‘Jurassic World’ Review: Bigger, Louder, Dumber

'Jurassic World'

Movie Rating:


It’s amazing how a few decades can change standards in moviegoing. In 1993, simply seeing Steven Spielberg throw credible dinosaurs up on the big screen qualified as an unprecedented success of cinematic spectacle. These days, Colin Trevorrow spends the last 20 minutes of his movie staging a massive multi-species dino battle royale that transforms an entire theme park into smoldering rubble, and it only inspires mild smiles of satisfaction.

Granted, the ‘Jurassic Park’ fourquel comments on that with a handful of in-jokes, but acknowledging such nagging problems doesn’t erase them. If anything, it just highlights the annoyance.

The film takes place 22-years after John Hammond’s grand theme park folly. Despite that tragedy, a T-Rex rampage through San Diego and a variety of paragliding related dino-disasters (or whatever the hell ‘JP III’ was about), somehow a full-on dinosaur theme park was eventually built on that cursed island and it proved to be a massive success. In fact, it’s become such an institution that tourists are getting bored with all those living dinosaur enclosures and demand more. For Jurassic World’s leader/manager/spokesperson/whatever Bryce Dallas Howard, that means constantly finding bigger, better, bitey-er dinosaurs to bring in the crowds. For some reason, that led to gene-splicing a super-dino that can camouflage itself to its surroundings and kill everything in sight. That seems like an unnecessary risk, but whatever.

It also means that Chris Pratt (his job title is equally unclear… maybe Official Park Badass?) has started training raptors to be his buddies under the watchful eye of Vincent D’Onofrio (who must be up to no good, because he’s Vincent D’Onofrio). The film takes place over a weekend when Howard must both supervise the launch of her super-dino and look after her two young nephews (Ty Simpkns and Nick Robinson), so nothing can possibly be allowed to go wrong. It’s got to be the safest and most productive weekend at Jurassic World ever! Surely, that’s exactly what will happen. The movie will be the uneventful tale of a dinosaur theme park that’s run and managed to perfection!

Well, actually no, not so much.

‘Jurassic World’ is a sequel about as thoroughly unnecessary as humanly possible, that exists for no reason other than the mighty power of brand loyalty. Thankfully, the only actual disasters involved with the project are the on-screen dino shenanigans. Other than that, it’s actually kind of fun if you can turn your brain off, lower your expectations, and let all the silliness wash over you like a massively expensive CGI shower. Things even start off rather well. Although many of the narrative setups can feel tedious as you watch a house of cards slowly get built just to get violently torn down, at least the process is kind of fun.

The fact that the ‘Safety Not Guaranteed‘ director/writer team of Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connolly were put in charge of this ship helps quite a bit in the early going. With only a single quirky indie to their names, the duo seemed like an odd choice for a massive sequel, but their playful and self-conscious sense of humor serves as the film’s greatest strength.

Plenty of laughs are made at the expense of Jurassic World attendees (both fictional theme park visitors and contemporary viewers in the movie theater) no longer being impressed by the mere sight of dinosaurs. Early dino reveals are dismissively ignored by characters in some clever visual gags, and oodles of nostalgic callbacks to the original film are worked into the plot as characters recall those fictional events fondly. A pair of hilarious technical supervisors for the park played by Jake Johnson and Lauren Lapkus also pop up frequently as a peanut gallery acknowledging the absurdity and repetitiveness of the movie to give the audience and out for falling for the same stupid plot devices yet again. Trevorrow and Connolly’s sense of flippant appreciation for the franchise is enough to keep the film’s sense of dumb sequelitis at bay for good chunks of the running time, but sadly not all of it.

Unfortunately, those self-consciously humorous touches only scrape along the sidelines, while the main storylines feel like a compilation of a variety of scripts slammed together with little concern for logic, reason or consistency. Chris Pratt proves that he is indeed a legit action star by managing to come off as charming and likable despite essentially having no character to play, other than being the guy who knows exactly what to do at all times. His plot involving training velociraptors is completely preposterous, even for a movie in which the audience already accepts that dinosaurs have returned through dumb science.

