I'm not trying to be a hero! I'M FIGHTING THE DRAGON!!

Jurassic World

tn_jurassicworldLet’s face it, MAD MAX: FURY ROAD means this is an all time great movie summer. Whatever else comes out, who gives a shit. Irrelevant. It could be nothing but THE COBBLER coming out every week until September and it would still be one for the record books. Therefore it seems weird to be praising a more normal, not world-shattering part 4 movie in this same summer, but I’m an honest man so I have to do it. JURASSIC WORLD is a solid, fun sequel and although I’m not sure I liked it quite as much as I liked LOST WORLD when I first saw that, I think this is the best of the sequels.

But Vern, you’re saying, THE LOST WORLD sucks. Hold onto your buts. I admit that my tastes in Jurassic Parks are different from most people around here. So I’m sure you will disagree with me that this is clearly, by far, for sure without even a remote question the best of the non-Spielberg-directed JP joints on every possible level forever and always amen may the force be with you and I hope they burn in hay-ell.

It’s odd that they waited 22 years to do this premise. In retrospect it seems like parts 2 and 3 were treading water trying to figure out what the hell to do in the wreckage of the actual Jurassic Park, the aftermath of the failed pre-opening in part 1. This time it’s a natural extension of that first concept. What would it be like if they actually got their shit together and opened the park, and made it work for a while and become a popular vacation destination before nature finds a way to fuck it up? Isn’t it time we actually saw Ian Malcolm’s prediction of the Pirates of the Caribbean eating the tourists?

One thing that’s enjoyable in the first one besides the jurassic is the park, and all the details of how it’s set up. The Mr. DNA educational cartoon explaining how the dinosaurs are cloned, the ride that takes you past the actual lab, turning it into a stage show, the safari-themed signage, the theme park’s logo that’s the same as the movie’s logo that’s the same as the book’s logo that’s on all the lunchboxes and shit in the gift shop, the structures used to (try to) contain the dinosaurs. This is the first Jurassic sequel to do more of that kind of stuff. We get to see the aviary for pterodactyls and what not, the closer-to-dinosaur-proof “hamster balls” that replaced the automated Jeeps, the petting zoo where kids ride on baby triceratopses and hug brontosauruses and shit, the many plazas which now have corporate sponsors, the “Asset Containment Unit” that gets called in when a dinosaur leaves its area.

It’s the little things that matter, like the lady who emcees the water show where people watch the mosasaurus, a gigantic aquatic dinosaur, getting fed. Her delivery is exactly perfect. I looked her up and her name is Courtney James Clark, she is an actual actress who has played many bit parts such as “Waitress” and “Female Student” in other movies, but I still wonder if she could’ve actually worked at Sea World, or maybe as a Universal Studios tour guide. She makes the park seem real.

mp_jurassicworld(Which is needed, because the first big flyover establishing shot of the place looks like a miniature model for some reason. I would laugh if it really was, what with all the “practical effects” fetishization we do these days.)

We see this place through the eyes of two kids: mop-headed, overly enthusiastic Gray (Ty Simpkins, the kid from INSIDIOUS and IRON MAN THREE) and sullen teen brother Zach (Nick Robinson from THE KINGS OF SUMMER), who tries to be unimpressed. There’s a very Spielbergian scene where a crowd clamors behind a zoo window as the t-rex is about to be fed and we don’t get to see it because the camera stays on Zach, who turns his back to it to answer his phone. “De-extinction” isn’t as impressive as it used to be, it turns out. Anyway the kids are supposed to be visiting their aunt Claire (Jessica Chastain lookalike Bryce Dallas Howard), the operations manager of the park, but she’s busy and pawns them off on her assistant (Katie McGrath).

The real star of the show is Owen Grady (played by Chris Pratt, who worked with the original Jessica Chastain in ZERO DARK THIRTY). He’s an ex-Navy guy who I’m guessing trained the attack dogs because his job here is working with raptors. He has had some very minor and inconsistent success in getting them to respond to commands. But fucking Vic Hoskins (Vincent D’Onofrio, of course) is nosin around hinting at some ALIENS type shit about hey man what about we train dinosaurs to fight wars what are you unpatriotic or something. (I am predicting that the next one will be called JURASSIC WAR. Not a joke. And I’m for it. We need more crazy in this series. THE LOST WORLD WORLD would be a good title too though.)

I like  Chris Pratt as much as the next world citizen and we all know that Marvel bought him action hero muscles, but he’s so good at being a comedic doofus that I honestly wasn’t sure he could pull off playing a guy who knows what he’s talking about. Consider me impressed. But his main job here is a cartoonishly amplified manliness. He walks very upright with his chest out, he’s always kinda sweaty, shirt open to expose some chest hair, holding a filthy rag, trying to wipe some grease or dirt off his hands. When we first see him he’s throwing dead rats to the raptors, and right after that somebody shakes his hand. Women come to him for help, children want to be protected by him. During conversations he’s generally tinkering with a motorcycle or posing with his rifle, which doesn’t look like it would do much dino-damage but maybe it just looks small compared to his arms. He’s got a knife holstered on his lower back that I don’t think he ever uses. I’m surprised he doesn’t cut an apple with it, I’ve noticed alot of tough guys in movies like to cut apples with their knives.

dinodamageI think Owen is a good JURASSIC PARK hero because he’s got that Mark Trail respect for dinosaurs as animals, but also a macho charisma unlike any of the previous characters in the series, except maybe some of the bad guys. He’s no dummy, he seems much more aware of how dangerous the dinosaurs are than the other people in the park, but he’s also the reluctant hero who has the balls to try to deal with them.

All of these characters will come together because of – well, this is embarrassing – they create a hybrid super-dinosaur called Indominus Rex that gets loose and starts killing all the other dinosaurs as well as the employees and is headed for the guest area. There’s alot of talk from both the money people and the lab about being pressured to come up with bigger, fiercer dinosaurs to bring in more people. (I don’t know why – it looks fucking crowded.) That’s obviously a meta type deal there and I’ve seen some writers read it as self-criticism. But I think it’s more just an acknowledgment of the challenges of making sequels. These people are making movies, not life, so creating a spectacle doesn’t raise the same ethical and safety issues as it does for their characters. JURASSIC PARK III proves that smaller scale, fewer dinosaurs and less eventful doesn’t cut it for a JURASSIC PARK sequel.

I think WORLD successfully ups the ante on mayhem. There are widespread attacks on crowds, new types of dinosaurs, inter-species clashes, a set of grizzled dinosaur hunting mercenaries straight out of a Michael Bay movie (the Drift King himself, Brian Tee, gets in on the action), and an excellent climactic dinosaur battle that had me giggling. Of course there’s also the plot-point given away in the advertising, that Owen enlists his pack of raptors in the mission to catch Indominus. I’m sure since this is the freshest and most different twist to the material it will be the part people fixate on as being undeniably bad. Personally I love this turn of events, but then again I love the idea of that legendarily crazy John Sayles version of the script where it was about a Dirty Dozen team of human-dino hybrids rescuing kidnap victims. This must’ve evolved out of that (and maybe is setting up for some less insane version of that concept in a future installment).

It’s actually not as absurd as it sounds. He’s using them as bloodhounds, not as soldiers. And the threat of the raptors is very much intact. The tensest parts of the movie are about coming face to face with the raptors, and they get alot of suspense out of the clearly insane plan of letting them out on purpose. Luckily they appease my need for silliness by putting night vision cameras on their heads and having people watch their POV of the mission on monitors like in ALIENS. Thank you for that. Next time I hope they get to wear leather vests like all the tough safari dudes in the series.

While the raptors remain great monster characters, even gaining new dimension, I can’t say ol’ Indominous is a worthy addition to the pantheon of dino-villains. Her design is generic, neither living up to the great build-up of her while she’s offscreen or her purpose as the creature that will impress the shit out of the tourists. And I don’ think she ever re-uses useful abilities she’s revealed to have such as a chameleon type camouflaging. She just kind of acts like a t-rex with more useful arms.

I think her best scene is actually one where she fails – she sees the boys inside the sphere so she bites on it, and it’s too big for her mouth. It looks pretty funny, and it would be cool if it actually got stuck in her jaw for a while. There used to be this one-legged seagull that hung out on a dock where I go jogging, I called him Ahab and I would feed him sometimes. One time I saw him and he had a starfish stuck in his beak. Couldn’t get it out, couldn’t shut his beak, but I had no way to help him and he just flew off like that. I was afraid it would be the last time I saw him, but then one day there he is and he got it out somehow.

Did you guys know birds are actually dinosaurs. It’s fucked up man the shit could go down at any moment. Ticking time bomb. That’s science man.

The most serious problems I have with the movie aren’t really bigger than any I have with the Spielberg ones, and they all pretty much happen early on. First of all, I’ve gotten to a bitter age where the cliche of the awe-filled wondrous sciencey dreamer kid is too corny for me. They did it with the daughter in INTERSTELLAR and the girl in TOMORROWLAND and here we have it again with Gray, who knows the parts that make up DNA and spouts off constant dino-trivia to the embarrassment of his brother but it’s supposed to be charming and impressive I think. He also has the scene where they show his bedroom so you can see that he has a big shelf full of dinosaur toys and another one full of robot toys. And a poster that has a picture of a robot on it that says “ROBOTS!” on account of how much he likes robots. (Nothing from any cartoon or movie though, just generic, unaffiliated robots.)

And worse, there is a comic relief character that’s a grown up nerd (Jake Johnson) who works in the control room and doesn’t fit into the corporate culture because he has dinosaur toys all over his desk. He’s supposed to represent the purity of a guy who loves dinosaurs and everybody else is potentially into it for the wrong reasons. But he’s not, like, a paleontologist or a person who works with animals, like previous JURASSIC heroes. He’s just an adult who still likes the thing he liked when he was in kindergarten.

Claire, in the first half, is a bigger problem. Howard plays her as way too much of a bad guy. She acts cold and phony, overly concerned with profit, underly caring of living beings, pointedly saying “assets” instead of “dinosaurs” and “it” instead of “she.” Which is dinophobic in my opinion. And to drive home the overly ambitious worker cliche she has neglected family, having no idea how old her nephews are or how long it’s been since she’s seen them, and at first being a terrible hostess/guardian to them. (I have a hard time believing the kids would be so disappointed about that, though. They wouldn’t give a shit. There’s dinosaurs.)

Many have decried this as a sexist stereotype, which I suppose it is, but it’s also a female equivalent of the InGen guy in part 2 or the lawyer in part 1, and the movie clearly likes her better than either of those dicks. Not to spoil anything but she does redeem herself and doesn’t get eaten off a toilet. But even if it follows in the Crichton tradition I think it would be so much more interesting if she was allowed to be wrong about this stuff but also likable. Misguided instead of being a jerk.

I’m afraid it’s when she swallows her pride and asks for the sweaty man’s help that the movie allows her to become more tolerable. There’s a great scene where Owen and Claire come across a brontosaurus (or whatever) laying on the ground dying after being attacked by the Indominus. Owen has his gun, you’re not sure if he’s gonna put her out of her misery or something. Instead he walks over and puts his hand on her head, comforting her in her last moments. Claire joins him and cries and this is when she regains her humanity. It’s a nice moment reminding us that Owen is right, these are animals, and humans can have a relationship with them. And then they walk over the hill and see what looks like the same valley from part 1 where they all saw the dinosaurs for the first time and marveled at their beauty. But now it’s littered with bodies, dinosaurs slain by this newfangled 21st century model dinosaur. Once again greed has killed the dream that put all the Spielbergian awe on those faces.

A few poor choices that characters make in this movie:

1) Going into the Indominus cage because they think she got out, even though they’re not really sure.

2) Taking a gyrosphere “off roading” through the broken gate of a restricted area. I know he’s trying to cheer up his little brother but still, not wise there, Zach.

