Jurassic Park turns 25 and on its 25th birthday, the series finally grows up.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is poised to be divisive. Much like Star Wars: The Last Jedi the series takes a huge leap and tries its hand at something new. This doesn’t mean that dinosaur loving audiences are going to chomp it up like a T-Rex.
Dinosaur action is still very much an active part of the story, but the new film decides to do things a little differently.
Welcome to Jurassic Park
The original beloved Jurassic Park feels like it came out 65 million years ago. Despite its genius, the film (and all subsequent films) failed to push the limits of what the material can actually bring to the table with the consequences of bringing dinosaurs back to life.
While Spielberg’s follow up The Lost World: Jurassic Park was more interested in dinosaur carnage (and maximum Goldblum), its ghastly follow up Jurassic Park III was merely a cash in.
How many times can you either be at a dinosaur theme park or head back to an abandoned dinosaur island? The answer is four times.
Jurassic World‘s soft reboot of showing us the park fully operational was merely laying the groundwork for what is absolutely a bold new step for the franchise.
The park is open
There have been rumours and story ideas circulating for years about a possible instalment of the Jurassic series involving gene splicing that made human dinosaur hybrids. These hybrids would then be used as soliders of war.
While that has yet to materialise in the franchise, some of those ideas are discussed but not acted on in Jurassic World, with shady deals involving raptors being trained for battle and being able to take commands.
As we know the park malfunctions in a big way and the DNA samples are whisked away on a helicopter towards an uncertain future.
The kingdom is falling…
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom wants to shake things up.
How on earth do you keep a franchise fresh after 25 years? You start by literally blowing up the island that the dinosaurs inhabit in order to push the story forward into uncharted territory.
A businessman named Eli Mills (Rafe Spall) tasks our heroes (among others) to save dinosaurs from extinction (again) from an imploding Isla Nublar. Meanwhile dinosaurs have been cherry picked from the now destroyed island and brought back to the same estate to be sold to the highest cashed up bidder.
We still have Dr Henry Wu (series veteran Henry Wong) playing god and making his new dinosaurs, but this happens to be in a hidden lab underneath an estate of John Hammond’s supposed partner from back in the day, played by James Cromwell.
Obviously none of this goes to plan and chaos ensues.
As strange as having a Jurassic film not focused on an island is, it pushes the set pieces into strange new places, almost like a house of horrors with dinosaurs roaming the hallways.
Life finds a way
Over the course of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom a mystery is teased over a secret Benjamin Lockwood (James Cromwell) may be hiding. He lives on the estate with his granddaughter Maisie, a Nanny and Mr Mills.
The granddaughter gets some serious air time in the film. Mr Lockwood is obviously rather fond of her but seems to keep her at arms length with details about the past.
However, it’s revealed that his daughter and granddaughter were both killed in a car accident years prior. Now here’s where things get very interesting.
Mr Lockwood used dino geneticists to bring his granddaughter back to life as a clone. So this means that we are cloning people in the Jurassic franchise and not just dinosaurs.
It’s rather shocking that this idea has not been played out in the series before. Does that mean we can now bring back Dennis Nedry? I promise to say the magic word.
Welcome to Jurassic World
During pre-production for Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, a concept was flying around the internet that it would be called Jurassic War. This version would feature humans riding Velociraptors into some sort of battle for mankind.
This story was shot down by Jurassic World helmer Colin Trevorrow. A possible future instalment might incorporate this when Trevorrow returns on directing duties.
At the film’s conclusion, the dinosaurs are let loose into the real world. This is something we’ve never seen in the Jurassic franchise.
Fast forward three years: In the future of the franchise dinosaurs and humans are forced to co-exist in the real world. How COOL is that.
Not only is that something that hasn’t been explored yet but it opens up a whole world of possibilities.
Bring on part 3!
For a 100 word review of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, click here.