Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Review

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

Jurassic Park!

In the world according to Alan Partridge, this means something that is very good.

Hell, in most people’s world the first Steven Spielberg helmed dinosaur epic is pretty great.

But is Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom another Jurassic Park, or is it a load of Jurassic Park 3?

We pick up three years after Jurassic World left us with another island full of synthetic dinosaurs roaming freely on some deserted island paradise.

Their mobile providers are gonna make a killing.

With a volcano on dino island due to go off any day, the question du jour is whether humans should protect these man made dinosaurs from another extinction event or save them from going the way of the dodo.

Humankind being anything but kind, we decide to let the dinosaurs get barbecued. 

Which is fair enough, I mean it’s real tricky for billions of humans to maintain their god delusion in the face of a 30-foot-tall tyrannosaurus rex.

Though I would very much like to see them try.

Fortunately, there’s a dinosaur mad billionaire friend of Richard Attenborough who wants to preserve these terrible lizards for the children, which can mean only one thing.

That’s right, saddle up for a suicide mission to dino isle for everyone’s two favourite paleontologists – who are definitely not going to be bumping uglies any time in the not too distant future.

Will our two heroes succeed and save the dinosaurs from extinction, as well as themselves from a life of self-inflicted celibacy? 

Who knows, I mean it’s not like Universal’s future profit margins will have the deciding say on the matter.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is the latest reptilian movie off the cinematic production line, following hot on the heels of the giant success of Jurassic World.

And this time, they’ve thrown Jeff Goldblum into the equation… for all of about two minutes.

Seriously, there are extras with more screen time than the Jeff – so if you’re hoping to marvel at a few more pearls of wonder from Dr Ian Malcolm, you’re going to be disappointed. 

But at least we’ve still got all those dinosaurs to keep us interested, and this new Jurassic Park starts out pretty promisingly. 

Stupid humans risking their lives in a ridiculous mission to bring some dead dino back to life? 

Check.

Massive, carnivorous dinosaurs queuing up to prove just how stupid said humans are in a spectacular opening sequence?

Double check.

That’s pretty much all you need.

Chris Pratt returns to do his best impersonation of Harrison Ford, as is Bryce Dallas Howard as she reminds us that she might just be the most gorgeous girl next door type in Hollywood right now.

While these two are running around a creaking dino isle that’s just about to erupt, everything moves along at a cracking pace.

Alas, director JA Bayona decides to remove them from said island halfway through, and things start to fall apart very quickly from here.

Predictable action sequences are needlessly recycled from past films, another new dinosaur is created for no good reason, and there’s also a careless genetic engineering angle casually bolted on before Bayona falls into hoary horror clichés to get us past the two-hour mark that is now mandatory for big budget films.

I still don’t get how so many directors since Spielberg just don’t get dinosaurs.

Jurassic-World-alt

You don’t need to create new dinosaurs to make your film exciting – all you need to do is introduce us to some new ones that we haven’t seen before, like the first one did with velociraptors.

I mean, who on earth had ever heard of a velociraptor before Jurassic Park? 

Instead, we have to sit through even more velociraptors doing their usual velociraptor thing – again – before they wheel out 2018’s t-rex to kill something while roaring at nothing in particular.

The most exciting parts of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom unsurprisingly involve dinosaurs that haven’t featured too heavily in previous instalments – like the mosasaur in the opening sequence that, sadly, doesn’t feature again til the closing scenes.

The real shame is that Bayona’s incarnation starts off interestingly enough, before jettisoning this storyline in favour of going through the tired motions of any generic action / horror movie.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is Jurassic Park for almost an hour, before giving up and becoming as bad as anything you tried to forget from Jurassic Park 2 and 3.

Jonathan Campbell

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June 2018
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