As almost everyone of my generation, we grew up with Jurassic Park. Toy dinosaurs, the lot! I vividly remember having to keep silent to my sister that we rented a dinosaur movie after discovering The Lost World on VHS, hidden on the fireplace behind some other stuff. When she went to bed I could stay up to watch it. Rediscovering the original movie as an adult, I fell in love over again, having Jurassic Park be in my top three favourite films. But enough nostalgia, this is a summer movie, and today, the park has opened!
A sold out theatre filled to the brim with fans of the original movies became my ‘home’ for the past two hours while I was transported to Isla Nublar all over again. Now a fully operation theme park, Jurassic World hosts 20.000 guests a day that marvel themselves over the amazing creatures that are dinosaurs.
For those not knowing the story, here is a basic plot: Brothers Gray and Zach visit the park for the first time, visiting their aunt Claire who is Park Operations Manager. Quite busy showing investors a brand new engineered dinosaur called the Indominus Rex, the two brothers are guided around by her assistant. Meanwhile, Velociraptor trainer and behaviorist Owen checks out security, when all hell breaks loose. (Of course it does!)
The mix of stories that is presented to us, feel a bit like a drag in the beginning. However, once the pace kicks up, everything is interwoven in a tightly packed adventure filled with the right mix of action sequences and plain fun. They really did a fresh take on these action sequences, with them being short and focussed, instead of a giant sequence that just keeps building up and up. Very refreshing.
With a lot of action comes the problem of predictability. With the problem of trailers, clips and spoilers lurking among every corner, being surprised in a movie this big rarely happens, but still, a lot of moments did came as a surprise, and things I feared from the trailer where handled in just there right way. As a theme park affectionado, seeing a park like Jurassic World in full force is amazing! Taking inspiration from Walt Disney World, guests wear smart bracelets, and employees have great looking name-tags. Even a Starbucks and a sushi place. A mix of attractions and adventures for all ages, makes it look like a well balanced theme park that I really want to visit and experience every attraction. Even a kids-thing as a dinosaur petting zoo.
During the adventures a LOT of Jurassic Park references are shown, most very subtle, with some more in-your-face things like Mr. DNA and a statue of John Hammond. But even revisiting locations from the first movies become more epic with the familiar John Williams horns blowing the theme everyone knows and loves.
Talking about music, scoring duty went to Michael Giacchino, with Williams being busy with that other big film revival happening. Giacchino has proved over and over again that he can bring a fresh take to well established scores like Star Trek, Mission Impossible and even a bit of Star Wars himself with Star Tours: The Adventures Continue. Surpassing the original Jurassic Park score is downright impossible, with it being one of the most iconic soundtracks of all time. But Giacchino brings his own fresh take on everything, with incorporating enough of the classic themes.
When they announced the new movie, I was dreading another remake like we’ve had one too many in the past years. Most of those keep using the same cheap tricks and ‘tributes’, but sorely lacking the soul of the original. The trailers for Jurassic World looked not only inviting, it looked promising. I’ve had some slight fears with some shown storylines, but I still remained hopeful optimistic. But I can safely say now, Jurassic World is plain fun!
Kids twenty-two years from now probably won’t remember much of Jurassic World, but do they have to? With the opening of this movie, the summer blockbusters have begun, and I can’t remember the last time I’ve had this much fun in the theaters.
Jurassic Park … Bring on more dinosaurs!