Vincent D’Onofrio’s weaponizing-dinosaurs-for-the-government plot is even more idiotic and almost impossible to understand – but thankfully the filmmakers make that a bit of a joke when his speech finally explaining the plan is cut mercifully short. Bryce Dallas Howard’s character is hard to ever fully warm up to; she seems to have been set up to be a villain in an early draft of the script, but was then changed into a hero without anyone bothering to give her an arc explaining how that happened. As for the kids, they too are established as protagonists early on, only to essentially become sidekicks at a certain point once Pratt takes over as the star. To be honest, it’s hard to take any of the characters or plot threads seriously, but luckily it’s not really necessary.

The reason all the storylines and character beats are so rushed and confused is clearly so that Trevorrow and his effects team can cram in as much dino carnage as possible. Sure, the idea of heroic raptors trained by Chris Pratt is stupid, but at least that concept doesn’t come to fruition until deep into the second half of the movie, which is essentially a series of massive dinosaur set-pieces with the bare minimum of connective tissue. There are probably more dino attacks here than in the entire first three films combined, and when they crescendo into a beautifully stupid and absolutely massive series of climaxes, it’s hard not to smile at the dino mayhem on display.

Sadly, none of the astounding dino puppets return, and that’s a damn shame. The monsters in ‘Jurassic World’ are all CGI except for a couple of stationary puppets, and even they’re obviously CG-enhanced. That might rob the big scenes of the sense of practical, physical scale that makes the first film hold up so well, but Trevorrow and company help make up for that through a collection of delightfully absurd (and often tongue-in-cheek) dino images that have to be seen to be believed.

It might all feel like overkill, and the movie lacks all the emotional weight, wonder, comprehensible pseudoscience, cynicism and dynamic characters that made the original movie so special and endearing, but at least ‘Jurassic World’ never takes itself seriously and delivers plenty of money shots. That’s not enough to make it a great summer movie, but it’s enough to make it a fun one, and that’s all that counts. If nothing else, this is at least a hell of a lot better than ‘Jurassic Park III’ and functions as adequate braindead summer entertainment with a handful of genuinely memorable highlights. That’ll do. ‘Jurassic World’ might not be great, but it could have turned out much worse.

What Did You Think of 'Jurassic World'?

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  1. Lol on the Vincent D’Onofrio comment. Yeah when you see him in a movie you wonder what he’s (his character) up to.

    Seldom do I see movies at the theaters – probably will wait for the Blu Ray on this one as well.

    • sell

      Heck, I’ll just watch this movie because of it, but I already preparing for the worst, they are eaten by a dinosaur. Do what? Although the character he plays is short of talent. Very ridiculous, the typical brainless villain, nothing to do with his masterpiece of “Daredevil.” This type of film is only ‘window’, adds nothing to the talent of an actor, especially a caliber D’Onofrio.

  2. I respect Philip’s opinion and usually agree with his reviews, but I think he’s way off the mark here. JURASSIC WORLD is a blast from beginning to end, and is really the sequel we’ve been waiting for all these years.

    Is some of the set-up/logic of the movie stupid? Yes, it has to be, or otherwise none of what we’d see in the film would ever happen…but given those boundaries, the movie is well-directed, well-acted, and the CGI isn’t nearly as obvious as Philip’s review would have you to believe. I didn’t think I was watching a CGI-fest the way I did with, say, SAN ANDREAS. Most of it here is pretty seamless.

    JURASSIC WORLD definitely has a Spielberg-ian feel to it – even more than Spielberg’s own THE LOST WORLD sequel. I appreciated the nods to the original film, but this movie is very much its own beast (pardon the pun).

    Going into the movie, I thought the idea of training Raptors was preposterous, but this film does a very good job of making us believe it – and never letting us forget that they (and the other dinos in the park) are animals with animal instincts.

    In short, this is a very good movie that I think most of you are going to be quite happy with it…don’t miss the chance to see this on the big screen.

    • William Henley

      I think Shannon is echoing my thoughts. This movie was a lot of fun, and the best since the original. Yes, it had some corny shots and plots, but it was a fun ride.

      I got to see this film at an AMC Prime, and that was awesome! I had forgotten from the articles that I saw here that the seats had vibrators in them, and the seats thumping at the dinos are walking, or rumbling in tempo with a dino breathing was AWESOME! Totally the format that I would recommend for anyone to see the movie in!

