'Jurassic Park 3D' Movie Review: Celebrating SpielbergÃ¢s Heyday With A Modern Spin
Jurassic Park 3D, directed by Steven Spielberg and starring Sam Neill and Laura Dern, gives a whole new generation of fans the chance to experience the film on the big screen. Like many late-80s/90s kids, I was too young to see Jurassic Park in theaters back in 1993. Upon its VHS release, however, it was all I watched. Albeit chilling – really, who wasn’t the teeniest bit traumatized by the image of a T-Rex’s jaws crashing through a sunroof? – the film became a beloved staple of my early years, as I’m sure it did for many a child (and adult) brave enough to watch. The movie also boasted some truly spectacular CGI and animatronic effects, the first of its kind in Hollywood. Jurassic Park lends most, if not all, of its success to the special effects. Without those terrifying puppet raptors, the suspense might have lessened. When its 20th anniversary re-release was announced, I was thrilled at the chance to finally see it in theaters, though I doubted the conversion to 3D. After 2009’s Avatar, no 3D film, with the exception of last year’s re-release ofTitanic, has come close to matching its success. Why ruin a perfectly good 2D film like Jurassic Park with a post-conversion that would likely be subpar at best?
Jurassic Park 3D is testament to the endurance and popularity of a good film. Neill and Dern star as a paleontologist and paleo-botanist invited to assess a brand-new theme park…with real-life dinosaurs. When the park’s safety is sabotaged by a computer programmer hired to steal dinosaur embryos for a rival company, chaos ensues. Creatures break out of their enclosures and wreak havoc on the research team. The sequence of events is no doubt engrained in many minds, but there were a few times when I nearly jumped out of my seat – the effects were that affective. A distinction remains between watching an action-adventure from the comfort of your couch and seeing it in a darkened theater. To this day I can’t sit in a car during a rainstorm without wondering if a T-Rex will go stomping by.
Instead of cheapening the movie, 3D betters Jurassic Park. The conversion definitely works to the movie’s advantage, fully immersing the viewer in the world of Jurassic Park. It feels more real, if a movie about cloned dinosaurs could feel plausible at all. Their features and musculature, especially in the scene with the Brachiosaurus, are enhanced further with the help of 3D. The depth perception is palpable here as subjects leap and creep off the screen – the shot of an amber-encased prehistoric mosquito, the Velociraptor’s jaws as it goes after Hammond’s (Richard Attenborough) granddaughter, or the T-Rex chasing the Jeep. The audience peeks through ferns in the foreground, sits with the experts in a roundtable discussion on moral implications of Jurassic Park, and assists in a Velociraptor’s hatching.
I had the pleasure of sharing my first Jurassic Park viewing on the big screen with a group of ten-year-olds. Whether or not they had seen it before, a new generation of movie-goers was gaining an appreciation for one of Spielberg’s shining achievements. Listening to their shocked gasps was perhaps the second most satisfying experience, other than the film itself.
In a world run rampant with technology, Jurassic Park, in any digital format, reminds us of a simpler time in film when heavy CGI material was not required to suspend our disbelief that prehistoric animals could, once again, walk the earth. Whether it's your first or hundredth time watching, don't miss out on reliving the spine-tingling magic of Jurassic Park 3D in theaters.
For more like this 'Jurassic Park 3D' movie review, check out Uinterview's movie review section here.