The teasing is over and the park is almost open, welcome back to Jurassic Park.
The opening image of the first trailer is of course us entering through those infamous gates, it’s a familiar scene but also unfamiliar at the same time as this is those King Kong style gates writ large as this time it isn’t 4x4s journeying through the gates but a slinking monorail.
And we know that from the likes of the 1976 remake of Kong and The Simpsons that monorails never work out.
The original Jurassic Park was written by Michael Crichton, and that concept was then was very much initially seen as Westworld with dinosaurs, a film that was both written and directed by Crichton.
And now this return of the franchise takes that and creates a Walt Disney come Sea World theme park experience, from the panicked runners in ‘main street’ to the Shamu moment given extra spice with it being a giant swimming dinosaur, a mosasaur eating a great white shark whole.
That’s a huge upgrade from the sacrificial goat of the original and is the perfect example of how the new Jurassic experience will be much bigger in scope than the 1993 original.
It’s of course a giant nod and wink to Executive Producer Steven Spielberg, who both directed the original and Jaws, so what better way to signpost that where gonna need a bigger dinosaur film in the wake of the Peter Jackson Kong remake, Pacific Rim and Godzilla.
We see old favourites such as the velociraptors, seemingly being raced like greyhounds, and a newly engineered dinosaur is quite rightly left in the shadows…before it escapes and the tourists get to run away (must run faster) from it echoing Jeff Goldblum’s Dr. Ian Malcolm in the first film when he says “Oooh, ahhh, That’s how it always starts. Then later there’s running and screaming.”
It may not have appeared in the trailer but don’t think we won’t be seeing the T-Rex, there is no Jurassic World without him, he’s still top of the iconic pile and we’ll all get a nice fuzzy inside feeling when he stomps onto screen, think of it as the cinematic version of a special guest star on a sitcom getting a huge whoop and cheer. Besides he is the logo so he is contractually obliged to roar, sniff and get those gnashers out.
We do know of course that there will be no return for Lord Attenborough’s John Hammond (hopefully there will be a portrait or something as a nice nod) And FX master Stan Winston who created the physical dinosaurs, both are no longer with us and that melancholy reverberates through the single piano notes echoing the Jurassic Park theme that punctuate the latter part of the trailer.
The scope and feel of the new film is truly epic, who thought that anyone would ever say that the summer theme park ride of a movie, Jurassic Park would ever feel like a small and intimate film…it looks like it might next June.