"Jurassic Park in 3D"
Yes, it's Steven Spielberg's 1993 classic based on Michael Crichton's exciting novel, tweaked into 3D and redistributed to scare the piddle out of a whole new generation! As for creating tension and thrills, Spielberg never misses a trick; I had to smile at all his gimmicks...even as I reacted to them. Remember, clichés became clichés because they WORKED!
A scientist finds prehistoric DNA in mosquitoes trapped in amber; from this he has cloned dinosaurs and wants to open a theme park in a highly controlled environment so children can have first-hand lessons about the Jurassic Age. He invites a small cadre of scientists and investors to tour his Caribbean Island facility, but as they tour...Oops!... they have a power outage. Excitement ensues...
I'll use fairly current credits, but think back, you'll remember:
- * Sam Neill ("The Vow") is Dr. Alan Grant, a paleontologist who is pro-science and anti-children. He is very interested in this proposed theme park, he is NOT interested in marriage or children. Born in Ireland and raised in New Zealand, Neill works all the time.
- * Laura Dern ("The Master") is Dr. Ellie Sattler, a botanist who works with Dr. Grant. This scientist is interested in both children AND marriage. Daughter of Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd, she is another professional who has acted all her life. She looks so young here!
- * Jeff Goldblum ("The Switch" and "Portlandia") is Dr. Ian Malcom, who questions the wisdom of trying to override nature's method of extinction. I had forgotten what a hunk he was (and still is).
- * Richard Attenborough ("Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat") is John Hammond, a scientist who dreams of using dinosaur DNA to create clones for a theme park. This multi-talented actor/producer/director is one of Britain's most honored professionals.
- * Samuel L. Jackson ("The Avengers") is Ray, one of the technicians at the theme park. Along with other achievements in his varied career, Jackson has gone on to become a mainstay of Marvel's Superhero series.
- * Ariana Richards ("Jurassic Park" trilogy and lots of TV) is the terrified big sister, Lex. After decades of television work, Miss R. has a new movie, "Battledogs," scheduled out this year.
- * Joseph Mazzello ("The Social Network") is all grown up now, his adventurous little 1993 Tim, a distant memory. Mr. M. has managed to work a college degree into his busy schedule.
- * Wayne Knight (Lots of TV) is the scalawag who tries to steal prehistoric embryos from the labratory. It is his rear-view mirror that cautions "Objects may be closer than they appear" when he spots a T-Rex in pursuit of his jeep.
Some of us today think "Thesaurus" is a dinosaur, so maybe we need to brush up. Remember those velociraptors hunting the children in that kitchen? For some reason, that indelible scene has stayed with me all these years. Spielberg made a memorable movie in 1993 and now, 20 years later, it's fun to visit it again. One big difference: Today's children have their bladders set for a commercial break every 10 minutes or so (Ah, television); there was an annoying stream of school children sneaking in and out during the film.
It's PG-13, so expect humor, suspense, violence (dinosaurs eating each other), bits of corpses (human and otherwise, with very little blood), and everything else Spielberg can throw at you. Just remember, this was terrific in 1993 when it was in 2D, so there is really no need for the extra 3D expen$e. But it's great either way!