Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World is a retooling of the classic first film, telling the same old story, but with a fresh coat of paint. The CGI-heavy dinosaurs are far from stunning, but the film's production rarely wastes a penny, aside from an overly cheesy ending and a half-baked script.
The park has reopened with the release of Colin Trevorrow‘s Jurassic World — the highly-anticipated sequel to the mega-popular Jurassic Park franchise. Jurassic Park III left the series in a bad state, with Trevorrow mostly correcting all of the wrongs with Jurassic World. By doing so he also plays things a little to close to the original film, creating something that’s more of the same, only bigger, louder and definitely dumber.
Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) oversees operations at Jurassic World, which was controversially reopened after the horrible incident that was Jurassic Park. Now, the park is running on high speed with a decade of success under its belt, but ticket sales are declining and the mass public is slowly losing interest in real-life dinosaurs.
Knowing that, the engineers have created a new breed of dinosaur, which is actually a deadly DNA cocktail of multiple species of animals.
Dino expert Owen (Chris Pratt) is brought into the picture to make sure that this new dinosaur can safely be captive and suddenly things go very bad and the past comes creeping up as the park suffers yet again from an outbreak of epic proportions.
Safety Not Guaranteed director Colin Trevorrow steps out of the indie spotlight and up to the studio big leagues with Jurassic World, taking notes from producer and original film (and sequel) director Steven Spielberg. And Trevorrow fares well as a rookie director given a popular franchise and an enormous budget, but he also fails to create something truly unique.
Jurassic World never reaches the heights of the original film, but it does soar effortlessly past the third film as it comes neck-and-neck tied with The Lost World for second best Jurassic Park entry.
One of the biggest problems that Jurassic World faces is finding its own identity and sticking with it. It borrows more than enough from the original film at wholesale and it does so in a slightly smart manner, almost always poking at itself while becoming super self-aware while doing so.
It’s downright making fun of the idea of a giant park created from such a disaster and then it goes one step further and commercializes every single aspect of the film, while again poking at it for a joke or two.
That kind of works at times, but it also falls victim of that same trope by becoming a big and dumb version of the first film, with updated special effects and spectacle, but not so much heart and actual story.
Characters take a back seat while dino-action spans across the screen in a loud manner, with dinosaurs rampaging all over the park, killing many security guards in the process.
This makes Jurassic World fun and exciting briefly, even scary at moments, but when the dust settles the film simply becomes big budget noise lost in the shuffle of trying to become something more.
Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard lead a somewhat stacked cast, but nothing is balanced in terms of establishing a main character and a team of supporters. Dallas Howard gives the film the most in terms of an actual character ark, while Pratt simply plays the guy that’s always right and never in any real danger.
The rest of the cast fills the voids of go-to “bad guy” (Vincent D’Onofrio), even though the actions portrayed aren’t all that unreasonable and then of course the damsels in distress, which tries and tries to give the film an emotional connection, but fails and wastes the talent on hand (Ty Simpkins & Nick Robinson).
This all comes back to the film’s half-baked script and competent, but far from experienced direction. Trevorrow definitely nails the film down visually and even occasionally captures some old sparks that haven’t seen light since Steven Spielberg‘s first film, but he never quite manages to bring it all together.
Jurassic World feels like a straight-forward retelling of the first film, only with bits and pieces altered and updated for a modern audience. Even then — the script features a few ideas that are downright idiotic and it feels as if Trevorrow does his best to make a bad situation slightly better.
The ending is awful and beyond cheesy, making the film’s lasting effect that much more dull.
Fans of the original don’t need me to tell them to see/skip this film, so I won’t even bother, but I can suggest lowering the expectations a little and simply going in expecting something big, loud and dumb. It’s still fun and moves fast enough to keep the mind occupied, but there’s not much more to be found if you start peeling back the film’s paper-thin layers.