The film that continues to break every box office record known to Hollywood is on everyone’s mind. That film is of course Jurassic World, the 4th entry in the Jurassic Park series. However, this is actually considered to be the direct sequel to the 1993 original and this film completely ignores the sequels all together. To its credit, this is better than the two other sequels but as a whole, Jurassic World lacks any real soul outside of Chris Pratt and the dinosaurs themselves. Riddled with bad dialogue, predictable moments, and bad character types, Jurassic World feels so commercialized, similar to how the park is presented. The film’s appeal is simply the dinosaurs in action which will satisfy many but the flaws are just too much for me to look past.
John Hammond’s dream of a park full of dinosaurs that everyone can see has come to life in the form of Jurassic World. It’s been open for 10 years and people have already begun to get bored with Dinosaurs according to the higher ups at Jurassic World. So the executives of Jurassic World have demanded for a new display to wow the public. The scientists have designed the Indominus Rex, a hybrid dinosaur that is essentially a bigger T-Rex with all the dangerous features of the meat-eating dinosaurs of the park. This is essentially suppose to be an analogy to the use of CGI in today’s cinema with moviegoers wanting it to see something bigger and cooler with CGI. So mayhem ensues the park (what a shocker!) and we follow Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) as they try to ensure the safety of Claire’s nephews who always seem to be in the middle of this chaos.
It’s no shock to anyone reading this review that this is a very popular movie. As I am typing this, this film is the 3rd biggest film in the history of cinema! So obviously people loved this film very much and it’s quite understandable why. Similar to Universal’s Furious 7, the main appeal of action (in this case Dinosaurs for Jurassic World) overshadows any of the film’s shortcoming. I genuinely love the first Jurassic Park film, which still gives me goosebumps the first time the dinosaurs are revealed, yet this newest installment banks on commercializing that classic. The film’s riddled with cliches, unlikable characters, and just awful dialogue. The film does have a sense of fun, but with a lack of interest in most of these characters, why should I care if they survive?
Hollywood’s newest star at the moment, Chris Pratt salvages what he can of what is a genuinely boring character. We are given a few mentions about Grady’s past in the military and that he and Claire had a short fling for a period of time, but that’s about it in terms of character development. The rest of the time, Owen plays out like an unlikable Indiana Jones, lacking any sort of charisma or even humor that Pratt’s Star-Lord had. Pratt does what he can to seem likable but the script fails to give this character what he deserves. But when discussing characters, no character is more unlikable than Howard’s uptight, businesswoman Claire. Claire is absolutely unlikable and is quite frankly, a terrible human being. Howard’s character is a modern day ‘business woman’ with the cliche of being a workaholic, ultimately leaves her with no sympathy when her nephews are in danger. It’s admirable to see Howard run in high heels during many of the action sequences yet that doesn’t change the fact that Claire is so despicable, you can’t stand the fact that the film pushes the forced romance between her and Owen.
The film plays the audience as dumb for a lot of the movie, relaying on showing Jake Johnson’s character in a Jurassic Park T-Shirt in an attempt to be “meta” when instead it just feels like they are trying and failing to be like Phil Lord & Chris Miller. The film ignores the other sequels, but still manages to not come close in terms of the first film. The first film felt like an attempt to provide movie magic for the first time in an era where CGI dinosaurs were never thought of. Fast forward to 2015 where you see superheroes fight some new forgettable villain every other week or cars being able to avoid the laws of physics, seeing dinosaurs back on screen no longer has that same sense of awe that the original film had. Colin Trevorrow’s film pushes itself as an update to remind parents to show their kids a special experience and give those parents moments of nostalgia. In reality, this is Steven Spielberg making more money off of a property he once attempted to make something truly magical for it’s time.