Movie: Jurassic World

(*no spoilers alert!)

The first dinosaur theme park may have been shut down (with good reason), but the movies just keep on coming. Breaking a world record with a $511.8 million debut in the box office, the fascination with dinosaurs doesn't stop. An inevitable looming presage contrasts the wildly successful attraction, Jurassic World, on Isla Neblar, where everything is running smoothly at the park with a predictable set of main character prototypes.

Trouble starts brewing in paradise with small mishaps, thanks to brothers Gray (Ty Simpkins) and Zach (Nick Robinson), and the climax starts to develop when the park's newest attraction (soon to be unveiled), the Indominus Rex (the foreshadowing of the name!), causes fatal confusion and everything turns from tranquil and peace to full-out chaos in only a few scenes.

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A hugely devoted follower of Parks and Rec, I was unsure of what to expect from hilarious comic/actor, Chris Pratt, playing Owen (apparently he already proved his leading man acting chops in Guardians of the Galaxy). Without him, what would his leading lady, Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) be? Probably dead. Actually, everyone would have probably died right away.

Not only was Owen impressive as the animal-whispering, ex-military man bada** who sticks to his good guy morals, Pratt's delivery of strength and acting saved the mostly unknown main cast from oblivion (and subsequent death as a not-so-important supporting character). For New Girl fans, you get your dose of Nick Miller-ish dorkiness (Jake Johnson).

(One of my favorite lines was when Claire, Gray, Zach and Owen are driving the car away from just barely escaping death and the boys ask:

"Can you stay with us forever?" [in a non-cheesy way]

"Of course, I'll always be here," says Aunt Claire who's now trying really hard to be a good aunt (probably because it feels like they're all going to die soon).

Then the boys look at her and say, "We meant Owen." ... "Yeah, definitely him." -- What a BA, right?! The guys just met him. But I guess he did just save their lives with his insane survival skills.)

One of the subplots leaves enough opening for a sequel (science never stops, does it?), but with an amount of investment that's forgettable and irrelevant enough. After watching the movie, I would most likely return to theatres to watch the next installment of Jurassic, but I wouldn't mind if there was an entirely new cast (with the exception of Pratt -- you can leave out the girl, though... their mini romance wasn't all that great). The movie also paid homage to the original Park in a few scenes (R.I.P. Ray Arnold)

With a predictably sky-high death count and a theme park that, despite the fact that it's inevitably doomed, Jurassic World was just as good as you would expect (from a sequel). With all the hype over the chaos that ensues and the problem that seems unfixable (thanks, science), the ending seems to fall a little flat and might leave viewers saying "that's it?!" (well, I did). However, the movie itself was entertaining, the plot was somewhat predictable but suspenseful nonetheless, and the CGI and set was visually flawless and enviable. Jurassic World is like the theme park itself: a fun ride that entertains, but leaves you wishing for just a little more.

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