    • Yes! YES! There was a lot of thought put into making everything make sense within the confines of the universe in which this takes place. I loved the way they handled the Indominus Rex, using concepts and conversations straight out of the original novel.

    • Timcharger

      Side note:
      Never quite understood the phrase “unnecessary sequel.”

      If a sequel was necessary, that would mean the original didn’t really do a good job.
      What great movie would end, and feel unfinished without a sequel?

      This is not to say, that there aren’t great sequels.

      The only “necessary” sequels are 2-part/trilogy stories, that were by design to be
      spread over multiple films. But those aren’t really sequels.


      About T5, I am looking forward to see old Arnold interact with young Arnold.
      And that tiny Daenerys Targaryen girl, she has been surprising doubters all
      across Westeros. I suspect her Sarah Connor will be underestimated, too.

      • Bolo

        Maybe ‘unwanted’ is a better word than ‘unnecessary’. I feel some series reach a logical conclusion and contriving another installment out of them involves undoing the narrative progress of the previous films so that they can cover the same ground but with weaker results.

        There’s a lot of series that I would say I love, but I’m done with them. I have lots of love for earlier installments, but no interest in any new ones. Terminator and Alien being at the top of the list.

        • Timcharger

          What a sentence of Phil’s:
          “‘Jurassic World’ is a sequel about as thoroughly unnecessary as humanly possible…”

          1. It’s not just unnecessary. (That doesn’t quite communicate Phil’s point.)
          2. It’s not just thoroughly unnecessary. (Cuz Phil hates it when unnecessary is not thorough enough.)
          3. It’s not just what is possibly, thoroughly unnecessary. (Phil has to cover all realms of possibility.)
          4. It’s all that is humanly possible, and thoroughly unneeded.

          Phil, you figured that JW is a 4-quel, so your sentence needed 4 levels of absolute qualifiers?
          I read your mind, right.

          • Timcharger

            Phil, for T5, you can have this, free, on me:
            T5 is a sequel about as thoroughly unnecessary as humanly AND MECHANICALLY possible.

            T5 with 5 levels of qualifiers, human and machines, the war between them, it’s a winner!

      • William Henley

        If a sequel was necessary, that would mean the original didn’t really do a good job.
        What great movie would end, and feel unfinished without a sequel?

        Back To The Future? Star Trek: The Wrath of Khan? Star Trek: The Search for Spock? Empire Strikes Back? Star Wars Episodes 1 and 2 (okay, those were not great movies). Harry Potters 4-7?

    • Tom Tuttle

      There’s also “destructive sequels” such as Star Trek Into Darkness. It removed some of the joy of watching the first one.

  3. Timcharger

    Phil: “Sadly, none of the astounding dino puppets return, and that’s a damn shame.”

    Really, that’s a “sad,” “astounding,” “shameful” concern to people?
    There’s a group of people who need to get their animatronic
    dinosaur fix?

    I’m a Muppets fan, but Jurassic Puppets is a thing?

    Don’t get me wrong Stan Winston & company work marvels, but
    if the effect is good, the effect is good. It’s a “damn shame” if the
    CG isn’t as good as the practical effect, and you said…

    Phil: “That might rob the big scenes of the sense of practical, physical scale…”

    That MIGHT?! Are you saying in JW it DOES in your opinion?

    • Haven’t seen the movie, but the shot in all the trailers of the big aquatic dinosaur leaping up and eating the shark seems like a pretty good example of Phil’s point. The perspective is all wrong. Rather than shoot the scene up close so that the people look “average” size and the dinosaur towers massively above them, beyond their scope of vision, the camera is pulled way back so that the dinosaur fits comfortably in the screen and the people look like teeny-tiny CGI miniatures. It’s completely the wrong way to stage the scene, IMO. I get no sense of the supposedly immense scale or weight of the dinosaur. Also, the pool it’s swimming in looks way too small for the dino.

      • Timcharger

        Haven’t seen the film yet either. My question was that Phil expresses
        sadness and shame to only comment that it “might” have that effect.
        Reads like a comment before he views, not in a review.


