The sequel to 2015 Jurassic World and the second in a planned trilogy, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom takes us back to the island that the dinosaurs now dominate. The disaster of the last film means the creatures roam free. Yet the island they call home is no longer safe, and a rescue mission is the only way to secure their survival.
Fallen Kingdom sees Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, B. D. Wong, and Jeff Goldblum all reprising their previous role and they are joined by newcomers James Cromwell, Rafe Spall, Toby Jones, and Ted Levine.
The latestl’ [ films may not have the classic appeal of the original, but this new offering delivers on action and suspense. Director Bayona adds brilliant horror elements and through the final act, takes the franchise in a new and interesting direction.
Set three years after the outbreak that destroyed Jurassic World. The dinosaurs have remained in the park, but the islands volcano is no longer dormant. Claire (Dallas-Howard) is now leader of the Dinosaur Protection Group and fighting to ensure the creatures survival. When an offer is made to rescue the dinosaurs and give them a new home, Claire enlists ex-flame and raptor expert Owen (Pratt) in going back to the island they once escaped. Yet is this offer too good to be true?
This instalment is directed by Spanish filmmaker J.A. Bayona who is best known for directing horror classic The Orphanage, drama The Impossible, and fantasy A Monster Calls. Previous director, Colin Trevorrow, acts as producer and co-writer while original Jurassic mastermind Steven Spielberg still oversees as lead producer.
The film begins by taking us back to the now chaotic island. The constant threat of dinosaur attacks and action proves familiar, but enjoyable, territory. Yet this sequel explores the moral and emotional impact that creating life brings. Do the dinosaurs have rights and in creating them are we protectors? Or is the volcano resetting what should not have been done? Parallels to Frankenstein are not just in the director’s Gothic imagery but also the films themes. The emotional attachment to the dinosaurs is played up here and, honestly, there are a few hard hitting, sad moments. For the second half, the creatures are brought into our world, with a more The Lost World feel. The jumps still work, and danger is indeed, around every corner for the characters.
Director Bayona has indeed added his own signature style to this film. The Gothic elements and horror tropes add a flair to this film that has not seen before. The Lockwood estate acts as the haunted mansion of the film with its museum like basement and moonlight rooftop. Dinosaurs our silhouetted in front of the moon and shadows through spiral staircases give the film an individual look.
This is a cheesy film though. It’s predictable and despite interesting visuals, it does not do anything new with the story. Things go wrong, and audiences will enjoy watching bad guy after bad guy picked off, in pretty gruesome ways. Nothing speical but this delivers what audiences have grown to love about the Jurassic franchise. The ending opens a new avenue for the third instalment and takes the franchise in an interesting direction.
No doubt that leads Dallas Howard and Pratt still have great chemistry on screen. The two this time round have a chance to develop their characters further. Claire feels more established with a new moral perspective, (and yes sensible shoes) while Owen grapples with his loyalty to creatures he helped train. Goldblum, despite receiving top bill, appears in a cool but cameo role. Rafe Spall, Tobey Jones, and Ted Levine are new villains who audiences will love to hate and pray for their well-deserved demise.
This may be a predictable entry to the Jurassic World franchise, but it delivers on suspense and action. A great addition and horror flair from its new director.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is out now!