Jurassic World (2015)

JW

The new park is open, and it is run by idiots who create a new dinosaur and then let it escape. Their efforts to contain the situation involve many cliche character arcs.

I am so on the fence about this movie. Yes it was fun, the movie is entertaining, but there is also so much to complain about. I feel like it just won’t do to say that this was a Hollywood fun action movie and that I shouldn’t complain so much, and expect less. No, some complaints are in order.

Now, I am a huge fan of the original Jurassic Park. What I liked about that movie is how immersive it is. It is a nicely fleshed out world with great locations and a back story that feels believable. The dinosaurs too still look real, and it is a tense movie. Take the kitchen scene where the kids are tracked by the velociraptors. That is a tense scene; the danger is real and up close, and Spielberg knows how to make it thrilling.

Jurassic World tries to recapture some of the magic of the old movie through references, but it does not offer anything thrilling. Yes sure there are dinosaurs with teeth, but there wasn’t anything scary about it. Tension is not created by animated reptiles, but by skill of the director.

The scene in Jurassic Park in which the T Rex attacks the car with the kids in the rain is still so much more real than the scene in Jurassic World in which the new Indominus Rex attacks the glass ball with the kids. The I Rex’s breath isn’t even visible on the glass, even though it tries to eat it. It just pulls me out of the movie and I start thinking about other things, such as shouldn’t the glass ball be slipping in the wet grass as it moves? I only start nitpicking when a movie is boring me.

JW2While Jurassic Park felt like a movie that was supposed to thrill adults, Jurassic World feels like a movie for kids.

And I guess that is why two kids are the main characters. For some reason, Hollywood thinks that the only way to reach kids is to cast kids, just like in the Star Wars prequels, but it doesn’t really work that way. And most of the time when kids are the main characters in a summer action movie, characterization suffers. The whole brother bonding theme left me yawning, and so did the simplistic love story.

Boring, stock characters make boring stock character arcs. The characters of the old Jurassic Park aren’t fantastic, but they are at least interesting. They aren’t deep but they are still a step away from being stock characters. Ian Malcolm, John Hammond, Dennis Nedry, I remember them. I have already forgotten the new characters. I just remember that there was the hunter guy, the business woman, and the brothers. And you know what is going to happen with them from the start. It is nothing but a predictable frame to attach the action scenes on.

In the end I can’t be too negative about Jurassic World. I really liked seeing the park open and all the visitor attractions and I wished I was there. I wished it was real. I would go there immediately. A park open to visitors was a vision that even the first movie was about, but we never saw it working and that made this movie a very nice addition to the dinosaur theme.

I just wonder now how many movies we can make about dinosaurs and how to keep it interesting.

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3 Responses to Jurassic World (2015)

  1. ressivocmer says:

    I think we agree on many fronts, but I never felt like the children were the main characters. If I had to say who the main character was it would be Claire, with Owen being the most dominant side-character.

    The children felt more like a device to forward the story. Much like Max in Mad Max: Fury Road. The main character was Furiosa, but the story needed Max to introduce her and to forward the plot.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey thanks for your comment. I think you are right, the kids are not the main characters, they were more like a device to show off the park and to show the Indominus rex rampaging.

      Do you think the story would have been more engaging if Claire and Owen were already a couple and the kids would have been their kids? That would really have created a strong incentive for them to go into the park and rescue them, and some drama because Claire’s mismanagement would then have endangered her own kids.

      Liked by 1 person

      • ressivocmer says:

        It would have definitely made for better characters, since there would be a stronger bond and desire to keep each other safe.

        I think this might have been on the storyboard somewhere during preproduction. But since the three films before all contained parents with their children they opted for nephews just to be slightly different.

        Now that I think about it, simply having a Claire that is more involved with her nephews would make things more tense. In the beginning of the movie she seems to not even care about family visiting – it’s as if saving them is more about saving face toward her sister than actually trying to save her nephews.

        And Owen obviously just wants to get some…

        Like

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