Did the Jurassic franchise really need a comeback? Jurassic Park was groundbreaking at that time 'cause it happened during the dawn of stunning computer imagery—dinosaurs were brought to life on screen! Now that CGI is no longer a trailblazer, what did this new series have to offer?
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From the last installment, things went down south—as expected or else there was no movie—but suddenly, the island where this new batch of dinosaurs inhabitated, is about to explode as its volcano is bound to erupt and engulf the whole territory. First, why even situate the park there if it was going to be that unstable? At an age where they can genetically replicate dinosaurs, they can’t even predict these tectonic disasters. Off the bat, I’m already not buying the film’s premise. -5
Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) conveniently become part of an expedition to that island which is just about to extinguish itself, to save some of the dinosaurs from extinction, yet again, but now with a new set of youngsters. Still not buying it. -4
But, all the excitement that one can expect from a creature feature such as this one is abundant enough for you to enjoy the film for what it was really designed for, which is to scare you out of your pants using these fascinating creatures from that Jurassic era. Heart-stopping, adrenaline-charged moments are aplenty for the audience to almost breeze through its more than two hours total running time. +3
Bryce and Chris are still delightful to watch making the film bearable if not just palatable. They are able to carry the film with their screen presence and charisma, making you look past the loopholes of the film. +2
A revelation in the film is Isabella Sermon who plays Maisie, the ‘granddaughter’ of the dying Benjamin Lockwood (James Cromwell) who provides the innocent yet spunky point of view and emotional anchor for the film’s kid audience. Adorably fragile yet courageous, her persona also harbors an interesting twist and reveal and the movie, plus she also makes the most integral decision that ensures there will be a part three. You’ll get what I meant when you get to watch it. +3
The villain support characters are quite capable, too, and I think it’s best for me not to divulge as their real characters are slowly revealed throughout the film. Let’s just say they are established enough to be despisable characters that you would bask in the moment when they get what’s due of them. +2
The utilization of the Stygimoloch, a dinosaur who rams his head against things is a great touch in the movie. His introduction brings both thrilling and comedic moments. Wait till people start flying off, making you inappropriately laugh at their fate. The genetically engineered indoraptor with quite a big personality is another good touch. +2
Multiawarded and critically acclaimed director J.A. Bayona handles this installment which makes it worth watching just for the visuals and the setting up of scenes. But there is only so much one can do with such a clunky script. I hope they fix the screenplay for the third part and I hope Bayona still takes it on to turn things around and redeem this franchise. +4
There’s a long sequence with no cuts, which is supposed to be underwater that will make you hold your breath for as long as the characters do. That is quite a feat and definitely visionary, which I can directly attribute to Bayona. +3
If you just wanna leave your brain at the door, forget logic and be terrified at prehistoric creatures jumping, pouncing, and chomping at humans, then Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is the popcorn flick for you. Ten points for at least 10 breathtaking moments in the film is just about worth it anyway so let this serve as my fair warning.
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Photographs courtesy of Universal Studios