Reel Features Season 5: Ticket 2
Fourteen years. Fourteen long years since the disaster that was 2001's Jurassic Park 3 and the Franchise laying dormant until Universal had found the right story to revive one of their lucrative Franchises and brought the 4th Installment of the Jurassic Park movie series but made the point that while this was a sequel to JP3, this was starting a new trilogy.
Now as someone that has loved and adored the first Jurassic Park, to see the series get a much needed rejuvenation was more than satisfying to know because I and several other Jurassic fans had been waiting for years for another follow-up because it was this series that had presented Dinosaurs more accurately and respectfully than movies that gone before it, from the likes of the Land that time forgot or some really low budget movies like Carnosaur that while going to the more mature rating that some audiences craved didn't have the quality to match it.
Jurassic World poses the question of what if Jurassic Park had come true, of which Spielberg had said in interviews "seeing Jurassic World come to life is like seeing Jurassic Park come true."
And the movie does this convincingly. You see tourists flock from all over the world to the Isla Nublar and taking the failed dream of John Hammond for his original vision of Jurassic Park and making it a reality with a thriving Theme Park.
The only thing I wasn't keen on of the look is that it had abandoned the concept of driving around the Island with the Ford Explorers and viewing the Dinosaurs behind electric fences. Mind you, that's probably my bias and fond nostalgia for the original movie talking there. Take that as you will.
A lot of people had given the character of Claire a lot of criticism due to the fact that it had been said that she had no character development. I don't know what movie that they were watching because I saw great development from her. She starts out being not too caring about the animals well-being and only seeing them as "assets" to really showing concern when she witnesses an Apatosaurus dying right before her eyes after the Indominus Rex had gone on a rampage across the Island. The point of a good writer and good character development is that the characters are in a different place at the end of the story from what they were in the beginning.
As good as the movie it is, and it is - it's not as good as the original. But then again Jurassic Park was such a tough act to follow from when it appeared in 1993 providing such a competent movie in writing, casting, special & visual effects and to the score and sound effects.
While the score & effects are just as amazing if not more so with the CG, I don't think the writing was as sharp. But, I did like the idea of having the Velociraptors portrayed as Protagonists this time around whereas before most audiences regarded them as Antagonists. I would argue in the first 3 movies they were neither - they were just being animals behaving as their counterparts would have likely done in the Cretaceous Period.
And to see the return of the original Tyrannosaurus Rex was just a treat and I do like that they showed her scars from the battle with the original Velociraptors in the last act of that movie which is good for continuity. Also, I was pleased when she smashed through the skeleton of the Spinosaurus where the film-makers acknowledged the mess-up from Jurassic Park 3 of killing that T-Rex off was asinine.
As for the Indominus Rex - I think it was inevitable that a Jurassic Park movie would explore the idea of genetic meddling taken to the next level in splicing Dinosaur DNA together in order to create a super hybrid. The I-Rex is composed of T-Rex, Velociraptor, Cuttlefish and tropical tree-frogs in order to have the genetic of being able to camouflage and hide itself from thermal radar. But then I would ask why would you need a dinosaur to do this, because this sounds like something you'd use for the military.
Now, this is where I think the Movie loses some credibility points in breeding a dinosaur specifically for military combat. If this was for a live-action Dino-riders movie that would be based on the retro-animated series, then have at it. But because the Jurassic Park series is taken very serious with the credibility that has been put into it (minus JP3) it just defies logic to through this aspect into the story where the necessity of it is neither warranted nor required.
The Velociraptors being trained is new to the movie series, but not the Franchise itself. Those that remember the comic book series from the 90s will remember a sequel series to the movie called "Raptor" in which a Billionaire manages to capture the remaining Velociraptors on Isla Nublar (not killed by the T-Rex) along with Grant and Ellie and end up in some jungle in South America where they are being trained as guard dogs.
While it still raises the question of why you would need to train Raptors for military applications when you could just showcase them as an attraction at the Park that would make money hand over fist instead remains to be seen. But that said I give some credit to the writers for having the sense to try something new, even if doesn't really work out in the finished product. But had they not gone with this angle, then we would not have seen the cool sequence with Owen commanding respect and some control over Charlie, Echo, Delta & Blue.
And I do like the theme that although he has some control over them, they're still wild animals that have the predatory instinct to kill and only allow Owen so much control over them.
Had these been the Raptors from the first 3 movies then they would not have hesitated to kill him. But because he has been present with these animals since their birth and actually imprinted on them more than Hammond would have done with each creature that was born on the Island, they look to him knowing that he is an authority figure/pack leader and understand that they will receive treats for doing as instructed.
Jurassic World did a very satisfying job of restoring much needed credibility back to the series after the woeful disaster that was Jurassic Park 3 14 years prior to this. As I mentioned, it's not quite on par with the 1993 original, but it's more than decent enough to have me wanting more from this series.
To say that this was brought back from the brink of extinction, would be an understatement.
Jurassic World is available from Amazon
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