Playing in the Parks

This week, Universal released the trailer for Jurassic World, the fourth installment of the Jurassic Park trilogy. I’m so excited! And I just can’t hide it! This seemed like a good time to revisit the original, and maybe hit on the other two a bit as well. And YOU get to come along for the ride… “Welcome to Jurassic Park!”


At the end of my senior year of high school, Jurassic Park hit the theaters. I was there. I was SO there! I hit the theaters 6 times to see that amazing bit of entertainment! When my youth group went on a mission trip to California, I talked our youth pastor into letting us go see it! I had the VHS ordered and paid for 4 months before the release date. Man, I loved that movie!

It was incredible! The action, the story, the excitement, the dinosaurs, the Spielberg! It was easily my favorite movie ever… at the time. I immediately found a copy of the Michael Crichton novel and zipped through that too! It had some differences, but it was incredible too! It was easily my favorite book ever! That brings me to my first JP point:

  • JP Point #1: The sick triceratops. In the movie, Grant and the others abandon the tour vehicles to investigate a sick triceratops. Ellie decides to stay and figure out what’s wrong with it while everyone else continues back to the main building. Basically the triceratops is a MacGuffin to separate Ellie from the group. Fine. But what’s wrong with it? It the book, the illness is eventually determined to be gallstones. In the movie, the sick dino is never mentioned again. However, there is this shot here:
    Could this be the illusive gallstone? Or is it just a rock?
  • JP Point #2: The shaving cream can. It was beyond obvious that Jurassic Park was going to have a sequel. It was incredibly successful. When the Lost World book came out, I devoured that one too! But it was not what I expected. When Spielberg showed the Barbasol can getting buried in mud, my mind said, “And there’s your sequel.”
    But nooooo! Two more movies came and went with no shaving cream can full of dinosaur embryos being dug out of the mud where they had been perfectly preserved. Or better yet, slightly defective due to the odd storing causing the dinos to be extra vicious and multicolored!
  • JP Point #3: The sign that Nedry crashes into. In the rainstoarm, Nedry crashes into a signpost and is unsure which way it was supposed to be pointing. In case you’re curious which way he should have gone, modern technology lets us see:
    Left, Nedry! Go left! Nah, nevermind. You’re the bad guy.

The sequel I found a little disappointing compared to the first, but still entertaining. True to the book, the hero of this story is Ian Malcolm, played by Jeff Goldblum. In the book, however, the main antagonist Dodson. This guy from the first movie:
Thanks for pointing him out, Nedry! I guess he was otherwise engaged. So, the movie took a different direction… And ended up in San Diego. A little strange, but ok. Had Spielberg given us a better story to get us there, we might have accepted it. After all, people were willing to accept a 400 foot marshmallow man in Ghostbusters. But instead, we have too many characters, a difficult to follow plot, fancy-schmancy dino-catching vehicles, and a gymnastics routine used to kill a raptor.

Grabbing some unused elements from both books and creating some brand new stuff, Jurassic Park III was a pretty good ride. We lost Spielberg on this one, with him serving only as producer, but we gained pterodactyls! A terrifically exciting touch from the first book. Nevermind the fact that no could see the mountain-sized atrium until they were right next to it. JP3 never got the recognition of the other two films, but it really is a descent movie. Lots of fun stuff and the return of Alan Grant! But what are they thinking killing off the T-rex!?
Ooh! She is not happy about that!

What can I say about this one? I have every intention of being there opening weekend! I’ll let you know then!

Did you love these movies as much as me? Are you ready for part 4? Let me know!


5 thoughts on “Playing in the Parks

  1. Pingback: I Have No Favorite Movie! | Blogs From Geekdom

  2. Pingback: Welcome to Jurassic World | Blogs From Geekdom

  3. Pingback: Top Ten Movies About Animals | Blogs From Geekdom

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