Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

Though it’s far from a great movie, who doesn’t enjoy watching dinosaurs devour a few bad guys.  But let me warn you that this may be too horrifying for younger children.

Jurassic World Fallen KingdomThe plot of this film is basically irrelevant. In a nutshell we have dinosaurs living on Isla Nublar facing extinction as a result of the eruption of a giant volcano.  Benjamin Lockwood (James Cromwell), a California magnate who was a partner with Richard Attenborough when the dinosaurs were created in the original film, hatches a plan to have several brought back to the States to live in a preserve where they will be beyond human contact.

Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard rekindle their roles from the last film, here journeying back to island with Mr. Lockwood’s assistant, Eli (Rafe Spall).  It turns out that Eli has other plans, and his small armed force betrays our heroes in order to bring the dinosaurs back to California where they will be auctioned off to a collection of nefarious bidders from around the world.

With Toby Jones playing an auctioneer without any conscience, you know that the dinosaurs are not going to be kept in their cages for long.

Having discovered their betrayal, Pratt’s Owen Grady and Howard’s Claire Dearing find a way to hide in the villains’ massive ship with their two spirited assistants, Zia (Daniella Pineda) and Franklin (Justice Smith).  The rest of the film takes place on Lockwood’s Versailles-like estate where villain after villain become little more than an appetizer for the dinosaurs.

With the exception of the performance of Ms. Pineda, the only other memorable role belongs to Isabella Sermon, who plays Mr. Lockwood’s suspicious granddaughter.  It is worth noting that young Ms. Sermon joins Mckenna Grace and Dafne Keen from last year’s Gifted and Logan as young actresses that need to be remembered down the road.  They all provided a spirit and energy that was central to defining the emotional strength of their respective films.

Though this movie confronts a moral dilemma as it wrestles with a decision to let the dinosaurs die or release them into the wilds of California, you have to swallow a lot of nonsense while watching this movie that lasts over two hours.  While the eruption on the island leaves you a bit teary-eyed as you watch it engulf a large brontosaurus, it is incredible how our unarmed heroes are able to dodge harm.  They seem to have been immune to the toxic vapors penetrating the atmosphere from the flowing lava, something that we have just observed taking place with the eruption this year of Kilauea on the big island of Hawaii.

But like it or not, there will be another sequel. President Trump will probably be in it where he has the dinosaurs patrol our southern border to devour illegal immigrants.