Jurassic World Dominion
PG-13 ‧ Adventure/Sci-fi ‧ 2h 26m
Screenplay by Emily Carmichael and Colin Trevorrow
Story by Derek Connolly
Directed by Colin Trevorrow
Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Sam Neill, DeWanda Wise, Mamoudou Athie, BD Wong, Omar Sy
(In their own words) Four years after the destruction of Isla Nublar, dinosaurs now live–and hunt–alongside humans all over the world. This fragile balance will reshape the future and determine, once and for all, whether human beings are to remain the apex predators on a planet they now share with history’s most fearsome creatures in a new Era.
If this movie was a dinosaur, it would be a Funasaurus Rex.
This is the sixth film in the Jurassic park/world franchise. The original was a masterpiece, in part because it was the first time we saw dinosaurs on screen at that quality of animatronics with touches of CGI, and it was the first time exploring this universe. Not to mention it being directed by Steven Spielberg who is a master storyteller. At this point in the franchise, there are just naturally going to be less mystery and less surprises about this universe. One of the biggest mistakes sequels make is trying to recapture the former glory by repeating the same tricks, by following the exact same formula. Also, with CGI becoming so much cheaper and studios wanting to utilize it, I think it hurts franchises like this. The limitations of CGI actually help in creating mystery and with story telling. I am of the strong opinion that limitations are great for storytelling.
Where this film exceeds is in its special effects and the storytelling.
The special effects; at times it’s hard to tell which is a practical animatronic dinosaur and when it’s CGI, the biggest give away is when it does “too much.” But also, the CGI itself is pretty incredible. There are times I had to tell myself “dinosaurs aren’t real, this is just a story, breath, Silas. In through the nose, out through your mouth.”
Storytelling; I liked that it managed to tell a somewhat new story within this established universe. Are they stories I’ve never seen? Not really, but I loved the way it was told and that they put them in this world. The story is split in the first two-thirds between two narratives – one following the original Jurassic Park stars and the second by the Jurassic World stars, until they inevitably meet up. This isn’t a spoiler because you know this is something that has to happen.
Let me say this though, if you are coming to a film about dinosaurs walking modern day earth as a result of cloning technology and the complete breakdown of the amusement park they were built for, you need to be watching this film with a very open mind. You need to be watching this for the fun of it, for the wild entertainment, to enjoy it like an amusement park ride. This is not meant to be Shakespeare, we know we are not watching a serious academy award contender. This is not going to be a Million Dollar Baby with dinosaurs.
Do I wanna see crap? No. Do I expect crap? No. Not at these ticket prices. What I want is to be swept away into a fun story that doesn’t make me think too much, and plays within its own defined laws of physics, science, and stretched believability. I think Jurassic World Dominion does that.
Two people behind me thought it was hard to follow the story because it jumped around so much. I think maybe they are idiots and I guess they don’t like subplots. It followed the story telling technique of something like Empire Strikes Back, which while I love it, isn’t exactly rocket science.
Three BEST things about the film
- Special effects. The animation is really incredible. The use of “practical dinosaurs was great. Hard to distinguish which were CGI and which were animatronic.
- They actually found an original story to tell within this Jurassic Park world setting. This wasn’t just a rehash of old plots, it had definite nods to the past, but those were mostly pretty subtle.
- Pacing and surprises. The film went by really fast. There are definitely a fair number of twists and turns in the film to keep suspense up throughout the film.
The three WORST things about the Film
- There’s a lot of movies to watch before this to get the full emotional depth the film would provide.
- There’s only so many ways to get eaten by dinosaurs, so there are limits to what the film can do with action scenes.
- Even if you suspend your belief for the dinosaurs, you have to really not have your thinking cap on as far as physics and laws of science would work. Don’t think too hard for this film.
There are actually many lessons from this film.
1. Biotech companies that alter food are nearly always questionable
2. Our desire to mess with natural law will lead to our deaths.
3. Humans tend to fail to learn from their mistakes when there’s money to be made.
THE FINAL WORD
This movie is a thrill ride for your soul, not for your brain. Grab some popcorn but not a big drink because the runtime is so long.
My 3L system gives me the choice to Love It, Like It, or Lose It.
I give Jurassic World Dominion a Love it, because it is something I definitely want to see again.
ABOUT SILAS LINDENSTEIN
When he’s not reviewing films or interviewing people for the Black & A Half podcast, Silas Lindenstein can be found in the greater metro Seattle, WA working as a real estate agent helping people buy and sell homes, or performing stand up comedy to fellow nerds. He has a wife and three children and desperately wants to learn to make the perfect homemade pizza.