But the one most people seem bothered by is Claire dealing with this emergency while wearing heels. I don’t agree with her decision, but I think it’s a legitimate character point. She rolls up her sleeves and opens up to her tank top undershirt as her symbol of getting ready to get shit done, but doesn’t fully butchify like Ripley, Sarah Connor or Barbara in the remake of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD, who literally takes off her dress and puts on pants at the point where she decides to man up. By keeping what Owen calls “those ridiculous shoes,” Claire is refusing to disavow her life as Powerful Business Lady. Maybe she can be nice Auntie Claire the dinosaur lover without quitting her job. I mean, could’ve, if there had still been a company to have a job at.

By the way, the new owner (Irrfan Khan, LIFE OF PI) is kind of the reverse of part 2’s Roland Tembo, in that he seems like a good guy but is kind of a bad guy. He talks a big game about sparing no expense and John Hammond’s dream and shit, but we find out making up fake dinosaurs was his idea. Returning chief geneticist B.D. Wong (EXECUTIVE DECISION) (who seems to have gotten sleazy since part 1) pierces through the bullshit in a speech about how they always used other animals to patch in missing strands of DNA, and had never been going for “realism” (good way to explain away changing dinosaur theories and artistic license on the size of velociraptors).

Of course this new dinosaur is not the only danger – we still have the same threat as ever, that any of these dinosaurs could get out. Hell, even the veggiesauruses could step on somebody. You know, the most deadly ride ever at Disneyland was the boring ass Peoplemover. Anyway, just when I was wondering why it’s only this new dinosaur that’s a danger, when she could be setting loose the other dinosaurs, she runs through the side of the aviary like the fuckin Kool Aid Man and releases a swarm of pteranodons and/or pterodactyls, or whatever flying ones they got now. And this leads to the best Dinosaurs Attack! part of the movie, a great sequence that includes the most spectacular death in the series.

And that actually was the part that made me think yeah, this movie might not be that respectful of women. These movies have always had a bit of a slasher side, giving terrible deaths to broad, one-dimensional characters that you’re not supposed to like. But Claire’s assistant didn’t earn her spot in that line of victims, in my opinion. The lawyer had a callous indifference to the safety of others, Peter Stormare was cruel and sadistic. This lady just looks at her phone too much. Pretty harsh punishment for that.

Still, I feel like to not appreciate that scene would be to be in the wrong fuckin place. I don’t know about you guys, but this is what I watch a dinosaur movie for. Hats off to director Colin Trevorrow (some guy who only directed SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED before this!?) for the literal and figurative ups and downs of that scene, and the joyful fan-shitting of the whole dino-birdy attack sequence. Bravo.

Since this is the first intentionally 3D JURASSIC PARK I was hoping it would be fun in a JAWS 3-D type of way. It’s a much better movie, but does have a few inevitable similarities since that was about a shark attacking Sea World. In that one they even had dolphins helping fight Jaws. They’re the raptors of JAWS 3-D.

But as you’d expect in this day and age, they did not have the good sense to treat this as a real 3-D movie. The fake after-the-fact 3Dification is well done, it looks very dimensional and there are some choice show-off moments. But I can’t honestly say they went for it. The logo doesn’t come out of the screen. There is no equivalent of the shark’s jawbone flying out at the crowd. This is a movie about roaring dinosaurs and shit, I don’t think you gotta be self-conscious about being too tacky or gimmicky. Many missed opportunities on this front. Shame. So you get one bravo and one shame, Trevorrow.

But I definitely lean harder on the bravo. I enjoyed this one.

VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.
This entry was posted on Monday, June 15th, 2015 at 10:11 am and is filed under Reviews, Science Fiction and Space Shit. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

149 Responses to “Jurassic World”

  1. Vern, I’m with you on this one, all the way.

    I loved SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED and had hope that Trevorrow could get something out of JW; I went in feeling a little apprehensive, an anticipation of disappointment….maybe that’s why I enjoyed it so much? I’d read so much negative hype.

    I was primarily concerned about how the Raptors where going to be “used”. I thought it was handled well and made sense within the context of the movie.

    The attack on the assistant was surprisingly brutal, and even made me think of Chrissie Watkins, and made me think about what my 7 year old Son was watching, while sat beside me….and made me think back to those first film-generated emotions I had as a kid; of every part of Jaws (I didn’t know it when I was a kid, but that shit stuck with me in an amazing way). I figured, if this type of scene in a dark cinema is going to stick in his mind, it might as well be this. (He’s seen Jaws though, so I reckon the indoctrination is already done….just not in a cinema setting.)

    Seems his favourite scene/quote is “your boyfriend is a badass…”.

    Not an amazing film, but very enjoyable. I’m glad it’s hitting the big bucks but only because I was hoping Trevorrow would pull something out of the bag and SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED to get some coverage.

  2. It’s cool that they finally brought some of Henry Wu’s shadiness from the book into the movie continuity.

  3. The poster that just says “Robots!” made me laugh. As of now I have no idea what it looks like in the movie, but it sounds like one of those lazy background posters that you see in cartoon shows on TV.

  4. Okay, here goes.

    This is a terrible movie. There is no moment that does not feel like it was conceived via collaboration between illiterate children and branding specialists. The characters are uniformly unlikeable and badly conceived. The subtext is self-defeating. The way the plot unfolds is unsatisfying and unbelievable. The dinosaurs are not impressive. The score is atrocious. The action is perfunctory. There is nothing to recommend it, except for maybe Pratt striking a semi-convincing hero pose every now and then.

    The danger in attacking a movie as thoroughly incompetent as this one is that your complaints read like a laundry list of nitpicks. But when every minor detail of a film is bad, does that not add up to a bad film? How many tiny wounds can a film withstand before it bleeds out completely?

    In any case:

    – What happened to the pterodactyls? One minute they’re ravaging the guests, the next they’re gone and never mentioned again. It might have been interesting to see how this little problem was solved, especially since it is the only time that the film fulfills its central premise, which is “The park is now open and the dinosaurs are eating the guests.” I would watch an entire film about pterodactyls attacking an amusement park, but I would feel mightily cheated if I knew that just over that fence there were all kinds of other monsters that were not invited to the party. Wouldn’t you want to see the havoc that could be unleashed in all the other exhibits? Why even have the park open if you’re not going to expand the canvas?

    – Pratt says “Never turn your back on the cage.” He immediately turns his back on the cage to do his tough guy walk toward camera. Is this a joke?

    – Howard calls her security team to help rescue her nephews. They say they can’t because they have their hands full. Doing what? If there’s a heavily armed paramilitary squad out there with its hands full fighting dinosaurs, why are we not seeing that? That sounds real entertaining, certainly more so than whatever the two retrograde gender stereotypes were doing.

    -Is the main monster supposed to be white? Because it never looked white to me. I also never saw it do its camouflage thing. Someone just yelled “It can camouflage!” and I guess we were just supposed to take their word for it. This is yet another time where awesome possibilities were suggested and then not expanded on.

    – They show that soldier guy casually shoot a pterodactyl out of the air from a helicopter. Oh good, you think. These guys are gonna fuck some shit up. They are then deployed to move some crates around. They are not featured in an action scene.

    – The reveal that the monster was loose was devoid of interest, suspense, or danger. The movie treated it like the characters just noticed the toner was low. “Oh, it’s not in the cage? I guess maybe we should make some calls when we get a minute?” Pratt actually leaves the room in the middle of the discovery, like he had better things to do.

    – I can believe that the thing can change its thermal temperature. But why would it? How does it know that it’s being observed with thermal imagery? How is that something an animal with no frame of reference would be able to figure out on its own? Movies often mistake “intelligence” for “inherent knowledge” and this is one of the worst example I’ve ever seen.

    – The deplorable treatment of the assistant. If you’re gonna draw out her death like that, either make us hate her so we’ll be glad to see her go or make us love her so it’s a tragedy. I’m not even sure she had a full like of dialogue so making such a meal out of such a blah, nothing character’s demise seems cruel, especially in a movie otherwise devoid of gruesome deaths.

    – Everything involving Howard was terrible. Just grotesquely awful. Worst character and performance I’ve seen in a major movie in a decade at least. You can’t spend a whole movie showing her as a broad, shrill caricature of a frigid career woman who just needs some dick to loosen her up and then expect us to think that she has a point. She does not, because she has not been written and performed to have a valid point of view. People harp on the high heels because, symbolism aside, wearing high heels into the jungle is stupid and she should listen to the person who is an expert in jungles, yet the movie tried to pretend that her decision was the right one because “strong independent woman” is on the checklist of elements the studio said the script needed. No. Strong independent women make good choices that work for the situations they find themselves in. Showing one part where she doesn’t let a man help her through a doorway does not equal feminism. It’s a sham.

    – So the T-rex follows Howard because he wants food, right? That’s pretty much all T-rexes want, is my understanding. So he chases down this juicy morsel, then gets into this fight with the other dinosaur, I’m assuming over who gets to eat her. So they fight, and then the raptor joins in, and then they win, and then the T-rex is like, “Mission accomplished, we are fight brothers now [fist bump implied]” and leaves. But it never ate anything! There’s edible protein all over the scene, including the raptor, but he just ignores his survival instincts and walks away hungry. That’s bad character motivation. He’s not presented as an animal with recognizable animal behavior; he’s presented as an intellectual property involved in a fan-fiction teamup with another intellectual property.

    – What the fuck was D’Onoffrio’s job? I thought he just ran the stable where the raptors lived, but apparently he has enough clout to take over a multi-billion dollar corporation based solely on his say-so, without any board of directors or executive vice presidents or anybody stepping up to fill the gap in the chain of command.

    But the main thing is not any of this bullshit. It’s that the movie hates itself. It knows it has no reason to exist, so it tries to pass itself off as a commentary on modern blockbuster filmmaking, while still being a cynically devised and heavily corporatized example of same. Verhoeven could pull this off, but this blasé hipster fuck is no Verhoeven.

    Right off the bat, it introduces Jake Johnson as a mouthpiece character who explains that the first movie was the real deal and this is total crap and if you like it you’re an idiot. And we have no reason not to take him at his word, since the new hybrid is so lame in comparison to the classic T-rex, who comes out and kicks its ass. The movie is setting up its own sole innovation as something phony and easily dismissable in comparison to the original model. It has no faith in itself and wants you to know it.

    The movie also tries to convince us that people aren’t interested in dinosaurs anymore, yet that’s clearly not true, since everybody went out and saw the movie. And not for this bullshit shit new Fakeasaurus, but for the old supposedly boring dinosaurs that everybody still loves. This underlying subtext does not have a basis in reality. The movie seems to want to set up this fake thesis so that it can then turn it on its head and prove that dinosaurs are still exciting and full of awe and wonder. The only problem is that it ends up proving its own phony argument right by treating its dinosaurs so poorly and with so little respect.

    I blame myself. My generation has hogged all the nostalgia for so long that the 90s Kids are both desperate for validation and secretly convinced of their own inferiority. How else to explain a movie that shoots itself in the foot right out of the gate by openly declaring that it can never measure up? Is that supposed to excuse its shortcomings? It’s like going to an open mic night and telling the audience your cover of a great song sucks and they probably won’t like it. You’re setting yourself up for failure and not even trying to pretend that you have anything new to offer.

    It’s a beta movie: ashamed of itself for existing and gaining worth only from its association with an alpha movie. If you already know you won’t measure up, why even try? Just throw in some callbacks to a better movie and hope that the audience has forgotten what a real story feels like. Even its characters are based on long obsolete cliches that its makers don’t actually relate to. There’s nothing earnest or real in the whole movie. It’s a train wreck.

    But hey there was that one part where they had the binoculars from the first one remember that best movie ever

  5. Vern’s review of The Lost World made me go back to watch that one and I had a bit of realization while watching Jurassic World: Parts one and two in this series are way more believable than this new one. I remember being younger and watching them, I bought the concept in the way that these islands could really exist somewhere, this failed genetic experiment. I think the meta-way in which the merchandising of the park in the movies blended with the merchandising of the movies in real life really helped in that way. And also the way in which the characters always treated the dinosaurs as real animals, what with the paleontologist main characters in the first one, and then the conservationists and hunters in the second one. I always liked those movies in that they were “this is what it would be like if we brought real dinosaurs back” first, and monster movies a distant second. Watching The Lost World again, I felt that aspect still held true, despite me now being an adult instead of a kid like I was when I first saw them.