        Josh: “The perspective is all wrong… the camera is pulled way back so that the dinosaur fits comfortably in the screen and the people look like teeny-tiny CGI miniatures.”
        Yet that’s exactly the same perspective of the first shot of dinosaurs
        in the original JP. The camera is pulled way back that Sam Neill and
        Laura Dern are teeny-tiny looking up against the giant Brachiosaurus.

        Again I haven’t seen the film yet, but I’m sure there are many shots
        of humans that are “human-sized” and the dinosaur too large to fit
        completely in-screen.

        Either way, whichever camera is zoomed in or zoomed out, CG or
        puppets isn’t the issue. As long as the effect is good. Puppets only
        in the zoomed in perspective. CG can work in either perspective.

        • That scene in Jurassic Park introduced the brachiosaurus with shots like these:

          Jurassic Park

          Jurassic Park

          Now, perhaps Jurassic World also has shots like this that aren’t seen in the trailer, but the one I described is being used as a signature image for the film in all the marketing.

          Jurassic World

          It just doesn’t have nearly the same effect.

          • Timcharger

            And that’s CG not a puppet Brachiosaurus (which was the
            start of this question).

            Further, that’s the follow up scene when they are walking towards it.
            The initial scene is with tiny humans, with entire dinosaur fully in-screen.

          • Timcharger

            Those Brachiosaurus shots you posted prove that you CAN capture
            the physical scale with CG, and not just with puppets.

          • EM

            I haven’t seen World yet either. My take from the trailers was that shots such as the one Josh has posted was that the film was supposed to establish a commonplace banality, the kind that would lead to a dropoff in park attendance, a risky move to draw guests in, and all the more surprise and panic among guests and employees once all hell does break loose.

            Of course, it’s possible I’m giving the film too much credit.

          • Clemery

            The cinematography was off throughout the whole film for me… I guess largely stemming from Trevorrow’s inexperience and indie roots. But the film just failed to bring any of the expected ‘oomph’ in any given scene, thanks largely to uninvolving camera placement and laborious editing. The entire first act should have been filled with that same wonderment and awe that we experienced when we were first introduced to Jurassic Park… but Trevorrow fails to elicit any such emotion here. The screenplay lets us down there also, seemingly rushing through a brief history of the new park/world with minimal details, when presenting a little more detail a little more logically would have worked wonders for the introductory act. And Josh’s comparison above captures what I feel about most of the movie… even simple clichés like the sharp beak of a downed Pterodactyl sliding towards one of the kids faces couldn’t even muster the slightest bit of suspense due to framing and pacing.

            I am no real fan of CGI… as any scene involving CGI in motion just suffered from the typical blur that puts me right out of the picture, but even with that in mind, the storyboarding was just lacklustre and completely misses the mark for me, offering a very uninteresting visual experience. Naturally, no suspense or scares were achieved, even in scenes that seem directly copied from the originals. JW just seemed to rely on the same old bag of tricks from all the previous movies.

            Lastly… the dialogue, story and characters are all just so mundane, seemingly fuelled by instruction to keep it dumbed down so the lowest-common-denominator audience can follow along too. I don’t give props to the “in-jokes” that people seem to praise it for… sure it may be all “meta”, but it just doesn’t work for me, and the two goofy characters in the peanut gallery never once brought a smile to may face (in fact, despite Jake Johnson’s dialogue being groan inducing, his female sidekick is the character I felt was more of an insult to my intelligence… even the big gag between them towards the end fell flat on its face for me). And when a Raptor gives Pratt the nod to say “chill out dude, I got this”… well, I just cant fathom how much worse future screenplays will become if this is accepted as good entertainment.

            Clearly I am not a fan… I know I am in the minority (as usual), but it really surprises me that people are so open to seeing past its multiple issues, for cheap fake-glossy thrills (that actually have no thrills). Sure, it can be argued that it is better than JP3 (and honestly, I would have to watch JP3 again to compare), but that’s kinda like saying that death by drowning is better than death by fire.

      • I completely agree about the staging. Spielberg created a true sense of awe with some of his shots. Also the action in the climax of the film was shot like a Transformers fight scene. We are so close to the action we can’t tell what is happening. It was frustrating.

