STARRING: Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum,
Richard Attenborough, Bob Peck, Martin Ferrero, B.D. Wong, Joseph Mazzello,
Ariana Richards, Samuel L. Jackson, Wayne Knight
1993, 126 Minutes, Directed by: Steven Spielberg
Steven Spielberg's 1993 mega-hit
based on Michael Crichton's novel about an
island amusement park populated by cloned dinosaurs —
Dinosaurs are big business.
And so was novelist Michael Crichton after Jurassic Park - his Congo and Disclosure
novels got made into movies soon after. Spielberg has always been big business too. And so
was Jurassic Park - becoming, according to some business analysts, one of the
biggest box office grossing movie of all times. (This is not to mention the numerous
successful spin-offs: Jurassic Park baseball caps, Jurassic Park mugs, Jurassic
Park coloring books, Jurassic Park comic books, Jurassic . . .)
And is the movie worth all
the hype? Partially yes, but mostly because of the special effects. Some magicians at
Industrial Light and Magic (the special effects unit bankrolled by George Lucas and also
responsible for the Star Wars movies as well as the technical
wizardry behind Terminator 2 - Judgment Day) made some dinosaurs
live and breathe like we have never seen them do before. These are no longer the slow,
klutzy and rubbery creatures we have seen in countless B-grade dinosaur pics. They are
well-researched and realistic enough to appease today's dinosaur obsessed hip kids.
But at its heart the movie
is empty - the humans in the picture serve as little else than dino fodder.
It lacks the
heart and soul Spielberg managed to inject into ET and Close Encounters of the Third Kind. See it for the effects - like
everybody else did.
in Crichton's novel (obviously) got toned down for mass consumption, leading
one thirteen-year-old kid I know to complain to me that the movie wasn't
enough. Sheesh, are today's kids really this jaded?
Followed by two
superfluous sequels, namely the dismal
The Lost World: Jurassic Park
in 1997 and the slightly better
Jurassic Park 3 in 2001.
Top 100 Sci-Fi
of all time