The 21 year journey to get to Jurassic Park: The Lost World
Do dinosaurs deserve the same rights as animals? That’s the underlining, and very in your face, story-arch of Colin Trevorrow’s sequel to Jurassic World (2015). A very topical issue and a commentary on what’s, kind of, happening in the world today. Sure, we don’t have an island of newly ‘un-extinct’ animals running around, killing hundreds of people, but spend a few hours in the comments section of most Facebook articles and you’ll eventually stumble across something.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom picks up 3 years after the events of Jurassic World (just like in real life!) and has the world governments trying to figure out if an exploding island volcano, that’s about to wipe out the dinosaurs ‘again’, is the perfect place to send the military, and some fashionable 20 year olds, to save the prehistoric animals. Short answer, yes. You’ve seen the trailers. You’ve seen Dr. Ian Malcom talk about weather or not those animals deserve rights and if you’re coming into this movie hoping for lots of Goldblum and ties to the original movie.. you’re out of luck. Goldblum’s entire role in the film was in the movie trailers. He more serves as a narrator for context, when it’s needed, to push the story forward or cap off certain parts of the film. Which is funny, because the last thing Fallen Kingdom needed was context. The plot was VERY predictable and there were even parts of it, especially towards the end, that I felt were completely un-needed. The little girl in the main image of this review is a perfect example. I don’t know why this franchise insists on injecting children into scenarios that are NOTICEABLY dangerous and yet nobody bats an eyelash or even reacts in a way that you’d expect them to when a 2000 pound bird/lizard is trying to rip them apart OR just finished ripping someone apart before their very eyes. But let’s be honest, we don’t come to Jurassic World movies for character development and a coherent plot, right?
The ‘second plot’ of the film has BD Wong reprising his role as the only thread connecting these movies to the 1993 Spielberg masterpiece and his role is… exactly what it was in the 2015 film. Playing god and trying to weaponize the dinos to the highest bidder. Except in this movie, we actually see the underground black market of dino-auction. I gotta say, this was one of the highlights of the movie for me. That’s 100% what we’d see happening if something like this were to happen in the real world. Sure, it starts off as a good science experiment and the “just because you can doesn’t mean you should” argument can be made, but it’s very logical to think that if dinosaurs were to be cloned they would absolutely be weaponized. The only problem with this arc, was that they diluted it with a manila-villain and a ‘plot point’ with the child character that seemed like was written in for the purpose of bringing it back to justify the final sequence of the film. I wont spoil it, but when you see/hear it happen, you’ll know. It did make for some great action sequences and “revenge death” moments.
Fallen Kingdom also borrowed it’s trope from the first reboot and gave us another ‘test tube baby’ dinosaur. This one was cooked up to be EVEN SCARIER than it’s predecessor from Jurassic World. Made with a little of this and a little of that, spiced up with some Raptor & Adnominus-Rex bits to make it truly scary. It was fine. Nothing special or scary, but when you’re this many movies into a franchise and you need to stop using Raptors and the T-Rex as the main ‘villains’ then I get why they keep making new dinos. All the build up for the inevitable escape of the hybrid is quickly diminished with fast action pieces that had me, literally, saying out-loud in the theater, “oh, COME ON” and “Nobody would do that…”. That’s the thing I never understand about these movies, no person on the planet would watch a creature rip 30 people to shreds and then voluntarily get inside of a cage with it because it fell over when they fired ONE bullet at it. Sure, that trope worked in 80s horror, but I like to think that we’re past that now and filmmakers can come up with more exciting or shocking ways to kill off a character instead of lazily writing a scene that I can predict for 5 minutes before its payoff.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was actually more enjoyable than Jurassic World (2015). I wasn’t the biggest fan of the soft-reboot from a few years ago and found myself bouncing between hype and not caring to see it’s sequel. With a 2 hour 10 minute run time, there were definitely scenes that I felt could have been cut for time. Pacing the action and ‘story’ was where the movie seemed to struggle and having to tredge through a story of animal rights that I, in no way, cared about… honestly… does anyone really buy that people would fight to save less than 100 dinosaurs from an “act of god” after they’ve killed how many people? PLUS, they’re all female dinos, so they’ll all die of natural causes and go extinct in 30 years anyway! That’s besides the point though… I do like where this movie sets us up to go in a possible third film. Although I didn’t enjoy the catalyst that set that possible sequel moving and I somewhat enjoyed the journey to get there, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is a fun summertime movie that takes your $15 and gives you action and incredible effects. If that’s all you’re wanting to see in a JW movie, then you’re in luck!
Please don’t bring your 6 year old children to this film like I saw MANY parents did. I would like to sit in piece and quiet when I see people get their arms ripped off or bodies torn in half and not have to endure the constant sounds of a child’s tear and or “this is scary” comments during quiet/tense moments.