The Jurassic Park saga has just closed with Jurassic World Dominion, the third of the second trilogy but which also acts as a bridge with the original film, by recovering the same protagonists. The saga began with Jurassic Park, the 1993 Steven Spielberg film based on Michael Crichton’s 1990 novel.
During the 90s, and until 2001, we had the first trilogy, with two installments directed by steven spielberg and one for Joe Johnson. After a long hiatus in which Universal toyed with various ideas for Jurassic Park 4 (including human-dinosaur hybrids to use as weapons), the Jurassic World trilogy arrived.
Why is Jurassic World Dominion Jurassic Park 6?
Steven Spielberg stayed on as executive producer and put Colin Trevorrow, who directed the fourth and sixth films in the saga. For the fifth, Jurassic World The Fallen Kingdom, John Anthony Bayonne he was cast as a “guest” director.
Now that the saga has been closed (or so it seems), it’s time to review in order from worst to best all the films of the Jurassic Park saga. In what position will the controversial Jurassic World Dominion fall?
6. Jurassic Park 3 (2001)
Jurassic Park III was released in 2001 and was directed by Joe Johnsonveteran special effects artist from the early Star Wars and Indiana Jones films, who impressed Spielberg with his personal film october sky and chose him to direct the third part, since Spielberg had been… a bit burned out from the saga.
Unfortunately, the same thing happened to Johnston, who was tempted to leave the project because its shooting was a disaster: the script was completely changed within a month of shooting and was never finished: literally writing as you go. And you can see it.
Jurassic Park 3 was a moderate success at the box office, perhaps due to the impact of its animatronic dinosaurs, the Spinosaurus that killed the T.Rex at the beginning and the “talkative” Velociraptorsas well as bringing back Sam Neill as Alan Grant (and Laura Dern in a criminal background).
Sam Neill recently said that it was a good action movie. Some recent readings have been more benevolent towards Jurassic Park 3 being the simplest and most direct film of the saga: 92 minutes (remarkably short) of characters being chased by dinosaurs.
Some prefer it to the Jurassic World saga for its total lack of pretension. Indeed, “it can be seen”, but thematically and argumentatively it is hollow: this saga can (and should) give much more of itself than simple races between dinosaurs… particularly with such an anticlimactic ending (which should have been much more spectacular).
5. The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)
Steven Spielberg and the first installment’s screenwriter, David Koepp, took a bit of license in adapting Crichton’s second (and final) novel in the series, though they were faithful to the odd decision to remove all the characters from the first one with the exception of Ian Malcolm (Goldblum) who also loses a lot of personality.
Still, The Lost World. Jurassic Park stands apart from the original with a darker shadenotable even in some of their deaths or in the very different and underrated soundtrack by John Williams (which Spielberg liked more than the one in the first movie) or showing new behaviors in his dinosaurs (the Tyrannosaurus maternity) used as part of his ecological message.
It is inferior to the original: the sequences are less surprising, the characters are less charismatic and in many sections it imitates the first one without much emotion, such as the Velociraptor scene, but in some aspects it is as interesting as the original, and left a climax for the memory with the tyrannosaurus loose in San Diego.
4. Jurassic World Dominion (2022)
The last installment of the saga seems not to have liked anyone. Well, I liked it! With some (generous) reservations, of course.
To begin with, it is the antithesis of something like Jurassic Park 3: it is very long, more than two hours, it has half a dozen protagonists in parallel plots and in its footage there is room both for chases with dinosaurs and for developing a business conspiracy plot whose roots go back to the first film (the villain Lewis Dodgson was already out in the 93, and is characterized as his character from the novel The Lost World by Michael Crichton).
In other words: Jurassic World Dominion does not seek to be an almost B-series passing entertainment, but rather genuinely cared to tell a story that enriched the universe created by Crichton, even exploring the ramifications of genetic power beyond the cloning of dinosaurs.
Unfortunately, Dominion fails to bring many of those ideas to life.. Even when all the characters (those from the new trilogy and those from the originals, Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum) are in their element and have things to contribute, Dominion runs out of steam in its second half.
And although carnivores are more numerous than ever, they lack “bite” in a somewhat strange Mission Impossible sequence in Maltaa pace that is sometimes jerky, with many easily expendable dinosaur scenes and an unemotional and strangely routine third act similar to previous movies for how disruptive this delivery is in other aspects.
