Jurassic Park III (2001)

Jurassic Park lost it. First one: good, classic. Second one: exciting, good. Third one: uh oh. Steven Spielberg has gone and oh you can tell. I was a bit sceptical because of this, and I was proven right, it’s extremely difficult to create a sequel with a different director. Especially when the first is such a classic!

Jurassic Park 3

Things got a little bit silly, all a bit stupid. It was a lot of things not making sense, and the thriller element disappeared. Dr Alan Grant (Sam Neill) returned with his obsession of the raptors, something we know quite well, although things didn’t quite make sense. We’ve been told of these raptors of what they would do, the realism (if you can say that with the falsity of dinosaurs and humans living as one) was unbelievable. We return to Isla Sorna, a restricted area, where Alan Grant has been duped in going there without his knowledge. All because a young boy, a son, has been lost on the island, an island where dinosaurs roam free. Obviously the parents are hysterical and worried, understandably as they’re son is in danger.

Explanation of dinosaurs was given in the first two films, there was recognition of who they were, what they were. Film one explained Jurassic Park, film two explained site B, film three explained nothing, although Isla Sorna was site B, there still needed to be some sort of scientific element especially when they were adding in new dinosaurs. There were ridiculous dinosaurs popping out of nowhere, with no understanding of what they were, it all became a little random and stupid.

Jurassic Park 3.

In place of thrilling moments and actual concern for characters, was replaced by convenient deaths, a lot of soppy talking and bad graphics that couldn’t quite be overlooked. It became more of a drama. I have to admit, there was one scene that was more thrilling and exciting, but then the unreality of it all just seemed to overcloud the could-be thrilling moments. ‘Jurassic Park III’ was just a bit all over the place, with a lot of talking.

Advertisements

Jurassic Park: The Lost World (1997)

For some reason, I always had in my head that the other two Jurassic Park films after the classic first were rubbish. I don’t exactly know why since I hadn’t seen them. Although after watching this second Jurassic Park, I realise how wrong I was! It was a great film! Thrilling, straight in with the action adventure and exciting. I really enjoyed it! So if you had the same mindset as me and expected this sequel as a bit of a let-down, I will explain why I now disagree. To be begin with, you do need to watch the first ‘Jurassic Park’ as it explains the main protagonist Dr Ian Malcolm and why he is so negative about the whole situation.

Jurassic Park 2 (2)

I actually thought this one was more thrilling that the first. It’s straight into the plot, throws you in immediately into this new island, Isla Sorna this time, site B, the site where the dinosaurs were bred. This island holds dinosaurs who are not bred into captivity, but in their own natural habitats. John Hammond’s (Richard Attenborough) plan is to send an exhibition to this island, to observe how these extinct creatures are reacting to a new world. Dr Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) returns are he begrudgingly goes to the island, only when he’s told his girlfriend, Sarah (Julianne Moore), has already gone. Malcolm is haunted by his horrible memories of Isla Nublar, he is devastated at the cover up from four years before and is still trembling at the sight of dinosaurs, but again he goes to where they are situated, this time with no fences, no protection, just a jungle and many many dinosaurs. With them is the tech and weapons guy, Eddie (Richard Schiff) and finally a great character in Nick Van Owen (Vince Vaughn). The actors are of course great, with names such as these! Dr Ian Malcolm again was a great return of a character, as we got to know even more about him. I was surprised that it was Julianne Moore, she looks so different now! Vince Vaughn was fab, to be honest, usually I’m not the biggest fan of his characters, but he was probably my favourite in this one.

Jurassic Park 2 (3)

We’re on the island pretty quick and as the others are amazed by the dinosaurs, Malcolm carries a ‘been there done that’ attitude. Soon, unexpected guests arrive on the island, hunting down the dinosaurs which takes a twist on how you see them, just as vulnerable animals. This is the introduction of InGen and we use discover what they are plotting. However, things take a turn of events when they take a T-Rex baby, something the mother and father T-Rex’s are not so forgiving about. The film then becomes very dramatic, however has a brilliant ability to build tension extremely well.

Jurassic Park 2 (1)

Again, the graphics weren’t amazing, this was 1997. So not up to the standards of ‘Jurassic World’ clearly. However, I did think the graphics were better than the first ‘Jurassic Park’. I thoroughly enjoyed this film, I thought it was a good sequel to the classic first. It had action and thrilling moments and a good understandable plot from the first film. A lot actually happens in this film. There was familiarity in characters and new ones to get to know. If you thought this was a crap sequel to a classic first movie, I would beg to differ with Steven Spielberg coming back, why wouldn’t this one be great too?

Jurassic Park (1993)

A Steven Spielberg classic, this one has to be remembered as one of his top films. Obviously, with the likes of ‘Jaws’, ‘E.T’, and ‘Indiana Jones’. Actually, I feel ‘Jurassic Park’ has a few similarities with ‘Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark’, the costume and archaeological exploring have links throughout both films. Not that there is anything wrong with that!

