Jurassic World (2015)

One of the first shots of this film is of a CGI crow or some other black bird, not a fancy dinosaur bird, not even a rainbow-coloured bird, a standard black crow. This instantly hit me with a huge wave of doubt over this film because if they couldn’t even use a real bird, and instead chose to CG the bird into the shot, that they weren’t going to bother with old school animatronics or even physical props, which has been my fear for this film since I first heard about it.

Thankfully however, there was some use of the old-school animatronics and prosthetics and you could instantly tell when they were being used because most of the CGI in this film was pretty bad whereas when they pulled the prosthetics and animatronics out, it actually looked like a real thing at least.

Sometimes the use of CGI in this film angered me or left me baffled, like with the crow, or even the famous shot in all of the trailers, the dead shark that gets eaten. That CGI shark looks worse than the original animatronic Steven Spielberg used in Jaws, “Bruce”. You can’t tell me that 40 years on from ‘Jaws’ we don’t have the technological know-how to create a life-like shark model? Apparently Universal doesn’t think so and instead threw in a cartoon shark for the scene.

I have no problem with CGI if it is convincing, the original ‘Jurassic Park’ used CGI but it looks far better than ‘Jurassic World’ because Spielberg blended animatronics and prosthetics with CGI to enhance the movements of the models.

The story is actually great and despite one or two plot inconsistencies and some pretty stupid dialogue, the script as a whole worked very well and felt refreshing for the series as a whole without diving off the deep end. The idea of a fully functional Jurassic Park/World is fascinating and I believe that they pulled it off extremely well, my only complaint is that we didn’t get to see or spend enough time with the dinosaurs outside of the raptors and the ‘Abomination’ Rex.

The first time we see the park it pulls out from a train car and shows this lush park with trees and all this vegetation and the original theme starts playing, but there are no dinosaurs in the shot, I found that quite funny and a pretty apt metaphor for the film.

The addition of the cross-bred super dinosaur is stupid and unnecessary, I also didn’t enjoy the pussification of the raptors, which have remained my favourite dinosaur since seeing the original ‘Jurassic Park’ in 1995 or 1996. Raptors, in these films at least, should never be controlled by a human, Raptors should be vicious, intelligent, killing machines.

The directing is passable with no flair, save for a few fantastic scenes that took me back to the days of the original. Trevorrow was hired to make a competent Jurassic Park film and he did exactly that, paint-by-numbers for the most part but by no means did he do a bad job.

The performances were good, none really stand out, though the kids were less annoying than they normally are in the Jurassic Park films, so that’s a big plus for this film. The thing about the performances is that no one really stands out, Bryce Dallas Howard was probably the best performance but even she had some wooden moments, mostly due to the script. However Vincent D’Onofrio as the token “Bad guy” was scene-chewingly fantastic and was always fun to watch him in the few scenes he had.

Overall the film could have been a lot worse than it was as this film was fun, exciting and sometimes filled with tense moments, all of which add up to a great Jurassic Park film and an even better Hollywood blockbuster. There are a few let downs, the shitty CGI, some wooden dialogue, stupid crossbred dinosaur, pussy Raptors and a few weaknesses in the story but overall it is an enjoyable time.

7/10

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