a Screenplay First, Then a Novel, Then a Screenplay
June 14, 2015 6:26 PM   Subscribe

 


Jurassic Park came out when I was 11 barely 12. It was a Big Effing Deal. Everyone saw it, and everyone liked it. It was the first movie in my lifetime -- and perhaps the last -- that you asked people if they'd seen it yet, like it was a given that they would, because it *was* a given that they would.

Jurassic World has no hope of coming anywhere close to that kind of universal popularity, even among 11-year-olds.
posted by Sys Rq at 6:42 PM on June 14, 2015 [4 favorites]


I'm honestly shocked at how well Jurassic World is doing at the box office. I didn't feel like there'd been that much hype around the movie but goddamn.
posted by kmz at 6:55 PM on June 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


The Cult of Jurassic Park
posted by robbyrobs at 7:08 PM on June 14, 2015


I have a deep and abiding love of Jurassic Park and Ian Malcolm (the one from the book, not the movie). So despite being infuriated by it, I'm kind of obliged to like The Lost World (though the book's much better than the movie). If someone's going to magically become not dead, it might as well be Malcolm.
posted by hoyland at 7:09 PM on June 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


Jurassic World has no hope of coming anywhere close to that kind of universal popularity, even among 11-year-olds.

The movie opened all over Earth, grossing 500 million dollars opening weekend. It's the greatest opening weekend haul in film history.
posted by Renoroc at 7:16 PM on June 14, 2015 [5 favorites]


Life finds a way.
posted by Artw at 7:18 PM on June 14, 2015 [13 favorites]


This all reminds me of that novel about the futuristic amusement park where dinosaurs are brought to life through advanced cloning techniques.

I think it was called Billy and the Cloneasaurus.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 7:18 PM on June 14, 2015 [12 favorites]


I didn't realize that there was all much love for Jurassic Park. I always thought of it as pretty minor Spielberg and basically a retread of Westworld with dinosaurs instead of robots. I haven't seen it since it came out but I remember thinking it was a pretty cynical and manipulative movie.
posted by octothorpe at 7:29 PM on June 14, 2015




I'm honestly shocked at how well Jurassic World is doing at the box office. I didn't feel like there'd been that much hype around the movie but goddamn.

Same here. I came across a lot more promo for Furious 7 and especially Avengers 2. Jurassic World didn't feel like an event on par with those mega projects... yet it's doing similar/better box office.

I'll probably go see it next weekend. Good heaven I can't remember the last movie I saw in theater.
posted by fatehunter at 7:38 PM on June 14, 2015


Jurassic Park, the movie, was kind of a dud -- it violated the basic action/catastrophe movie principle that things should get worse and worse until all seems lost and then be dramatically saved. Instead, things instantly became terrible and then the cast incrementally fixed things one at a time. This is probably more true to life from a systems engineering point of view but doesn't really work as a movie.

I remember "clever girl" but nothing else.

If you're gonna watch a decades-old movie about Jeff Goldblum coming face to face with the dangers of genetic experimentation, do yourself a favor and make it The Fly.
posted by escabeche at 7:39 PM on June 14, 2015 [9 favorites]


If You're 11 Years Old, Jurassic World Is Now Your Favorite Movie (and it passes the Bechdel test)

I haven't seen it -- it's not really my thing -- but I have seen a lot of women complaining that it's a pretty sexist movie, Bechdel test or not.
posted by jeather at 7:44 PM on June 14, 2015


Instead, things instantly became terrible and then the cast incrementally fixed things one at a time.

No, the raptors getting out made things terrible, and that happened towards the end. Remember, the raptors were trapped until they rebooted the system; Nedry left the raptor cages electrified (he's a thief, not a sociopath). The system reboot is what downed the power everywhere. Before that the only threat was the T-Rex.
posted by leotrotsky at 8:01 PM on June 14, 2015 [15 favorites]


The movie opened all over Earth, grossing 500 million dollars opening weekend. It's the greatest opening weekend haul in film history.

Huh. I guess it isn't a Unix system 'cause I don't understand this at all.
posted by Sys Rq at 8:04 PM on June 14, 2015 [5 favorites]


Is there anyone here who enjoys Bryce Dallas Howard's acting and can explain to me what her appeal is? She keeps getting booked in movies and I just don't understand it.

From where i'm sitting, she's a bizarrely flat, brittle, unlikable actor (probably a very nice, cool lady in real life though?) and yet, still getting hired. Does she come off entirely differently to anyone here? I'm weirdly invested in understanding this disconnect.
posted by pseudonymph at 8:13 PM on June 14, 2015


PSA: Safety Not Guaranteed is a great movie (except for the last fivish minutes)
posted by Yowser at 8:28 PM on June 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


...but I remember thinking it was a pretty cynical and manipulative movie.

This is a criticism made of Spielberg generally. Maybe apocryphal, but when told someone had a heart attack watching Jaws, Spielberg's private response (at the time) was, "It works." And made of movie-making overall. In a documentary involving Lucas (in an editing room I believe), he cynically jokes about the importance of a soundtrack to achieving a desired response. The culture surrounding soundtracks is more guarded and insular than screenwriting. It's a damn phone tree.

Is there anyone here who enjoys Bryce Dallas Howard's acting and can explain to me what her appeal is?

The Help(2011)
Hollywood royalty is a real phenomenon.
posted by lazycomputerkids at 8:33 PM on June 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


I always thought of it as pretty minor Spielberg and basically a retread of Westworld with dinosaurs instead of robots.

Jurassic Park, the movie, was kind of a dud


In all kindness, who the fuck are you people, seriously.


Jurassic Park is an excellent movie and I will fight you.

-It's legitimately terrifying. The dinosaurs feel real. The suspense feels real.

-The dinosaurs still feel real 22 years later because the special effects in the movie are incredible. The dinosaurs from the original JP look and move in a more believable way than they did in Jurassic World, a movie which had an enormous budget and two extra decades of computer technology at its disposal.

-The movie feels real because you actually care about the characters. They did a fantastic job of casting (choosing actors with less name recognition so you don't project previous characters on them as much) and setting up who they were as people outside of the ridiculous situation they were in. Grant is forced into a big action hero role, but he's not a big action hero guy. He seems like a pretty normal guy.