I reckon most will know the famous plot line of the horrors of an experimental amusement park gone wrong: a dinosaur escapes. But actually there is a lot more to it in this original ‘Jurassic Park’. The incident happens quite far into the film; there is a build-up of characters and the potential of a phenomenon of a park such as this one opening. The reality of these extinct creatures bought back into human life, the dangers, the wonders, the fascination, the destruction. And whether it would be possible to bring this dinosaur park into human entertainment. Like a zoo, but with historic, extinct animals, ones potentially dangerous, ones beautiful, grand and harmless. All on one island, Isla Nublar. It is all about the spectacle.

Jurassic Park - ill dino

A year before John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) declares Jurassic Park open, he’s advised to get the guidance of those familiar in the particular topic of dinosaurs. Introducing archaeologists, Dr Alan Grant (Sam Neill) and Dr Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern), who spend their creative lives digging up dinosaur bones and learning all about them. And mathematician Dr of the Chaos Theory, Dr Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), who is the most negative about the whole idea of bringing animals which were wiped out back. The characters are all quite loveable, especially the development of Grant and his opinion on hating children to Sattler’s discomfort. Hammond is actually quite a complicated character, determined to make a spectacle of his new amusement park, to give people what they’ve never experienced before, but also conflicted by the agony of the dinosaurs’ dangers. We learn along with these specialists at what has been going on in Jurassic Park, so as they are bewildered by the spectacle, as are we, it’s very clever, how the whole park eventually comes to life.

Jurassic Park - trex

You have to keep your imagination open with a film from the 1990s. The graphics are never going to be what they are now, especially nowhere near the amazing graphics of ‘Jurassic World’. So the dinosaurs are not the most amazing looking, but that was always going to happen with technology not at the stages it is now. So please do keep that in mind. However, with what they’ve got, I think they have done it quite well. There are definite moments of not bad graphics and pretty bad, so just keep your imagination open to that. Another thing, I can’t say that tension is built up massively in this film, although there were definite moments where I was thinking ‘anyone could die, I’m not even sure who will survive’ etc etc. Although, tension wasn’t bombarded all the way through the film, ‘Jurassic Park’ is broken down into a lot of talking and understanding of this new park so it’s not as a thrilling film. Of course this isn’t a bad thing, just something I noticed rather different to ‘Jurassic World’. However, saying this, it makes sense to have these break ups in the original as technology wasn’t as good, so still now it doesn’t take too much away from the film.

Jurassic Park - Grant and kids

All in all, I do believe this to be one of the classic films of the 1990s and definitely one of Steven Spielberg’s classics. It is a long film, but it is a well done film. You have to watch the first dinosaur escape before the others right? They all have some connotations to each other, so why not start from the beginning!

Lucy (2014)

A film moving away from Hollywood, directed by the French director Luc Besson, this film stars two well-known loved American actors, Scarlett Johansson and Morgan Freeman. But also stars a collection of other actors to get to know. ‘Lucy’ tells the story of a young girl kidnapped by the vicious, brutal Mr Jang (Min-sik Choi). As Lucy (Scarlett Johansson) is petrified, we struggle along with her at what is happening, when she wakes she discovers she’s been operated on with a pack of a new drug planted in her tummy. Attacked again, the pack breaks inside her and the drug enters her bloodstream. A drug which allows her to use the whole 100% capability of her brain, giving her superhuman mind powers, including telekinesis. So, yes, it does escalate quickly, but somehow this surreal sci-fi plot works, it seems to make sense. This is all due to the science explained behind it all by Morgan Freeman’s character, Professor Norman.

Lucy 3

This was a nice change from stereotypical Hollywood films. There were a variety of edits and camera angels which presented itself as different. Most predominantly, this was the use of jump cuts, the film did have many jumps to symbolism, especially at the beginning. Or jumps from Scarlett Johansson’s character in the thriller of her kidnapping to Morgan Freeman’s scientific explanation in a lecture hall. There are even flashes of percentages her brain is reaching to when she discovers new powers. This jumpy feel of the film does actually work, especially with her snap character change when the drugs start to affect her as that seems a jump from two different characters. ‘Lucy’ is also quite a quiet film, in regards to background music, there are some silent moments. The only thing with editing is that there are a few bad green screens, but maybe I can just notice them as I’ve studied film, it doesn’t ruin the film however!

Lucy 2

‘Lucy’ is extremely fast pace. There seems to be no character building as you’re thrown straight into the plot, however you are still able to build character recognition and favouritism with little background. Scarlett Johansson is obviously brilliant, and she plays the character extremely well. ‘Lucy’ has thrilling moments, a lot of action and is full of sci-fi. Lucy becomes a character that feels no emotion and has one goal, her own safety. There are many gun fighting scenes, and even a car race scene. Her new powers become interesting to find out what else she can do, as they reach high potentials, superhuman.

