(director/writer: Colin Trevorrow; screenwriters: story by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver/Derek Connolly/Rick Jaffa/Amanda Silver/based on characters created by Michael Crichton; cinematographer: John Schwartzman; editor: Kevin Stitt; music: Michael Giacchino; cast: Chris Pratt (Owen Grady), Bryce Dallas Howard (Claire Dearing), Vincent D’Onofrio (Vic Hoskins), Ty Simpkins (Gray Mitchell), Nick Robinson (Zach Mitchell), Jake Johnson (Lowery Cruthers), Omar Sy (Barry), BD Wong (Henry Wu), Judy Greer ( Karen Mitchell), Irrfan Khan (Simon Masrani); Runtime: 123; MPAA Rating: PG-13; producer: Frank Marshall/Patrick Crowley; Universal; 2015-in 3D)
“It works as an entertaining lightweight thriller especially engineered for the theme park crowd.”
Reviewed by Dennis Schwartz
It works as an entertaining lightweight thriller especially engineered for the theme park crowd. Though less scary than the original, it’s still a fun watch as it carefully follows the proven formula of the genre to attract a mass-audience. This fifth sequel, the first in 14 years, is more than adequately helmed by Colin Trevorrow(“Safety Not Guaranteed” / “Reality Show”). It’s based on the story by Rick Jaffa and Amanda Silver, who are co-writers with Derek Connolly and the director. The writers adapt their screenplay from the classic 1993 Jurassic Park novel by Michael Crichton.
It takes us back to the events some 20 years ago at Costa Rica’s Jurassic Park, on Isla Nublar, as we follow two youngsters (the dweebie Ty Simpkins & the older disinterested teen Nick Robinson) sent there by their overbearing mom (Judy Greer), about to get a divorce, on a vacation where she expects them to be closely monitored and treated like royalty by mom’s workaholic uptight sister, who is the theme park’s operating manager, their Aunt Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard). The theme park, thanks to the brilliant but amoral lab scientist Dr Henry Wu (BD Wong), now has a genetically designed dinosaur, Indominus Rex, he created as a new attraction to improve declining attendance and to follow through on corporate orders to always keep the park’s name in the public eye. Jurassic World’s billionaire benefactor (Irrfan Khan) has spent $27 million to sponsor the project. His philosophy he declares is ‘The key to a happy life is to accept you are never in control,’ which is not as smart a creed as he thinks it is.
Things get frantic when the dangerous giant monster escapes its enclosures, flips over vans, kills a security guard and roams around the island on the loose among its 20,000 visitors.
To the rescue comes the pic’s noble hero, Owen (Chris Pratt), a smart and sensitive engineer who has trained a pack of vicious Velociraptors (named Charlie, Delta, Echo and, Blue) to accept orders from him as the Alpha Male. His assistant handler is Jake (Lowery Cruthers) and the crude one among the trio is their untrustworthy boss (Vincent D’Onofrio).
Since there’s a possible love interest between the corporate-minded beauty Claire and the wiseguy rugged-individualist Owen, she enlists him to help search for her missing nephews.
The super high-tech special effects, some half-hearted provocative thoughts about a scientist playing God and the great 3D visuals, allow the B film narrative to go down as buttery as popcorn.
REVIEWED ON 11/19/2015 GRADE: B-