    I didn’t feel Jurassic World lived up to that aspect in any way. Everything from the design of the park, the attractions, to the way the movie treated the dinosaur mayhem, felt completely unreal to me. The characters in the earlier movies sure were broad in a lot of ways, but I always bought them as professionals. Not with this one. Not for a single second did I believe in the reality of Bryce Dallas Howard’s, Irrfan Khan’s or Vincent D’Onofrio’s characters. They all seemed completely clueless to me to a cartoonish degree.

    Still, Vern’s review made me appreciate Jurassic World a bit more and I can relate to the sentiment that these movies really could up the absurdity and outlandishness (like that original pitch for part 4), but then they should really go all out and make it totally insane, in my opinion, and not leave the concept right in between that and the original concept like they seemed to have done here. My two cents.

  6. When do you guys think we’ll get the eventual “dinosaurs re-assimilate within human society and co-exist with us” plot? part 6?

    You know with Triceratops becoming the new Elephants and being hunted for their horns; the government militarizing raptors and rexes (similar to the John Sayles JP4 script but with more versimilitude), people trying to keep compis as pets etc.

    That’s the one I’ve been waiting on myself as I’ve been burned out on “Dinos chase people on an island” as a premise for quite some time now.

    Speaking of Sayles’ script I still wish to see a dino/human hybrid commandos movie one day. Maybe not necessarily as a JP entry but it sounds too fucking insane not to be used. That could be a shitload of fun in the right hands.

  7. Also as impressive as that new all time opening weekend record is expect Star Wars VII to knock it out like Tyson did Spinks.

    I mean if the third sequel to Jurassic Park which nobody really asked for could pull these kind of numbers imagine the movie that these sweaty movie nerds have waited for their entire lives?

  8. Broddie – “I mean if the third sequel to Jurassic Park which nobody really asked for”

    correction I mean besides Griff obviously.

  9. @Mr. Majestyk

    You are 100% correct sir.

  10. I thought they already made the human/dino hybrid commando movie last year. You know, the one with those four monsters who found katanas and nunchakas in the sewers and used them to fight that Wolverine robot. And I mean it wasn’t too shitty but it wasn’t exactly a brilliantly absurd and crazy idea that should have been made into a big budget movie, more like dumb cartoon material.

  11. I thought this movie was a fucking blast, I had a great time, maybe it isn’t flawless, maybe it isn’t Spielberg caliber, but it delivered what I always wanted to see from a JURASSIC PARK sequel and that was a new park, which it pulls off brilliantly, the design of the park was cool looking and the little details like the Jimmy Buffett Margaritaville and the petting zoo makes the place feel believable.

    I mean didn’t you always want to see a more WESTWORLD style take on the idea of a dinosaur theme park where it’s already open and a bunch of tourists get caught the crossfire when the shit goes down? There’s nothing in the movie that’s blatantly awful like what you’d find in a Michael Bay TRANSFORMERS flick, so I just can’t understand why someone (*cough*Majestyk*cough*) would let a few problems spoil some fundamentally cool stuff.

    And I know it was total fanservice, but *SPOILER* the scene where the two kids find the ruins of the original Visitor’s Center was so fucking cool, I love the idea of the ruins of the original Park out there in the jungle beyond the sleek, modern Jurassic World, I just absolutely love that detail.

  12. Majestyk, there’s not much point in going through it all since obviously the various logic questions are not the main part of you hating it. But alot of the stuff you brought up does have answers. For example, why didn’t we see the security team fight dinosaurs and and what did they do about the pterodactyls are the same answer: throughout that scene the soldiers and Pratt are shooting them out of the sky. Why could D’Onofrio take over the company? Because he was running a sort of black ops side of the company which was doing the dirty stuff like trying to contract dinosaurs to the military, taking control was part of the protocol and the sneaky thing he was up to from the beginning.

    I didn’t notice the Imdominus being white either, if she was supposed to be, and I think we just know about the camouflage because of hiding in the cage to sneak out. If they showed it I missed it, and I agree that that’s weird.

  13. The Original Paul

    June 15th, 2015 at 5:09 pm

    @ Mr Majestyk – but did you like the movie? Come on man, don’t be a fence-sitter.

    Yeah, I’m going to wait for this one to appear on TV I think.

  14. The dinosaur assimilation movie has been made and it is called Theodore Rex.

  15. Henry Swanson's my name

    June 15th, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    “I’m surprised he doesn’t cut an apple with it, I’ve noticed alot of tough guys in movies like to cut apples with their knives.”

    Brilliant. Thanks for the laugh Vern.

  16. “Hold onto your buts.” Well done, sir. THE LOST WORLD WORLD is pretty great too.

  17. COLIN TREVORROW RAPED MY CHILDHOOD!!

    Just kidding.

    **SPOILERS**

    I too, thought JURASSIC WORLD: SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED 2 was a hoot, way better than I expected. There are some great cinematic moments in this, stuff that made me smile, like when the crowd is watching the sea world monster eat a shark, then the entire stadium gets lowered and we see the creature under water. Also the line from Dallas-Howard “It’s in the cage!” was a classic Oh Shit moment. The T-Rex coming back at the end was a nice surprise. Should have seen it coming though, what’s a JP movie without a T-Rex rumble?

    To answer the camouflage question – the scene where the soldiers go after I-Rex and find the torn out flesh with the transmitter in it, the blood drips from above the trees and I-Rex appears, having been concealed with his camo capabilities. Pratt or one of the soldiers even states that he was using camo at the time. That’s the only scene I remember, but it stands out I think.

    Majestyk – you might be giving in to your inner snarkosaurus a bit too much there buddy. This was at least a lotta fun, even if GODZILLA: UP-SCALED is still my favorite monster blockbuster of the past few years. Where does Chris Pratt go from this one and GOTG? I don’t think he can go much further blockbuster-wise, but my prediction is that if he takes a good left turn into more horror/comedy/action stuff he could be this generations Bruce Campbell.

  18. Mr. Majestyk— If I may quote a different, better movie to attempt to crystallize your frustration with JW: “It’s like, you’re dreamin’ about gorgonzola cheese… when it’s clearly brie time, baby”.

    JURASSIC WORLD is what I like to call an LCD movie (lowest common denominator). LCD movies are laden with kewl action sequences, lowbrow comedic moments, CGI out the wazoo, cardboard cutout characters, and very fucking little interest in trivialities like plot coherence, decent acting, character arcs, and proper continuity. They are designed specifically for the average movie patron to check his/her brain at the theatre entrance and enjoy the [cinematic equivalent of a] roller coaster ride. And they tend to account for many of the top-grossing movies of all time for those very reasons.

    If one approaches such a movie with no other expectations beyond that… chances are a good time will be had. I’m guessing your Grumpy Gus reaction was the result of a complete unwillingness to yield to this set of circumstances.
    And that’s cool if you want to retain those standards, but chances are this type of movie is gonna irk you every time one rolls into town.

  19. I’m just curious as to how this is any different than Vern’s infamous TRANSFORMERS review. It’s not supposed to be Shakespeare, right?

  20. Vern: I’ll allow that perhaps that there were justifications for many—certainly not all—of my logic problems, and in a movie that wasn’t as terribly conceived and executed as this one, I might have felt generous enough to give it the benefit of the doubt when things got questionable. But this movie lost me within the first ten minutes with its shitty acting, writing, and directing, followed by a whole bunch of ideological idiocy and perfunctory dino action, so I did not feel inclined to cut it any slack.

    I really think y’all are nuts. This is as shitty and regressive a movie as any Michael Bay joint, without any of the madness and scale that make his movies worth sitting through. I feel like the last human in a Body Snatchers movie right now, but I have to believe that we’re dealing with a TRANSFORMERS 1 situation here. Right now, everybody is so happy to have this beloved property back that they’re willing to take the “What, it’s a popcorn movie, it’s supposed to be an insult to your intelligence and be poorly made and not enjoyable, but with CGI, that’s what they’re like, all the time forever, there’s never been one with any standard of quality at all, why do you hate fun?” But then the sequels will be more of the same and the same things they defended two years ago will be the things they harp on now, and hardly anyone will admit to ever liking the first movie.

    In conclusion, I’m right, you guys are wrong, please reassess your lives.

  21. @Griff

    How does this movie pull off the park concept brilliantly? The movie’s entire set up is dinosaurs escape in a fully populated and functional park and then devotes only one sequence to the concept. Most of the movie takes place in a nondescript forest like the last 3. Thus the movie can’t even deliver on its own central concept.

    Also, why the hell did they just leave the ruins of the old park up? That scene existed for no reason other than to further play upon our nostalgia of the original. Just another scene that exists with no narrative reason. More I think about it, that’s the whole movie in a nutshell: a series of scenes and ideas that sound good but has no idea (or even want) to use a narrative to connect them together.

  22. I don’t know, Mr. M, didn’t you make a similar claim about the reception of THE EXPENDABLES 2 that never came to pass?

    I’m just so sick of huge blockbustery franchise movies that I would skip JURASSIC WORLD on principle, but luckily it also looks and sounds terrible so I really have no qualms skipping it, maybe forever.

  23. Dan: Well, people might reassess their feelings on EXP2 if they remembered it existed.

  24. I wasn’t crazy about the last Jurassic Park movie from over a decade ago, even though it had the guy from FARGO in it.

    Chris Pratt riding in a motorcycle surrounded by raptors is what sold me on Jurrasic World.

  25. You’ll definitely love those seven seconds when that happens then.

  26. People still tell me I should see EXPENDABLES 2. And I still refuse.

  27. What can I say? It’s a world gone mad.

  28. Like 40% of the reason I have no interest in ever seeing it is your comments, so at least you’re fighting the good fight, saving the world one soul at a time.

  29. Unfortunately seeing Mr. M get this riled up actually made me a lot more curious about this thing, which I had previously completely written off. So it evens out to neutral.

  30. Yeah seeing good points made from both different sides of the like/dislike coin by Vern and Majestyk made me at least curious to watch it. I know there has to be some middle ground between both perspectives so I have to see for myself. Which is a victory since initially I didn’t plan on ever seeing it at all. I’ll wait for it to hit cable in a few months though definitely not gonna go to the cinema.

  31. I’m not trying to talk anybody out of anything. Even terrible movies are worth seeing just to be part of the discussion. And hopefully some of the discussers might agree with me and make me feel less like I’ve gone insane.

  32. I’m just too curmudgeonly these days. Even though they can still be good, I write off the huge blockbuster/franchise/tentpole movies on principle, because I’m so sick of them, and so sick of them dominating the situation.

    I mean, look, I don’t believe in high/low art distinctions, I believe any type of movie can potentially be great art (or at least great entertainment), I have no problem included these kinds of movies in the conversation. But more in more it just feels to me like they are dominating the conversation, and everyone who loves movies is supposed to see all of them and support this horrible studio system so we can participate in the cinephile dialogue. I’m fed up. By and large these movies are only okay at best, but they cost the GDP of a small nation to make and they are lowering our standards. I mean, for gosh sake, people were acting like the thoroughly unremarkable CAPTAIN AMERICA VERSUS HIS FRIEND I FORGOT ABOUT FROM THE FIRST MOVIE was some sort of subversive political commentary just because it made vague patriot act references and stole it’s plot from 3 DAYS OF THE CONDOR. There are better movies we should be applying our analytical skills to.

  33. Geoffrey – I thought the part with the old park was silly too (of course they wouldn’t leave that stuff there, considering how upset they were at the guy’s t-shirt). But its narrative purpose is giving the kids a vehicle to escape in.