-And let's talk about Ellie Sattler for a minute. She is an amazing character. Probably one of the best female characters we've had in any movie, ever. She's bright, she's insightful, she gets shit done, she's empathetic, she's a feminist, and they let her character do all of it without once painting it with any kind of "sexy lady hero" brush. She just is cool. She outruns velociraptors, saves people's lives, is a paleobotanist, and gets one of the best lines when she blows off a sexist comment from Hammond by saying, "look, we can discuss sexism in survival situations when I get back," before heading out to go save their sorry asses.

-If we go by Spielberg movies that incite sheer action movie terror, JP is it. Like what, Jaws? Jaws maybe comes close? Jaws is an awesome movie. But one big shark doesn't have nearly the wow factor of a friggin dinosaur, or the panic from being stalked by multiple velociraptors. You can escape a shark by not being in the water. You can't escape a velociraptor. Horrifying. And we all know sharks can't open doors.

-Or how about Spielberg movies that inspire true awe? Close Encounters of the Third Kind is the only one that comes close. And that, at least for me, is truly a really close one. It's one of my favorite movies. But man, seeing those dinosaurs for the first time? The nearly perfectly executed sfx dinosaurs that haven't been rivalled by any before or since? I mean, that's pretty fucking cool.


I mean, I don't know what else to say. Jeff Fucking Goldblum, maybe? The musical score? Butts? But it's an incredible movie. I honestly didn't know that there were people who didn't think that movie was good. I guess I can understand not liking the movie (maybe a dinosaur ate your grandmother and you've been overly sensitive ever since, I don't judge), but thinking it's "minor" or "a dud" makes me think you just want to be contrarian for the attention or something. Jurassic Park is a nearly perfect movie by all sorts of rubrics, with a few silly things in it that don't detract from the plot (or my personal hero Dr. Sattler) in any way.

I'd be really interested in hearing what JP detractors think the movie should have been, if not this movie.
posted by phunniemee at 8:39 PM on June 14, 2015 [137 favorites]


Jurassic Park, the movie, was kind of a dud -- it violated the basic action/catastrophe movie principle that things should get worse and worse until all seems lost and then be dramatically saved.

Like, did you consider that maybe one of the reasons the movie is so well regarded is that it's not like every other churn-em-out action movie? That maybe people want their movies to be more than "basic"?
posted by phunniemee at 8:45 PM on June 14, 2015 [21 favorites]


I am, currently, right now, reading a bunch of his stuff. I just finished Lost World, which I enjoyed. I also just finished Rising Sun. There's a good mystery in there, but damn was that dude afraid of Japan. So far I've liked Congo the most, weirdly.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 8:47 PM on June 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


Ranking All 16 Michael Crichton Novels

Believe it or not, this list is pretty much in exactly the right order.
posted by shakespeherian at 8:48 PM on June 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


There's a good mystery in there, but damn was that dude afraid of Japan.

I'd blame the 80s, but it's from 1992.
posted by Artw at 8:51 PM on June 14, 2015 [1 favorite]


Why I won't be seeing Jurassic World.

Also, why can't we have Jurasik World?
posted by George_Spiggott at 8:58 PM on June 14, 2015 [6 favorites]


-The dinosaurs still feel real 22 years later because the special effects in the movie are incredible

Except the Gallimimus flocking.
posted by the man of twists and turns at 9:04 PM on June 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


George_Spiggot, they explain why no feathers in the movie.
I don't want to spoil it for you.
But there is a line.
Where they explain how they manipulated how the dinosaurs look so that they'd look more like how people expect them to look.


Which actually brings up another pro-JP meta-point, which is that the movie was so iconic that it pretty much singlehandedly dictated how the general populace sees dinosaurs. A velociraptor is not a turkey-sized feathered thing. It is a terrifying six foot tall lizardbird hellbeast. No matter how much science tells us about how dinosaurs probably actually looked, the first image in most people's mental rolodex for "dinosaur" is a creature from Jurassic Park.
posted by phunniemee at 9:06 PM on June 14, 2015 [10 favorites]


Agreed with phunnimee that Jurassic Park is phenomenally feminist. It's actually astounding to watch now. So matter-of-factly pro-woman, and when you consider the (sexist, ughh-worthy) source material, that's something. Everything about Ellie Sattler, not to mention the fact that Lex saves the ship park because she's a computer nerd hacker (while Timmy or whatever does absolutely nothing besides fly off an electrified fence) and Jeff Goldblum is lying around hot and shirtless (and Alan Grant spends a good deal of the movie not being the intrepid action star, that's Ellie's job, but learning to deal with kids).

And regardless, there was still a Timmy action figure (doing what?? Getting electrified?) and NO Lex action figure! Ever! Made! Can you believe that? They take a character from the books who is basically a gum-snapping, "pickle"-playing thorn in the wise focal character boy-king's side, make her into an 11-year-old(??) l33t hacker (UNIX?? SHE KNOWS THIS!!) who saves that little boy's butt like thirty times, and she gets no cool computery/hacky action figure and when you google "Lex Murphy" one of the first suggestions on Google is "Lex Jurassic Park annoying." Ugh, fuck everyone!

I also love Lex-in-the-movie because compared to Lex-in-the-book, she's not particularly physically courageous but overcomes her fears to "find the file" and protect her brother. Lex-in-the-book is a bullying jock, which was so disappointing to me, since I loved her in the movie for being the awkward geek that I was (awkward geek hero that I wanted to be).

Anyway, haven't seen Jurassic World, but will soon. It looks like fun but I'm pretty confident that compared to the original, it can only disappoint from a female character standpoint.
posted by easter queen at 9:07 PM on June 14, 2015 [27 favorites]


Where they explain how they manipulated how the dinosaurs look so that they'd look more like how people expect them to look

This is reflective of a dilemma in the book as well, where they debate making the dinosaurs slower and dopier because it's both safer and more what people expect to see, in keeping with the aims of an "amusement" park (I think, can't remember the details).
posted by easter queen at 9:08 PM on June 14, 2015


I was being a little tongue in cheek, but since you mention it, the fact that "no feathers" is deliberate doesn't make it better -- in fact it kind of makes it worse. And the director's tweet already made it clear that it was deliberate, no spoilers needed.
posted by George_Spiggott at 9:09 PM on June 14, 2015


One last comment: I love rewatching Jurassic Park, because it reminds me of a time when blockbuster movie stars were allowed to look older than 19.
posted by easter queen at 9:10 PM on June 14, 2015 [20 favorites]


If they make another sequel after the fourth movie, I hope they get Chali 2na to do the voice of the T-Rex.
posted by Strange Interlude at 9:33 PM on June 14, 2015


Jurassic Park came out when I was 11 barely 12. It was a Big Effing Deal. Everyone saw it, and everyone liked it.

