Much like the dinosaurs you see on screen, the 'Jurassic' franchise would've probably been better left in the past.
The third film in the Jurassic World franchise or the sixth Jurassic Park film, Jurassic World Dominion, made a lot of promises in the trailers. It promised to show us a predator which was even bigger than the T-Rex (the Giganotosaurus), and it promised to explore how mankind would be affected if dinosaurs were to one day come back.
The first Jurassic Park movie, which was released back in 1993, was arguably responsible for popularising dinosaurs to the masses. Michael Crichton's (author of the Jurassic Park novels) story had a simple premise but it was supported by interesting characters, and did not shy away from exploring complicated subject matters (chaos theory to be exact). The heavy source material was then brilliantly adapted on to the big screen by Steven Spielberg. The content was made easy for the audience to comprehend and it was the most accurate depiction of dinosaurs on screen (for the time). The animatronic and CG works revolutionised cinema as a whole.
The franchise was resurrected in 2015 with the first Jurassic World film, which gave us a glimpse into what the park would've looked like if it had actually managed to open. But it was far from the golden standard of the first two original films. It was a creature feature which – in the third act – had a Velociraptor riding a Tyrannosaurus Rex fighting a fictional dinosaur called the Indominus Rex. It was dumb fun, with emphasis on the 'fun'.
Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom, however, was a pretty big let-down. The story barely made any sense, the characters were uninteresting, and it was almost a chore to watch. But at the very end of the film, it did something bold, dinosaurs were released on to the mainland; something the original films and novels had emphasised would be catastrophic to human civilisation time and again.
So, did reintroducing dinosaurs back into the world's ecosystem have unforeseen consequences? Were they a catalyst for global mass extinction? Did civilization fall? The answer to all the above was "not really."
Turns out reintroducing dinosaurs back into the wild has little to no impact on the world. Dinosaurs are bought and sold in black market trade, some people have trained them to become weapons, but for the most part they are harmoniously living side by side with people and modern animals.
The problem with Jurassic World Dominion is that it was too afraid of telling its own original story and sticks to its safe stale formula. Without spoiling anything, there was yet again another island, another evil company standing in for InGen, and the movie reiterated how control is only just an illusion.
The movie tried to tell the story of a kidnapping but it felt like it was too afraid to really commit to it. It said dinosaurs can now be trained to kill but failed to properly explore the concept. It said dinosaurs were a big threat to humanity but did not pose any real danger for the most part.
It was great to see the old cast back together; Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum reprised their roles as Grant, Sattler and Malcolm, but the original trio felt like a shell of their former selves. They acted more like spies than actual palaeontologists and scientists. Additionally, the forced romantic tension between Dr. Grant and Dr. Sattler was just insufferable.
Chris Pratt as Owen Grady, Bryce Dallas Howard as Claire Dearing and Isabella Sermon as Maisie Lockwood were great in their roles but they were confined within the walls of a poor script.
Furthermore, the plot armour was so thick for the main cast of characters that at no point in the film did it feel like they were in any actual danger.
It is probably safe to say that after two instalments, fans are not expecting a thought-provoking film by any means, but the absurdity of this movie often takes you out of the experience.
It seemed that the only entertaining value the film had to offer were the visuals – if you like watching dinosaurs on the big screen, they still look spectacular – and some good choreographed action scenes. One can argue that Jurassic World Dominion is a better movie than Fallen Kingdom. But with each new instalment, there seems to be a severe loss in the quality of its stories.
In the end, Jurassic World Dominion is a forgettable experience that feels more like low quality fan fiction. It is passable as a popcorn flick, but you won't remember it as soon as you leave the theatre.