    I don’t agree with Larry’s “it’s not supposed to be Shakespeare” defense. I keep my brain on me at all times, for security purposes. But I guess it’s fair to say that I am accepting/appreciative of certain types of stupidity which I think have been a part of every JURASSIC PARK movie including the first one. I do not believe this is as good as the first one, but when I see people talking about Sam Neill and Laura Dern as some great, multi-layered and not at all bland characters that this fails to live up to I’m just not on the same page. Forgiveness has always been required for my enjoyment of this series.

    Here’s the real explanation that just occurred to me, though. JURASSIC PARK is no JAWS, but I have enjoyed the JAWS sequels, which are generally crappier than the JURASSIC PARK sequels.

  34. That’s fair. Some movies I refuse to see specifically because I want to avoid the discussion. You couldn’t pay me to watch AMERICAN SNIPER. I just don’t want to be involved. But I do want to talk about movies with the actual real people in my life, not just you glorious mutants on the internet, and to do that I gotta see the big movies.

    Of course, I want to see them anyway. I’m not jaded about humongous spectacle at all. I still get giddy about a well-cut impact shot or a perfectly timed post-explosion comic relief moment. Yeah, I wish more movies were made that weren’t based on existing properties, but I don’t see what denying myself the crash-bang-zoom I crave is gonna do about it. I still believe these movies can be good, full stop. I don’t need to check my brain at the door to enjoy dinosaurs chomping on dudes. There’s a way to do stupid fun that doesn’t expect me to be stupid, too.

  35. Dan I totally get where you’re coming from I have similar sentiments though I’m a bit more forgiving then you are I totally get it.

    When people try to talk to me about STAR WARS VII for example and I let them know that I only saw the teaser trailer last year and don’t care about it they look at me like I just called their mother a gorrilla sucking whore. The truth is I love the original trilogy and I really like part 3. That’s more than enough STAR WARS for me though. Especially now that it’s no longer the unique vision of one man who steers the whole ship. That’s the thing if Lucas was still doing it I actually would give it a shot cause at least at it’s worst it could be interesting for at least one viewing.

    As it stands I have no interest in Disney’s STAR WARS especially when it’s being made by some journeyman only hired because he plays nice with studio execs and delivers exactly what they want and not because he’s a true visionary. Post-Lucas SW just isn’t for me. It’s like EXPANDED UNIVERSE: THE MOTION PICTURES and I was never asking for that no matter how much some corporation tries to sell me on it. Corporately dictated cinema is mostly not for me anymore. Nothing worse than sitting through movies where it’s blatantly obvious that they just had a checklist of things to add to it to make it more “sellable” to start and then went from there.

  36. If all I have to talk to people about when it comes to movies is movies I have no interest then I rather tell them that I’m not into seeing any movies at all for the most part. I’ve found that I’ve literally hurt feelings in real life when people learn things like the fact that I thought BAD BOYS II is a complete piece of horse shit and that TRAINING DAY isn’t a classic. I like to be a bit more neutral than that. I don’t like to give people trivial reasons to hate me.

  37. Mr. Majestyk, are you sure this movie didn’t make you angry?

    I have to admit, reading a takedown like yours is giving me something potentially similar to belief perseverance. I walk away liking the movie more. I know Vern addressed this, and I know they’re not the crux of your argument anyway, but so many of your bullet points are addressed or they’re, in my view at least, irrelevant. And when you say something like “Worst character and performance I’ve seen in a major movie in a decade at least,” I’m lost, because while I wasn’t a big fan, nothing I saw justifies that kind of antipathy. And I think you’re just as insane as you think everybody else is when you make a claim like this is “as shitty and regressive a movie as any Michael Bay joint.”

    I really think you’re mistaken about your vision of the future. I think this will be remembered somewhere between ‘just alright’ and ‘pretty good’.

    Though, that’s how the first Transformers is remembered by a lot of people, actually. Maybe not people on the sites we go to, but my colleagues at work and plenty of the people I know in real life would still admit to liking the movie.

  38. Broddie,

    Yeah, I run into that problem sometimes where I talk movies with more casual moviegoers and it gets awkward because I just don’t like or care much about the movies that they are into. It’s not a knock on them, but it’s hard to have a conversation like that and not come off like a condescending ass.

    So I like sticking with my cinephile friends and places like this online. But more and more I feel this growing trend that just because a 300 bajillion dollar studio superhero movie CAN be good, that every single major release is a must-see and worthy of intense discussion. Not that I don’t think you all fine people don’t genuinely love some of these movies, but fucking GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY was treated like the 2nd coming of John Ford or some shit, and not the mildly pleasurable but corny as fuck STAR WARS BABIES bullshit it actually is. I mean, it cost however many umpteen millions, and the only good thing about it is that some of the cast is charming and they say a few funny lines. Why the hell do we need an epic blockbuster sci-fi extravaganza just for a few chuckles?

  39. JTS: I left the movie pleasantly bemused, certain that I would get to enjoy a fun little dogpile on an insultingly bad movie come Monday morning, only to discover that it’s the biggest hit ever and everybody loves it and what’s wrong with me. So if I come off angry, it’s really just befuddlement. I don’t know how I ended up so far off center on this one.

  40. Dan: I like GotG a lot, but for the life of me I can’t understand why the rest of the world went so nuts about it.

  41. Mr. Majestyk welcome to what has been my dilemma with THE AVENGERS for the past 3 years.

  42. Oh sorry some clarification; that was RE: the JW post not the GotG one.

  43. Well, that’s just crazypants. AVENGERS is simply delightful.

    Really, guys, you’re gonna have to put in more effort if you want to keep up with all these correct opinions I’m dishing out here.

  44. Isn’t it nuts?

    I like a lot of Whedon’s stuff. I grew up on Buffy and Angel. Never saw FIREFLY but liked SERENITY. I loved the first IRON MAN and liked AVENGERS NO.1: CAPTAIN AMERICA well enough. Yet nothing. The movie is not even at least an immersive event like AVATAR it was just a shame. Emperor having no clothes with that boring ass climax and the lamest 2nd act too. Not only did it make Hulk Vs. Thor boring which is shockingly bemusing but the best it could do besides that was Captain America and Iron Man vs. Fans. C’mon son.

    I don’t know man but that shit will never work for me. Just one of those movies. I just realized how much crazier it seems since I just came off a double bill of ERNEST SCARED STUPID and WEEKEND AT BERNIE’S but I also tell myself those movies didn’t have any pretenses about being more than what they actually were. AVENGERS wanted to tell me it was a T2 or FURY ROAD (yes I went there) like experience but nah that shit left me high and dry like a Radiohead song.

  45. Marvel Studios movies ain’t been the same to me since Disney absorbed them into the giant corporate kaiju that masterminds everything behind that entire company.

  46. After years of giving me shit for not liking Tarantino, you all suddenly are united in “Yeah, we all hate stuff that the rest of the world loves for any reason”?

  47. It happens sometimes. I keep trying to like PACIFIC RIM but it just ain’t happening. We’ve all got something whose supposedly universal charm just eludes us.

  48. I was talking to Broddie, CJ, not you. You are clearly insane.

  49. I’m not really tired of bloated studio crapola yet, but man, I am getting a little tired of the idea that in order to reach people they need to spend all the money in the world on these films. Sure, something like this one or SAN ANDREAS, which exist solely as vehicles to deliver over-the-top setpieces to needy children are by definition going to be expensive. But did TOMORROWLAND really need to cost 190 million dollars? Did INTERSTELLAR, which is mostly shot on Earth and uses primarily practical effects, really need to cost 170 million? It seems like there’s an agreement between studios and the public that everything that costs less than 100 million bucks is niche market stuff. In order to get a big summer movie, it seems to me, you need to be able boast about its mammoth price tag, otherwise people assume you’re not serious that this is a big thing. The result is a whole range of movies that spend buckets of money on things which don’t really pay off in any meaningful way, big expensive stuff that isn’t particularly well-imagined nor particularly beneficial to the plot. I really loved GotG, but I understand what Dan’s complaint is: 90% of the charm in that movie is the cast, witty script, and the crisp execution of those two elements that makes them work. You could have spent 160 million less and still had all those things almost completely intact. But then, who would have gone to see it? Without all that money, why would the public at large think it was a big deal and turn out?

    The tragic end result of this logic is that the point is not to spend the money you need to make this particular movie, the point is to spend as much money as possible so no one can deny that it’s a big deal. But with that much money riding on things, you can’t take any chances on a misfire by doing something offbeat, challenging, or even original. You dare not make anything that people can’t immediately understand in the .4 seconds where you have their attention. The result is a lot of JURASSIC WORLDS — (I haven’t seen it yet, of course) which depending on who you ask are either lightweight, disposable, somewhat sloppy filmmaking-by committee forgettable fun, or an bald-faced insult to the eyes of every cinema viewer around the world. But you know what no one is saying? Something great.

    Ultimately, this system can’t really continue. You can’t keep escalating upwards, because we’re reaching the point now where so much money is tied up in these tentpole movies that a few unexpected flops can all but bankrupt a studio (which also has implications for the smaller-scale movies scurrying around the underbrush). Audiences seem more or less content to deal with shoddy, out-of-control productions — just as they were back when BATMAN FOREVER came out– so it’s not gonna be quality or lack of originality that’s gonna kill ’em. But the costs might. Once that happens, hopefully there are a few people left in Hollywood who have some dim memory of a time when they used to be able to make money by doing something other than writing progressively bigger checks.

  50. I thought the movie was passable, but I do think that it pandered way too hard to nostalgia and relied too much on Chris Pratt’s handsomeness and charm.

    Some of my grievances:

    A lot of blurry fast-panning during dino fights, presumably to hide CG flaws (I thought you’d have more problems with this, Vern!)

    Indominus didn’t tear out the GPS until after it got out. Why would they rely solely on the heat sensors and walk in? If they thought it got out, wouldn’t the first thing be to check where the fuck this death monster actually is, because it could be killing people?

    That assistant’s death was not proportional at all.

    Judy Greer totally wasted as mom who is sad all the time.

    I’d say the movie treats women like props but it really treated everyone like props to move the plot along rather than being well-rounded.

    Jake Johnson’s character, just….why?

    Oh no, a code red in the park, please return your gyrosphere to the dock, we may have built giant gyro bubbles with GPS but we didn’t bother to automate them in case someone has a panic attack or seizure or just is a dumb kid who doesn’t listen. We also didn’t geofence them in case that back gate gets opened. I mean, at least they made them self-powered unlike the jeeps that just stopped on the tracks in the original, but that made sense for the tech of the time, and they did have a backup gen.

    “We found this old car that’s been rotting in the jungle for 20+ years! Good thing we fixed up another old car one time, because I just told the audience we did, we can totally get it working in like 45 minutes!”

    Indominus has T. Rex and raptor DNA. Raptors are it cool with it until they’re not. T. Rex and it are not cool. T. Rex and raptors are cool? Also T. Rex just leaves, he wasn’t hungry he just wanted to be of (fan) service. That’s a relief, cause we spent a whole previous movie running away from a T. Rex and some raptors, the very same animals which are now still loose as this movie ends, this could have turned into a whole Chris Nolan second climax!

    Overall just less suspense than the original in favor of Marvelesque action, I’ve also considered the Aliens similarities this has, especially as a more actiony sequel to a more horror original, and I’m down to change the formula, except this is no Aliens.

    My favorite parts:

    Jimmy Buffett cameo as he runs away from Pterodactyls with a margarita in each hand

    Seeing baby triceratops get picked up by pterodactyls, legitimately sad

    The pan up to see all the rest of the dead brachiosaurs/apatosaurs/brontosaurs or whatever they’re called now.

  51. On top of the nasty, lingering, disproportionate death of Zara that some are complaining about, I thought this also had a mean streak when it came to the kids. We all know the Spielberg trope of the kid protagonist’s coming from broken, divorced families, right? These kids find out the full extent of their parents impending divorce as they’re being shipped off to the dinosaur park, which is not a great way to start a happy holiday in my opinion. But prior to that, when they’re leaving the house, the father is a total fucking arsehole to the older son, mocking him for kissing and hugging his girlfriend goodbye.