No. It was sort of a dud. I was genuinely very disappointed. I just wanted to see dinosaurs fighting each other and it took 80-90 minutes to get there--for 2-3 minutes. Bullshit.

I haven't seen it since it came out but I remember thinking it was a pretty cynical and manipulative movie.

Ditto. I thought it sucked ass and haven't seen it since. I did see No. 2, which is literally one of the worst movies ever made.

I'd be really interested in hearing what JP detractors think the movie should have been, if not this movie.

More dinosaurs fighting.

Ranking All 16 Michael Crichton Novels

Believe it or not, this list is pretty much in exactly the right order.


Are all of them tied for No. 16?
posted by mrgrimm at 9:39 PM on June 14, 2015 [2 favorites]


I just wanted to see dinosaurs fighting each other

You should see Jurassic World.
posted by phunniemee at 9:44 PM on June 14, 2015 [4 favorites]


Are all of them tied for No. 16?

I guess there's literally no way to find out!
posted by shakespeherian at 9:46 PM on June 14, 2015 [23 favorites]


Are all of them tied for No. 16?

This is the first thing that came to mind when I read that.
posted by phunniemee at 9:50 PM on June 14, 2015 [4 favorites]


You had one job, Phil

The dinosaurs in Jurassic Park were originally going to be stop-motion, and it was Phil Tippett's studio that was slated to do the work. At the time, CGI was still in its infancy, but its capabilities were developing rapidly. This was a year or two after ILM had wrapped up its FX work on Terminator 2 (another film notable for its groundbreaking use of CGI), so it had all the in-house expertise and equipment necessary for doing CGI effects. But the technology was considered too primitive to render photorealistic animals that could pass on film, so it wasn't even on the radar as a potential alternative for Jurassic Park.

A few guys at ILM thought it might be possible to do dinosaurs with CGI, so they started futzing around with it in their spare time. Eventually they managed to put together a demo reel. When they showed it to Spielberg and his people, it blew them away. It was reportedly one of those game-changer moments where everyone in the room realized simultaneously that the industry was going to change forever.

Spielberg more or less made the decision to dump Phil Tippett's studio on the spot and go with ILM instead. But they ended up hiring Tippett as a consultant to supervise the dinosaur FX work. Thus he became Phil Tippett, Dinosaur Supervisor.
posted by dephlogisticated at 10:01 PM on June 14, 2015 [38 favorites]


I was eight at the time Jurassic Park came out. I had just gotten out of school for the summer and the first big event of summer vacation was going to see Jurassic Park. I remembered only a few years earlier being terrified of the animatronic dinosaurs at the science museum. But I was older now. I was ready for them.

I saw it twice. Once at the Cinemark that got worn down so much over time that it morphed slowly into a discount theater without anyone really noticing. Then again at the drive-in theater. Where we were outside at night and the wind was blowing around us and dinosaurs were rampaging on the gigantic drive-in screen. It started to rain and storm a bit in the middle of the movie. Not enough to drive anyone away but enough to make the hair on my neck stand up while my eyes were fixed upwards watching T-Rex break out of a paddock in similarly stormy conditions...

I wasn't quite ready for them.
posted by downtohisturtles at 10:01 PM on June 14, 2015 [8 favorites]


A few guys at ILM thought it might be possible to do dinosaurs with CGI, so they started futzing around with it in their spare time. Eventually they managed to put together a demo reel. When they showed it to Spielberg and his people, it blew them away.

I swear this was posted on MeFi sometime, but I can't find the post.
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 10:08 PM on June 14, 2015 [7 favorites]


Butts?

Somebody talented should do a Butts super cut:

Like, "Hold on to your butts", then that guy from Top Gun "I want some butts!" Then Venkman from Ghostbusters 2 "Aren't you supposed to lie to me, and kiss my butt?"
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 11:01 PM on June 14, 2015 [4 favorites]


Wise has the bizarre reputation of having directed both The Sound of Music and Star Trek: The Motion Picture

...and West Side Story, and The Day the Earth Stood Still, and ... well, the list goes on, although none of the rest are quite _that_ great. But they run the gamut from musicals to romances to westerns to film noir. Ahem. It was called the studio system.

Anyway. Weird hate for JP here. Now, I love me some Spielberg, but Jaws is still the legitimately better film -- one of the best of all time, really -- while JP is simply a good genre movie. I enjoyed it when it came out but felt it was a bit thin and mechanical, story-wise, overall. Still, it's held up fantastically well, particularly all that brand-new dino-CGI that you'd think would have long since begun to age. I think it's Spielberg's story talent that makes it work all these years later, not the technology itself, though.

As for this movie, though, yeah -- the BO has surpassed basically anyone's expectations and set it up for one of the top blockbusters of all time, if the Cinemascore (A) means repeat viewings and gushing recommendations. My take on this is that they were lucky to cast Chris Pratt right when he's hot. It's certainly not Bryce Dallas Howard that anyone's showing up for. (C'mon, when Arrested Development needed a daughter for Ron Howard, they got Isla Fisher!) He's just this aw-shucks actor/sex symbol of the moment with appeal to both men and women.
posted by dhartung at 11:40 PM on June 14, 2015


I do remember being slightly disappointed by the first movie because the book had pterodactyls, and the movie did not. I got over it, though. It is basically Spielberg's best movie that doesn't involve Nazis.
posted by dirigibleman at 11:45 PM on June 14, 2015


The 3rd movie has pterodactyls. That's close to the only thing I remember about it.

Pterodactyls alone do not make a movie.
posted by Artw at 11:55 PM on June 14, 2015 [3 favorites]


I liked Anthony Lane's observation, years ago, that many of Crichton's novels can be accurately summarized with the formula "Look Out! Plural Noun!" So Jurassic Park is essentially "Look out! Raptors!" while Rising Sun is "Look out! Japs!" and Disclosure is "Look out! Women!"
posted by Sonny Jim at 12:22 AM on June 15, 2015 [22 favorites]


I used to work at a relatively big post-production house. One day, there was an informal poll on the 'chat' mailing list as to which movie triggered one's carreer choice to go into vfx. Maybe it was the age of the average vfx artist at the time, but apart from a few 'terminator 2's and' toy story's, it was overwhelmingly JP.
posted by psolo at 12:36 AM on June 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


A few guys at ILM thought it might be possible to do dinosaurs with CGI, so they started futzing around with it in their spare time. Eventually they managed to put together a demo reel. When they showed it to Spielberg and his people, it blew them away.