  4. Timcharger

    Why do I keep picturing the most epic girl fight will occur between
    Bryce Dallas Howard and Jessica Chastain?

    If I was an evil warlord, those two would team up to be my top
    twin assassins or entourage.

    But why do I get a sense that the two hate running into each
    other at casting calls?

  5. Timcharger

    “If I was an evil warlord, those two would team up to be my top
    twin assassins.”

    I need to be a criminal mastermind; I can’t stop picturing what
    outfits my twin assassins Bryce and Jessica will be wearing. It’s
    gotta be red leather right? Or 1 all in white and the other all in
    black? What finishing kill weapon would Bryce, Jessica use?

    What?! This is about Jurassic World, sorry. (But you’re welcome.)

  6. I agree with Phil on missing the puppet dinosaurs or what have you. There are plenty of closeups of the big baddie dinosaur and its reptilian eye, but it still doesn’t hold up to the famous t-Rex dilating eye ball shot. A couple of robot heads wouldn’t of hurt. It was a really fun movie and there were a lot dumb choices made by the cast, but I liked it a lot. It still shiny and new, so repeat viewings will determine how much I like it compared to the other sequels. For now, I hold it second best after JP.

  7. Jurassic Park is my favorite film of all time. I can’t imagine anything topping it. The achievement in visual effects alone is reason enough to be on anyone’s top 10 list. Getting prepared for Jurassic World had me very excited, until I saw the first trailer. The second they mentioned the genetic hybrid dinosaur my red flags went up. Even Chris Pratt’s character made the appropriate joke: “They’re dinosaurs, wow enough!” After discussing the trailer with my buddy, we correctly predicted the entire final act of the film simply because it is painfully obvious that it is what will happen.

    I’m going to go ahead and start this off with the biggest complaint I have. Jurassic World does not honor Jurassic Park. It consistently tries to rip-off what made Jurassic Park great without offering much of anything original. Oh two kids, one of which is a dinosaur expert, who are at this theme park without their parents having their safety entrusted to some other member of their family? Never seen that before. The two kids getting trapped in a vehicle while the dinosaur is occupied with something else only to have it’s attention drawn to them by something that lights up? How original! Several times throughout the film I caught things like this. They didn’t feel like scenes that pay homage. They just didn’t have enough original ideas. Don’t even get me started on the final fight scene…ugh.

    Another major beef of mine is the score. I love Michael Giacchino. He has done some incredible work. I can imagine taking on a film with such iconic music must be overwhelming. The new pieces he offered for this film are very bland. You won’t remember a single theme after seeing this one. What’s more, when he brought back themes from the original film he either misuses them to a frustrating degree, or he adds ugly elements to the more beautiful themes. I know trying to create tension with music is key, but don’t use a piece that represents beauty to do so.

    Ok here comes another really big complaint of mine: I counted 0, possibly 1 practical dinosaurs in the entire film. The odd animation of the 1 led me to believe it was animatronic, otherwise I would have thought it to be bad CG. How many dinosaurs in Jurassic Park were fully CG at all times? I count 2 off-hand. (Gallimimus, and the other ones drinking out of the lake during the “welcome to Jurassic Park” scene) Yes the CG in Jurassic World is quite good, but it doesn’t feel like Jurassic Park when it is ALL CG.

    My next complaint is more of a personal issue I have with the movie. They change Henry Wu’s character completely. He played such a small, but important role in Jurassic Park, but there was a certain charm to him. What they’ve done to him here changes everything about him. I don’t like that.

    I need to stop typing so I will end on the cast. The two young actors were nothing special. Their dynamic was awkward, but not in the believable brotherly feud kind of way. The younger brother suffers from what has to be the worst case of helmet-hair I have ever seen. Every time he was on screen I just wanted to pop his hair off like a Lego figure and be done with it. I’m a big Chris Pratt fan. I think he is a really cool dude. He unfortunately falls really flat in this film. He was an odd mixture of Ian Malcolm, Alan Grant, and Robert Muldoon. Bryce Dallas was ok. My only complaint is that she really need to see a doctor for how much she perspires. Vincent D’Onofrio was unfortunately cast in an incredibly two-dimensional role. He is solely motivated by just really wanting to be the villain for no reason that any chance of understanding more about the character is impossible. Did anyone else notice the Jeff Goldblum “cameo?” Not a complaint, just funny that it was in there.