    Come to think of it, it was pretty cynical about most relationships – the Pratt/Howard jibes at each other (and I agree with whoever said they had little chemistry), the scene where Jake Johnston announces that he’s going to stay behind and sacrifice himself then goes to smooch his co-worker in one of those usually melodramatic cinematic gestures, and she shoots him down bluntly by saying she’s got a boyfriend. I guess that was mean’t to be funny.

  52. Poeface: In a similar vein, while I thoroughly disliked Howard’s character, I also didn’t appreciate the constant guilt-tripping she got about not wanting kids. It’s a perfectly valid life choice that the movie treats like a character flaw. I know they did the same thing with Sam Neil in the first movie, but one thing I liked about the third one–which I recently watched for maybe the fourth time…and finally mostly remember!–was that it showed him sticking to his guns, even though it cost him Laura Dern. They wanted different things, they both moved on, they stayed friends, and nobody treated him like a pariah for being true to himself. But he’s a man, so it’s okay that he has other goals in life besides adding to the world’s already overstuffed supply of human beings. Women don’t have that option, so they must be browbeat into submission over thinking they have the right to choose what they do with their own lives and insides. Luckily, now that she’s finally found the perfect mansplaining man-person to teach her all the stuff she’s doing wrong, she can get right to work on fixing herself. If they start right away, maybe she’ll be a whole human being by morning! Yay!

  53. I’m with you, Mr. M. I find the generally positive reaction to this awful awful film incredibly baffling.

  54. I’ll have to pull out the Auteur Theory on this one and say that the relational/gender issues are the director (and writer[s]) fault. My memory of SAFETY NOT GUARANTEED is foggy, but that whole 21st century indy/mumblecore movement is myopic and spends a lot time gazing at it’s own insecure, emasculated navel. Two of Trevorrow’s writers on JW, Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver also wrote EYE FOR AN EYE (the Kiefer Sutherland one), which featured the most disturbing, protracted and cruel rape and murder I’ve seen in a mainstream studio film. Zara’s death in JW was in a similar spirit of nasty for nasty’s sake.

  55. @geoffreyjar

    “How does this movie pull off the park concept brilliantly?”

    I mean the design of the park itself, it’s a cool looking place that you wish you could actually visit and the little things like the Starbucks and the Margaritaville make it believable as a real theme park.

    “Also, why the hell did they just leave the ruins of the old park up?”

    Why does Disney World still have River Country and Discovery Island out there rotting? It costs money to demolish things and considering Jurassic World was built in the southern regions of the island I can imagine they probably just stripped out the most important and expensive equipment from the lab and called it a day, why bother if you’re not going to build anything in it’s place?

  56. The Original Paul

    June 16th, 2015 at 6:49 pm

    Majestyk:

    Now you know how I feel most of the time! I’ve said it before… I generally don’t bother to say stuff that other people have already said, except maybe to add an “I agree with X”. So the only time I’m ever writing something of substance is when I’m disagreeing with all of you guys. Hey, a debate is of no value, and certainly no fun, if everyone agrees, right?

    Mr Subtlety:

    I know exactly what you mean. The film that’s probably my favorite of the ones I’ve watched this year so far is COHERENCE. It took place entirely in one room, one street, and one driveway. It had eight actors and seven staff working on it, and was made without a fixed script and under incredible time constraints (it was filmed over the course of five days). It succeeds solely because it has a great script, characters, acting and direction, and it wasn’t afraid to take chances.

    I’ve found that as I’ve got older, the “magic” of big-budget cinema – with gigantic special-effects, action set-pieces, etc – has had less and less of an effect upon me. I’m appreciating things like a good story and original filmatic vision a lot more, and things like big set-pieces a lot less.

  57. Aww, this is a shame. I was hoping for a sequel in which the T-Rex from the first movie hunted down the heirs of John Hammond. Just like another part four featuring a prehistoric predator.

  58. Although the movie doesn’t really go in depth with any of it think it has a lot of interesting themes going on. Corporate greed, the movie’s selfawareness about it’s cgi and I really like the theme about that there are amazing things all around us but nobody notices anymore because their smartphones are glued to their hands.

    It’s not a smart movie but I like that it tries to say (or mumble) something about the modern times we live in.

  59. Here is an idea for the next sequel: Since it always ended up with people dying and law suits whenever they cloned dinosaurs, they try a radically different approach this time…and mix dinosaur DNA with some of the cutest animals out there make super cuddly dinos!

    But then of course some dumbass takes the toys away from Kittysaurus and Pugolodon…

  60. So, the assistant’s death has already been talked about to death but, I’m sorry, that shit is not right for this series. Nobody has been treated as poorly in this whole SERIES, much less the rest of this movie, as this woman. It just goes on and on and ON and ON, with the fucking DROWNING and the TOSSING and the shit. And I really never do this in movies, but I couldn’t help it; when she finally got eaten by the Shamusaurus, I let out a very audible “what the FUCK was THAT?”

    Me and the dude I saw the movie with, afterwards we couldn’t help but make jokes about an early draft of the script where the British chick’s name is suddenly shares a name with the writer’s ex-wife and the pterodactyl starts talking to her as it’s fucking her up, “Take all my fucking MONEY and spend it on your fucking BOYFRIEND, DIANE? Take my fucking kids away from me, DIANE? WELL THIS IS WHAT YOU FUCKING GET, DIANE!!!” That’s just how ludicrous that scene is.

    Other than that, yeah, I’ve seen a lot of shitty horror movies in my time where the main plot device is how stupid and easy to kill the characters are, but man, I ain’t ever seen dipshit characters like this movie. Not a god damn thing D’Onofrio’s character does makes sense. Not a god damn thing the kids do makes sense. There is no reason for ANYONE to go into that dinosaur pen. It just doesn’t make sense.

    And about the dino birdy attack scene… I like the all the shit with the helicopter and shit getting fucked up there, but I thought the attack on the village was lame, and not because of the assistant’s death. Unless I just missed it, the ONLY civilian deaths (assistant aside) are implied. If they even are implied! Nobody fucking gets eaten! They just get pecked a little bit! Fuck you, movie, you were promising me that the pirates were going to eat the guests, and what you gave me was some soft horseshit. Give me the payoff I want; you show me guests DYING.

  61. PinkServbot – Serious question: would it be better if it was the same character, and the camera just flew at her like it was gonna eat her and then we knew she was dead offscreen and she didn’t get a cruel, cool death? It sounds like you would say yes, but I say absolutely not. I agree that it’s weird, it should’ve happened to a jerkier character. But it should’ve happened. What is the point of a movie about dinosaurs killing people if we’re gonna be offended by the dinosaurs being good at their job?

    An additional thought: is it so wrong that it makes us uncomfortable? Could it be intentionally fucking with the formula so that we don’t know what to expect?

    Maybe the way to do that though would be to give that death to a character who is clearly a good guy.

  62. grimgrinningchris

    June 20th, 2015 at 5:23 am

    That was my favorite part of the whole movie!

  63. I think that her death was meant to be shocking and to show that shit has truly hit the fan, I don’t think that it was meant to be some crowd pleasing comeuppance like the lawyer getting eaten on the toilet, you’re supposed to feel bad for her.

    Dinomite – I liked that the movie had far more post 9/11 allusions than I was expecting with the Vincent D’Onofrio character (like when he says “imagine if he had these guys in Tora Bora”), JURASSIC PARK is pretty much the quintessential 90’s movie to me, so it was weird to see that stuff in JW, but also interesting for the movie to acknowledge how times have changed since the early 90’s.

  64. I finally saw this yesterday. I pretty much agree with Vern. It was mostly entertaining.

    I was a tad annoyed at them hauling out the old cliché of the uptight woman who just needs a man to show her how to loosen up. And it was so stupidly simple to soften the edges of Claire. She was far too cold and robotic. If you wanted her to be all about her schedule and routine, you still could make her human. I know exactly how they should’ve done it. They should’ve shown her as being harried and stressed about her day as an explanation why she couldn’t show her nephews around. Something should have been a monkey wrench in her plans. It would have even been another reinforcement for how much she likes to plan and schedule things. It would’ve shown that even with her desire for order she has emotions and loves her family. She should’ve shown some guilt over not being able to spend the day with them.

    Which brings me to her reaction to her nephews. It’s one thing if they wanted her character to be someone who doesn’t want children, or doesn’t know if she wants children, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t understand or like children, and especially love the children in her family. They should’ve had her more excited to see them, not get all stiff and unresponsive to his hug. She should’ve been genuinely shocked when she realized how long it’s been since she’s seen them. She could’ve just said, “Seven years? My God, where has the time gone?”

    She should’ve been shown as nervous or excited to see Owen again. She could’ve started to primp in the rearview mirror on the way to see him and then get disgusted with herself for doing so.

    She should’ve been shown to love her job and take pride in doing it well. This would’ve shown that she wasn’t all about schedules and plans for no reason. She was like this because she wanted to do her best and enjoyed her work. It also would’ve been nice to show her as a bit more effective at her job when things started melting down. This may have required additional scenes or more changes, but everything else would’ve been a simple line or two, an expression or two, or just a tweak on how the character was played.

  65. Hey, good news everyone! I thought this one was total shit! A roulette wheel of self-defeating script choices and leaden pacing sullenly dragged along by some bloodless, weightless and mostly incidental dinosaurs. Even at the end, when it plunges headlong into out-and-out parody, is just barely ridiculous enough to spur some minor interest. Corporate filmmaking-by-committee at its most pandering and stultifying. Really the only things of even passing note are its hilariously regressive gender stereotypes and how desperately and openly the movie wants Chris Pratt’s dick (seriously, how many scenes do we need of this guy striking a macho pose and someone reverently commenting on how awesome he is?)

  66. Yay! Life found a way!

  67. I wouldn’t call this a good movie, but as far as 3D popcorn spectacle goes it was enjoyable for what it is. The film is a big sloppy love letter to the original JP film and most of Spielberg’s filmography that is either so dumb that it doesn’t realize how inept it is or it is so wicked smart it realizes the joke is on the consumer that is willing to pay for a stupid uninspired retread of a much better film we have already seen.

    The film could be viewed as a metaphor for big dumb expensive blockbuster film making. The company that owns JW is like the major film studio, they are making money but they are greedy and they want even more money so they want to push the envelope to create new bigger louder entertainment properties to appeal to the masses and earn the consumers hard earned dollars. The corporation/studio has cooked up the idea of combining elements of various other dinosaurs/properties to create something new from something old, and cash in. (Spoilers) In the film that experiment goes terribly wrong and jeopardizes JW, and in the world of big budget studio film making it is only a matter of time before one of these big dumb cash grabs flops hard and puts a major film franchise or studio in jeopardy.

  68. Charles – “in the world of big budget studio film making it is only a matter of time before one of these big dumb cash grabs flops hard and puts a major film franchise or studio in jeopardy.”

    A part of me sadistically hopes that it’s ANOTHER INDEPENDENCE DAY.

  69. All I see people talking about this movie is the money it’s making and how that compares to AVENGERS TOO and stuff. I don’t see people talking about the content of the actual movie itself. You got people discussing the movie’s numbers online like theme park enthusiasts discuss numbers online. How meta.

  70. Broddie – I think AVATAR 2 might be modern Blockbusters’ HEAVEN’S GATE, nobody gives a fuck about AVATAR anymore, it may have been a huge hit at the time but it has not stuck around in the public’s memory at all, I can guarantee you that the average person, if they remember AVATAR at all, most certainly does not remember any of the characters’ names.

    So Cameron is barking up the wrong tree if he thinks the public wants not one, not two, but THREE fucking sequels back to back.

  71. You got it backwards, Griff. James Cameron doesn’t think about what the public wants. He TELLS the public what they want.

