A director with one low budget indie film to his name brings us the best summer blockbuster since Avengers.
There is a huge amount of pressure involved in rebooting a much loved franchise and they don’t come much bigger than Jurassic Park.
Director Colin Trevorrow started his career with Safety Not Guaranteed – a charming and quirky indie flick about time travel, that had little to suggest that Trevorrow deserves to be the man at the helm for one of the most anticipated films of the decade. This potential risk more than pays off.
If Avatar taught us anything it was that you can spend all the money you want on CGI and special effects but if you can’t write believable characters or interesting dialogue you will still be left with a dumb action flick. Jurassic World learns from this and though the special effects are faultless it is the script and the acting that elevate the fourth instalment in the series above your average action fare.
Chris Pratt’s journey from loveable goofball Andy in much missed comedy Parks and Recreation to Hollywood heartthrob has been surreal and unexpected but he seems much more comfortable in Jurassic World than he did in Guardians of the Galaxy and rumours of Pratt as the next Indiana Jones no longer seem so far fetched. Pratt’s co star Bryce Dallas Howard struggles with a less well written character at times but at least she has recovered from the trauma of being involved in Spider Man 3.
Like other derided genres, horror and rom-com, action films are often criticised for predictable plot devices and rehashed ideas. Apart from two people jumping over a waterfall whilst shouting, Jurassic World does its utmost to break free from the trappings of a tired genre to appear fresh and it is this unpredictability that allows the story to comfortably justify a running time of over two hours.
The message that the human race shouldn’t play God is as poignant as it was in Jurassic Park but a ham fisted attempt at a critique of capitalism doesn’t sit well alongside such obvious and jarring product placement. In a film about dinosaurs though this is a minor criticism and an attempt at dissection and analysis of that kind only leads to less enjoyment.
I would have liked to have spent a bit more time with a wider range of dinosaurs but Trevorrow gets so much right that it feels like nitpicking to mark down Jurassic World too harshly for this.
There is no iconic moment to rival the trembling water glass but how could there be? Jurassic World is a really good film in its own right and is such a welcome addition to the Jurassic Park series especially in light of such recent massive disappointments as Indiana Jones 4, A Good Day to Die Hard and The Dark Knight Rises. Nods to the original are not too ostentatious either which is always a plus point.
Jurassic World is in almost every way a success. Breath a sigh of relief and cross your fingers for the new Star Wars movie to be this good.