Wired ran an oral history on ILM, which was mentioned here recently. This incident is discussed briefly, and the main guy who was the proponent of going digital, Steve Williams, kinda sounds like an ass (although, I wouldn't be surprised if someone here has worked with him). And this is him describing it almost 25 years later. If I recall correctly, he was in charge of animating Jabba in the Star Wars Special Edition, and the results didn't help him keep his job.
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 1:31 AM on June 15, 2015


And has anyone yet mentioned "So you two, um hrm, dig up dinosaurs?"
posted by TheSecretDecoderRing at 1:38 AM on June 15, 2015


I would also like to see a supercut of Goldblum making verbal noises, chuckling, sighing and touching invisible things with his hands
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 2:25 AM on June 15, 2015 [12 favorites]


The third one has put me off the franchise, which even the Spielbo-brats of the first didn't manage. The reason being Tea Leoni's monumentally irritating character.
posted by GallonOfAlan at 2:52 AM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Ebert's contemporary review of JP is pretty close to how I felt about it:
In the 16 years since it [Close Encounters] was made, however, big-budget Hollywood seems to have lost its confidence that audiences can share big dreams. "Jurassic Park" throws a lot of dinosaurs at us, and because they look terrific (and indeed they do), we're supposed to be grateful. I have the uneasy feeling that if Spielberg had made "Close Encounters" today, we would have seen the aliens in the first 10 minutes, and by the halfway mark they'd be attacking Manhattan with death rays.

Because the movie delivers on the bottom line, I'm giving it three stars. You want great dinosaurs, you got great dinosaurs.
posted by octothorpe at 4:03 AM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


I remember that review and find the quoted portion kind of baffling. Jurassic Park is in no particular hurry to show us anything. Does it wait as long as Jaws? No, it doesn't. But you don't need to look any farther than this thread to find people who thought it waited too long already (not that I agree).

A movie where Alan Grant spends all his time digging in Montana with ten minutes of dinosaurs at the end would likely be execrable.
posted by sparkletone at 4:09 AM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


It's amazing how much the quality of an FX-heavy movie is just about the director and studio having the gumption to really spend the time and money to get it right.

The CG of Terminator 2 (1991) and Jurassic Park (1993) is more convincing and evocative being watched today than that of most science fiction movies being made today even though the computing is a hundred or a thousand times cheaper depending upon the task.

Principal production on Avatar was in 2007-2008 and eight years later has anyone (but Cameron himself in the sequels) even thought about putting that level of gloss on the 3D CG / live action hybrid. Can you even imagine (for example) what Guardians of the Galaxy would have looked like with Avatar production values?

The shame of it is that a lot of the small amount of product that gets the proper treatment because of director / studio commitment doesn't have a story that merits it. (When you mute the audio and don't really think about the plot, the CG of the Transformers movies is simply breathtaking.)
posted by MattD at 5:45 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Jurassic Park was singular for me; it was one of a handful of movies that I gladly went back to see again, after telling my friend next door how awesome it was. I remember it landing like a bolt from the clear blue sky: here was a movie that I had been wanting to see my whole 13 year old life, realized and complete.

What I remember best was how important the scale of the movie was. We had a copy on VHS, and I vividly remember watching it with my aunt on our new big screen television, and the scene with the T-rex making her freak the hell out and scream blue murder. We always made a point to watch it with the lights out and the surround sound on, and the scene with the T-rex and the scene with the raptors in the kitchen were just so damn intense. It was awesome.

It was simply what a summer movie was supposed to be, and a standard by which most subsequent entries would fail. None harder than its sequel; I remember being so very disappointed in The Lost World, which just felt sloppy and unnecessary. But Jurassic Park created awe. For me, that's enough.
posted by graymouser at 6:45 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


The thing that dates it the most is the early 90s conviction that chaos theory had near mystical significance in some way and wasn't primarily a novel method of making paisley patterns.
posted by Artw at 6:52 AM on June 15, 2015 [24 favorites]


For people of a certain age, Jurassic Park was a revelation because it was the first movie with completely believable dinosaurs. Prior to that, the best I had seen was 1975's The Land that Time Forgot, which was pretty good for '75, but the dinos were still pretty obviously puppets. With JP, they looked completely real, and still do, 22 years later.

I watched it with my daughter a few days ago, and thought it held up really well, except for Wayne Knight's hammy overacting, which is distracting. He's much less believable than the T Rex. And, yeah, Sattler is a bad-ass without being pretentious or fake. Wonderful character.
posted by Pater Aletheias at 7:23 AM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Pterodactyls alone do not make a movie.

Pterodactyls with chainsaws and flamethrowers, on the other hand...
posted by GenjiandProust at 7:30 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Remember seeing it in the cinema... and the place being packed. Wouldn't be until the LOTR films that I can remember a cinema being that full. Also, unusually on the row in front of me were three generations of the same family - granddad, mum and kids who all seemed to enjoy it.

Watching it again now, the special effects look a little bit iffy round the edges. But the spare used of them, especially the cgi, gives them a weight and a solidity and realness that the 'the fly the camera anywhere' film making we get now does not have.

It's not perfect - the 'nature found a way' / find eggs sub-plot is pointless (where as in the book that the fact that the dinos were breeding and therefore there was more of them than the park people thought there were was a big plot point). And the massive continuity error in, what is otherwise an absolute classic scene, the T-Rex attack is very annoying. But there's only bring it a notch down from one of greatest films ever. It's still a classic.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:34 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


For me it was mostly a revelation because I grew up extremely sheltered when it came to media consumption and it was the first movie I went to with friends. Prior to that the "scariest" thing I watched was Goldfinger on TV.

I was properly scared and still tend to have dinosaur nightmares, 20 years later - and have watched the movie many, many times since then. The only movie I have watched more often is probably The Big Lebowski and it is a close race.
posted by dominik at 7:37 AM on June 15, 2015


Jurassic Park was a revelation because it was the first movie with completely believable dinosaurs

You could probably broaden that and say that the t-rex and raptors were the first completely believe monsters* in film.

*Human monsters like Buffalo Bill excluded.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:55 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


So from the Revisiting Jurassic Park’s Tangled Bookish Roots article and the Nedry death quote... I've just realized that's totally could have been in one the classic 70s Horror boom novels of Herbert or Hutson. Probably why I love the book so much.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 7:57 AM on June 15, 2015


The thing that dates it the most is the early 90s conviction that chaos theory had near mystical significance in some way and wasn't primarily a novel method of making paisley patterns.