  72. Hasn’t Bryce Dallad Howard been a star way longer than Jessica Chastain?

    THE VILLAGE, MANDERLAY, LADY IN THE WATER, SPIDER-MAN 3, TERMINATOR SALVATION, THE TWILIGHT SAGA…

  73. Mr. Majestyk – what’s that saying about pride before the fall? Cameron may think he tells the public what they want but the public may decide “no James, we really don’t want any more giant ugly blue cat people thank you very much”.

    I think people forget just how much things have changed already since AVATAR came out, in 2009 the only significant Marvel studios movie was IRON MAN, that was before THE AVENGERS reminded audiences how nice it was to have characters you actually cared about and enjoyed spending time with.

    That was also before Hollywood really went whole hog with cashing in on nostalgia, as we see now with JURASSIC WORLD, no one’s nostalgic for a movie from late 2009, no one’s gonna be eager to see the further adventures of Jake Sully and Neytiri (you better believe I had to look those names up).

  74. I’m just saying that when you have STAR WARS or TERMINATOR or whatever there’s always going to be people who say “well shit, I have to see the new STAR WARS movie”, people feel almost obligated when it’s a franchise with a huge amount of cultural cache, but AVATAR just doesn’t have that, I can imagine people going “naw, I can skip this one” when faced with the prospect of AVATAR 2.

  75. Griff – Nobody knows what will happen with AVATAR 2. I can’t imagine it being as successful as the first one. But both TITANIC and AVATAR were considered disasters and for-sure-flops for months and months before they came out and smashed all records. Eventually Cameron has to make a movie that doesn’t make the most money in the world, but people who bet against him have not learned from history.

    More importantly, AVATAR is an awesome movie, Cameron hasn’t blown it yet and part 2s are his specialty. Part 2 could make $1 and if it’s good I will be happy because $1 is pretty cheap for me seeing it three times in Imax.

    Kevin – that’s true, but I never saw Jessica Chastain and thought “Bryce Dallas Howard isn’t in this movie, is she?” which is what I thought when I saw the first JURASSIC WORLD trailer. As far as I know that’s the only time they’ve looked alike, although I’ve seen them comment on it as if it’s an ongoing confusion for people.

  76. Vern – TITANIC and AVATAR were lightning in a bottle moments that at least brought something new to the table, there had never been a historical disaster movie on the scale of TITANIC before and AVATAR brought surreal, trippy visuals to the heavy CGI era as well as the whole 3D thing.

    But what can you really do that’s completely fresh and new with AVATAR 2? Let alone AVATAR 3 and AVATAR 4.

    Really I think that’s the big problem, AVATAR 2 may be a hit but will AVATAR 3 and AVATAR 4 following immediately after be hits as well? That whole idea of filming three sequels back to back just smells of the sort of hubris that leads to disasters to me.

  77. In Tree of Life I did actually have to wonder if Bryce Dallas Howard was in it but that was the first time I’d seen Chastain. I’ve been good ever since. Similar thing happened in early Ving Rhames/Michael Clarke Duncan movies.

  78. My mother still has trouble to tell Tony Todd and Michael Clarke Duncan apart. White people, amirite?

  79. Also Griff, while AVATAR’s absence in modern geekdom might be a warning sign, you also have to remember that there hasn’t been a backlash with the general public yet. Only with the “blue smurf Pocahontas” internet crowd and as we have learned over and over again through the years, their opinion is no indicator for success or the lack of it. Once the movie gets released, people will most likely be like “Hell yeah, I really liked part 1, so let’s check this one out!” Not to mention that the trailers will show some super awesome stuff, that will get everybody’s ass in the seats.

  80. If AVA2R is the HEAVEN’S GATE of modern blockbusters, does that mean it’ll be reclaimed as a masterpiece by all and sundry as we enter the second half of the century? And if it means the de-facto approach will change from set-template, franchise supporting mega-pictures to giving directors blank cheques to do whatever they want, I’d be cool with that (although I guess the first AVATAR kind of was that)

  81. I can’t say that I am excited for an AVATAR sequel, but I wouldn’t bet against Cameron. It is going to be something like the ID4 sequel Broddie mentioned or TERMINATOR GENESIS that flops hard.

  82. AVATAR 2 is going to be huge. People are gonna question the king at first and then be blown away when they see the technological boundaries he’s pushed past this time around. Guys somehow he’s fucking with water in the next movie and well all know how much he loves that shit. The thing with AVATAR is that it’s an event. IMO it’s gonna make a bulk of it’s cash and lots of it at the box office because of that.

    The original is still the most immersive 3D experience people have had at the cinema with a regular movie to date 6 years after release. AVATAR is the one Cameron movie I never bought on home video but watched 3 times on IMAX 3D because that was the point. Plus the Animal Kingdom AVATAR land is gonna open around that time too and will get people hyped to go back to Pandora even more.

  83. Thanks to the bajillions this made we now have The Rock remaking his own SAN ANDREAS but this time with the RAMPAGE arcade game license to have an excuse for monster on monster mayhem.

  84. Actually I had a father of a friend ask me if I knew if they would make a sequel to Avatar because it seemed like the ending was open for a sequel. So the public doesn’t really know the trilogy plans but they want to see more.

  85. Saw this, and will throw my hat into the positive side of the ring. It does suffer from a middle section which has way too much exposition, an overload of nostalgia for a film I watched on an easily available DVD only last week, and some stuff I couldn’t buy even in this particularly ludicrous chapter of an inherently facetious franchise (a ride that gives a 15 year old complete control?). But I loved the build-up and world building, and the finale was a lot of fun too. All in all I would put it a smooch below the first two, which is to say, unlike FURY ROAD, not in the league of your JAWSs, BACK TO THE FUTUREs and such, but way above numerous other blockbusters I’m sure we could all list, but let’s not because we don’t need to start something like that now.

  86. Mark my words, all of you who are tolerating this mess of shoddy film-making and apologetic meta-jokes about how dumb the movie you’re watching is: you will learn the true meaning of horror when Hollywood looks at the piles of money this think is making and decides that the thing that the public wants is for them to stop trying and openly admit that sequels are worthless disposable garbage that just need to string some nostalgia along with a few expensive effects. THEN you’ll rue the day you ignored my prophetic words.

  87. Nice try, but AsimovLives did it first.

  88. Mr. S, this films existence and success are proof we are already there. The future is now. They are already cooking up the next Supermegafullyloadedtotallyextremosaurus-Rex* in the lab, and it going to be awesome and everything is going to be OK.

    *(SPOILERS: it is a cyborg from the future)

  89. Hey Vern, sorry I didn’t see your reply until now.

    Honestly, if it’s still the same character? I don’t know if I would necessarily say “yeah it needs to be a nothing ‘camera flies at the character’ implied death”, but I’d at least be fine with the same sort of chompy-chompy-and-you’re done death the one schlubby Adonisaur (or whatever) dude gets when Pratt’s covered himself brake fluid or whatever. This thing, though, just feels *so* out of character for the series, and I get that maybe it shouldn’t be completely off the table, but… Why not keep things at that pace, then? Not a soul dies like that before, and not a soul dies like that afterwards.

    And y’know what, instead of giving D’Onofrio that absolute joke of a death scene, give HIM the big bombastic death. Not because we’re supposed to hate him but because at least he’s *somebody.* I can’t even remember the assistant’s name. Well, honestly, I can’t remember any of their names, which just goes to more reasons why I didn’t really care much for this movie.

    That being said, though, I am very pro-this movie’s climax. All of that shit that happens between D’Onofrio’s crap death scene and the ridiculous “let’s all shake hands” knowing look between Rex and Blue? That’s great. Pratt poppin’ at the big bad with a rifle while the raptors go to work? That one raptor getting thrown into a Benihana and going up like there was a Hank Hill propane salesman meet’n greet going on in there? Two tickets to a movie of nothing but that shit, please.

  90. Just saw this on the weekend. I have to agree with Vern’s review, I really enjoyed it, although I have some issues with it. The whole “You’ll want kids someday!” thing got really grating. I don’t want kids, and I don’t really believe in marriage either, so the traditional family values shtick felt shoehorned in because it’s related to a Spielberg film or something. On the flip side of that, I liked how the kid’s parents were getting a divorce. I kind of really connected with that storyline in a way. I’ve got a younger brother too and our parents are divorced, so we’re really close. I mean, you get a lot of bromance films nowadays but actual positive relationships between brothers don’t feel as common, or at least I don’t see them very often.

    For me though, going by the trailer, things felt somewhat self aware and purposefully silly, and I was glad to see that in the film. It really went for a lot of b-movie nonsense. Corny lines like “She ripped out her tracker.” or when the owner of the park had to fly the helicopter and someone asks if there’s another pilot and the camera does a zoom in on his face as he’s all “I’m the only one” or something like that. A lot of the deaths were pretty brutal actually, not in a gory way but brutal nonetheless.

    My prediction for the sequels is the second involves the army trained dinosaurs, the third will be them rebelling and Earth will be a post-apocalyptic dino wasteland. Jurassic World: Apocalypse. Then the fourth film will be a Mad Max crossover.

  91. I’m sure a lot of people are still wondering if Pratt does use the knife or not, and I can definitely tell you that he does. I already forgot if it was to remove the broken tooth from the hamster ball or if it was for something else, but he does use it.

    By the way, why did the director feel the need to use the old “characters find one of the large predator’s teeth so that we get an idea of how huge it must be” cliché AFTER we’ve aleady seen pretty well how huge said predator was anyway?

  92. I don’t get why so many smart people are giving this egregious piece of shit a pass. Critics consensus wise, this is transformers 1 all over again.

  93. Seems pretty different from TRANSFORMERS to me. It has some likable human characters. It has a reasonably structured story. The dinosaurs are better characters than the robots, they get more to do, I can tell which way they are facing and what they are doing, and I enjoy what they are doing. The special effects setpieces are fun and understandable. It is not full of painfully unfunny jokes. I did not find it racist, boring, confusing or too long. If they made another movie I would want to see Chris Pratt and his raptors in it.

    I am not “giving it a pass.” I enjoyed it. They have similar aims and JURASSIC WORLD, for me, was clearly far better at achieving them.

  94. Yeah, I don’t mean to use overly harsh language, but you are full of shit if you think JURASSIC WORLD is anywhere as bad as any of the TRANSFORMERS flicks.

  95. I disagree with all of those points except being able to tell which way te dinosaurs were facing. Good job, JURASSIC WORLD team!

  96. Okay, I’ll give this one a shot.

    Nobody else found it just a little bit racist that the movie takes place at what should have been a major boon to the Costa Rican economy and yet there’s not a single Spanish speaker in the movie? Did they fly all the dufus minimum wage honkies down from the states and put them up at the park at great expense instead of just hiring local? Can we assume the locals are in the kitchen and thus not worth depicting at all?

    Also I’m pretty sure the one black character disappears for most of the movie only to return just to say “We have a situation here, boss.” His role in the story is equivalent to the “Meanwhile…” narration box in a comic book. TRANSFORMERS 1 has some tone deaf moments but it at least tries to be a movie for everyone. JW doesn’t even pretend it’s for anyone but the whitest of white people.

    This does not make the movie bad, though. Everything else makes the movie bad. This just makes it worse.

  97. The Original Paul

    July 1st, 2015 at 8:55 am

    Majestyk, I don’t know about JURASSIC WORLD, but I’m pretty sure that a movie that actively makes light of soldiers dying in the Middle East, especially during the time that TRANSFORMERS was made / released, is not for “everybody”. At the very least I’d call Tyrese making lame butt-puns while his squad is being massacred as “insensitive”. I don’t think it’s trying to be, the same as Michael Bay’s constant use of gross racial stereotypes isn’t trying to be “racist”, it’s just something that he uses as a crutch. But having a break-dancing, jive-talking autobot who’s the first (maybe the only, I can’t even remember which of the ‘bots survived that movie) autobot to die… yeah, I’m pretty sure this movie wasn’t meant for educated, politically-aware black people. I don’t even think that its appeal is divided among racial lines. I think it’s for casual moviegoers who like familiar stereotypes and tropes and don’t particularly care if they’re politically backwards or insensitive, exclusively. Call it a “mass market” movie if you want, but I still think that’s not by all means a movie for “everyone”.

