Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is a science fiction adventure film and is the fifth film Jurassic Park film series (review here). It is the direct sequel for 2015's Jurassic World and is directed by J. A. Bayona. The film marks the return of Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, B. D. Wong, and Jeff Goldblum and adds Rafe Spall, Justice Smith, Daniella Pineda, James Cromwell, Toby Jones, Ted Levine, Isabella Sermon, and Geraldine Chaplin

The Story/The Direction:

The film is set on the fictional island of Isla Nublar near Costa Rica where Owen Grady (Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Howard) as they try to rescue the dinosaurs from a volcanic eruption. They are there for personal reasons but also for Sir Benjamin Lockwood (Cromwell), the former partner of John Hammond from the original film. Lockwood wants to continue Hammond's dream of having an island of free-roaming dinosaurs for his granddaughter Maisie (Sermon) and other children to enjoy. However, his assistant (Spall) wants to sell them to the highest bidder. 

Bayona does a decent job creating a film that has some suspenseful and enjoyable moments. The music is decent by Michael Giacchino and at times tries to create its own story in this aged franchise. It has continued the previous film's awesome look on the dinosaurs with its CGI. This film is able to have all the elements of a summer blockbuster: charismatic stars, smarmy villains, and a lot of action. 

The Characters:

Dearing is no longer the head of a park and is now running a save-the-dinosaurs nonprofit. She and Grady are brought together by Spall's Mills to save the dinosaurs. Pratt is able to play his typical role well and Howard's Dearing is less annoying than the prior film. They return as the broken up couple that plays up the "will-they-or-won’t-they" flirtation.  They are joined by Dearing's team from the non-profit and are pushing for the dinosaurs to be saved but Goldblum’s Dr. Malcolm says otherwise as he always has. Wong’s Dr. Wu has returned to create a new dinosaur as he always has. 

The Flaws:

This film basically plays out exactly as one would predict with very minimal deviation from the previous films. It is somewhere between The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park III.  As with the former, the film tries to capture the magic of the previous film and as with the later, it has the returning cast of the first film in the Jurassic World series.  The film meanders through its two-hour runtime hitting with minimal character development and logic that could only work in a Transformers film. The script is not great and has cliche, cheesy, and stupid lines such as "It was all a lie!" and "No, it couldn't be." This is all intertwined with mindless action scenes but most of them are fairly forgettable. 

Overall:

With a dinosaur film, however, there is a required suspension of disbelief but yet it also should have magic and wonder as the original did. This film, unfortunately, does not have that but it still delivers where it ultimately counts: the dinosaurs. They look great and if this technology was apart of a story that was more engaging, this film would be a lot better. Unfortunately, this is not the case and like the exploited dinosaurs in this film, this film series is probably going to continue this "the same film but bigger" idea that has been in a lot of sequels as of late. If one is wanting a simplistic but somewhat enjoyable summer popcorn movie, this is that film. If one is looking for a film that will capture that magic of the original, they will not find it here and should skip it, especially if you saw the final trailer, which gives away the entire plot. 

Rating: 2.0/5.0 bowties

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Trailer