Lucy 1

There are no limits and things do get very surreal, although it becomes bewildering and spectacular. When it comes down to it, it is a very good film, interesting, I was hooked. Although it’s probably a film I’d watch once as once it’s watched it’s done really. But nevertheless, I didn’t regret watching it, in fact I enjoyed it.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018)

This is the second Jurassic World film, and it is a necessity to watch the first, a definite must, so if you haven’t seen the first, my review on the first ‘Jurassic World’ is here. Now, if you have seen the first, it does actually help with this one to watch the Jurassic Park’s, however it isn’t a necessity, it just helps with some character recognition, for example, Hammond in the first ever dinosaur park and Dr Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) actually makes a reappearance. So for some realisations of the plot and characters, the first Jurassic Park will help in this second Jurassic World, although it’s not the most important thing.

Jurassic World 2 - T-Rex

Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard are back as Owen Grady, the raptor whisperer, and Claire Dearing, who dramatically turned from logistics manager to understanding them as animals. Isla Nublar is under attack, by natural disaster. The volcano on the dinosaurs’ home is soon to erupt; in a desperate act, Claire agrees to help take the dinosaurs to a new home. Although, the trailer expresses too much and shows that she is actually betrayed and they are to be moved and sold in auction. This means the film is one of two steps, Isla Nublar and the auction. I wish they hadn’t actually shown this in the trailer as it would have left more mystery in the film and it would have created a twist unexpected as the dinosaurs were not safe once saved from the natural disaster of lava.

Jurassic World 2 - Water Dino

I have to admit the first step to this film was exciting, thrilling and adventurous. Blue is back and Owen is determined to save her. The bond between human and dinosaur only becomes stronger in this one and it is loved, just alike to the first Jurassic World. The exciting, thrilling beginning of this film is reminiscing of the original, except the poor dinosaurs are petrified as well, they are stuck on an island with a volcano taking over, it has tragic, sad tales of animals trapped and fleeing, while humans trying to save them, but when the volcano begins to erupt everything becomes even more pressing and urgent. The second step of the film has a completely different tone, it more echoes the horrifying element of people buying these dinosaurs for weapons of war. This element meant it wasn’t thrilling all the way through unlike the first Jurassic World, which was non-stop until the end. Nevertheless, the film still has it’s thrilling moments, adventurous and comical ones too. Especially with the goat-like dinosaur, adorable and comical.

Jurassic World 2 - Blue

There are also new characters to the films. I loved three of them in particular. Zia (Daniella Pineda), the baddass dinosaur vet, who just wants to save and help any dinosaur. Franklin (Justice Smith), the tech guy, petrified of any dinosaur but still eager to save them, he screams constantly and ends up in undercover roles just to hide, he is hilarious. And finally, Maisie (Isabella Sermon), the young determined girl who gets whirled up in the discovery of the auction. There is of course the villain, a villain driven by money and nothing else, the brains behind the whole auction as money in sight.

I really enjoyed this film, it has the action thrilling and comical moments like the first film. Although not as thrilling as the first, I would probably still say the first Jurassic World was better. But nevertheless, it remains a good sequel and who doesn’t love a bit of Chris Pratt anyway!

Downsizing (2017)

Matt Damon is great, he’s a great actor and his films usually persist with his great acting. ‘Downsizing’ claims to be a comedy-drama, different from the best Matt Damon action films, as Jason Bourne is brilliant. And he should have stayed with the action films, this one was not up to standard, well actually that’s too kind. Sadly, I thought this film was boring, flat, not funny whatsoever, it was just crap. Sorry.

A sci-fi comedy-drama of a new scientific discovery, the discovery of shrinking people in order to save the environment of overpopulation. However, what it seemed like in the trailer, in which some scenes weren’t actually in the film, it seemed this discovery was meant all for environmental needs, which made sense, it was a cool concept. But the film actually delved into the economics much more than I thought, which made me think the whole film was of a scam, but that didn’t really go anywhere either. It was odd.

Downsizing 1

Where was the comedy? I honestly have no idea, I don’t understand what was funny. The main protagonist’s (Matt Damon) life was boring at the beginning, routine, and just stayed that way, when he turned small, his wife pulled out last minute which led to a divorce, again, I don’t get the comedy. He was given his large wedding ring after moving into his large (in small world) new house, where he was left alone, again funny? More drama, yet I didn’t really understand the characters, so I didn’t care about them. Matt Damon’s character was boring, very surprising, since it was Matt Damon. But so boring! I didn’t care about any of the characters, I couldn’t even tell you many of their names, only remember Matt Damon’s since they said it so many times: Paul. I didn’t invest in any characters. Well, there was one which I thought maybe bought some more depth to the film, Hong Chau’s character. She was very abrupt and honest, blunt and bossy, which was so random, although she was a character that just wanted to help people. She was probably the best character.