    (By the way, TRANSFORMERS is a rare case of a kind of reversed “Paul’s Village” effect. I saw it on the recommendation of a group of friends who enjoyed the heck out of it. I didn’t, obviously. But I can’t honestly say I can recall a single person I know who’s seen the movie and doesn’t like it. So there’s that.)

    And here’s something I’ve wanted to discuss for a while. I have to give the marketing team for TRANSFORMERS 4 some grudging respect here. There’s pretty much nothing that would entice me into watching the movie, at least unless it comes out on TV at some point and I’ve got nothing else better to do. But I think the trailer for that movie might have been one of the best trailers I’ve ever seen. I’m talking about the one where Mark Wahlberg and daughter find an abandoned truck, start restoring it, and realise that it’s a Transformer. Watching that trailer – and specifically Wahlberg and his family in it – makes me realise exactly who this movie is meant for and what it’s offering. Plainly it’s not a movie that’s aimed at somebody like me. But the double-dose of watching how those characters, and I guess their specific class, are portrayed – that plus the way the feeling of “discovery” of the Transformer as some kind of lost treasure perfectly mimics the nostalgia that the trailer is trying to tap into – is done brilliantly. Man, if DREDD had had this good a trailer, it would’ve been a mega-hit.

  98. I think a movie about wisecracking alien robots who transform into product placement lost the “educated, politically aware” audience of every race before it even came out. I’m saying that Bay recognizes that black people exist and might like to see themselves on film. That’s why all of his movies, starting with the one that made a star out of a little known sitcom star named William Smith, have featured black actors in prominent roles. He isn’t always very tactful about it, but he’s not tactful about anything. That’s his style, and he changes it for nobody. At least he’s not living in a honky echo chamber like the hipsters who made JW, who assume we’re all nineties kids whose parents bought us all the expensive plastic crap that the movie cares more about than anything else. The irony is that TRANSFORMERS is literally a toy commercial and it’s still less cynical about its status as a merchandising platform than JW is.

  99. The Original Paul

    July 1st, 2015 at 9:51 am

    Majestyk – fair points about TRANSFORMERS. I will grant you those points, which I think can be distilled and simplified down to the fact that Michael Bay uses awful stereotypes in his movies without bias towards any particular race or social class. (Or course what this means in practice is that we’re free to “enjoy” Steve Buscemi in THE ISLAND equally with Anthony Anderson in TRANSFORMERS. Yay.) Come to think of it, just about everything you say about JURASSIC WORLD is something I’d say about THE ISLAND.

    Honestly, this is probably a really bad thing, but you keep piquing my interest. I almost want to watch JW (I won’t, at least not until it’s out on DVD) just to see if it can possibly be on THE ISLAND’s level of bad, or whether I’d be more in the “cautiously positive” camp. I think this is similar to when people slow down when driving past accident sites so they don’t miss out on any of the gory details.

  100. I can see comparing this film to TRANSFORMERS in that they are both big dumb shameless commercial cash grabs, but while JW is a mess it doesn’t have anywhere near the bloated excess or blatant disregard for the cinematic language TRANSFORMERS displays. JW feels more like EXPENDABLES 2 in that it is to busy delivering “wink wink” meta fan service to be bothered with being a good film.

  101. I can’t remember any black people in four movies of MAD MAX. Fucking George Miller cracker honky.

  102. Yeah, it’s a fair point that the JW cast is not very diverse. But its one major black character is pretty cool, and does not spend his short screen time asking “what’s crackin bitches?”, doing a breakdance move and then getting broken in half and held casually by the hero while he makes a speech. Nor is there a character that’s made out of Mountain Dew. I see a huge, obvious, undeniable difference in the execution, stupidity and crassness of the two movies, so I resent the implication that enjoying JW means I’m lowering my standards. I don’t entirely buy the conventional wisdom about how much stupider JW is than JP, but come on. Imagine if TRANSFORMERS had a good movie to be held up to! It was, for its time, a new level of terrible, it even invented a new way for action to be incomprehensible.

    You can hate JURASSIC WORLD all you want, you can even appreciate TRANSFORMERS more because it’s a more unique specimen. But they are not the same.

  103. I’ll admit I was disappointed to see that Omar Sy didn’t get more screen time and didn’t get to be funnier, but his character was ok, at least he was neither the stereotypical big scary black man or the cowardly incompetent buffoon, just a sidekick who doesn’t get to do much but can hold his own when shit goes down.

  104. I mean, JW is moderately closer to a real movie than TRANSFORMERS 1 or 2 was, I guess. I can’t in all honesty say it’s significantly better than the somewhat more toned-down TRANSFORMERS 3 (never saw 4), except maybe in terms of having a mildly more suitable climax. Still a long, long way from being even remotely good. It does generally let you see the dinosaurs, more or less, but I’m sorry, I cannot sanction any claims that it has a “reasonable structured story.” The story is a complete narrative and thematic mess, clearly rewritten by several teams of different people with different objectives, it’s glutted up with reams of needless exposition and pointless characters going in different directions, and on top of that it has to be the most blatantly and unabashedly sexist mainstream script I’ve seen in years (so hilariously tone-deaf that it’s hard to even get mad about, but still). Come on guys, we all like dinosaurs, and I don’t begrudge you your enjoyment of this movie, but surely we don’t have to claim that it is in any technical way accomplished or even competent, do we? Because I just don’t see how that’s a defensible statement.

  105. Vern, I would never imply that you’re lowering your standards. I hope I didn’t give that impression.

  106. Sorry Majestyk, I was referring to Sergio’s comment: “I don’t get why so many smart people are giving this egregious piece of shit a pass. Critics consensus wise, this is transformers 1 all over again.”

    I know he didn’t mean it personally either, but the implication is there when posted under my review.

  107. ThePinkServbot

    July 1st, 2015 at 2:17 pm

    Oh, god! Yeah, I definitely can’t say I’m an honest “fan” of Jurassic World, but I definitely can’t agree that it’s in Transformers territory. That’s like… That’s like a Godwin’s Law type of thing.

    um, sorry to any Transformers fans

  108. Saw it yesterday. It’s simultaneously pretty fun, and horrendously stupid in so many ways. Paramount is how it’s not explained how this park even exists. In the first film, not only did no one on the tour decide to approve of the Park, not only did people DIE, but the owner, John Hammond himself, decided that it would be a mistake to open it at all. Yet in WORLD, there’s a building named after him with a statue and the current owner says Hammond passed the place along into his hands. THE FUCK?!

    Who handles a divorce like that? Who sends their kids off on a trip that’ll end with them coming home to find out their folks are separated? That’s like burying a turd at the bottom of an ice cream sundae. Also, what WAS the older brother trying to do by staring at those other girls, and why is the fact this guy seems to be actively trying to cheat on his girlfriend played more for laughs than him being a scumbag?

    This also has one of the worst shoehorned in romance subplots I’ve ever seen, between two characters who seem to actively dislike each other throughout the movie, but ONE instance of the useless executive woman saving the guy(I actually like that she’s not on equal action hero terms with Pratt, because come on, he’s an ex-Armed Services guy who knows his shit, and she’s a business lady) and an incredibly unconvincing kiss later, and they’re a thing. I’m glad it’s kinda kept to a minimum as the other stuff with Pratt was good at showing he can be a bit more than just a goofball.

    And how come the corporation can’t tell them what the classified DNA samples the Indominus has once it goes loose? I think that’s a NEED TO KNOW situation. Plus, weirdly, they mention it can detect people’s heat signatures, but that ability is never seemingly exhibited. It should have still been able to see Pratt after he doused himself in petrol, right?

    That said, I do like that when people do stupid things, the movie actually has realistic consequences for it.
    Go into the Indominus Pen? It’s still inside.
    Go offroad into an endangered area? You’ll get attacked!
    Let a not-fully trained civilian pilot a helicopter as part of an armed assault(did I miss an explanation for where his instructor was? I mean, if they still had the helicopter on the island, it stands to reason he would still be around)? It’ll crash when things go south and everyone on board dies a fiery death!
    Set raptors loose? They’ll turn on you!

    I also agree that McGrath’s death was really disproportionately brutal for the character. Especially when D’Onofrio’s death is far more quick.

  109. Just wanted to point out that the sitcom star Majestyk wrongly called William Smith is actually Willard Smith. William Smith was the character he played on TV.

  110. To me, the premise of the park being open despite what happened before is the most true thing about the movie. Of course they would try to clone dinosaurs again. Would we invade Afghanistan again after it was shown to be impossible? Of course we would.

  111. Would they be ALLOWED to though? Shouldn’t an international regulatory agency kinda have words to say about that or something? And if we consider the other sequels canon, didn’t THE LOST WORLD specifically end with the islands being ruled basically a nature preserve where the dinosaurs would be left alone?

  112. We just got a new TERMINATOR sequel, how can it be so hard to believe that big companies are never reasonable enough to NOT give another try at making money with something that should remain dead and buried, even though the latest attempt was a miserable failure and everybody keeps saying that it’s a terrible idea?

  113. Yeah, but when the last TERMINATOR movie flopped, it didn’t start eating the audience.

  114. POLTERGEIST killed all its cast and they still remade it.

  115. So you can’t imagine that a giant company is able to find a legal loophole for their clonosaurus project? Probably even that’s why it is in Costa Rica an not in the middle of California.

  116. Whoa, whoa, whoa Craig T Nelson and Jobeth Williams are still with us!

  117. Ok half its cast I guess…

    Disneyland rides have injured/killed employees and guests, zoo animals have mauled handlers and visitors, we still have Disneyland and zoos, they just close the ride for a couple of days and then everything gets back to business as usual…

    I have a harder time believing that the employees are so poorly prepared to handle a crisis situation than believing they would open a new park. They seem to only have like 20, 30 armed men for that whole huge island… That kid at the hamster balls ride immediately reacts like an idiot, that kind of ruins the good work of Making the Park Seem Real of that lady at the Deusexmachinasaurus water show. In real life when they have to close a ride at Disneyland, they don’t normally get the Squeaky-Voiced Teen from The Simpsons to just yell “sorry, we’re now closed, go away folks!” so that everybody starts panicking and trampling each other.

  118. Toxic, actually the employees being poorly prepared to handle the crisis makes it seem more real. Just look at how laughable airport security is even in a post 9-11 world, or how poorly prepared FIMA was to handle hurricane Katrina.

  119. But TSA and FEMA are not amusement parks, they’re not even private companies… The closest real life equivalent to Jurassic World would be Disneyland and from what I understand they train their staff so that the safety of their properties and reputation is not in the hands of teenage morons who will scream “OH MY GOD WE’RE ALL DOOMED” and run away as soon as they receive a message telling them they need to shut down a ride and evacuate.

  120. Toxic, I don’t disagree, but that still doesn’t mean that everything will go as planed when the shit hits the fan.

  121. ThePinkServbot

    July 3rd, 2015 at 4:17 pm

    The more I reflect on this movie and all the press material surrounding it, the more I realize that I got a lot of issues with it, but one thing I don’t have an issue with is Chris “The Man” Pratt, in either casting, performance, or, ho ho, AESTHETICS. I gotta say, every second of him on-screen in this movie meant nothing but Tex Avery noises coming out of me.

    And man, I ain’t ever been a “oh that Harrison Ford/Brad Pitt/George Clooney!” type, but with stuff like this floating around:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dJNPSeBoVO4

    just makes me want to turn into Momma Klump about the dude, hooo-whee!