But only for that last reason, Jurassic World Dominion Deserves Way More Credit Than It’s Getting. Although apparently demanding a minimum of attention from the viewer and daring to tell something different from what Spielberg did in 1993 and using dinosaurs for something more than display them are unforgivable crimes for criticswhich has butchered it like they did its predecessor, Fallen Kingdom.
3. Jurassic World (2015)
Jurassic Park 4 may have been a riot with “dinohumans” used as military weapons, but thankfully they let enough time pass to warrant a full reboot.
Jurassic World was, along with Star Wars Episode VII, the most exciting “legacy sequel” of 2015, with a movie that followed the same scheme as the 1993 but for a new generation of viewers that made it one of the highest grossing movies in history.
Director Colin Trevorrow, along with screenwriter Derek Connollyconceived of this relaunch of the saga in which the park was finally opened to the public as Jurassic World… only to be destroyed when a genetically modified dinosaur, the indominus rextricks the guards and escapes.
Although sometimes too similar to the original, Jurassic World stands out for its accurate recreation of the park full of people (no expense was spared), new and exciting scenes with dinosaurs, a leading couple as charismatic and attractive as the original trio and even fun metatextual readings on the commodification of dinosaurs. It’s hilarious and always goes to more.
2. Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018)
John Anthony Bayonne, one of the highest-grossing Spanish directors (The Orphanage, The Impossible) opened in Hollywood with the sequel to Jurassic World, written by Trevorrow and Connolly. But Bayona, with a predilection for horror, gave it a visual touch of her own, especially in the second half of the film.
Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom has a strange structure, opening with a volcano (the quintessential iconography of classic dinosaur cinema) and ending with the civilization that in a sense also “rhymes” with the themes originally covered by The Lost Worldthe sequel to Jurassic Park.
But in our opinion The Fallen Kingdom is much better finished. On the one hand, it offers the protagonists of the first new bows, particularly for Claire/Bryce Dallas Howard, the character with the most evolution in the entire sagaalthough Owen/Chris Pratt also explores his relationship with the velociraptor Blue and is quite the action hero.
Abandoning plans for a zoo, the key is the protection of the dinosaurs against those who want to continue using them for their own benefitand not to make other zoos like in The Lost World, but to sell them on the black market… or cut them up to study them and make new ones.
It is the case of Indoraptor, another hybrid dinosaur that escapes in a limited third act in a mansion that looks like a haunted house, in a climax in which Bayona is unleashed with the most careful staging of the entire saga. What a joy of lighting and framing!
It may not be as fun and entertaining as the first Jurassic World, but the Fallen Kingdom script shows that Colin Trevorrow and Derek Connelly really see the enormous potential of the saga to tell new things based on genetics…
… Y what failed them in Dominion was, precisely, not having someone like Bayona in the director’s chair.
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1. Jurassic Park (1993)
No one can ever deny that Jurassic Park, Steven Spielberg’s 1993 film, is the best of the saga. Because of the impact it had on the public, create a new “dinomania” who inspired millions of children and a whole generation of paleontologists, for his advances in special effects…
On that note, Jurassic Park was the first movie that actually showed realistic creatures made with digital effects, with ILM (Industrial Light & Magic)although today what has lasted most in memory are the animatronic effects of the deceased’s Tyrannosaurus Stan Winstona technique that has been recovered in the new deliveries.
Jurassic Park stars Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Attenboroughand in smaller roles, Samuel L Jackson and Wayne Knight. A perfect cast, reunited in Dominion, but here it was the key to elevate the film above other adventure and horror films (along with to the screenplay by Crichton and David Koepp).
Alan, Ellie and Ian weren’t heroes or anti-heroes like Indiana Jones, they were much more vulnerable people, with very strong personalities and sometimes antitheses who, however, overcame their differences to survive an island where the dinosaurs are barely on screen for five minutes… but they leave a huge mark.
This is ours selection of the best films of the Jurassic Park saga, ordered from worst to best! Do you agree with our choice? Assuming that the first one is second to none, which sequel do you like the most? Do you prefer the sequels of that time or the new Jurassic World saga?