Downsizing 2

There was also some random cameo actors in this film, Neil Patrick Harris, Jason Sudeikis (who actually wasn’t in it that much, even though seemed that way from the trailer), Kristen Wiig, James Van Der Beek, Margo Martindale, very random. It was fun to see these actors in the film, although they just didn’t add much to the plot or seemed it would go somewhere else and didn’t.

It was a two-hour film, two hours too long. It dragggedddd. The film travelled 15 years in this two hours. It was silly racing through these 15 years, just to give a routine effect in Paul’s life, and then a boring, flat storyline where nothing really happens. Then the ending? So abrupt! Suddenly at the end, happily because I couldn’t be bothered to watch it anymore, but it also just left everything standing still. It was abrupt and sudden, with nothing said, nothing happening.

DOWNSIZING

I was a bit sceptical of the film anyway, but I never expected it to be this flat. Not many great things actually happened in this small world sad to say. I just didn’t get it. At all.

The Divergent Series: Allegiant (2016)

The third film of the Divergent Series and I am so sad to say it was a little bit of a let-down. I was absolutely loving all the films, the first two were full of action and great simulations you fall into. But then this one just turned weird and a bit far-fetched. I understand it’s a sci-fi film, so it’s not supposed to be reality, but there was something in ‘Divergent’ and ‘Insurgent’ to fall into and believe in. ‘Allegiant’ had bleeding skies unnecessarily and unexplained, and weapons undefeatable. So many things were going on and the main story line just seemed weird and random. I’m so upset this happened, I was loving this series. Without the simulations, a lot of action and thrilling moments were lost, we weren’t able to go into the character’s deepest fears. Instead, we followed them as usual, but this time as divided.

Allegiant - over the wall

The main enemy is dead and the city turns into chaos. There are no factions and the hunt is turned onto Jeanine’s co-conspirators instead. The message of a world outside the wall has been released but nothing has changed, the walls are in lockdown. A mob has been created and is difficult to control, the city splits. This part was completely fine, there has been a rebellion and a new leader is yet to strongly come into play. Great start! Obviously, Tris (Shailene Woodley) and Four (Theo James) can’t just stay knowing there could be something beyond the wall. Quickly marked as traitors, Tris, Four, Caleb (Ansel Elgort), Peter (Miles Teller) and Christina (Zoë Kravitz) explore beyond the wall, making it over swiftly. Again, all parts of this plot were fine, especially because we know these characters and we know Tris could not resist seeing what’s past the wall. Additionally, we know Four would follow Tris anywhere and Peter would do anything to benefit himself. But then things just got weird…

'The Divergent Series: Allegiant'

A whole new life was shown to us beyond the wall. The city they had all be living in (Chicago) was an experiment and has constantly been watched by those on the other side. Who are these? Well they’re the Bureau of Genetic Welfare. The Director, David (Jeff Daniels), is quick to single out Tris and she is explained everything, in which I’m still not sure about. Something to do with genetic modification. Through the experiment, the only one marked as “pure” was Tris, everyone else in Chicago is “damaged” and the experiment is how to make everyone “pure”. This was all very random and a lot of information was given all at once. Because it’s so scientific, when it all hits at once, it becomes rather confusing. Meanwhile, back in Chicago, chaos is hitting extremes, the city is divided and ready for war: Evelyn (Naomi Watts) vs Johanna (Octavia Spencer). So much happens and so much is going on. Caleb is assigned to watch Chicago from the Bureau, so that’s how we keep in contact with the city inside the walls. However, the effects they’ve done make the screen pixelated so you know he’s not really there, although I do think it was a but unnecessary because either way we know Caleb isn’t in the city and it distracts from the vision of the city that we are still interested in, especially since we’ve been only there for the past two films. Therefore, our interest is revolved around Chicago and the characters we already know, instead of this alien place of flying cars and drones which protect with no assistance.

25020.dng

These new characters are also alien to us, are they trustworthy, who are they? What do they want? What’s this business with the pure and damaged? I guess this is the mystery element of the film, but it’s so different from the other films, it seems it’s not the same series. It seems it’s taken a different route of this overwhelming world we know nothing of, and the only similarity is the characters. I guess you either appreciate this or not. I do have to admit, I did like ‘Hemlock Grove’s Bill Skarsgård’s character, Matthew. But, Christina is definitely lost in this film as well. There were things thrown into the film which didn’t seem to make much sense, and Tris’ automatic trust became slightly annoying and seemed a bit out of character. Moving away from Chicago lost the Divergent Series in my opinion, the film felt lost in this strange land that was completely unrelatable and overwhelming. Sadly, I was let down, maybe if there is a next one, it would redeem itself?