  122. ThePinkServbot – you’re gay, right? Well then I can’t blame you for having the hots for Chris Pratt, he is one handsome, handsome man with a great persoanlity, even heterosexual me has to admit that

  123. ThePinkServbot

    July 3rd, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Griff: Like a french horn! What’s great is that there’s all that you mention, and the fact that both muscle-otter Guardians/JW Pratt AND full bear Parks & Rec Pratt have unique appeals for me…

    But what a sweetie, though. That’s the best thing of all. What a bonafide cuddly teddy bear!

    okay, I’m about to make this way too demeaning, time to cease my commentary on that

  124. AW, FUCK IT. I’m gonna give this one another try, come Blue-Ray time. Maybe I’ll have some fun this time around.

    It’s better than transformers, I know that, but it’s still a pretty flawed movie and not very good, I’m just saying that critics reaction was similar in that sense: a pretty bad movie gets a pass on it’s many flaws because it’s “fun”.

  125. Ah God damn it, now because this needless retread made all the money in the world, they’re handing this clown STAR WARS XI, as if somehow it was his genius direction that turned a bunch of dinosaurs and a shitty script into a license to print money.

    I WARNED YOU. I WARNED YOU THIS WOULD HAPPEN. Remember our whole “You’ll rue the day…” talk?

  126. If the rumor is true I don’t think it’s entirely because of JURASSIC WORLD. I read on slashfilm something I hadn’t heard before, that when Lucasfilm was trying to get Brad Bird to direct episode 7 and he didn’t want to leave TOMORROWLAND he suggested having Trevorrow (who he apparently is friends with) prep the movie for him and then he would take over. They said this was what led to the weird rumors that he was going to direct it and then led to him being considered for JURASSIC WORLD. So blame Brad Bird.

    I hope it’s not true, not so much because of him but because I hate the idea that they’re putting someone else on the third one before the first one even comes out. It’s weird enough that there’s no possibility of Abrams continuing into 2. But Johnson is actually writing and directing, and wasn’t he supposed to write 3? It seems like they should be looking for someone who can do more than one chapter.

    I worry that as movies turn more and more into brand names they are also turning to a TV model of producers who look for employee directors instead of visionary collaborators. That worked with STAR WARS because it was George Lucas overseeing his baby and so much of it came from him. I don’t see it working with this.

  127. What is interesting, is that they picked directors so far, with at least one studio movie under their belt. It’s not like they trust any unproven no budget mumblecore directors yet.

  128. Man, I can’t wait for these movies to come out so I can start being right all along.

  129. Oh come on, don’t be that guy.

  130. I mean, I’d rather they all be great. But if they’re gonna suck, I wish they’d get it over with.

  131. Yeah, just more evidence that Disney views their 4 billion dollar purchase as a commodity product which they want to be as blandly approachable as possible, and hence they don’t want anyone with real clout or vision anywhere near it.

  132. I mean, I would have been a little more excited for Bird I guess. Actually it seems like they did approach a couple people who I consider to have some vision, for example Affleck. But it’s still little surprise they Disney is handling their Star Wars franchise about as tightly as Marvel does, ending up with directors who they can easily push around and ensure they get a safe, focus-group-tested product delivered on time.

  133. With Bird at the helm I actually would’ve been curious enough to watch it. As it stands though this type of move makes it more and more transparent. Most SW fans are suckers if they keep buying into this shit so naively.

  134. Hahahaha, this guy directing STAR WARS would be hilarious. JURASSIC WORLD was more dumb-but-doesn’t-totally-realize-it fun than DEEP BLUE SEA. It’s a truly moronic film about truly moronic people. On the other hand, the Dallas Howard character arc was pretty great I thought, so I guess that’s something to build on.

  135. DEEP BLUE SEA is way better than JW. There is no comparison.

  136. Better in the sense that’s it’s more competently put together? Yeah, I agree. I’m not sure it’s more fun though. JW had 20 bad minutes at the beginning of the film, but after that I felt like I was pretty much laughing the whole time.

  137. Philip, do you really think a movie where its biggest star gets eaten halfway during a dramatic, inspirational speech and has LL Cool J escaping a gas oven that a shark turned on doesn’t know that it’s dumb fun?

  138. I don’t know, CJ, it’s hard to tell sometimes with Harlin. Similarly, you might assume that a movie that has the main monster from the previous 3 movies showing up to save the day while the music swells like it’s a Lassie flick knows what it’s doing, except there are some other signs in the film that the creators might not totally get how funny/retarded the movie is.

  139. I finally got around to seeing JW, and it is a colossally dumb movie. At its best, it’s so dumb it’s fun, like when Chris Pratt gives a knowing nod to his raptor buddy. Still, I think there’s a lot of potentially in a Jurassic Park sequel, so I was kind of disappointed that the movie wasn’t very good. I also didn’t like Safety Not Guaranteed, so maybe this Trevorrow guy isn’t a very good director or writer (since his name is credited as one of the four writers on JW). What’s the deal with giving huge blockbusters to minimally talented directors who have made one mediocre indie flick?

  140. So I’ve seen this now. Hey, remember what a villainous prick D’Onofrio was for wanting to stop the whateverasaurus by siccing other dinosaurs on it? Christ what an asshole oh wait it worked.

    This is a dreadful movie.

  141. Just felt the need to pop in here four months late and confirm that yes, this movie really sucks. It’s ashamed of its very existence; it’s a meta-movie. Almost fascinating in a way.

  142. This bump reminds me that somebody actually rented and insisted that I watch this movie with them recently. I passed and stayed home and finally watched the last 3 episodes of HANNIBAL instead. Something tells me that I did the right thing. I could proudly say I don’t feel any lesser never having watched the 4th JP movie same way I never felt like I did myself a disservice when I skipped GERIATRIC JONES AND THE COMPLAINTS OF NUCLEAR FRIDGES. Some franchises that I’m nostalgic for are better left off over in nostalgia land IMO.

  143. Funny Broddie mentioned KOTCS, because I just finished JW and even though it had a much more coherent script, the execution was so bland, so perfunctory, that I honestly kind of preferred KOTCS for having a couple of thrilling action sequences and images in it. (You know, i think that Spielberg guy might be a bit of a better director than this Trevorrow guy. Just spitballing here).

    Absolutely nothing in JW is memorable or pulse-raising (i can’t even get worked up about the I-Rex’s powers that everyone hated or the assistant’s death because i think I watched this whole movie with an Aubrey Plaza-esque face of stone). I can’t even muster the energy to hate this movie like everyone else, but I am kinda scared at the thought of Star Wars Episode IX being this anonymous and workmanlike. I mean, even the scene that’s supposed to get your blood pumping and has the original theme blasting did nothing for me, since it’s you know, a kid walking through a hotel then looking out a window at a CGI set. I can’t entirely blame Trevorrow for the movie- people make fun of Simon West for being a bland director but at least Con Air had good lines and memorable, fun characters. This has neither. Even Pratt is working at 25% of the charm we’ve seen from him. The score is anonymous, the kid actors try hard but I identified and sympathized with Lex from part 1 more and I’m a guy. The love story is dumb, the parent’s divorce is literally brought up in one scene and forgotten about. It’s actually thisclose to being a good movie but I’m honestly having trouble remembering it and i just saw it last night. (I do remember it rips off Aliens THREE TIMES with the stupid D’Onofrio military subplot and by doing the control room/body camera massacre scene TWICE!)

    BTW: Trevorrow said this is “The T. Rex from the original’s ‘Unforgiven'”. I love that idea but the movie never even makes it clear it’s the same T. Rex, and it basically forgets about it until the end. Maybe I need things bigger or broader but they never gave the sense the T. Rex was washed up or people didn’t care about it anymore. The Indominus Rex basically looks and acts like a T. Rex the entire time anyway. I kinda expected more wackiness (i.e. we find out some of the I. Rex DNA came from humans, kinda like another horror movie these same guys wrote).

  144. Finally saw this last week. I was pleasantly surprised by how good it was.

    I will defend the scene where the female assistant is grabbed by pterodactyls. First of all, they drop her in the water – which I interpreted as a lucky escape rather than a death, and a sign that the filmmakers were squeamish about actually killing this character.

    Admittedly we never see her again, and her chances of survival in the water with that mosasaur are not huge. But even if she does die, it’s because she’s a minor character, not because she’s a jerk. Also, because she’s the guardian of the two kids, writing her out puts the kids in more jeopardy and gives Howard a reason to get involved. (Maybe the other JURASSIC PARK movies have erred on the side of kid-friendliness by making us hate certain characters so that it will be less upsetting when they get killed – but I never took that as an ironclad guideline. Samuel J died in the first JURASSIC PARK and I don’t remember him being set up as a jerk.)

    Actually, I think the gender roles in this movie are more defensible than critics admit. I like the scene where Howard ties her shirttails into a knot to try to prove that she’s ready for battle. It’s ridiculous, but sincere. It shows that she’s trying and she wants to change. And she does rise to the occasion over the course of the movie. It’s sad that some people would cry sexism merely because the character has to grow with experience, instead of being magically perfect from the beginning. Perhaps more people would have been happy if the already-awesome-from-the-beginning survivalist-zookeeper character was played by a woman instead of by Chris Pratt. Which would indeed have been cool. Maybe next time.

    If I were to suspect the movie of sexism, I might be more troubled by the nervous-ish girl in the control room, and the awkward scene where the nerdy guy tries to give her a goodbye kiss and she rebuffs him. But even there, the misunderstanding is resolved peacefully and they remain friends. She doesn’t accuse him of assault, he doesn’t call her a bitch. Instead they resolve an emotionally awkward situation like adults, which is refreshing.

    I also liked that this movie is set in a world where some people (including kids) are bored by living dinosaurs. It’s an amusing irony, and it also shows that this is a universe that doesn’t have to keep hitting the reset button to keep “ordinary” people in disbelief at the existence of something everyone in the audience already accepts and came here specifically to see.

  145. I also like the foreboding that the movie creates in the early scenes. Indominus Rex is given a Hannibal Lecter level of buildup – we’re supposed to be worried that this ONE dinosaur might escape, and only THEN worry about what happens when it causes the other dinosaurs to escape. And when the squeaky-voiced employee tells the tourist that the park is closed, it’s silly and goofy but it also ups the ante by showing the audience how seriously unprepared this park is for something bad to happen, meaning that the shit is REALLY gonna hit the fan when the dinosaurs escape.

  146. Curt–

    I don’t think the problem is that the assistant was killed. It’s that she was essentially tortured before she was killed. You can have a drawn out death for a character we hate; you can have one for a character we love if it comes out of his/her glorious heroism (like the safari guy from pt 1); but it is unsatisfying at best in this type of movie to have a drawn out death happen to a character like this. It reminded me of the death of the tech guy from pt 2, where he was surrounded by two t-rex, whimpering, then finally torn in half by those same t-rex. That wasn’t cool. It was just unpleasant.

  147. Phillip, by “this type of movie” do you mean horror movies, or kid-friendly adventure movies? These JURASSIC flicks try to be both but I guess I think of them as mainly the former.

    I’m not a huge horror buff but I don’t think that death and suffering are inflicted solely on characters who have been shown to be unsympathetic. I don’t remember Scatman Crothers in THE SHINING, or most of the crew in ALIEN, “deserving” to die. Bad shit can happen to pretty much anyone who isn’t careful – if anything that’s what gives horror movies their adrenaline.

    Maybe we just aren’t used to seeing a female character as the minor authority figure who meets this type of fate. Even though we’re very used to slasher movies where a much dumber and more sexualized type of female character dies. So in a way I would argue that this is actually progress for female roles in horror movies.

  148. So I totally skipped this cause it didn’t star Alan Grant or Ian Malcolm. But now that I found out Malcolm is back for part 5 I guess I’m gonna have to watch that one. Goldblum V Dinosaurs revival has been long overdue.

  149. Somewhere Griff is doing the humpty dance I’m sure.

    I just hope they call it THE LOST PARK: JURASSIC WORLD. Just don’t cast Zoe whats her face as Malcolm’s daughter. Unless she will get into more gymnastics hijinks.

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