If Michael Crichton wrote it now the inspecting scientist would be a thinly veiled Dawkins 'You're playing at god! And there is no god!' Hopefully he would get eaten.
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 8:14 AM on June 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


Easter Queen: Agreed with phunnimee that Jurassic Park is phenomenally feminist. It's actually astounding to watch now.

Ian Malcolm: God creates dinosaurs. God destroys dinosaurs. God creates man. Man destroys God. Man creates dinosaurs.

Ellie Sattler: Dinosaurs eat man … woman inherits the earth.
posted by WCityMike at 8:15 AM on June 15, 2015 [18 favorites]


In all kindness, who the fuck are you people, seriously.

Lawyers, probably.
posted by Sys Rq at 9:07 AM on June 15, 2015 [12 favorites]


There are so very many things to hate about Jurassic Park that it's easy to forget I enjoyed watching it.

Once.

But that's all it could carry. On second viewing or in any attempts since then, I bog down on the plot holes, the convenience-plotting, the inconsistencies of character, the chaos-woo, and on, and on. And as a computing professional I get particularly put-out at the obvious and spectacularly unprofessional errors that Hammond's IT staff have introduced into his system. (Seriously, it doesn't bother to keep track of the number of actual critters? What if a pack of wild dogs got in? Fucking idiots.)

So, if you want to like it, bully for you. To me, it will always be a spectacular feat of directorial sleight-of-hand. Coming up with a movie based on that script that included such strong performances (of often ridiculous characters) and managed to keep me from noticing how stupid it was on the first pass? That bordered on brilliant. I do hope Spielberg continues to use his powers for good...or at least, not for evil.
posted by lodurr at 9:57 AM on June 15, 2015


Phil Tippett would like to remind you that you weren't there, man. You don't know.
posted by ckape at 10:09 AM on June 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


On second viewing or in any attempts since then, I bog down on the plot holes, the convenience-plotting, the inconsistencies of character, the chaos-woo, and on, and on. And as a computing professional I get particularly put-out at the obvious and spectacularly unprofessional errors that Hammond's IT staff have introduced into his system.

That's part and parcel of a Michael Crichton story on film or in print, though. He passes it off as "Genetic engineering madness will destroy us all!" but JP is really a story of overreaching and extraordinarily incompetent automation combined with other forms of extraordinary business stupidity unbelievable from anyone who'd ever heard of the concept of an attorney. It's just shitty sleight of hand down to its core.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 10:09 AM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I'm half-kidding about Spielberg. It pisses me off that he wastes such talent making up for bad material that way (and to be fair, he doesn't do that so much anymore).
posted by lodurr at 10:18 AM on June 15, 2015


-And let's talk about Ellie Sattler for a minute. She is an amazing character. Probably one of the best female characters we've had in any movie, ever. She's bright, she's insightful, she gets shit done, she's empathetic, she's a feminist, and they let her character do all of it without once painting it with any kind of "sexy lady hero" brush. She just is cool. She outruns velociraptors, saves people's lives, is a paleobotanist, and gets one of the best lines when she blows off a sexist comment from Hammond by saying, "look, we can discuss sexism in survival situations when I get back," before heading out to go save their sorry asses.

True.

Also, don't forget how one of the most exciting sequences in that movie included a scene where a young girl saves the day BECAUSE SHE KNOWS UNIX!

That's right, motherfuckers, you better watch that shit again to remind yourself how awesome this movie will always be.
posted by hal_c_on at 10:29 AM on June 15, 2015 [4 favorites]


Another useful reminder that any criticism of a movie that relies on telling us the rules of filmmaking and how a movie violated those rules will never be good or useful criticism.
posted by maxsparber at 11:14 AM on June 15, 2015 [5 favorites]


...combined with other forms of extraordinary business stupidity unbelievable from anyone who'd ever heard of the concept of an attorney.

I want to know how the hell that park keeps getting insured?!

Someone please write me fanfic about the cokeheads in the underwriting department.
posted by Jacqueline at 11:18 AM on June 15, 2015 [7 favorites]


Another useful reminder that any criticism of a movie that relies on telling us the rules of filmmaking and how a movie violated those rules will never be good or useful criticism.

Yeah, "never" is hardly ever really a very useful characterization.

First, I can't speak for others, but what I'm telling you when I say "i get hung up on plot holes and unbelieveable characters and circumstances" is not "this film violates rules of filmmaking." What I'm telling you is "this film violates my sense that the film makes sense."

I'm telling you that after an initial exciting vieweing, the film was unwatchably broken because of all these issues.

That's not a rules-based critique, and it is "useful" to anyone who thinks they might share aspects of my aesthetic.

Second, I'm also telling you that I feel cheated and manipulated. So, again, not a "rules based critique" in any real sense -- more of a "Michael Crichton you're trying to pull a fast one by throwing inconsistent characters and stupid circumstances at me, and I fell for it on the first pass, and that makes me feel cheap."

Third, to the extent that 'rules of film-making' map to the aesthetic experience that people are likely to have (and I will grant you that they will often fail to do so), rules-based critiques can be quite useful.
posted by lodurr at 11:24 AM on June 15, 2015


Yeah, I was referring to escabeche. Sorry about the confusion.
posted by maxsparber at 11:26 AM on June 15, 2015


.....but is it as good as Fury Road?
posted by Windigo at 12:03 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I want to know how the hell that park keeps getting insured?!

Someone please write me fanfic about the cokeheads in the underwriting department.


That kind of reminded me of John Aspinall... I've no idea how me managed to keep his zoos open given the number of keepers and the general public that got killed or mauled (unless it was the magic combination of being a bit of a toff and, allegedly, being more than a bit of crook)
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 12:32 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


It's delightful to learn—among other things—that some people enjoyed Sphere, a book that made me want to hurl it against the nearest hard surface. But then, I have a hangup about books and movies that make me curious about how they end and then neglect to provide an ending.
posted by Flexagon at 12:49 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


- According to numerous interviews, Michael Crichton’s initial idea struck him in the early 1980’s.

Now and again, I've occasionally mused on the legal Venn intersection between Jurassic Park and the Satanus character from Judge Dredd - complete with a national 'Dinosaur Park' - and wondered why Pat Mills isn't a very, very rich man. It's not as though 'inspiration' from 2000AD was alien in Hollywood, as Robocop apparently proved.
posted by specialbrew at 1:29 PM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Jurassic Park is not without its warts, but no films are, and for me nothing negates that it's just such a ball.

