Dennis D. McDonald (ddmcd@ddmcd.com) consults from Alexandria Virginia. His services include writing & research, proposal development, and project management. Follow him on Google+. He publishes on CTOvision.com and aNewDomain and volunteers with the Alexandria Film Festival. He is also on Linkedin. To subscribe to emailed updates about additions to this web site click here.

J.A. Bayona's JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM

J.A. Bayona's JURASSIC WORLD: FALLEN KINGDOM

Movie review by Dennis D. McDonald

If you can let your inner 12-year-old emerge, you might just enjoy this retread of tried-and-true story elements. It's colorful, lavishly produced, loud, and has more than enough eye candy. As an added bonus it includes some very nicely filmed images of Bryce Dallas Howard's combat boots.

The only reason I saw this movie was because I subscribe to MoviePass and figure they'll be going out of business soon.

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I thought the last Jurassic movie was boring as hell. Also, after seeing Chris Pratt smirk his way through movies like The Magnificent Seven, Passengers, and several Marvel films, I had very low expectations.

Imagine my surprise! As popcorn/roller coaster movies go, this one is very entertaining!

We certainly get our money's worth of various dinosaurs including the culinary habits of various two-legged predators. A couple of well-constructed indoor and outdoor scenes, an exploding island complete with lava, the biggest dinosaur stampede you've ever seen, and vicious Alien-esque chases up and down dark corridors round out the package. All of these when taken together make Fallen Kingdom the perfect Summer drive-in movie.

And yet...

Yes, there's an "and yet." The director, J.A. Bayona, last seen producing an incredibly touching, fantastical, and artistically superb tragedy called A Monster Calls, obviously has a handle on making expected Jurassic Park story elements work -- evil businesspeople, humans getting chomped, screaming adolescent girls, a minuscule appearance by Jeff Goldblum -- and he does his best despite a very weak script. 

But quality drama is not why we go to see movies about dinosaurs, right? Bayona understands that. He delivers.

If you can let your inner 12-year-old emerge, you might just enjoy this retread of tried-and-true story elements. It's colorful, lavishly produced, loud, and has more than enough eye candy. As an added bonus it includes some very nicely filmed images of Bryce Dallas Howard's combat boots.

 Ted Levine versus this guy? Guess who wins...

Ted Levine versus this guy? Guess who wins...

Review copyright (c) 2018 by Dennis D. McDonald

Travis Milloy's INFINITY CHAMBER

Travis Milloy's INFINITY CHAMBER

Brad Bird's THE INCREDIBLES 2 

Brad Bird's THE INCREDIBLES 2