We decided to celebrate my wife’s birthday by going to the movies and seeing the latest installment of cloned dinosaurs in a theme park.
I was disappointed that the new movie, Jurassic World, offered nothing clever or surprising. Poor editing had the various plot lines jumping back and forth. The reason why was the screenplay had been written by four different writers and the director could not mesh it together well enough to make a decent movie.
Jurassic World was built up over the decaying remains of Jurassic Park. It looked silly, stupid and out of place to have this modern looking Disney-like dinosaur world amusement park built among ruins. Never was it explained how it came to be that investors were sold on the promise of no more “containment anomalies.”
We knew before buying our tickets the promise would be broken leading to dino rampages, chases, near-misses, and heroism. Still, as we entered the theater, we wished to be entertained with a decent story and not CGI running amok.
Here is the short version of the story: Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) works at the Jurassic World theme park as a velociraptor trainer but they turn him into a dinosaur whisperer.
Scientist Henry Wu (BD Wong) engineers a new dinosaur, Indominus Rex, because we, the public, want bigger, badder and more teeth. Tycoon Simon Masrani (Irrfan Khan) insists that Owen should test it out first. For some reason, Hoskins (Vincent D’Onofrio) is a nut job who lurks around the park, sizing up the dinosaurs to use as weapons for the military.
Meanwhile, operations manager Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) who looks at these dinosaurs as nothing more than assets (but has the superpower of being able to outrun the Indominus Rex in her high heels), has to deal with waning profits and the arrival of her two nephews, Gray and Zach.
Nothing new to see here, folks. A generic action hero, an uptight woman, and two kids in peril. Mix in poorly written jokes and a little sexual innuendo and you have a very awkward film.
As for the dinosaurs, the CGI was great and most reviews will be positive. Here’s the problem – the Indominus Rex is part T-Rex, part tree frog, part cuttlefish, etc. (are you laughing yet?) and changes size throughout the film. One minute it’s a Godzilla-like creature and the next scene it’s a regular T-Rex. This super smart, super fast dinosaur can’t catch a woman in heels but can talk to velociraptors (are you crying yet?).
The film is loaded with cliches – walkie-talkies that don’t work, children that need to be saved (screw everyone else in the park), badly written love story, and prim and proper tough lead female character that shows she has a soft side.
This mess was at least half an hour too long. The good part of this experience was the wife agreed with me and the theater had recliner seating so we could be bored comfortably.