The David E. Talbert-penned and directed musical transports audiences to a mythical village of Cobelton and follows a brilliant but down-on-his-luck toymaker, Jeronicus Jangle, (played by Oscar-winner Forest Whitaker). Jangle is betrayed by Gustafson ( played by Keegan-Michael Key, who is so phenomenally wicked in this role) because what’s a film without drama, I suppose. But through the inspiration and unflinching faith of his granddaughter Journey (11-year-old cutie pie Madalen Mills) and friends, Jangle is able to tap into the power (and dare I say magic) within himself to overcome.
And that’s all I’m going to give y’all about this film’s plot. You’ll thank me later.
Guess what?! Cobelton, the town where Jingle Jangle is set, is chock-full-of Black folks! Black folks in the streets; Black folks in the stores. Black folks owning stores. We love to see it. If you look closely, you might even catch the South African Gwara Gwara dance in the film’s choreography.
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey stars Forest Whitaker, Keegan-Michael Key, Phylicia Rashad, Anika Noni Rose, Ricky Martin and newcomer Madalen Mills (who was selected to be Journey after a worldwide talent search in 2019). John Legend also signed on as a producer of the musical.
As the star-studded cast is dripping with so much melanin, we thought it would only be appropriate to play The Root’s very own, Black Ass Game.
... Which Christmas anthem are you bumping: Temptations rendition of “Silent Night” or Donny Hathaway’s “This Christmas”
... Which Christmas side reigns supreme: Baked mac and cheese or collard greens?
... Which mythical city would win in a tree lighting ceremony: Cobelton or Wakanda?
Watch director David E. Talbert and the stars of Netflix’s Jingle Jangle head off in a round of The Root’s Black Ass Game. You are guaranteed to have a good laugh.
Jingle Jangle: A Christmas Journey streams on Netflix Nov. 13.