Jurassic World
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Jurassic World

Don’t sweat it if you’re running a little late for the screening you bought tickets for. Not much happens in this chapter’s first hour or so. And then all hell breaks loose, delivering exactly what you bought those tickets to see.

As a public service, I will offer up the following condensing of the too-long-on-film set up. Two all American brothers are packed off to visit their aunt, who runs the newest Jurassic theme park. She, reflecting a not too subtle sense of obligation from the filmmakers, is surrounded by at least one actor from just about every major ethnic group. Each character is allowed a moment or two to establish if they’re a good guy or a bad guy. And then there’s time for the product placement which, tongue in cheek or not, drove me crazy. All that all takes about an hour.

We all know what’s going to happen. Why make another chapter if those beautiful CGI beasts are going to behave themselves? And so, eventually, the Big Kahuna, a dino designed to out dino all the rest, goes nuts and that is when, finally, the fun begins. I found myself chuckling at the cool action scenes, the nods to classic junky Japanese monster movies and the introduction of neat stuff that will, inevitably be used in the amusement park ride that will follow this film’s release.

Yes, there are actors in this movie, but none are used to their best abilities. Chris Pratt, who has a terrific on screen charm, is only allowed to be duller than dishwater. And Bryce Dallas Howard looks swift in a flowy white skirt, but isn’t asked to do much more than that. Not that any of that matters. This movie is about the action and, most importantly, the dinosaurs who, once they take off, deliver the goods.

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