‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ proves bigger isn’t always better

Chris Pratt in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

“When it is not necessary to do a thing, it is necessary to not do it” – The Zinja Training Manual as outlined in the novel “Shike: Time of the Dragons”

Every aspect of technology has a dark side, including the bow and arrow – Margaret Atwood

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom begins three years after the destruction of the revamped Jurassic World on Isla Nublar. The island is deserted except for a small team sent to retrieve a bone from the Indominus Rex.  We were first introduced to that hybrid of dinosaur species in Jurassic World.  Fifty feet long, it is stronger and more dangerous than the famed Tyrannosaurus Rex.  Why spend money to obtain a bone from a dead dinosaur?  Because of what “Dr. Henry Wu” (B. D. Wong – White Frog) can do with “Dino DNA.”

“Claire Dearing” (Bryce Dallas Howard – Lady in the Water) is working to save the dinosaurs still on Isla Nublar from the impending eruption of the island’s long-dormant volcano.  After Congress refuses to fund saving them, Claire is contacted by “Benjamin Lockwood” (James Cromwell – The Promise), John Hammond’s partner in creating the original Jurassic Park.  He and the man who runs his foundation, “Eli Mills” (Rafe Spall – The World’s End) have a plan to save the dinosaurs.  They’ve created an island sanctuary where the dinosaurs can live in safety and kept in place by natural borders.  They need Claire’s help in locating the dinosaurs as her hand can reactivate the computer tracking system on Isla Nublar.  Their primary concern is “Blue” the only surviving raptor from the pack that “Owen Grady” (Christ Pratt – Passengers), so Claire recruits him to join the expedition to Isla Nublar.  She also brings “Dr. Zia Rodriguez” (Daniella Pineda – Mr. Roosevelt) who is a paleoveterinarian and “Franklin Webb” (Justice Smith – Paper Towns) who was a computer technician at the Jurassic World park.  The team of mercenaries and others who are there to trap and transport the dinosaurs to the island sanctuary is led by “Ken Wheatley” (Ted Levine – Shutter Island).  His cruelty is displayed in his method of keeping a memento from each of the dinosaurs he captures.

With the eruption of the volcano imminent, Claire is able to reactivate the computer system.  That allows Owen, accompanied by Wheatley and his troops to locate and trap Blue.  This is where the double-cross becomes evident.  Eli Mills is working with Dr. Wu and plans to use Blue’s DNA along with the DNA from the Indominus Rex to create an “IndoRaptor.”  The dinosaurs aren’t going to a sanctuary at all.  They are taken to a secret facility in the deepest recesses of Benjamin Lockwood’s estate.  Lockwood is unaware of what Mills is doing until his granddaughter “Maisie” (Isabella Sermon in her acting debut) tries to tell him what’s going on.  She overheard Mills talking about his plans with “Gunnar Eversol” (Toby Jones – Atomic Blonde).  He is a high-level auctioneer with a clientele that can afford to bid the tens of millions of dollars for dinosaurs that Mills plans to auction off in that subbasement chamber.

Ted Levine and Daniella Pineda in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

This is the fifth installment in the Jurassic Park/Jurassic World franchise.  It seems that the filmmakers involved with the franchise believe that because bigger is better, the bigger and more powerful the dinosaurs, the better the films will be.  That is not the case.  When the original Jurassic Park was released 25 years ago, the dinosaurs were amazing.  Those same dinosaurs, with the improvements in visual technology since then would have been effective enough to generate fear in the audience.  Humans are so small in comparison, bigger and more effective predators don’t help a weak story.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is worth seeing, if only for the chance to see those extinct creatures brought to life by the magic of moviemaking.

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