I’m sorry but nope, you won’t catch me visiting this tropical island of death predators with razor sharp teeth that could rip me in half without a second thought. Maybe a fly by in a helicopter or plane but never on foot or in a car. Give me a movie and I’ll gladly watch it but going there is another thing. If I were to put myself in the shoes of any character I’d be the guy running to the bathroom in the middle of the park and hiding out hoping to not get eaten if something were to go wrong.
You can bet on the director that has several films on the American Film Institute’s top 100 that he would knock this out of the park about a film involving prehistoric creatures that roamed the earth. There really isn’t much to say about this film other than it’s a modern classic, plain and simple. Fortunately, that doesn’t mean I’m off the hook with this one. I recently revisited this one since when it came out I was incredibly young (not going to age myself, it’s in my about me) and this film didn’t really appeal to me at that time.
On an island off the coast of Costa Rica called Isla Nublar, a delivery of a Velociraptor goes horribly wrong and a handler gets killed. Meanwhile, the entrepreneurial mind behind this exotic island, John Hammond pays a visit to paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant and Paleobotanist Dr. Ellie Sattler in the hopes that they will accompany him to view his park and give their approval. The parks investors send their lawyer to ensure all safety measures are being held. The lawyer Donald Gennaro invites Ian Malcolm who specializes in chaos theory. Upon arrival to the island the group witnesses something they never could have possibly imagined, a Brachiosaurus.
Hammond invites Allen, Ellie, Ian, and Donald on a tour of the park and the group learns of the cloning techniques and how amber played a role in preserving dinosaur DNA through mosquitoes. The group also learns that frog DNA was used to fill in the gaps and all dinosaurs on the island are female. During the tour, we get to witness a Velociraptor breaking out of its shell while also paying a visit to the raptor enclosure. Hammond’s grandchildren join the group as the group minus Hammond go on an automated tour of the remaining enclosures.
The tour isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be, all the dinosaurs seem to be missing as they are the main attractions. The group comes across a sick Triceratops and they split up even more. Dr. Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) stays with the Triceratops as Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neil), Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), Donald Gennaro (Martin Ferrero), Tim (Joseph Mazzello) and Lex (Ariana Richards) continue on the tour without her. The parks lead computer programmer Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight) takes a bribe from Hammond’s (Richard Attenborough) rival to steal dinosaur embryos. Nedry deactivates the park security system including the electrified fence allowing the Tyrannosaurus rex to break through the fence and disrupt the tour.
The T-Rex attacks as Ian and Donald make a run for it, Ian injures his leg and Donald finds a bathroom stall to hide in hoping the dinosaur will overlook him. But gets eaten. As Dennis tries to escape the park from his employer and the tropical storm that hit the island, he encounters a Dilophosaurus who kills him, and the stolen embryos get lost underneath a pile of mud. The T-Rex turns his sights on Tim and Lex, but Alan tries to lure the dinosaur away from Hammond’s grandchildren.
Alan, Tim, and Lex are forced into the enclosure and nearly die from the falling smashed up Jeep. The three take refuge in a tree top and Alan discovers broken eggs proving that the dinosaurs have been breeding. Dr. Sattler with the assistance of the parks game warden, Robert Muldoon (Bob Peck) find Ian and the three get back to safety with Hammond in the emergency bunker. Hammond and The parks engineer Ray Arnold (Samuel L. Jackson) try to reboot the parks security system and Arnold heads to a maintenance shed to complete the reboot. After failing to return, Sattler and Muldoon go as a backup to reboot the system. Muldoon notices the Velociraptor enclosure has been deactivated as well, setting them free. Muldoon distracts the raptors while Sattler reboots the system, finds Arnolds severed arm and gets attacked by a raptor.
Only Sattler makes it back to the bunker as Muldoon sacrifices himself while fighting off the raptors. Alan Grant, Tim, and Lex make their way back to the Visitor center while Alan looks for Sattler, leaving Tim and Lex alone in the kitchen. The two get attacked by raptors and just make it out alive while full power is restored to the park. Hammond is able to call for help just as raptors close in on Grant, Sattler, Tim, and Lex. The four get saved by the T-Rex as the dinosaur attacks and fights the raptors allowing an escape.
You want to talk about iconic? This film screams iconic with every major shot taken. The first sighting of a dinosaur takes your breath away and that’s when you know you’re witnessing greatness. If this film comes to theaters for an anniversary you bet your ass I’m in there. Certain films must be seen on the big screen and Jurassic Park is one of them. This film also screams pop culture from the moment we fade in as an audience to the fade out, there are many things that resonate throughout and will continue to have an impact on pop culture going forward, no matter how many films they release. The first being the Jurassic Park logo, it smacks you right in the face everywhere you go. Its such a clean and minimal logo and its easily one of the most recognizable movie logos out there.
The second impact on pop culture this film has had over the past 2 decades is the gorgeous score by John Williams. I mean how can you not get chills from hearing that score play the moment the helicopter hits the island. There is a reason this film is a modern classic and the score has a large part in that. It’s John Williams guys, how could it not be a hit, John is one of several composers that can elevate the film just by the music. I don’t even need to bring up Star Wars or Jaws to drive my point home. The score is equally as important as the film.
The final impact on pop culture (at least in my opinion, Y’all might have other impacts) are the memes. Memes have quickly become an outlet for us to express ourselves on the internet. From the Ray Liotta Goodfellas laughing meme to the crying Jordan meme, the internet just wins at memes and Jurassic Park offers up two classic ones. The first is the Jeff Goldblum chest exposed and the second being the Wayne Knight yelling “Nobody Cares” to no one as he is taking the bribe. Whenever something big hits the internet, these two memes are always in the rotation and I love the fact that Jeff Goldblum loves that he’s a meme. One thing I admire about this film is that there isn’t a forced love story in this film. That would be the one thing that could potentially ruin how great this film really is.
I absolutely love this movie, there isn’t a bad thing to say about it really, the plot and story both have excellent pacing, the dialogue fits for each character, the visuals are stunning even 27 years later they hold up. This film checks off all the boxes for me: cinematography, score, characters, visuals, acting, set up and execution. It all works, and it works pretty well. Its easy to see how this film could become a franchise. If I were to rate Jurassic Park, I’d rate it a 4.8 out of 5.
So, tell me guys, have you seen Jurassic Park and if so, what do you think about it? Do you agree or disagree with me? Comment below or send me an email and let me know what you think.
Jurassic Park is directed by Steven Spielberg is Rated PG-13 and has an 91% on Rotten Tomatoes. Jurassic Park was released on June 11th, 1993 and has a runtime of 2 hours and 7 minutes. Jurassic Park can be bought online by retailers including Vudu and Itunes.
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