By Danny F. Santos (doddleNEWS)
I was a fan of Jurassic World. Sure, it cribbed a lot from the original Jurassic Park but it delivered some great set pieces, captured some of the original magic, provided entertaining performances from its leads, and revitalized the Jurassic Park franchise which fizzled out with Jurassic Park III. So it blows my mind that Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom ended up as bad as it did.
With a franchise about dinosaurs running amuck and eating people, you do expect some level of B-movie DNA in it. But Fallen Kingdom removes any traces of an A-level film and goes full tilt into B-movie territory. Without the fun. Even the acting fell flat and I’ve never seen Chris Pratt so… uncharismatic. If anything impressed me about this movie it’s that it somehow made Pratt not very funny at all.
The other characters, including Bryce Dallas Howard‘s Clare, are either dumb as required by plot or really idiotic moustache twirling bad guys. You wonder how anyone in this film made it past childhood without jamming a fork into an electrical outlet. The only one with any sense is a returning Jeff Goldblum who is sadly not given much to do than be the only character talking any sense.
The plot is supposed to deal with some heavy questions about genetic engineering but dispenses with those questions quickly. Even as it continues to ask them. The film even introduces a dark dilemma based on what we should and shouldn’t do with genetic engineering and then drops it immediately after.
So the cardinal sin that this movie makes is that it’s just. So. Stupid. So stupid.
The dinosaurs behave in whatever way the plot requires them to behave and they show up or disappear as needed. Need one apex predator to attack another while a volcano is exploding for no reason? No problem! Need to sell some of those dinosaurs and have a ton of money? Why not do it in your own basement without anyone else in the house knowing what you’re doing.
The location this film takes place makes no sense and the reason given for the auction of the dinosaurs is equally non-sensical. It’s basically money to fund a project but considering the expense it seemed to cost to capture the dinosaurs in the first place, it really wasn’t needed. Just finance your idiotic idea yourself so you can sell it to… actually, that point is also not clear.
There are some well done aspects of the film. J.A. Bayona has created some exceptional visuals for the film including a heartbreaking shot of a brachiosaurus that is left behind on the dying island which may just be the saddest image in the entire franchise. The horror visuals really work and It’s interesting how they turned a Jurassic Park movie into what is basically a haunted house story. But however you slice it, the reason it’s set in a house—and I hate to say this again—is just so stupid.
Jurassic World was supposed to kick off a new trilogy. But it seems that just like The Lost World: Jurassic Park was a pale imitation of its predecessor, so too is Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom when compared with Jurassic World—which itself is just a well done imitation of the original. Considering how Jurassic Park III turned out, it does not bode well for the third Jurassic World movie.
2 stars out of 5