Jurassic World fails to deliver

Twenty years after Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park and its two forgettable sequels, you may have hoped for a few new ideas and at least some above average special effects from Jurassic World in 2015. Instead, Jurassic World just regurgitates the original films’ set-ups and scenes, with run of the mill special effects, some amazingly lame dialogue, along with endless and disruptive product placement.  A giant auditorium is called the “Samsung Innovation Centre,” for example, and one of the younger brothers wears Beats headphones religiously. He always happens to be tilting his head so that the logo is clearly on display. The director may as well have added continuously scrolling text to the bottom of the screen and be done with it. One of the more ridiculous moments had Chris Pratt holding a bottle of Coke for the camera, drinking it carefully to achieve a nice, lingering, framed shot. When being chased by dinosaurs, you can always do with some extra sugar.

Jurassic World trailer
Chris Pratt stares at a dinosaur tooth as Bryce Dallas Howard looks on

The two leads, Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) and Owen (Chris Pratt), are competent enough, but there are no real surprises here and no real tension (an incredible achievement considering we’re talking about dinosaurs running amok).

On a dinosaur preserve on an island off Costa Rica, Claire’s two nephews come to visit a well-established dinosaur theme park. Don’t ask me why they come on their own. Something to do with their parents deteriorating relationship? I have no idea. Park staff (diabolical scientists) have been experimenting with mixing dinosaur genes. Apparently, they need bigger and better attractions – basically dinosaurs with more teeth. You may be surprised to hear that one of the dinosaurs they create breaks free. I wasn’t. Even if you haven’t watched the film, you know the rest.

My favorite bit of the film was a very brief shot of park visitors canoeing down a river. On the river’s banks, enormous dinosaurs stride by. The park’s insurance premiums must be astronomical. I don’t think they were even wearing life jackets. If the dinosaurs had been covered in company logos, it wouldn’t have surprised me.