Stars: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Ty Simpkins
In 1993, I went with my son, who at that time was eight-years-old, to see Jurassic Park. It was a milestone in entertainment as we sat in the only theater in Portland to have the nifty new Dolby Digital sound, making the dinosaurs’ roars totally awesome.
The movie scared the bejeebers out of me. I spent most of the time during the T-Rex scene (after the “where’s the goat” question) underneath a jacket with my son afraid to watch the poor kids go through their ordeal. To be honest, none of the sequels matched the first one in scare factor—until now.
Watching Jurassic World was a scary ride that I will term “Raptor-luscious.” I jumped in my seat. Brought both hands to my head and held it in fright. Leaned hard into the seat while grabbing my armrests with both hands. (I guess I was trying to get out of the way.) Not much gets to me in the scare factor, but this one hit the nerve.
Okay, so here you are in the park! It’s open. It’s cool. The original dream has come alive. However, the DNA processing has progressed to scary levels. The park owners want the “wow” factor to increase, so the scientists tinker and make a brand new hybrid dinosaur. “Probably not a good idea.” Of course, it was a really, really bad idea. It doesn’t take long for containment to breech and all hell break loose. Of course, removing 20,000 visitors from the park is no easy feat.
Some reviews I’ve read complain about the lack of character development in the storyline. The character line-up includes the over-zealous park manager, the nifty Raptor trainer, a concerned investor, and a sleazy character who really needs to be eaten to shut him up. Every story needs an antagonist, and he’s no different. Then, as in the original, insert two kids that need to be rescued to keep your heart pounding, like it did in the first movie, by grabbing your sympathy for the two poor boys unable to defend themselves.
The characters are in place, and I will admit there are not a whole lot of lines or backstory to the characters that develop them in any way. However, the character focus in this movie is on the dinosaurs–the new hybrid and the Raptors. They are the true stars that will capture your attention either through roar or deed, leading to a very surprising twist you won’t see coming.
Needless to say, I enjoyed the movie in non-3D but am really tempted to get back to the show as soon as possible and have one of those beasts come after me in 3D. It’s a rush. The special effects are great, and the throaty sounds of the hybrid and the hissing of the Raptors are music to your ears.
So grab a bag of popcorn, a cold drink, and buckle up for flesh eating, crunching fun-filled time with splattering blood from victims. Don’t take it so seriously in movie land. A lot of people get eaten, true, but it’s no worse than the carnage I’ve seen lately in movies from humans killing humans. At least with dinosaurs you can forgive them because they just want to eat.
Owen: These animals are thinking: “I gotta eat.” “I gotta hunt.” “I gotta…”. You gotta be able to relate to at least one of those things.
Go have some fun. It will take you back to 1993. Really, it will, even in the story.