    You will leave this film most likely thinking: “Haven’t we seen that before?” As a big fan of the original film I am left saddened and frustrated. I no longer want any more Jurassic Park films. The dream is over. *cries in a corner*

    • the tl;dr version is just a quote from Ian Malcolm: “[The filmmakers] were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.”

    • But ALL the dinosaurs in Jurassic Park/World are genetic hybrids. None of them have been created with a complete DNA code. That’s why the raptors are bigger in JP/JW than they were in real life. They’re all created for the entertainment purposes of the Park, not to be as close to the real versions as possible…that idea goes back to Crichton’s original novel.

      • This is true, but none of them have ever been multi-dino hybrid like the Indominus. It was pretty obvious to me from the initial reveal which dinos they mixed for the indominus. It just seemed like an unnecessary step to take for the franchise. You’re telling me that people who still frequent zoos to see the same exotic animals that have always been there during their lifetime are somehow BORED with freaking dinosaurs??? Enough so that they have to start creating their own dinosaurs. This was just absurd.

        • William Henley

          The problem with a park like Jurassic Park is that, with its remoteness, extremely expensive assets, and the fact that you HAVE to stay on property at the resort (did you pick up the part in the movie where they say they charge $7 for a soda) is that you are catering to the rich, no matter how much Hammond in the movie (not the book) says otherwise. As such, you have to consider how to get repeat visitors to the park. How many people do you think go on African Safaris more than once in their life?

          So you got an exclusive group of rich / semi-rich people that you have to make sure make repeated visits to the park. So you got to offer something new. This worked at first, start with the initial Ford Explorer ride, add the river later, then the aviary, then the tank. Okay, so we have run out of new attractions, what now?

          So as crazy as Dino-hybrids are, it makes sense.

          • But this isn’t an African Safari. Those animals have always existed in out lifetimes, most of which everyone has seen in a zoo. I am confident that no matter how much Jurassic World cost it would have a sold-out crowd every day, even 20 years after it’s opening. Maybe I just overestimate just how much interest these creatures would generate. Maybe they could have a discount month for us poor folk 🙂

          • William Henley

            Yes, but your target audience in that super-rich is going to be kids. If the park has been in existance 20 years, that is their entire lifetime. Notice, for instance, that the older kid, upon arriving at the island, is more interested in his phone than where he is.

            Now I guess you can say that Disney World keeps having repeat visitors despite the fact that they only role out a new attraction once every five years or so, but you also have to think that an entire family can stay off-site in the Orlando or surrounding areas, get airfare, food, and tickets to the park for about the cost of a single plane ticket to Costa Rica.

            It’s also a fantasy world.

            I think the movie was pretty spot-on with how easily people (at least its target audience) will get bored with stuff. Of course, my question is, once they unveil this, what were they planning to do 3-5 years down the road when audiences get bored with that? Gladiator events with the dinos? (Actually, that sounds fun, they could genetically engineer Godzilla next!)

    • timcharger

      Not that I disagree with many of ur points.

      But ur comments are essentially the unoriginal complaints that a sequel is unoriginal.

      • Maybe just my first point and my concluding statement. I don’t really want to read my post to find out for sure, haha.
        For some reason I went in to the movie with high expectations. I should know better. I just really wanted it to be original. I was harsh in my review simply because of my love for the first film.
        I’m sure when I watch it on blu Ray I’ll have a much better time now that I know what to expect.

  8. C.C. 95

    I am still surprised people don’t get this yet….why do these big movies get directors who have only done one little movie? Because they are ONLY directing acting scenes. The rest of the film was already past pre-viz when they got hired. They are just actor puppeteers. All the action and effects sequences are not in their control- because no studio would put their blockbuster into the hands of a dude who did a $50 grand indie picture. They get paid squat and have no control over editing or cut. Their gift is they get to say they directed said movie (even though they didn’t). These movies big event pictures are made by committees now. The director is just a puppet. (Unless they actually hire a director with an actual CV).

