HowHow could you completely ruin one of the best movie franchises ever?  You could throw out the story, copy every interesting scene in previous versions and overscore the thing with grand finale/dramatic music in even the most mundane scenes… oh yeah, and throw in a lead actress with no real ability to act. Jurassic World is how you ruin one of the best movie franchises ever.

Okay, I may be a bit harsh on Bryce Dallas Howard (perhaps it was the lame script that hurt her performance.)  The overacting she did in the first helicopter ride was probably misplaced because she was doing it on a set with green screen and had no idea how un-frightening the actual helicopter ride would seem to the audience.

It also bothered me that the movie wasted the talents of Chris Pratt.  Yes, he made a few quips that were probably the highlight of the whole film, but most of what he had to do was hampered by this horrible story.  Could the characters be any more cardboard (the caring but-tough animal rights hero – the prototypical military evil dude bent on doing wrong for the sake of creating better weapons – the corporate chick dead set on building/saving revenue at the expense of people – the anthropomorphized raptors that seemed to have loyalty, trust and deep non-verbal communication with that tough hero who built that trust by tossing them dead rats to eat.)

There was no depth to any of the characters because there was no depth to the story.

Sure, it featured some cool dinosaurs and cool images of violent animal aggression, but the only interesting scenes were the ones they blatantly stole from earlier Jurassic films… you know the one – the man/boy/girl hiding, the dinosaur coming oh-so close to discovering the hero as the music swells, the audience holds their breath…  it was done ad nauseam in this film because it worked so well in the earlier ones.  I get why they did it, but it was cheesy and lacked imagination.

A few things just made me chuckle however.

  • Pratt chasing raptors through the dense jungle on his Triumph motorcycle.  Anyone who has ever ridden a motorcycle knows just how impossible this would be in that thick jungle with rocks, downed trees, vines – you name it.
  • I mentioned the helicopter side story – the billionaire dude that is just learning to fly a heli takes the heroine up for a ride and everyone on board acts like he is making loops or something… when they cut to wide shots of the chopper, it appears to be very smooth.  It makes the folks inside seem to be badly overacting.
  • The whole idea of the military interest in raptors replacing soldiers in war was just ridiculous.  It was a weak premise designed to create some conflict and give someone new to blame for what eventually goes wrong.  It is not only a stretch…  I think it is one of the worst examples of lame writing in the film.  It is just stupid.

ChrisPrattCoolGo see it for the dinosaurs… actually, the BBC’s Walking with Dinosaurs does a better job of that.  Go see it for Chris Pratt… actually, he is so much better in Guardians of the Galaxy .  Go see it for… on second thought – don’t bother.

RATING 3 out of 10

Chris Doelle