As someone who grew up with the Jurassic Park movies and worked as Build-a-Dino in Orlando at the T-Rex Cafe, obsessed with dinosaurs is an understatement. What I love about the original franchise is not only is it a dinosaur movie but a horror movie thrown all into one. What’s not to love?
With the reboot of the franchise, we return to the world of Dinosaur Theme Parks and all the horrors that ensue when you try to manipulate ancient creatures we do not understand. However, when it comes to Jurassic Park: Dominion it seems they forgot why they were here.
I will never forget the image of the final shot in Jurassic Park: Fallen Kingdom when the pterodactyls are flying over Las Vegas. HOLY SMOKES! The dinosaurs have made it to our shores! So, going into Dominion I thought we’d explore that a lot more. Instead, we are given a weird Indiana Jones movie, but with dinosaurs while heading right back to a theme park.
JURASSIC PARK: DOMINION
If you haven’t watched the first two films of the new Jurassic Park franchise, don’t worry we get a great recap at the start reminding us what has happened and who is important. Dinosaurs have now become hot black market items. We see a Monosaurus taking down the Deadliest Catch crew in the Baltic Sea. There are Pteranodons nesting on the roof of the tallest skyscraper, We see tiny ones “playing” with children in the park. While others are also terrorizing campers in their Winnebagos. The film goes on to tell two very separate stories before finally coming together in the last 20 mins of the film.
Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) and Owen (Chris Pratt) are hiding out in the woods with the clone of Maisie Lockwood (Isabella Sermon). People are hunting Maisie, but she’s a teenage girl who doesn’t understand the dangers she faces. So, of course, she gets kidnapped. This is where we enter the world of “Indiana Jones and the Dinosaur Capers”. So instead of giving us a terrorist motorcycle chase scene, we get a fantastic mind-controlled Atrociraptors chase scene. Personally, I loved this. It was wildly entertaining, while also just being silly.
On the other side of the Dominion story, Alan Grant (Sam Neill) is using tourist money to fund his digs. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) is investigating these new GIANT locusts that are eating the world’s food supply. While Dr. Ian Malcom is working for the bad guy, a Monsanto-Esque BioSyn. However, he hasn’t turned to the dark side. Instead, he gets Sattler an invite to BioSyn headquarters in order to continue her investigation and confirm her hypothesis.
DOMINION! WHERE ARE MY DINOSAURS?!
While I LOVE seeing the original cast used they couldn’t save this film on their own. The bloated writing and the over used of regurgitating what the original gave us is what ultimately makes this final installment come crashing down.
I like the idea of Jurassic Park: Dominion, the execution is severely lacking. The film doesn’t fulfill the promise it gives in the final moments of the previous film. This movie comes in at just under 2 ½ hours and 2/3rds of which are spent world building and giving us this Indiana Jones “where is my daughter” storyline. Seriously, 90 mins before we move on to what we’re actually here for.
Finally, once we get to BioSyn we learn this is where the company is bringing their rescued dinos. So, basically ANOTHER theme park. Finally, we get to be terrorized by the dinosaurs, but there’s barely any time left to build suspension or do anything we haven’t already seen before.
That being said, Jurassic Park: Dominion does double down on the recent discovery that some dinosaurs have feathers. So we get a couple of really great, updated new species looking like giant chicken bird dinos. We also get a new Apex-Predator, the Giganotosaurus – yes, that’s a real name, who has a fantastic fight with the always loved T-Rex.
While I didn’t hate Jurassic Park: Dominion, I obviously didn’t love it. It is worth the watch just to see the original cast return to their glory, amazing chemistry, and call-backs to the original series we all love.
It’s also fun to see all the new and old species of dinosaurs roaming the earth and in BioSyn. However, just be prepared for a really long, slightly convoluted film.
Jurassic Park: Dominion is now in theaters! Check it out and let me know what you think in the comments below!