Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Movie Review: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

"Jurassic Park" has always had a special place in my heart, being amazed by the gigantic creatures during the dawn of what was cutting edge special effects and being terrified by them will always be an awe I will never forget. 

 As a kid, that scene where in  the poor guy runs in the rain to take a dump despite there being a T-Rex and the lines: "If you got to go, you got to go" ~and eventually getting eaten by the T-Rex as he is taking a dump will always stick in my head. 

Fast forward to me becoming an adult and three more Jurassic movies and we now have Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

Following the events of Jurassic World, the dinosaurs that have been left alone on the island are now in danger as a volcano on the verge of erupting threatens their existence. (Why build an amusement park on an island that has a volcano on it? Even if it was dormant before it still puts your investment at risk right?) Just something that I thought about, don't mind me. 

Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) now a dinosaur-rights activist and founder of the Dinosaur Protection Group (she's dealing with a lot of guilt) is working on the clock to save the dinosaurs before they are wiped off from the face of the Earth (again). She gets her chance when she is contacted by Benjamin Lockwood, the former partner of John Hammond as they work together to bring the endangered dinosaurs to a sanctuary where they will be safe. Claire enlists the help of Velociraptor whisperer Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) ~ (lots of welcome sexual tension and complicated history there as well) to come along and rescue Blue, the brave and loyal raptor from the previous film. 

With new comers, tattooed badass paleoveterinarian (its a thing) Daniella Pineda as Dr. Zia Rodriguez and the hilarious Justice Smith as systems analyst and ultimate T-Rex fan Franklin Webb the team is complete and as they set out to rescue the dinosaurs, you might guess where the rest of the story goes: get in, rescue mission while a volcano explodes and get out but that's where director JA Bayona gets you as events quickly escalate and our dino lovers find themselves needing some rescuing themselves. 

You know how it is, human greed and the need to play God (all over again) drive the plot of "Fallen Kingdom" - you may be okay with where the story is headed or you may hate it  but you cannot deny those amazing and thrilling sequences from director JA Bayona, there are no crass jump scares here as he plays on the scenes with a tasteful horror suspense style that will surely leave an impression on a new generation of kids. 

You have dinosaurs trying to eat humans, dinosaurs fighting each other (check, check) but you also have dinos with lots of personality who endears themselves to the audience, yes, we have the loyal Blue but it is the hard headed Stiggy the Stygimoloch who really steals the show! (Stiggy plushie please!) So, yes, your emotions get played on too and I already shed a tear or two in an earlier scene!  

We must also commend the performance of newcomer Isabella Sermon, who plays Maisie Lockwood, the granddaughter of Benjamin Lockwood and possibly the future of the Jurassic Park franchise (queue John Williams score).  

A hard headed Stiggy the Stygimoloch and director JA Bayona are the real heroes of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. 

Despite being movie #5 in the franchise, "Fallen Kingdom" offers new and exciting sequences which will bring you to the edge of your seat. The story may not be for everyone but I did enjoy the surprise twists which had me let out an audible gasp. Director JA Bayona's horror expertise brings up the fear level and kids will definitely have something to think about as they hide under the covers tonight. The subtle horror elements were a treat; I particularly liked the use of light, shadow and even electricty to intensify scenes and bring out emotions in others. Yes, there was a tear in that smoke and lava fading away sequence. 

Jurassic World: "Fallen Kingdom" brings what we loved about the past Jurassic films-like running from dinosaurs in a shut down park and ups the ante by including...say an erupting volcano in the mix and its pretty much consistent throughout. Just so you know what you're in for. (7/10). 

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