Franchise becomes a bit of a dinosaur

Saturday June 23, 2018 Written by Published in Entertainment
A scene from the movie Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom screening at the Empire Cinema. 18062222 A scene from the movie Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom screening at the Empire Cinema. 18062222

Filmmakers will go to any extent to squeeze the very last dollar from franchises which have previously been a hit among moviegoers.

Economically, it may make sense, but does it do justice to the franchise and the reputation it has gained from that initial release?

Take for instance, the Star Wars franchise. They even did a movie recently on one of the leading characters, Han Solo – Solo: A Star Wars Story – in what many perceived, and rightfully so, as total money-milking.

For the record, the movie crashed at the box office.

Planet of the Apes gained a good following after its release but as more movies from the franchise started coming through, it started to lose steam following a stellar run at the beginning.

At least there was something about Planet of the Apes that made more sense than the latest Jurassic World movie, Fallen Kingdom, which was released this week at the Empire Cinema.

Giving apes human-like intelligence in the Planet of the Apes seemed a reasonable idea. It made at least a bit of sense, given the close genetic relationship between humans and other great apes.

But creating a human like dinosaur in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is taking things a bit too far.

The logic is obviously to expand the franchise by bringing some depth to the story and providing multiple options for its makers to plan future movies.

Unfortunately, by doing so, the filmmakers sometimes risk losing the very essence of what the franchise stands for. And from what I can gauge from this latest Jurassic World flick, they are almost getting there.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, the sixth movie in the franchise, is set three years after the events shown in Jurassic World.

In Jurassic World, a new theme park on island of Isla Nublar creates a genetically modified hybrid dinosaur, which escapes containment and goes on a killing spree. The humans soon leave the island after the dinosaurs go rogue.

The island is now under threat from a volcano which is about to erupt and the United States government decides to let the remaining dinosaurs perish in the eruption.

Enter Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard), the theme park’s former operations manager, who teams up with Owen Grady (Chris Pratt), a Navy veteran and former dinosaur trainer for Jurassic World, in a bid to save those remaining dinosaurs.

But what seemed at first like a noble exercise soon turn ugly when corporate greed comes to play and Owen and Claire realise that some things, especially extinct animals, are better left alone.

As expected, there is lot of work done in the visuals, thanks to the CGI, to give Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom the authentic look it deserves.

The producers have done well in past movies from this franchise when it comes to visuals and the action associated with them, and in this film they’re better than ever.

There is a scene in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom where the main characters along with the dinosaurs try to escape the island after the volcanic eruption.

The graphic work done in this sequence is incredible and is one of best scenes in the entire movie.

Both Pratt and Howard put in decent performances. However, there is a lack of chemistry between the two despite them being former flames from Jurassic World.

There is nothing extraordinary in direction from JA Bayona – it’s basic and remains true to the other installments in the franchise. 

Unlike those other movies, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom focuses more on humans and less on dinosaurs. It’s about corporate greed and the danger associated with it.

And as they say, greed, in the end, fails even the greedy. Hopefully the makers of Jurassic World will learn to be a little generous and not let their appetite for quick cash from shoddy movies ruin the entire franchise.

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