Julian Reviews: ‘Jurassic World: Dominion’ Is Truly Unhinged

Julian reviews: Jurassic World: Dominion

Hello Internet! I am back with a very interesting review…about Jurassic World, the sheer cinematic cartoon monstrosity Jurassic Park has become.

I liked Jurassic World when it first came out in June 12, 2015, when I was in high school. It was great in all the shallow aspects of seeing dinosaurs break out, start eating tourists, causing all kinds of chaos, and having a Godzilla-esque fight at the end of the movie. After Universal stole away a billion dollars of their audience’s money in their resurgence, they then released Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom on June 22, 2018. It became a blatant rehash of The Lost World: Jurassic Park by re-introducing the idea of dinosaurs entrenching into the human world. Even still, how can that not be a great story premise for the conclusion of the series to not mess it up? Right? However, it gets messed up.

Now, in Jurassic World: Dominion, the story advances four years after the events of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. Isla Nublar, home to the site of Jurassic Park and Jurassic World, is destroyed due to volcanic eruption on the island. Isla Sorna, aka Site B from The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park III, is considered unhabitable for the dinosaurs. The dinosaurs who were captured from Nublar, were released from their confinements of the Lockwood mansion into the modern world thanks to the cloned daughter of Benjamin Lockwood, Maisie (Isabella Sermon).

We are brought to a new world order where dinosaurs are living amongst human beings all over the globe due with the surge of dino poachers and black markets, with, miraculously, only 37 related dinosaur deaths reported by Now This News (a real news company that appears in the movie). A sudden event happens, forcing two generations of Jurassic heroes to come together to stop a plot that could potentially shape the balance of dominion between man and dinosaur. 

Bryce Dallas Howard in Jurassic World: Dominion
Bryce Dallas Howard in Jurassic World: Dominion (Photo credit: Universal)

The movie’s synopsis and marketing behind is a lie. It’s not about the dinosaurs, it’s about manufactured locusts from Lewis Dodgson’s (Campbell Scott) BioSyn corporation eating up everyone else’s crops to force them to buy his GMO crops. Alan Grant (Sam Neil), Elie Sattler (Laura Dern), and Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) with the assistance of Ramsay Cole (Mamoudou Athie) are trying to steal locust DNA as evidence to prove Dodgson of wrongdoing.

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All the while, Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard), with some assistance of characters from past movies and newcomer Kayla Watts (DeWanda Wise), are rehashing the plot of Taken with spy thriller elements from the Bourne and James Bond movies. Maisie and Beta, the daughter of the velociraptor Blue, are kidnapped for generic reasons. The premise of a moral debate about dinosaurs taking over the world faded into the background. That’s not only a lazily complicated story, but it’s also ignorant. 

(L-R) Sam Neill, Isabella Sermon and Chris Pratt in Jurassic World: Dominion
(L-R) Sam Neill, Isabella Sermon and Chris Pratt in Jurassic World: Dominion (Photo credit: Universal)

The actors and actresses did the best they had with the script. The original trio, Neil, Dern, and Goldblum, are back, and I wished their reunion was handled a little better, but I’m glad to see them back together. Goldblum did the best acting out of all of them I believe; he’s still the lovable chaotician who still judges humanity harshly over the course of all the movies, despite the odd decision from the screenplay having him work for BioSyn, even though he has always judged corporations. I do not agree with that decision at all.

Neil and Dern did alright, and they finally hooked up after playing hard to get for three decades. Athie also did the bare minimum in this movie. Wise actually kind of did great in this role and had fun in this movie. Pratt doesn’t seem to have his usual charm in this movie and seemed like he was sleepwalking through the role. So does Howard; it still feels like her character has not had any growth beyond the first Jurassic World movie and still carries a very flawed guilt complex. Both Pratt and Howard’s chemistry together seem manufactured throughout the entire trilogy, and it still does not feel earned. Sermon’s Maisie is insufferable, and her past storyline in Fallen Kingdom was completely and ridiculously retconned.

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Jurassic World: Dominion is a universal fail, even though it shouldn’t have been. Fallen Kingdom set up a great story idea and Dominion ends up squandering it. It is ironic how the 2019 Battle at Big Rock short film was more straight to the point about dinosaurs in our world than the actual film. Even though Pratt claimed this movie is the Avengers: Endgame of the Jurassic franchise, this film makes the franchise end on a baffling and abysmal note.

Life found a way…for Hollywood to coldly manufacture a sequel/legacy trilogy with plotlines and characters sorely lacking what made the 1993 original Jurassic Park a cultural phenomenon and making The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Jurassic Park III look even better by comparison. 

DeWanda Wise in Jurassic World: Dominion
DeWanda Wise in Jurassic World: Dominion (Photo credit: Universal)

*Julian Jones is a University of Alabama at Birmingham graduate with a degree in Sociology and minor in Public Health. When he is not watching films, he is an Assistant to Ashley M Jones, Poet Laureate of the State of Alabama. Let him know what you thought of his review by leaving a comment below!

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*If you want to understand why Chris Pratt makes comparisons between Jurassic World Dominion and Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame go to https://movieweb.com/chris-pratt-compares-jurassic-world-dominion-marvel-cinematic-universe/ to learn more

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