Friday, June 17, 2016

Film Review: Jurassic World (2015)

Jurassic World (Review)
United States/2015
Format Viewed For Review: HBO Now
Netflix Streaming: No
Amazon Prime: No

"...a fun blockbuster..."

22 years after the events of Jurassic Park, Jurassic World has become a successful resort with dozens of attractions. However, some attractions are more dangerous than others, including a set of hybrid dinosaurs...

Jurassic World is a fairly simple film – it's a blockbuster, after all. Siblings Zach (Nick Robinson) and Gray (Ty Simpkins) are sent to Jurassic World to spend time with their aunt Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard), the park's uptight Operations Manager. Unfortunately, Claire can't stop working to spend time with her nephews, so she sends them out with her assistance while she handles her business. At the top of her agenda: allow Owen (Chris Pratt), a Navy veteran and Velociraptor trainer, to evaluate the paddock of a new hybrid dinosaur, Indominous Rex. Of course, everything goes wrong, which sends the park into a tailspin. From here, you have your basics: exciting chase scenes, close-calls, explosions, capture attempts, and even a pinch of romance. The ending was a little disappointing.

Jurassic World is a great blockbuster. Actually, it follows the summer blockbuster blueprint to the tee. You have plenty of thrills, lighthearted humor, and some romance between the leads. And, it all works. There are some edge-of-your-seat chase and action scenes here. Some of the jokes fall flat, but I chuckled a few times. The romance... Well, I thought it was underdeveloped. It's entertaining, though. At the same time, it's a bit contrived and unbelieveable, don't you think? I mean, there are so many scenes where I said: "Yeah, right," or, "Why are they doing that when they could do this?" And, minor spoiler, you expect me to believe they're just going to let the management, who's personally responsible for hundreds of deaths, walk out of this situation and live happily ever after? It often feels like it was tossed together on a whim, which is disappointing.

The cast is good, though. Chris Pratt plays a character everyone seems to adore: Chris Pratt. Pratt is good, though. He's more than serviceable and, of course, he's charismatic. Bryce Dallas Howard plays the uptight but humorous (sometimes) role well. The supporting cast is good, too. This is a big-budget blockbuster, so you can expect great cinematography and music. The special effects are great, too. Jurassic World is directed by Colin Trevorrow and too many writers to list. You really want me to, don't you? Okay. Writing credits go to Trevorrow, Rick Jaffa, Amanda Silver, and Derek Connolly. The direction is fine. Considering the basics of the writing (the characters are cutouts from other films), I'm surprised this film had four writers.

Overall, Jurassic World is an entertaining film. It's a fun blockbuster with plenty of action and humor. The cast is great, too. It does often feel like just another blockbuster, though. And, I refrained from mentioning it throughout this review, this film failed to capture that same sense of wonder I had when I first watched the original Jurassic Park. Perhaps it was the blockbuster writing or the lack of proper setup, but this film did not fascinate like the original. Hey, at least it's better than one of the sequels. (I haven't watched it in a long time, but I vaguely remember enjoying Jurassic Park 3 quite a bit.)

Score: 6/10
Parental Guide: Violence and blood.

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