Jurassic Park – IMDB 226/250
After a long hiatus waiting for NOW TV rather than buying the DVD, I’m back with a Christmas edition of my IMDb reviews. A Christmas edition if only because it is the 22nd of December.
And really what is more Christmassy than dinosaurs going terrorising humans, as the latest film in my IMDb top 250 list is Steven Spielberg’s modern classic, Jurassic Park.
Starring the likes of Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum and the late great Richard Attenborough, Jurassic Park tells the amazing story of a new type of theme park opening in Costa Rica by John Hammond (Attenborough), who by ‘sparing no expense’ has managed to create real life dinosaurs, using DNA and mosquitos and some loose science type things. (That’s a technical term),
It isn’t long before said dinosaurs get out of control and out of their captivity, and start raging havoc through the park, as Sam Neill desperately tries to get Hammonds’ two grandchildren to safety from the parks Jurassic inhabitants.
Jurassic Park is a film that has become synonymous with my childhood, as I remember watching and being terrified by it as a child. It has so much nostalgia which I’m sure it has with many children across the world, especially having been fascinated by dinosaurs as I was when I was younger, and still am to a degree.
Moments such as the first time we hear the thud of the T-Rexs’ approach, with the brilliant image of the water rumbling, and then when it eats the lawyer (Martin Ferrero) on the toilet, are all iconic moments that have been written in to the history of cinema.
But the scene that has always stuck with me is when the main villain of the film Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight), encounters a Dilophosaurus. I remember for some reason being petrified of this scene, and whenever I watch it now it brings back memories of watching it through closed fingers.
The whole film just had an endearing quality to it. The stunning and at the time ground-breaking visuals are perfectly complimented by the memorable score from film legend John Williams – which is still instantly recognisable to this day. My Mum has it on her Classic FM at the Movies CD. You know you’ve made it big when you get on this.
It truly is a modern classic, which can be loved by kids and adults, with an excellent blend of action and adventure, like many of Spielberg’s films such as Indiana Jones or E.T. And though I enjoyed Jurassic World (2015), it didn’t have the same heart or energy the original provides.
It may be aimed more towards children, but Jurassic Park still poses serious questions as well. It questions the power and our use of science and technology, and whether or not we are going too far in our advancement of it. Like Dr Ian Malcom (Goldblum) says “Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.” These sorts of questions are still raised in TV programmes today such as Humans and Westworld, and clearly writer Michael Crichton is occupied with this question as well.
But it isn’t a film without its flaws. The writing is somewhat simple and at times stale, but this may be largely because the focus was always going to be on the visuals and action of the dinosaurs. And due to the progress and new discoveries we have made in the last 23 years regarding dinosaurs, some of the science here is very wrong. But you can hardly blame Spielberg or Crichton for that.
My main issue with this movie is sadly Richard Attenborough. Though his performance is as usual charming and his character an interesting one, the Scottish accent he provides left a lot to be desired.
He keeps going in and out of the accent, like he forgets his character is supposedly Scottish, particularly at the end when it seems he decides to drop it altogether. So rather than watching and listening to what he said, I couldn’t help but concentrate on whether or not a Scottish accent would creep out.
But though it has its issues, Jurassic Park is still an extremely enjoyable film. It really is the sort of movie that will be on television at home at 5 o’clock on a Sunday, you’ll be curled up on the sofa eating some crisps or chocolate or whatever you people eat, and no matter what point of the film it’s on, you’ll start watching.
BEST ACTOR: JEFF GOLDBLUM
BEST SCENE: Many would say the arrival of the T-Rex, I’m going for the Dilophosaurus bringing justice to Dennis
BEST LINE: Dr Ian Malcolm: ‘Remind me to thank John for the wonderful weekend’
Jurassic Park: 8/10