Jurassic Park Trilogy- Films

Jurassic Park Trilogy

I decided to revisit these because the franchise is still alive and the newest one will be out on Blu-ray on Tuesday.

Jurassic Park (1993)

For more information follow this link.

On an island off the coast of Costa Rica, John Hammond has built a park with some very unusual attractions and a whole lot of complications.  The story is fairly straight forward, John uses the cloning technology from InGen Bio-engineering and fossilized dinosaur DNA to breed dinosaurs, creating a theme park on an Isla Nebular.  Before the park opens, he has an archaeologist and paleontologist, a lawyer representing his investors, another scientist, and his grandchildren visit the park for a test run.  One of John’s employees, trying to make extra money on the side, causes a catastrophic failure in the security system, allowing the dinosaurs to run amok.

A great cast with scene stealing performances by Lord Richard Attenborough is simply wonderful in this!  Fantastically well cast as the overly optimistic, overly ambitious, and overly naive John Hammond; and Jeff Goldblum as Ian Malcolm, the overly overtly sexy chaos theorist.

As this is the first film of the series, the story is very clear that the technology and concept of the island park is new and needs a lot of work, so even the “dated” aspects work for the franchise as a whole.   Although the sciences in this film are dated, and there are some serious eye-roll moments, the extraordinary animatronics and CGI more than make up for it.  Over-all, 25 years later, this movie is still worth watching.

This one gets 4 fru-fru drinks.

 

 

 

The Lost World: Jurassic Park 2 (1997)

For more information follow this link.

Ian Malcom’s reluctant adventure with the dinosaurs continues on Isla Sorna, the Park Site B, an island where Hammond’s dinosaurs were allowed to roam free and create their own ecosystem.   A research team has been sent by Hammond to photograph and learn about the dinosaurs in the habitat they’ve created, but InGen, a bio-engineering company, arrives hunting and collecting the dinos to bring them to a zoo in San Diego, an amphitheater of Hammond’s design which he had abandoned for the island park featured in the first film.

The concept of the story is really good.  They maintained the spectacular effects, with animatronics, maybe relying a little too heavily on the CGI than they had on the first.  However the script, specifically the dialogue is not so much with the good, regardless of the terrific cast.   Jeff Goldblum’s Ian Malcolm was a poor choice for a leading character.  His negative, paranoid yet swaggering, “rock star,” declarative personality doesn’t make him a believable action hero, mostly because the character doesn’t seem to have evolved much, if at all, from the first movie, and nor does he appear to develop during this one.  Where in the first film, Malcolm was hot, in this he is simply lukewarm.  Vince Vaughn’s Nick Van Owen made a much more convincing hero, and could easily have been re-written to be the leading man.  The addition of Malcolm’s daughter, who stows away, was an unfortunate choice to keep the franchise “family friendly” and add the “child peril” tension.   Julienne Moore’s Sarah Harding starts out as a strong, passionate, professionally driven, independent character who very quickly is reduced to simply defer to all that Ian Malcolm commands, after a token argument.    And Pete Postlewhaite, as Roland Tembo, steals every scene he is in with his unparalleled charisma and talent.

I’m sure you have noticed, dear reader, that I was minimally impressed by this movie.  It has all the thrills and tension that made the first so good, but spending more time and effort on the human element of the film would have made it so much better, and as I have frequently said, being able to connect in some way with the characters is one of my highest priorities in a movie.

I gave this one 2 fru fru drinks.

 

 

 

Jurassic Park 3 (2001)

For more information follow this link.

Dr. Alan Grant is tricked to go to Isla Sorna on what he is told is a fly-over tour, but is actually a mission to rescue the child of a couple who was lost while on vacation.

While this is better written, by far, than The Lost World, it has no passion.  This, too, is a rescue story, however, it seems that people have decided to essentially quarantine Isla Sorna from the outside world, ineffectively.  The action, thrilling, and more violent scenes are softened significantly.  Again, it is filled with a talented cast, but this is a safe family movie.  By which I mean, no real risks were taken, everything is nicely predictable from the revisiting of Dr. Grant and Ellie, to the feel-good ending, including the fact that the audience enjoys it for the “popcorn flick” it is, and it made money.  It also means that it’s rather unmemorable.  I’d forgotten that I’d seen it until I started watching it, and then realized why.

I gave this 2 1/2 “virgin” fru-fru drinks.
1/2

 

 

 

The franchise is definitely worth watching and revisiting periodically.  I love the fact that the sequels are separated by several years and they don’t try to pick up where each had left off.  It makes re-watching the movies, and accepting the dated parts, more palatable.  Even though the character set up is formulaic, specifically the consistent themes of romance and child peril, it is a story we grew with, and is worth continuing to grow if they keep building in this world.

The whole franchise gets 3 1/2 drinks for working, for not trying to pretend not to be dated, and for building a wonderful exciting new world which as been the fantasy of kids for generations!
1/2

 

 

 

Zombieland (2009) – Film

“Zombieland”

Follow this link for more information.

31 Days of Horror Challenge: Movie #28

Two months after the zombie apocalypse has occurred, a shy college student and other survivors come together travelling across the country, chasing rumors of a zombie-free Pacific Playland Amusement Park.   Continue reading

Deadman Apocalypse (2016) – Film

“Deadman Apocalypse”

For more information follow this link.

31 Days of Horror Challenge: Movie #15

In a dystopian future, Jack Deadman is part of a military team sent to find a stolen water supply in order to save humanity, in underground passages, called Labyrinthia.  The mission fails when the inhabitants of Labyrinthia attack the team.  10 years later, Jack, now known only in legend, as The Jackal, haunted by his failure, and hiding in the tunnels,  has never found a way out, discovers that one of his team, Alba, is still alive and imprisoned.   With renewed purpose, he rallies to fight the Emperor Ramses, and free Alba. Continue reading

The Pirate Movie (1982) – Film

“The Pirate Movie”

For more information follow this link.

Raised by pirates, Fredric is now 21 and though he appreciates all his pirate family as taught him, he yearns for a different life.  After leaving the pirates, Fredric finds himself on an island where he meets the girl of his dreams, Mabel, the youngest daughter of the Major General, whose treasure, Fredric’s pirate friends had stolen years ago.  To keep their love, Fredric and Mabel must fight tradition, family customs, the local constabulary and the Pirates.   Continue reading

Jake Speed (1986) – Film

“Jake Speed”

For more information follow this link.

When Margaret Winston’s sister is kidnapped, Grandpa knows just who to contact to rescue her.   Unfortunately, Jake Speed is a fictional character from a pulp novel series.  Or so everyone believes. Uncertain of his claims, but unwilling to give up hope, Margaret is swept away by the real life Jake Speed in the adventure of a lifetime, she travels to Africa to save her sister from slavery. Continue reading

The Chronicles of Riddick (Series) – Film

Reviewing the complete franchise,  hope you enjoy it.

“Pitch Black” (2000)

For more information follow this link.

A transport ship, carrying 40 passengers and a prisoner, is forced to crash land on an unknown planet.  Forced to deal with the aftermath of the crash and the escaped prisoner, the survivors discover that there is something far worse once the suns set.  Continue reading

Snow White & the Huntsman (2012) – Film

“Snow White & the Huntsman”

Follow this link for more information.

A twist on the classic fairy tale.  The evil queen murders Snow White’s father, the king, and imprisons Snow.  Years later, the evil queen discovers that Snow White will either destroy her or give her immortality.  When Snow escapes her prison, the evil queen sends a Huntsman after her, however the Huntsman decides to protect her.  Continue reading