I have some thoughts on Jurassic World Dominion because there are some parts that didn’t sit well with me when I watched it in theaters. How are you going to make a movie in the Jurassic franchise and make the dinosaurs inconsequential to the plot? If you cut the dinosaurs out, you could keep the movie the same with minimal rewriting. That’s the most frustrating thing about this movie because when the dinosaurs are used its interesting and action packed.
The story being shifted away from dinosaurs came as a huge surprise not only because of the franchise that it’s a part of but because of what was set up by the previous movie and The Battle at Big Rock and speaking of Big Rock there are shots used in Dominion that came from that short. The switch to locusts and the ignoring of dinosaurs will be the biggest fault I find in the movie. Another issue I have with the movie is the full shift of Henry Wu. He had been shown to be a stylish almost mad scientist in the previous movies only worried about what he could do with science without caring about the repercussions of his actions. In Dominion he looks like a high school English teacher that’s been bullied by his students. He also has a much different mindset than he did in the previous movies actually caring repercussions. The reintroduction of Dodgson seemed odd but gave the movie an antagonist that was tied to the original movie.
Since I’m done with my issues with the movie, I want to talk about what I liked about the movie. First thing is I want Bryce Dallas Howard as an action movie lead. This movie shows that she could easily be an action hero. The return of the original leads is a lot of fun. I feel like both Sam Neill and Laura Dern were brought back to fix an aspect that a lot of fans had an issue with from Jurassic Park III, where their characters were no longer together. Jeff Goldblum plays the two different Ian Malcolms that he has to play. The public persona that’s similar to what we saw in the first movie and then the one that actually cares and was changed by the incident at the park who we saw in the second movie. This is the only movie in the Jurassic World trilogy where I buy the Owen/Claire relationship. I also want to mention how much of a delight DeWanda Wise is in the movie. She manages to steal scenes that she shares with returning members of the cast.
The practical effects in Dominion look amazing. I feel like there were even more practical effects in this movie than there were in the previous two. The larger locusts that are in the movie look great when you see them up close. The baby dinos that we see look as adorable as ever. The CG dinosaurs are just as good as they were in the previous movies. The new dinosaurs that we see look amazing and are suitably terrifying. Which makes it even more of a shame that they were so underutilized. I will say that the filmmakers learned another lesson from Jurassic Park III and not have the Tyrannosaurus be jobbed out to the new carnivore. The music from Michael Giacchino might the best of the new trilogy. There were points where it was suitably whimsical with a repurposing of the original theme and then it would go into whatever the movie wanted you to feel.
Jurassic World Dominion is a messy movie that squanders what was set up in the previous movie. The movie seems to be performing well in theaters in spite of the negative reviews that I’ve been seeing. That could mean that there will be at least one more movie in the franchise. I don’t know what could be done if they do go further with the series, unless they take it to space which I would be down for. You can see Dominion in theaters if you’re a diehard fan of the franchise. I give Jurassic World Dominion 4.5 cans of barbasol out of 10.