The final shot of the T. rex with the "WHEN DINOSAURS RULED THE EARTH" banner is one of my favorite movie moments of all time. It's so over the top is such a pitch perfect way. It's hard to believe the film was originally going to end with Grant killing the raptors with a piece of construction equipment or some such nonsense.* In other words, the last time we would have seen the Tyrannosaur is when it eats the Gallimimus. What a lopsided film that would have been.

Another useful reminder that any criticism of a movie that relies on telling us the rules of filmmaking and how a movie violated those rules will never be good or useful criticism.

Amen.

The 3rd movie has pterodactyls. That's close to the only thing I remember about it.

Pteranodon. Sorry for the pedantry. :)

* I re-watched The Lost World recently and was struck by the terrible scene where Malcolm's daughter kills the raptor using her gymnastics skills. That is the single instance in the franchise of a human killing a dinosaur. I mean, the idea of killing a raptor that way is fucking stupid to begin with, but it also strikes such a sour note. The dinosaurs are supposed to be animals, just doing what they do, and killing one off in such a jokey way is just awful.
posted by brundlefly at 2:08 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


My favorite Jurassic Park fanfic: "A Year of Women", about "Twelve women who have shaped Alan Grant's life." The author writes:
I started thinking about paleontology, and how it's very much a man's world. All of the scientists cited as inspirations for Jurassic Park were, with one exception I believe, male. Most of the predominant names in the field are male, yet Alan clearly responds to Ellie as an equal in the books. There's a partnership and respect between them that's perhaps unusual for a man of his age in a male-dominated field. So I thought of how many women he must have known and interacted with who helped shape his views over the years, and the idea became to paint scenes of his life, and the women who've moved through it and the impressions they left on him.
posted by brainwane at 2:33 PM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


Pteranodon. Sorry for the pedantry. :)

Sup bro, pretty sure you meant ptedantry.
posted by phunniemee at 3:20 PM on June 15, 2015 [15 favorites]


My take on this is that they were lucky to cast Chris Pratt right when he's hot.

The best part about casting Chris Pratt is that anything viewers might find ridiculous in the plot can be explained by the fact that the movie is actually Burt Macklin, FBI er, Dinosaur Wrangler. If only they'd cast Aubrey Plaza in Bryce Dallas Howard's role...
posted by Blue Jello Elf at 3:29 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


As far as kid actors in a not-only-for-kids film go, I'd have to say that the Jurassic Park duo are probably among the least annoying, on par with Newt from Aliens or John Connor in Terminator 2. Or is it because I just like these sci-fi special effects pioneering survivor films that are fun for all ages (of characters)?
posted by Apocryphon at 3:33 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


My take on this is that they were lucky to cast Chris Pratt right when he's hot.

I don't think my mom has ever seen Chris Pratt in anything before Jurassic World. My parents went to go see the movie on Friday, and here were the texts I got from my mom right after:
"Awesome movie!! I could watch it again, right now!"

"I am officially a Chris Pratt groupie. He almost made me forget about Malcolm."

"...almost."
posted by phunniemee at 3:34 PM on June 15, 2015 [3 favorites]


In all kindness, who the fuck are you people, seriously.

I'm not a lawyer but I work in a small corner of the film industry. Aside from the dinosaurs, which are cool no argument there, I don't like the film. Poor plotting, manipulative, clunky dialogue, suspense falls flat - it doesn't work for me at all. It seems for a lot of people here that love this film saw it at a critical moment in their lives - early teens. Which might explain why perhaps that I didn't (I was in my 20s). To me it seemed, at the time especially, to be a summer movie designed to sell toys. I didn't mind the book though.
posted by Ashwagandha at 4:08 PM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


To me it seemed, at the time especially, to be a summer movie designed to sell toys.

Dinosaurs eat man, woman inherits the earth.
posted by phunniemee at 4:13 PM on June 15, 2015


As far as kid actors in a not-only-for-kids film go, I'd have to say that the Jurassic Park duo are probably among the least annoying, on par with Newt from Aliens or John Connor in Terminator 2.

♫ one of these things is not like the other... ♫
posted by brundlefly at 4:21 PM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


To me it seemed, at the time especially, to be a summer movie designed to sell toys.

When I saw it again a couple of years ago I couldn't get over the feeling of being forced to watch an advertisement for a theme park ride.
posted by junco at 4:25 PM on June 15, 2015


I'll say what I've always said. Teenage John Connor is cool as hell. If I was in high school, I'd vote for him for class president. Not to mention, he's sadly the best incarnation of John Connor (besides the scarred adult version who shows up at the beginning of T2), since the one T3 was a total dork.
posted by Apocryphon at 4:41 PM on June 15, 2015 [1 favorite]


"...he's sadly the best incarnation of John Connor..."

Sadly, that doesn't say much. I think it's a testament to how good T2 is that it transcends Connor. And let's forget about Terminator Salvation entirely.

I'm not sure if this counts as a Terminator Genisys* spoiler since it's revealed in the trailer, but ...

...

...apparently John Connor is corrupted by the machines somehow and goes all nanotech evil cyborg. This seems like a really, really shitty decision since Connor has been played by a different actor in every movie he's appeared in. There's not enough visual continuity in terms of the character for the sight of Evil John Connor to have any impact on viewers.

*WTF TITLE
posted by brundlefly at 4:54 PM on June 15, 2015


I really really liked Prey.
posted by turbid dahlia at 4:59 PM on June 15, 2015


I really really liked Prey.

Prey + Jurassic Park together are the one two punch that cause me to find starling murmurations intensely unsettling.
posted by phunniemee at 5:12 PM on June 15, 2015


I had never heard of the great train robbery and I thought I had read all of Michael Crichton's books.

Their list of book order is surprisingly good, though I would have moved up Congo and the pirate one and moved down Andromeda Strain. I never really got the hype with Andromeda Strain.
posted by bbqturtle at 5:53 PM on June 15, 2015


I'm seeing JW tomorrow and I am almost squeeing with excitement. Finally, we get a second Jurassic Park movie!
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:30 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


I would also like to see a supercut of Goldblum making verbal noises, chuckling, sighing and touching invisible things with his hands

As you wish.
posted by Evilspork at 6:48 PM on June 15, 2015


If you have not already, do yourself a favor and read Escape from Cretaceous Park.
posted by HMSSM at 8:32 PM on June 15, 2015 [2 favorites]


Or how about Spielberg movies that inspire true awe? Close Encounters of the Third Kind is the only one that comes close. And that, at least for me, is truly a really close one.