    • C.C. 95

      …and Phil and Josh are 100% correct abou the puppetry. The most amazing parts of the first movie were the animatronic Dinos- hands down.

      • timcharger

        U have a skewed belief of what happened in film history. The BEST thing about the original JP is the dino puppets? Hands down?!
        Yeah hot dogs are the best thing at the World Series, too?
        Josh talked about framing the shots.
        Phil talked about balancing both CG and puppets.
        The best thing was seeing dinosaurs liked we never did before, and we only had puppets before JP. It was the revolution in CG that make JP what it was in history.
        Stop taking hands up surveys with ur skewed beliefs.

      • William Henley

        Um, no, the most amazing part of the first Jurassic Park was the realistic, believable CG that changed movie-making forever. Before Jurassic Park, CG was used for gimmiks and effects, not for believable creatures / characters.

    • That is true, though I wouldn’t say that he didn’t actually direct the movie. The acting scenes are kind of important. 🙂

      The other reason you’ll see more of these big movies put in the hands of barely-experienced directors like Trevorrow or Gareth Edwards, or guys coming from TV (Alan Taylor, the Russo brothers, etc.), is that these directors don’t have enough clout to fight with the studio to get their way. When you hire an auteur like Steven Spielberg or James Cameron to direct a tentpole picture, Spielberg and Cameron are going to do what they want to do no matter what. When you hire someone like Colin Trevorrow, he’s going to be forced to kowtow to what the studio tells him to do.

    • Phil Brown

      I see what you’re saying, but I think you’re being a little too harsh. Sure, big studios have an infrastructure that involves a variety of voices in designing the special effects sequences (especially at Marvel), but the directors are still quite involved no matter how green they’d are. It’s not quite that cut n’ dry.

  9. zero_zep

    Pretty big meh from me, though I do agree its better then any of the other sequels by far. It just lacked the extra things that made the first so great, the original JP seemed like such a passionate project for SS. Somehow he knows how to adds those touches that makes things seem real and if needs be scary. The new movie has a surprising amount of blood and violence but there was no tension whatsoever for me. It’s just action scene after action scene that not only failed to impress me but was lacking any emotional feel to it either. I will admit it did have ONE really good shot with the new rex and the explosion but that’s really all that grabbed my attention as whoa. I must be old now because I find myself liking things less and less because its just the same old tripe over and over again. Same set ups, same attempts at trying to be scary, and same lame jump scares. But I am part of the problem because I paid to see it lol. After all my complaining I admit I was at least entertained, but it was generic to the extreme. On a side note, how many times to movies have to explain that animals feel and have emotions but no one believes it till its too late? You can watch a cat or dog for 20mins and can tell that they feel and have emotions as along as there not sleeping lol, oh well.

    • It’s hard to make sequels to these movies without there being a certain amount of stupidity among the humans. It’s like trying to make a sequel to JAWS. If people just stay out of the water, nothing can happen…but of course, you HAVE to get people in the water for there to be a movie. Same kind of stuff with Jurassic Park/World. You just have to accept it and enjoy the ride.

      • timcharger

        And that expectation is so unrealistic compared to the real world. In the real world we stopped repeating stupid mistakes. Wars over color, over who’s god is the biggest baddest god, over financial greed. Movies should stop recycling these themes that we in the real world have stopped repeating.

        • Elizabeth

          “In the real world we stopped repeating stupid mistakes.”

          Since when? Does ISIS/ISIL ring a bell? Christian conservatives trying to rewrite history and law to? Ignoring the warnings of the scientific community when it comes to climate change?

          Humans are just as stupid as they ever were.

          • cardpetree

            Hmmm, and yet you couldn’t decipher that was sarcasm on Tim’s part? People love to call other people stupid.

          • Elizabeth

            I didn’t call anyone stupid. I called humanity stupid. Like the quote from Men in Black:

            “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky dangerous animals and you know it. Fifteen hundred years ago everybody knew the Earth was the center of the universe. Five hundred years ago, everybody knew the Earth was flat, and fifteen minutes ago, you knew that humans were alone on this planet. Imagine what you’ll know tomorrow.”

            Sarcasm and the internet have never gone well together.

