Starring: Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rafe Spall, Jeff Goldblum, Geraldine Chaplin, Ted Levine, Toby Jones (Rated M – 128 min).
It seems four quick years since the Jurassic World theme park imploded and was abandoned due to freewheeling dinosaurs on the run around tropical Isla Nublar.
Former partners, in more ways than one, Owen Pratt and Claire Howard return to the island due to a once thought extinct volcano erupting only to threaten to wipe out the (now accepted in society) dinosaur population.
The opening sequence looks good but leaves unanswered questions. Mercenaries lead the way heading in to capture species, take back to mainland before extracting DNA for future endeavours.
Conspiracies and excess money build up into double crosses and inside trading, playing god measuring morality of humanity.
Complications in plot aside, including a major twist that I had to think twice about, there are some brilliant action set pieces on the island. Most exciting are the dinosaurs rampaging for survival as lava flows. However by the time we get back to civilisation, it becomes turmoil among the masses. Cloning is key again, rarely a positive thing.
Evolving as an actor, Chris Pratt strolls, runs, smirks through on point, reminding us how versatile he can be while Bryce Dallas Howard transpires beauty with action ability. Unfortunately she has less to do. Original favourite Jeff Goldblum, relegated to brief court room monologues, has even less to do returning as Dr. Malcolm. Look fast to spot former ‘Lost’ survivor and Soul Surfer media gnat, Faith Fay, the best is yet to come.
Gothic darkness and inner fears of what goes bump in the night is explored with demon-like ‘Nosferatu’ – images way too scary for young children, so don’t take them. The massive underwater creature teased in the trailer was not utilised to full potential, maybe it was too similar to upcoming ‘The Meg’ to include.
Directed by J.A Bayona (The Impossible, A Monster Calls) getting tension right for the most part, sound editing is remarkable adding to the power of the enjoyment to be had for the majority of this fifth instalment to the Jurassic legacy.
Shane A. Bassett