"You just went and made a new dinosaur?"
It’s been over 20 years since the fiasco at the original Jurassic Park and a lot of advancements have been made technologically in both theme parks and gene splicing which has lead to tens of thousands of guests hearing daily “Welcome to Jurassic World”. With fears that the parks attendance might slip as people’s interest in their biological attractions begins to wain the good folks in the genetics labs over at inGen have decided to splice some genes and create a new breed of dinosaur. With the parks security being unprepared for what happens when the creature inevitably escapes, it’s up to ex-Navy badass turned Raptor trainer Owen (Chris Pratt) and the parks operations manager (Bryce Dallas Howard) to save the day!
“Jurassic World” has some very big footprints to fill. I’m not meaning being a sequel to the now classic Spielberg film of the early 90s (nothing will ever touch that), I’m meaning following a series of continually solid holiday blockbuster films that studios have been churning out as of late (the Marvel movies being a prime example). When put up against these other mainstream juggernauts “Jurassic World” holds its ground as a great piece of popcorn cinema.
Director Colin Trevorrow perfectly balances the thrills and action of the film with a sweet, light hearted nature that is often missing from bigger, blockbuster cinema. The duality in tone he creates guarantees the audience will have a great time as he generously provides plenty of opportunities for the viewer to both laugh and scream and what’s happening on the screen while never loosing interest in either the story or the characters. This is also due in large part to the tongue in cheek nature of the film, Trevorrow knows exactly the type of movie he is making and never lets it take itself too seriously, which in this case is very important.
The story is what it is (you don’t exactly go into the fourth “Jurassic Park” film expecting it be have a brilliant story) but what the cast and crew manage to do with the little they are given is quite entertaining. Everybody involved seems to be having a lot of fun working on the film which translates on the screen and bleeds over into the audience. Pratt and Howard do a fine job delivering clunky one-liners and expository dialogue while young actors Nick Robinson and Ty Simpkins provide a wonderful heart to the film as brothers lost on the wrong side of the fences and trying to survive the park.
The problem with “Jurassic World” is that it seems to be trying a little too hard to be a blockbuster. In an age where Marvel films craft interesting and intriguing stories it’s a little disappointing that a storyline couldn’t be constructed for this franchise that doesn’t just seem like a rehash of old material, throwing in some nostalgic moments for extra measure. While the special effects are breathtaking and the construction of the piece is entertaining, it just leaves the audience with a somewhat of an empty feeling as the credits begin to roll.
While Jurassic World may be a whole lot of fun the audience learn a similar lesson to that of the characters in the film, bigger is not always better. Of course nothing will come close to the sheer cinematic thrill that is the original “Jurassic Park” but as far as holiday blockbusters go this one definitely provides an entertaining time at the movies.
6 out of 10.
Reviewed by Chris Swan.