HOLLYWOOD—I already noted that summer 2015 would be one of the biggest of all-time at the box-office. It seems week after week a blockbuster is invading theaters. This weekend we have the release of “Jurassic World,” the highly anticipated sequel to the “Jurassic Park” franchise that literally changed people’s perception about dinosaurs thanks to Steven Spielberg. Can you believe it has been nearly 14 years since the last installment in the franchise?
This latest outing finds the audience returning to the park that mesmerized fans back in 1993. Things have been revamped, the dinosaurs are on a grandeur scale, and what seems to be all joy and fun, soon becomes utter chaos for the park goers. In a role that many have scoffed about upon learning about his casting, Chris Pratt portrays Owen Grady, a velociraptor trainer.
It’s a different role for the actor who drifts into a meatier and more serious role than his past work. Owen is a bit of a drifter, he delivers witty one-liners at times, all the while being ignored by some of the parks geneticists and operators who failed to learn from the mistakes from the past. I will admit Pratt’s character reminded me of the character portrayed by Thomas Jane in “Deep Blue Sea.” That was a movie where scientists thought it was okay to tinker with nature.
After the chaos that erupted in the first movie, Isla Nublar, a secluded island near the Pacific Coast, is now back up and running as a functioning dinosaur theme park, which was envisioned by John Hammond. In an effort to boost attendance at the park, the geneticists manifest a hybrid dinosaur known as the Indominus rex.
It’s like the T-Rex, but 10 times bigger and 10 times scarier, at least that is what the movie trailers and TV spots tots to the audience. Leading the wave of the parks newest attraction is Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) who is the park’s operations manager. Howard exhibits such a dark personality to many of the roles that she has portrayed throughout her career, and “Jurassic World” is no different. She can be slightly cold to Owen, as well as her nephews Zach (Nick Robinson) and Gray (Ty Simpkins) who arrive at the park at the worst possible time.
Colin Trevorrow does double duty in the film serving not only as the director, but a participant in the films script. Trevorrow manages to deliver to the audience a dinosaur theme park that is 100 times larger than what Steven Spielberg did back in 1993. The slight problem is that the movie isn’t quite certain rather it wants to be a heightened thriller or a fantasy adventure where bad things happen. This is a common issue in past installments of the franchise where “The Lost World” and “Jurassic Park III” attempted to deliver a ‘serious’ movie, but it wasn’t fully as serious as one expected.
I will admit “Jurassic World” finds a way to bring back that charm that was evident in the first movie, it’s not perfect, but it’s indeed a step up from past flicks. A bunch of that success is thanks to Pratt and Howard who in my opinion carry the movie in addition to its special effects. All the other actors and actresses have notable roles, but these two shine a bit more and help the narrative push when iit feels like it may be struggling slightly. I will admit when the dinosaurs run rampant in the park amongst thousands of park goers it is absolute fun to watch. The movie delivers giddiness as a viewer that makes you feel as if you are inside the park.
“Jurassic World” while no masterpiece, is indeed an improvement in previous fair and delivers a film that has family written all over it, even though it appears otherwise at times.