Gray (Ty Simpkins) and Zach (Nick Robinson) are taking a trip to Jurassic World. Their aunt Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) runs the park and promises to show them a good time. However, Claire is busy with the running of the park, so she can’t spend much time with them. She sends her assistant to accompany the boys around the park and gives them bracelets that grant VIP access to all the attractions.
Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) has been training the velociraptors at the park. When Vic Hoskins (Vincent D’Onofrio), a security contractor, sees the progress Owen is making with the velociraptors, he has plans to train dinosaurs to be used in military operations. Owen shuts him down at every turn, but that does not discourage Vic.
To keep the park interesting to visitors, a team of scientists, headed by Dr. Henry Wu (BD Wong), work constantly to come up with new, bigger, scarier dinosaurs. Their latest creation, the Indominus Rex, is not yet ready to be revealed, so it is kept in a secured area of the park, off limits to guests.
As it turns out, the Indominus is more clever, and dangerous, than anyone could have imagined. When the dinosaur escapes, everyone in the park is in danger. Claire must find and rescue her nephews and stop the Indominus before it can reach Jurassic World’s visitors.
Jurassic World hopes to whip up nostalgia for the 20-year-old Jurassic Park franchise. It relies heavily on the feeling of awe and danger we all felt watching the original. The problem is, it may rely a little too much on what audiences felt for the first time we were thrown into the park. There are countless references to Jurassic Park, and that many of the new park’s features were remnants of the 20-year-old park. So many references, in fact, that it starts to take away from the film.
Chris Pratt has proven his abilities as an actor. Most notable among his talents is his sarcastic wit. Those who saw Guardians of the Galaxy (What do you mean you haven’t seen it? Go. Go now!), know that he delivers one-liners better than most. He can also hang with the best in an action movie. That’s why I was slightly disappointed that these were down-played more than I would have hoped. Bryce Dallas Howard is fine as the head of the park. She goes from park manager to dinosaur fighting badass in no time. Maybe a little too quickly. But that can be explained away by her desperation to save her nephews and thousands of park visitors.
If you feel the story seems a little familiar, you’re not alone. Jurassic World seems to be more of a reboot of Jurassic Park rather than a sequel. Almost every scene is either borrowed from or an homage to the original. Sure, the dinosaurs have gotten bigger and the effects are better. But, in the end, it is essentially the same movie. The park becomes an allusion to the franchise itself. In order to continue bringing in guests and making money, the park must make things bigger and scarier, regardless of the cost or danger. The movie becomes everything those in the movie warn us about.
While it isn’t a terrible movie, I expected so much more from Jurassic World. It is fine for some nostalgic fun. If you are going to see it, and I’m ‘sure most of you probably will, you really should see it in the theater in 3D to appreciate the scale and action.