers find themselves stranded on a desert island when a corporate retreat led by unhinged former Marine 'Storm Rothchild' (Jean-Claude Van Damme) goes horribly wrong. Now Chris (Adam Brody) and his co-workers must battle nature – and each other – to survive! Welcome to the Jungle is a hilarious journey into the heart of madness...
I didn’t expect much from Welcome to the Jungle simply because I remember Jean-Claude Van Damme from his original uber-masculine action roles of the mid-90’s (Street Fighter, Timecop, Kickboxer) however taking a leaf out of the books of a number of other aging action heroes (whose varying degrees of success can be seen in any of the three Expendables movies) Van Damme takes a tongue in cheek approach to his previously hard bodied machismo; playing a parody of himself Welcome to Jungle is in fact a refreshingly pleasurable watch.
Taking liberal inspiration from the dark and brilliant Lord of the Flies Welcome to the Jungle is the story of Chris (Adam Brody), an ambitious staff member in a miscellaneous office whose ability to climb the corporate ladder by the presence of his overbearing and generally unpleasant boss Phill (Rob Huebel). A ridiculous and over-the-top company retreat intended to build and strengthen relationships within the office team cause this strikingly mundane (and familiar to so many of us from our everyday lives) narrative to take a brilliant twist.
Stranded on their far flung desert island the office workers fare well until their guide, ex-marine Storm Rothchild (Van Damme) disappears, in the chaos that follows the team split into two warring factions, one of which is led by the pompous Phill who now casts himself in the role of God, rather than boss.
What makes this film however is the performances, Van Damme in particular is brilliantly comedic in a parody of himself, whilst Huebel is also fantastically cast. A modern, sometimes violent but consistently entertaining twist on Golding’s classic Welcome to the Jungle is well worth a watch.