Review of 'Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom'

jurassic_world_fallen_kingdom.jpg Another film where the trailer gives much of the story away: Several years following the events of Jurassic World a volcano on the island threatens to erupt, destroying all of the dinosaurs now roaming free there. Clare Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) has formed the “Dinosaur Protection Group” to save the dinosaurs but any rescue is rejected by the US Senate. Benjamin Lockwood (James Cromwell), former partner of Jurassic Park founder John Hammond, proposes that the dinosaurs be transferred to a sanctuary on another island and approaches Clare for help. Clare realizes he will need the former dinosaur trainer Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) to help finding the hyper-intelligent Velociraptor “Blue”. On returning to the island Clare and Owen very quickly see that the motives of the group are not as pure as have been led to believe as any rescued dinosaurs are to be sold to the highest bidder…

It is hard to avoid spoilers since the story is so simple. The key here of course is action and lots of it. “Fallen Kingdom” repeats the familiar theme of tampering with nature (in bringing extinct dinosaurs back for entertainment) but a slight twist is introduced with the idea that these creatures are due our protection our having created them in the first place. The dinosaurs, in a way, are not the bad guys though, rest assured, there are lots of scenes of human-munching here.

It is fun to see Pratt back on the screen (I can watch him in just about anything) but he is woefully underused with very few time on the screen for his trademark quips though he dominates any scene he is in (assuming it does not also feature a dinosaur that is). Most of the time he, like others, are either running away from dinosaurs, volcanoes or bad guys. Another Jurassic Park/World film, another tale of corporate greed. Speaking of underused characters, Clare is really just along for the ride not progressing the film beyond getting herself and Owen to the island and, it seems, to look really, really scared most of the time.

I won't bore you with how great the effects are as this is pretty much par for the course nowadays. The music is suitably majestic and fraught but it is, unfortunately, not provided by John Williams (though his themes are repeated throughout by the composer). The acting is as you might expect and not asking too much of the actors: Look terrified, scream, run, quiet moment to make a smart comment, repeat…There is a nice cameo, much vaunted by the promoters of Fallen Kingdom, by Jeff Goldblum as his character Ian Malcolm as he testifies to the US Senate but this is extremely brief and quite tempered from the fiery character we saw in previous films.

Entertaining but adds very little to what we have seen before. It is great, of course, to see the dinosaurs on the big screen again and the action is amazing with some incredible set pieces. The ending is a bit of a let down and is hardly a surprise. The door is certainly (and literally) open to further films if they decide to continue…It is likely we have not seen the last of the Jurassic Park/World series.

Rating: “It is OK but I have some issues”

Review Date: 2018-06-23

Directed by: J.A. Bayona

Studio: Amblin Entertainment

Year: 2018

Length: 128 minutes

Genre: Science Fiction