I watched Close Encounters a few years back and IMHO it hasn't aged well. Structurally it's a bit of mess, frankly. Jaws holds up and Jurassic Park absolutely does as well. JP is one of Spielberg's top five, maybe top three. JP is also a (the?) high-water mark for CGI.

Anyway, I remember going on a first date when I saw Jurassic Park in the theater. Before, when I asked her out, this conversation happened:

Me: "Hey, Rhonda (her real name), do ya wanna go see a movie?"
Her: "Yes, let's do that!"
Me: "Oh, good. There's that new Jurassic Park movie coming out. Let's go see that."
Her: "Uh. Hmm. Erm. Actually, I'm not sure I want to see that. Let's see--" and I swear this is true, this is what she suggested "--that new Michael J. Fox movie Life With Mikey? It looks cute."
Me: "...."
Me, scrambling: "Oh, that movie? Yeah it's gone. Jurassic Park is pretty much the only movie playing."
Her, disappointed: "Oh, well. Sure. I guess. Let's see that, then."

A few hours later, I'm driving, she's in the passenger seat. We're on our way to the theater when I stupidly pass the other theater in town. The one playing Life With Mikey. Whose title is proudly displayed on the marquee.

Her: "Hey, I thought you said Life With Mikey was gone. It's...playing there."
Me, playing it off/cool: "Oh, I musta made a mistake. Oh, well, we don't know when it starts or anything, so let's just see Jurassic Park."

The takeaway being it's sometimes a moral positive to lie to your date.
posted by zardoz at 3:46 AM on June 16, 2015 [2 favorites]


The takeaway being it's sometimes a moral positive to lie to your date.

Dr. Ian Malcolm: [looking at a huge mound of dinosaur faeces] That is one big pile of shit.
posted by hal_c_on at 12:01 PM on June 16, 2015


Regarding sexism in Jurassic World and the Bechdel test (and no, thank you kindly, I do not believe female dinosaurs talking to one another counts!)...

1. It includes at least two women,
2. who have at least one conversation,
3. about something other than a man or men.


Yes. It passes this set of criteria. There are four (?) women who have more than a single line: Claire, the kids' mother (Claire's sister), Claire's assistant (Zara) and the woman in the control room (Vivian). There is at least one conversation that doesn't have to do with men (between the sisters, about the kids -- but then about their mother). Maybe the conversations between Claire and Zara or Claire and Vivian also count, but the only one that struck me as not really involving men was the one between the sisters.

Having said that, the Bechdel Test is an embarrassingly low bar that a lot of excellent films don't pass. Just because this one passes that low bar doesn't mean that it's not a sexist film.

Spoilers below:
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Claire is, ultimately, a damsel in distress for the majority of the film. Part of it is that she's obviously not one of the people who would normally go out into the park and handle dinosaurs. I'm not entirely sure what her job is - is she in charge of the whole park? She's certainly a corporate person of some kind, more concerned about snagging sponsorships for the new attractions, than anything else, even her nephews. (I can't remember when it was, exactly, but while all the stuff is happening, it takes her a minute to think about the kids in all the chaos and there is an amusing moment when you see her realize "oh shit, the kids!".)

So, on the one hand, it's unfair to compare her to, for example, Ellie Sattler. Ellie was wearing work boots in the first movie, for crying out loud. Claire wears a pristine white outfit and heels. But, on the other hand, she spends an inordinate amount of time (IMHO) being a fish out of water and only shows that she's a halfway capable individual twice. Once is shooting the pterodactyl as it attacks Owen (Chris Pratt), the other is taking one of her nephew's phrases ("we need more teeth!") and thinking to release the T-Rex.

... and then promptly loses all her cred by attempting to run away from the T-Rex in her heels.

There's more, but honestly, this post sums it up pretty well for me.

I enjoyed the movie for all the dinosaurs. I was definitely freaking out through some of the more suspenseful moments. I just wish that Claire had been more like Ellie, particularly since I'd re-watched the original Jurassic Park the night before. The contrast between them is, to be honest, disappointing.
posted by juliebug at 2:01 PM on June 16, 2015


It seems for a lot of people here that love this film saw it at a critical moment in their lives - early teens. Which might explain why perhaps that I didn't (I was in my 20s).

You may well be on to something, here - phunniemee makes some very good points above about the many good things about JP, and yet for me it never added up to anything more than pleasantly mild brain candy that I don't mind watching on a lazy Sunday afternoon every few years.

The authors of the two Tor article in the post were certainly under 13. I, like you, was in my twenties, and I'm pretty sure by that point experience had taught me that "PG/PG-13 rating" + "summer blockbuster" + (especially) "Spielberg" = SAFE. I knew going in that the main good guys would NEVER be in any real danger of dying, there might be a handful of "neutrals" or kinda-good guys who die (but very likely offscreen & they were just cannon fodder anyway, just enough characterization for us to go "Awww, man . . . ." when they bit the dust), the bad guys were definitely gonna get et, there wouldn't be much gore or violence onscreen at all (especially after the shit Spielberg got for the "pulling out the heart" bit in Temple of Doom), whatever violence was onscreen would be comic/cartoonish . . . . . . there just wasn't any real suspense. Bad, irreversible, shit can happen in "R" movies, or low budget movies, or indie movies - with Spielberg at the helm of a huge PG flick, you know that everything will wind up just peachy.

The dinosaurs were awesome . . . . but not scary.

I'm not sure a lot of pre-teens (especially back then) really have that kind of perspective, so for them the suspense in JP actually works on a visceral level.
posted by soundguy99 at 4:52 PM on June 16, 2015 [1 favorite]


I knew going in that the main good guys would NEVER be in any real danger of dying

I suppose, but that's the case with the overwhelming majority of movies, PG-13 Spielberg or otherwise. Is North by Northwest not suspenseful because we know Cary Grant is going to live in the end?
posted by brundlefly at 1:35 PM on June 17, 2015


I really miss that danger in movies. (I was so disappointed when John didn't actually Die At The End, as promised.) Nowadays it seems that whenever you seriously raise the specter of a main character dieing, you get accused of 'going grimdark'. E.g., that super-annoying demi-movement that keeps cropping up in SF from time to time about writing "positive" stories.

