Thoughts on Jurassic World

I saw Jurassic World with my family last Saturday and have been thinking about it ever since. I grew up watching the original movies (Jurassic Park actually came out the year I was born), though I haven’t gotten around to reading the books yet.

I was skeptical about Jurassic World. The trailer made it look fantastic, but would it really live up to expectations? How can anything compete with the original?

The movie was good. It seemed to be the perfect combination of old and new. The way the park and attractions were set up made it feel so realistic, like taking a trip to Disney World or SeaWorld. There was action and some pretty impressive dinosaurs, but what I liked most about it was the feel of the park. The filmmakers really took their time in the way everything was portrayed.

There were some things I thought could be better, though. The plot didn’t seem as seamless to me–there were a bunch of action scenes thrown together but they did not build off of each other. There was a character that served as the antagonist, but there was not much depth to him or his plan (pretty much just like Dennis in Jurassic Park but more military driven). Then there’s that familiar only-the-bad-guys-get-devoured thing that doesn’t really make much sense. It’s not like dinosaurs can smell the villain on you. But I digress.

My point is, the movie was good, but not perfect. But as I reflected upon it, I felt bad for judging the way the dinosaurs looked or the number of victims they killed. Because wasn’t that the point of the movie? People are not satisfied these days. They want everything bloodier; they want the dinosaurs bigger and with more teeth. They don’t want what they actually looked like. They want the thrill.

I mean, if the velociraptors looked like actual velociraptors, nobody would enjoy it:

The movie was what I expected, even more so, but the message was what really got me. It wasn’t just about the ethics of creating hybrid dinosaurs; it was a reflection of what we, as moviegoers, expect, and how our expectations are often impossible to meet. 

[below I chase a rabbit that has little to do with the movie]
That’s what I got out of the movie. Deacon thinks I’m looking too far into it (a criticism I seem to get a lot). But it’s my opinion that books and movies are for more complex than viewers realize initially. The creators spend more time and effort putting everything together than we could ever know, and they know what they’re doing. They know the little things that we might not realize until after we’ve watched it 20 times. I think anything that is created with such great time and effort deserves the right to be analyzed thoroughly. 

Furthermore, once something is produced, it no longer belongs to the creator. Books don’t belong to authors; poems don’t belong to poets. (dinosaurs don’t belong to scientists) They belong to the readers, just as movies belong to the viewers. They become what we want them to be. You like a song because the lyrics speak to you personally and you can derive meaning from them, even if that meaning was not what the songwriter had in mind when it was written.

My point is that it is okay to analyze something beyond the surface. It’s exciting, even. Most of the time, you’ll find things that you didn’t realize were there. You’ll develop a fan theory that people either love or hate, but either way, it will make you appreciate the story more.

currently listening to: Wolves Without Teeth by Of Monsters and Men

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