Monday, June 25, 2018

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom Review: A Jurassic Disaster

In 2015 the movie world returned to that little park filled with dinosaurs After years of hibernation the Jurassic Park series made its return with the fourth installment in the franchise: Jurassic World; and what a return it was as the summer blockbuster was a success both critically and financially. So because of its success, it came to no surprise that Jurassic World would garner a sequel, and sure enough the adventure would continue three years later in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Taking the helm from Jurassic World’s Colin Trevorrow this time was director J.A Bayona; although Trevorrow remained on the film as an executive producer and a writer. So with an exploding island as well as a new hybrid, Fallen Kingdom looked to up the adventure for the series and while some may have found this exciting one Film Adventurer did not. See I had a different experience with Jurassic World as I found the blockbuster to be stupid for all the wrong reasons. However just because that experience was a poor one did not mean that the sequel would be the same. Oh how wrong I was.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom centers on Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) who return to the island in order to save the raptor Blue, and the rest of the dinosaurs,from extinction. If you have seen any trailer for this movie then odds are you know how this story plays out. Having a predictable plot is not always a bad thing as long as its executed decently.Sadly this was not the case for Fallen Kingdom. The story structure was inconsistent as it rushed through the first act then dragged itself through the remainder of the film to the point where any intriguing aspects were hardly investing due to excessive padding. This was evident in splitting the story up into two areas with the Owen and Claire’s adventure being one part and the mystery of the Indoraptor being another. Although both sides eventually converge they did very little keep this adventurous tale...well adventurous. It did not help matters that the plot was contrived as it relied heavily on conveniences and its sense of continuity was horrendous. Another glaring issue was the story’s use of themes such as nature vs nurture. While this could have been a captivating element for the plot, the movie barely touched on it leading to this theme be nothing but an afterthought. I tend not expect much out of a Jurassic Park tale but I do hope that it has some semblance of storytelling to it; but that is not the case for Fallen Kingdom’s plot as its sense of adventure goes up in flames along with the convenient volcano.

What does it say about a cast when the best character is a cgi raptor? Although the cast was decent in their performances, the characterization of this group left much to be desired. Both Owen and Claire are not  strong protagonists as their development was lacking and their chemistry together was underwhelming.The supporting cast was not much better. The likes of Franklin Webb (Justice Smith) and Zia Rodriguez (Daniella Pineda) were insufferable as their characters were so blatant their purposes may as well have been tattooed on their heads. Meanwhile the young Maise Lockwood (Isabella Sherman) added very little to the cast as her role in story B (not to mention the overall film) was a bit convoluted. The villains were laughable as their one-note train of thought made some of the most  generic action antagonists look complex. Even additions such as Toby Jones, James Cromwell, B.D Wong and Jeff Goldblum were not enough to save this ensemble  as the execution of this “cast of characters” was inexcusable on all counts.

 When it came to technical aspects like effects and music Fallen Kingdom was fairly sound in its presentation. While some of the effects could have fared better  they still worked for the movie, and it were actually an improvement from the film’s predecessor. Helping out the effects was the cinematography as, although the color scheme left little to the imagination, the camerawork was executed decently and even led to some impressive moments; particularly in a few action sequences. Rounding things out was another solid score by Michael Giacchino. Although the soundtrack did not contain any memorable tracks, the music of Fallen Kingdom still worked by being thrilling and living up to the  compositions of the series.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is disastrous for all the wrong reasons. While its presentation in the likes spectacle was decent the movie lacks in vital areas such as story and characters to the point where sitting through this blockbuster was a tiring endeavor. Although J.A Bayona, as well as the cast and crew try their best to make Fallen Kingdom work, the substance of this installment is all but extinct giving the blockbuster little to no impact. I cannot say that Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is the worst in the franchise, but what I can say is that this sequel is an adventure that I rather not endure again.

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