As I sit here I wonder if the film market in particular hasn't segmented so that the 'grim' stuff is meant to be handled by horror, dark fantasy and crime films, and all the other films get some cat-safety-compliant variation on an up-ending.
posted by lodurr at 1:51 PM on June 17, 2015


So, um, turns out I actually really liked Jurassic World, especially it's meta-commentary upon itself.
posted by Artw at 3:49 PM on June 17, 2015 [3 favorites]






Y'know it's sort of a shame Crichton never got around to writing some kind of space fiction.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 2:13 AM on June 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


... for highly-sarcastic values of "shame".
posted by lodurr at 5:39 AM on June 19, 2015


Breakfast
posted by fearfulsymmetry at 6:18 AM on June 19, 2015


... for highly-sarcastic values of "shame".

HA HA YES, BECAUSE THE WORLD IS DIMINISHED BY THE PRESENCE OF MORE BOOKS HA HA HA
posted by phunniemee at 7:05 AM on June 19, 2015


HA HA YES, BECAUSE THE WORLD IS DIMINISHED BY THE PRESENCE OF MORE BOOKS HA HA HA

More books where Crichton spews nonsense for profit? Yes.
posted by lodurr at 7:09 AM on June 19, 2015 [1 favorite]


Y'know it's sort of a shame Crichton never got around to writing some kind of space fiction.

If those darn scientists from Japan keep exploring space without humility and wisdom because they didn't earn it, they're going to bring the vacuum back to Earth, because vacuum finds a way, and then what will happen to all of the women staging false sexual harassment lawsuits as a way to get the public to buy the lie that is anthropogenic climate change?

The important thing is to be afraid of everything that isn't very tall white men who are almost scientists but stopped their sciencing before they got all corroded.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 8:00 AM on June 19, 2015 [4 favorites]


phunniemee: -If we go by Spielberg movies that incite sheer action movie terror, JP is it. Like what, Jaws? Jaws maybe comes close? Jaws is an awesome movie. But one big shark doesn't have nearly the wow factor of a friggin dinosaur, or the panic from being stalked by multiple velociraptors. You can escape a shark by not being in the water. You can't escape a velociraptor. Horrifying. And we all know sharks can't open doors.

I'd say that JP was terrifying to you for the same reason that Jaws was terrifying to me: we were kids when we saw the respective movies. (I was eleven when Jaws came out; going by your profile, you were seven when JP premiered.) It didn't matter that I was living in Wisconsin, maybe a thousand miles from sharks in any direction, at the time, any more than it mattered that you can't really get dinosaur DNA from amber or real velociraptors were small enough to step on or whatever.
posted by Halloween Jack at 12:53 PM on June 19, 2015


I never thought of JP as even slightly scary but I again I was probably way too old when I saw it for it to effect me.
posted by octothorpe at 12:58 PM on June 19, 2015


I'd say that JP was terrifying to you for the same reason that Jaws was terrifying to me: we were kids when we saw the respective movies.

I mean, for what it's worth, I didn't think Jurassic Park was scary when I was a kid. I thought it was awesome. But I can still recognize that an enormous many-toothed bitey creature would be a terrifying thing to encounter. I mean, no one goes to horror movies because zombies are real.
posted by phunniemee at 1:11 PM on June 19, 2015


You people are crazy, Jurassic Park in space would rock
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 3:32 PM on June 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


I mean, no one goes to horror movies because zombies are real.

Now you tell me . . . . . .
posted by soundguy99 at 4:21 PM on June 19, 2015


In the grim darkness of the forty first millennium... nature finds a way.

/cue three way space marine, tyrannid, T-Rex fight at a remote adeptus mechanicus research monastery.
posted by Artw at 4:27 PM on June 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Nature finds a way
posted by shakespeherian at 4:30 PM on June 19, 2015


How about Tyrannosaurus Reich?
posted by Halloween Jack at 5:37 PM on June 19, 2015


I mean, no one goes to horror movies because zombies are real.

I totally read that the other way. There's nobody at the horror shows any more, on account of all the zombies.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 5:40 PM on June 19, 2015 [2 favorites]


Saw it yesterday. The meta-commentary on the nature of branding & amusement parks seemed weirdly cynical and misplaced-- I mean, it was a movie with a shit ton of product placement, you can't do all that shit in earnest and then wink at it. You can't have your cake and stick your dick in it too!

Also all the marital drama and guilting women for having jobs was like, really cold and unpalatable. The mom spent two of her three scenes crying and the other one bitching at her husband (for a confusing comment I didn't even understand). Personally, I love my niece and nephew but I can never remember their ages, and I hope that they think having an aunt with a job is inspirational and not evidence of my bitch heartlessness.

And WHO thinks that putting a redhead in true white and purple is a good idea?? With a nude shoe? Are you people fricking crazy?! What was that horrible white dress aughhh

Her outfit was a perfect symbol of how not a focal character she was-- no woman wants to be chased through the jungle in stilettos and a flowy separates shirt dress(?), no matter how edgily it is styled. Not even if she is Megan Fox or Fay Wray.

Chris Pratt was hot and the motorcycle/raptor scene was cool. Michael Bay Dinosaur Megafight was cool, despite my hate of Transformers-flavored climax scenes (also people in the theater clapped when the mosasaur chomped the Indominus? What?).

I hated all the characters, basically, which made it hard. But I was pretty impressed with the scariness/excitment level and I'd probably see it again! also many of the jokes were dumb but some were funny and the final scene between the protags was cute. I felt like it was written FIBI (for idiots by idiots!) but I couldn't deny the fun of the CGI. (Also "but how many pounds is it???" made me laugh just because, why?)
posted by easter queen at 11:07 AM on June 22, 2015


Also when Chris Pratt swiped Jake Johnson's figurines off his desk I lolled. But c'mon movie, you have Chris Pratt, JAKE FRICKIN' JOHNSON and these are the boneheaded jokes you give them? The comedy level could have been much higher and would have rescued the crappy characterizations at least.
posted by easter queen at 11:11 AM on June 22, 2015


Is it mandatory for any article written about the "Jurassic Park" movies to include the picture of shirtless Jeff Goldblum?
posted by Devoidoid at 11:53 AM on June 24, 2015 [1 favorite]


Yes.

... yes.
posted by easter queen at 12:01 PM on June 24, 2015 [3 favorites]


Interesting titbit learned from a Brannon Braga interview - Roddenberry had an explicit rule against time travel for TNG, would that it had been kept to.
posted by Artw at 6:00 PM on June 25, 2015




Jurassic Park in space...
posted by lodurr at 10:38 AM on June 29, 2015


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