Ranking movies is about as arbitrary as it gets, and then there’s ranking movies within a specific franchise… Yeah, I’d say it’s an exercise in futility, so you may be wondering, “Why do it?” The fact that you’re reading this is the answer. Anyway, here’s my ranking of worst to best of the Jurassic Park movie series, and just for the record, I don’t care how many Jurassic World movies they make, I’m not calling it that EVER.
5. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
This movie is boring and a carbon copy of the previous installment – all they did was substitute “the park is open” with “the park is covered in lava” and then immediately abandoned what could have been an intriguing ticking clock gimmick for BORING. Meh.
4. Jurassic World
A pale imitation of the original with a pale imitation of Indiana Jones in the lead. There’s a few cool things to look at, but this is a bland affair – aside from the most brutal inessential character death to ever be put on screen.
3. The Lost World: Jurassic Park II
Sure, it’s a clunker, but it’s MEMORABLE.
“We’re not going to make the same mistakes again.” “No, you’ll make all new ones!”
“You got kicked off the team?!?”
And so on. The trailer falling off the cliff is neat, too.
2. Jurassic Park III
This movie gets better every time I see it. The phone gag never gets old. I know the dream sequence is silly, but I look forward to it and I laugh every time.
1. Jurassic Park
Or, as I like to call it, “Jaws for people who think Jaws is boring.” It was visually dazzling in it’s day, but there’s a lot of tension here, too. It’s definitely one of the best of the big budget blockbuster of the 90s.
(And by “Failing,” I mean artistically, obviously not commercially.)
Journey with me into the depths of Universal Pictures and see how a Jurassic World movie gets made… if you DARE.
“Okay everybody, it’s time to open the cash register that is the Jurassic Park franchise. Does anybody have ideas for a script?”
“That’s easy. Just take the script for Jurassic World and cross out “The Park is open,” and replace it with “There’s lava, but not for the entire movie, because that would get expensive,” and that’ll do. For the rest of the time, we’ll just do the exact same ‘genetically engineered dinosaur on the loose’ and ‘dinosaurs can be trained, bond with humans’ thing we did last time.”
“Okay. I think that’s lunch.”
It’s just that simple, folks. They put shiny thing in front of us and we open our wallets.
Speaking of which, Director J. A. Bayona gives us some interesting things to look at during the course of 128 minutes where there’s nothing to think or feel about – he does this trick with shadows that’s both effective and cool to look at, but he does it more than once, which was probably not a good idea.
Meanwhile, the idea to bring human cloning into the movie reeks of both “Look, here’s something NEW! Don’t you see how this movie is totally different?” and “This may be way off brand, but the next movie can now be able human-dinosaur hybrids,” and man, do I NOT want to see that movie.
Anyway, Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard are both likable enough, Daniella Pineda and Justice Smith are both welcomed additions and Jeff Goldblum isn’t really in this movie, it’s just a cheap gimmick. Toby Jones and B. D. Wong could really use a mustache to twirl, and that about rounds out the cast.
What else can I say about Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom? It’s especially engaging – I’ve never seen so many people leave the theater to go to the bathroom during a movie. It’s not that it’s fundamentally broken, it’s just lazy. If this is your first Jurassic Park movie, maybe you’ll enjoy it. but as a twenty year veteran of the franchise, I was just waiting for it to be over.