          • Timcharger

            Yes, Elizabeth. Because in the real world, we still are repeating stupid mistakes
            in very big, very dangerous ways.

            I’m very okay with sequels repeating with stupid people doing stupid things
            again. For people to complain about sequels doing that, it makes me ask:
            have you not seen the real world?

            Doing get me wrong, it’s because it’s been 14 years since JP3 and JW, so I
            like the refresher in stupidity.

  10. Saw it today and it wasn’t that bad. Kind of bland overall but entertaining in a way. I wish there was more of a focus on the story of the park and a conclusion to the whole InGen genetic engineering thing. They kind of tossed that in there just to have an excuse for a new Dino.

  11. cardpetree

    This was a great summer blockbuster movie. One of the better ones. Hardly a better way to spend two hours on a June, Saturday afternoon.

  12. Timcharger

    Spoiler Alert:
    Spoiler Alert:
    Spoiler Alert:

    So the velociraptors discover a new alpha that replaces Chris Pratt.
    They can clearly see how Indominus is the true alpha. Pratt now
    even battles and tries to kill the raptors who have turned sides.

    Now why did the raptors turn back to Pratt as their alpha? He
    removes a leash from one of the raptors and that does it? I’ll buy
    it, if Pratt “communicates” to the raptors that he wants to challenge
    Indominus for the alpha position, and the raptors stand back to
    watch the fight. I can buy that.

    And having the raptors flip-flop allegiances again was rather
    unnecessary given the ending. It was the mosasaurus ending that
    mattered anyway.

  13. Timcharger

    I’m in the camp that genetic hybrid dinosaurs in the plot was too absurd.

    Yes, I acknowledge that all the dinosaurs in JP were technically genetic hybrids.
    But the frog DNA used to fill in the gaps didn’t make them croak, hop, and eat

    We still want triceratops and stegasauruses to look like themselves.

    Yes, we want bigger, scarier attractions and exhibits, but we don’t want
    hippogriffs, pegasus, chimeras. Don’t get me wrong Hellenic Myth World
    sounds amazing. But that’s not Jurassic World anymore.

    Though I do give credit to JW for immediately lampooning itself for creating
    genetic hybrid dinosaurs. It’s like the screenwriters are giving the producers
    the middle finger for forcing this plot direction.

      • Timcharger

        Okay, so you paid attention in the 1st film’s plot.

        But here’s the trade secret: the real reason is because Spielberg
        wanted to avoid the X rating with giant dino dongs constantly
        framed into shots over the actors’ heads. If all dinosaurs are
        female, then problem solved.

        Did you have a point? Mine was to have you picture a giant dino
        dong over your head. Look up.

        • William Henley

          Dinos lay eggs. I don’t think males of egg-laying species have big dongs.

          It was also explained in Jurassic World and I believe in one of the books (possibly Jurassic Park, but may have been Lost World – been 20 years since I read them) that they never did look natural – the colors and possibly skin, were chosen to be pleasing to the eyes. This was kind of a cop-out, though, because the special effects guys didn’t know what color to make these things as we don’t have any surviving dino flesh, and needed a way to explain it.

          I also think in the books, they used more genes than just that of frogs (does anyone remember?)

          • EM

            Yes, I remember. I don’t believe particular species were named (at least in the first novel—the only Lost World I’ve read is Arthur Conan Doyle’s), but both avian and reptile DNA were used. Possibly other amphibians were in the mix, too.

  14. Dane

    This started out so well but then quickly became sooooooo dumb. By the end fight I was giggling at how silly it was, rather than feeling like it was epic or exciting. Really lame movie IMO that wasted a lot of potential.

  15. Regarding Trevorrow and his ‘not enough clout’/’out of the left field’ casting as director: last week, I was watching the special features on the ‘Jurassic World’ Blu-ray, and he mentioned how he even got to pick his own crew. He opted for a lot of ‘Safety Not Guaranteed’ guys, of course, and he specifically stated that he never expected to get so much leeway and freedom, coming of a $750.000 first movie.

    Sure, it may be corporate blah-blah (because he would never badmouth Universal on the official Blu), but still, it left me semi-satisfied. He at least pretended he got away with a lot of his own choices and creativity.

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