Wednesday, February 27, 2008

The Lost World - Jurassic Park (1997)

There is a scene in The Lost World - Jurassic Park, where Vince Vaughn faces a mural of the Jurassic Park in the decrepit command center. His face is that of a man longing, not for survival, but for a different setting. He wishes he was in the previous film and not this mess. I actually had to read the "directed by" credit at the end twice, because I couldn't believe my eyes that this was a film made by the most prominent of all modern Hollywood storytellers: Mr. Steven Spielberg.

Whatever your opinion is of Spielberg's films, there is no denying that he is the master of popcorn storytelling. Paternal issues aside, his films always deliver the "fun" factor - almost without exception. The first Jurassic Park is a great example of his work - a hell of a ride. His films exude with memorable set-pieces and characters. Yet, The Lost World has a couple of the former, but none of the latter.

Despite the fact that Jeff Goldblum is back, his character is criminally downplayed. Julianne Moore has a couple of goofy lines in the beginning, but she fades away too. Vince Vaughn is given some meaty action scenes and he saves the day a couple of times, but he is mysteriously absent in the climax. Velociraptors are talked up, but are disposed of by a twelve-year-old girl trying out her gym moves.

It is really a hard job to mock up this premise - it's dinosaurs, for Pete's sake! But, Spielberg - neither McG, nor Brett Rattner, nor Stephen Sommers - manage to create a huge mess. It is really, very excruciatingly bad.

1 comment:

Blarney said...

It has some amazing set pieces though. The trailers and T-Rex and the velociraptors in the tall grass spring to mind, but yes, a poor sequel.

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