Incredible! Unbelievable! No, not the technical gee-whizzery that sits behind the latest in the seemingly neverending saga of dinosaurs reborn. Because for all i know, somewhere in the world, at this very moment, a bunch of bio-geniuses are working on just such a project.
No: what is truly beyond belief is the basic premise that the motley assortment of hunters, adventurers, and mad scientists assembled at the start of Jurassic World could possibly think it a good idea to start making dinosaurs again
Or that any insurance company anywhere might be prepared to back such a venture.
Dino disaster inevitable
Hey ho! The dinosaur makers are back (on the same island where Jurassic Park so murderously backfired). Good idea: they are limiting their genetic tinkering to mostly herbivorous species that wouldn’t say boo to a raptor. Bad idea: they are doing so in the middle of a theme park packed with over 20,000 holidaymakers. And chief mad scientist, Dr Henry Wu (BD Wong) is busy creating a new dino that’s bigger, faster, smarter, more homicidal than anything seen before.
What could possibly go wrong?
You mean? She escapes? And she starts snacking on anyone and everyone within biting range? And in the ensuing disorder the few lethal species still on the island, including a gaggle of semi-house-trained raptors, get loose and THEY start snacking on holidaymakers? Who’d a thunk it!
Chaos is compounded by the existence of two rival factions trying to sort out this mess. The goodies, led by wealthy philanthropist Simon Masrani (Irfan Khan) and lady with control issues, Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard): and the baddies, led by Hoskins (Vincent D’Onofrio). The former dither, and by the time they decide to act responsibly it is too late: the latter, in pursuit of an improbable plot by the military industrial complex to breed killer lizards, just get in the way.
Of course, if only they’d listened to ex-navy SEAL and raptor whisperer Owen (Chris Pratt), the whole thing could have been sorted out in the first ten minutes. But then we wouldn’t have had a film to go to.
Also in the mix are two teens and the inevitable sub-plot about what happens when you don’t do as the grown-ups say. They are meant to evoke sympathy, but i couldn’t find it in me to root for either: not apprentice bad boy Zach (Nick Robinson); nor too cute-for-his-own-good Gray (Ty Simpkins).
Half an hour in, and i was fervently hoping director Colin Trevorrow would surprise us all by serving this horrid pair up as dino tidbit. The film is competent: not so interesting as the first in this franchise (Jurassic Park) which broke new ground in cgi effect. It contains two genuinely engaging moments. When Claire and Owen get all tearful over a dying brontosaurus: and when Hoskins gets his well-deserved comeuppance.
In the end, our hero and heroine save the day, but not before – sequel alert! – Dr Wu flies off carrying all the research and genetic material necessary to do it all over again.
It’s nonsense. Tolerable nonsense, but nonsense nonetheless: predictable, competent, and not the worst way to while away a couple of hours. Just don’t expect any great insights into human nature.
Meanwhile, the last vestiges of plot credibility are shredded by Claire’s heels. For regenerated dinosaurs are one thing; but her heels, stiletto, magnificent, and at least 3.5”, are quite another. Because if you believe such heels can survive a hike through jungle, mud and rock: if you believe that in the final scene, a woman can wear these and still outrun a rampaging dinosaur; then i suspect you’ll believe anything!