Jurassic World

star2star2star2

Big effects?           GreenCheck

Huge action?        GreenCheck

Silly jokes?              GreenCheck

Stupid humans?    GreenCheckGreenCheckGreenCheck

Really, do you need to know more?

I realize that I’m probably one of the few people in the world not to have seen this movie already. I avoided it because I was pretty sure it would be exactly what I got: A rehash of the original.

I will grant the fact that the script was better than the original Jurassic Park, which, while a fun ride, abounded with stupidity. But this sequel still had twirling mustachios and idiotic choices, especially since they fully acknowledge the issues of the past. I get that corporations and people can be greedy; but that foolish and greedy? Similarly, the approach to the military was insulting and overly flat in its rendition.

Chris Pratt (Guardians of the Galaxy) has the only believable character in the whole mess, outside of the dinosaurs themselves–but that was a problem with the original too. He really manages to ride a good line in the film.  Bryce Dallas Howard (The Help) is simply absurd in look, though her super-human ability to run around a rain forest in spike heals should be noted (after you stop choking your laughter down). Vincent D’Onofrio (The Judge) couldn’t be more evil if he had on a black hat. B.D. Wong (Focus), who is usually quite good, well, I’m glad he got a good payday out of this, because it wasn’t worth adding to his cv. Same for Irrfan Khan (The Lunchbox). At least Jake Johnson (Safety Not Guaranteed) almost got to act normal-ish rather than a total goof, but it isn’t a memorable performance.

The two kids serve their purpose, but neither is more than a puppet for the audience to latch onto. Ty Simpkins (Iron Man 3) is initially a bit ADD, a bit Asperger’s, but that seems to fade and be forgotten. As his older brother, Nick Robinson (Kings of Summer) provides the standard, dour teenager full of angst and self-righteousness. Neither is quite fully believable given the horror they’re facing. And the forced bonding and caring moments would make E.T. proud.

Director Trevorrow (Safety Not Guaranteed) channeled his inner-Spielberg perfectly for this sequel to the franchise and, in the process, has written his own ticket for years to come. Making over a billion for the studio will do that for a director. However, the writing teams (including Trevorrow) worry me; far too many short-cuts and bland characterizations in their work. These are the folks that are going to go on to write the sequel for this and the Avatar series. Have to admit, that isn’t making me want to save my hard-earned coin to run to the theater to see the results. Here’s hoping they take their new found star power to write well rather than fast and to the mean the next time.

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