After the longest break from the cinema in years, I finally saw the Jurassic World sequel. I’d managed to avoid spoilers and there was a lot of good buzz about the film so I was pretty optimistic going in.
Jurassic World in 2015 surprised me, it was a really fun return to this universe and Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas-Howard seemed like good fits to lead this franchise.
Straight from the off JWFK (awkward abbreviation I know) indicates this will not be as light and fun as Jurassic World. It still has its moments of levity, but the overall tone is more like a kids horror film. This change-up works well, meaning it feels different to JW without really being all that different of a story to its predecessor.
A few years age passed since the events of the first film and the islands volcano is now active, as you may have guessed from the trailers. This is where he first half of the film takes place. It makes for some visually stunning scenes on the island, and even if there is some ridiculousness in terms of what characters get away with, you have to suspend your disbelief in these films, this is about dinosaurs after all.
From there the film pivots quite clumsily from big dinosaur and jungle action to a smaller area, and during the third act we really get a taste of that horror element I mentioned earlier. These scenes were the most engaging for me in the film and showed something a bit different to previous Jurassic movies.
There is a clear point in the film when it changes course and pivots but it’s done with no real subtlety. We have a character introduced who is clearly a bad guy, and the intentions of the antagonists are made clear. That’s pretty much all the depth we get from the villains, as aside from that it’s a similar situation to Jurassic World, with anew dinosaur introduced.
Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas-Howard carry the film on their shoulders, with the two sidekick characters being odd additions. One I found annoying the other to be a bit more interesting but still not really important to the story. Jeff Goldblum is in the film but his part in the trailer is pretty much it, so don’t expect much from him.
At times Fallen Kingdom to wrestle some meaningful issues, addressing that these creatures are not monsters, just animals,but animals that are used to being top of the food chain. This comes into focus at the end of the film and the choices made here are interesting as I thought for a moment they was going to do something very brave from a franchise point of view but it wasn’t to be.
Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom provides more of the same for the franchise, and it’s an entertaining film, but what they do next in the franchise will need to bring something new to keep me engaged as a fan.
Good: Spectacular island scenes, tense monster chases, addressing moral issues and my hero Chris Pratt.
Bad: Tiring premise, annoying sidekick, lukewarm lava and T-Rex Machina.
7/10 – More of the same from Jurassic World.