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‘Jurassic World: Dominion’ Review – Incredible Dinos, Lackluster Story

5 Minute Read
Jun 9 2022

The trilogy comes to a close with a movie that leans on nostalgia and faulty logic.

Isla Nublar is no more, and prehistoric beasts roam the entire planet and its seas. The greatest fear from the 1993 movie has come to pass. The controlled experiment is totally out of control, and all of humanity is in danger thanks to our own hubris. Can a handful of heroes make things right again, or will humanity not survive this self-made crisis?

This is the last movie in the franchise and connects the 1993 movie directly with the current trilogy. It stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, and BD Wong. Jurassic World architect Colin Trevorrow direct and wrote it.


Jurassic World: Dominion Review – Minor Spoilers

Let’s just get this out of the way. This movie is dumb. Its internal logic is bad, and it’s pretty clear they wrote the screenplay around action elements. The movie’s main bad guy is possible environmental collapse thanks to corporate greed. Humans playing god for gain is kind of upfront, the dinosaurs are a secondary obstacle. This isn’t new for the franchise. This is the franchise. And if it were executed well here, that would be fine. It’s not.

Mutated locusts showing up in the midwest and eating up all the crops – minus the fields planted with a bioengineered seed made by Biosyn. The company, led Dr. Lewis Dodgson (Campbell Scott), was behind the whole Barbisol-can embryo plot in the original movie. Dodgson will lie, cheat, and steal to get an edge. He’s perfectly ok with creating environmental disasters if it gives him control and more market share. And as long as he doesn’t get caught. Sounds like he should be a threat. Instead, he’s a caricature of an evil executive in Dominion. A mix of Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, and Dennis Nedry dressed up to look like Tim Cook.

The company also runs the world’s dinosaur sanctuary and houses its scientific headquarters in the middle of it. It’s a security system that looks like humane aid to the dinosaurs.

via Universal

After the events of Fallen Kingdom, Owen, Claire, Maisie, and Blue are hiding out in the mountains of somewhere in the US. Owen is spending his time rounding up dinosaurs off the high planes like domesticated cattle. He’s still controlling prehistoric beasts with an outstretched open palm and a “this means stop, I promise” stare. This entire scene is batshit goofy and has some really horrid green screen work.


via Universal

Teaming Up To Save the World – Kind Of

Elsewhere, Dr. Ellie Sattler is studying environmental weirdness, Dr. Ian Malcolm is lecturing at Biosyn, and Dr. Alan Grant is back in Utah funding his latest dig with tourist money. I will note that as much as I liked seeing the three on-screen again, they’re written like hollow cartoon versions of themselves rather than fleshed-out characters.

The gang gets together thanks to those locusts and Maisie being kidnapped. We meet some new characters along the way, including CIA operative Barry Sembène (Omar Sy), pilot Kayla Watts (DeWanda Wise – the movie’s stand-out), and scientist Ramsay Cole (Mamoudou Athie). The supporting cast is great – I would have loved to see more of Omar Sy. There are a lot of humans involved in this story, which was kind of nice because I could ignore Chris Pratt’s flat acting most of the time. 

This would not be a Jurassic World: Dominion review without a look at the dinos. Their journey is filled with monsters. The dinosaur chases and fights are fun to watch – and there are a ton of new species (with feathers!). As usual, they’re the actual reason to see a Jurassic Park movie. I will note that they do use a good amount of practical effects with both the dinosaurs and the environment. There are animatronic dinosaurs, and while they don’t look as good as Stan Winston’s work, they look good. I’m glad they threw them in there.

via Universal

There are also a lot of scenes that involve humans staring at giant, carnivorous dinosaurs without either really doing much (like the below scene) or screaming into their faces without a lot of consequences.

After two and half hours of running around, we are rewarded with a great dino fight and not much else. The end is predictable and plays out in a montage that has a very after-school special feel. It’s a really blah way to round out a blah movie.


via Universal

Should You See It?

Jurassic World: Dominion feels very Scooby-Doo, aww-shucks at times. There’s no question the story is bad. And while there are stakes, they don’t really feel urgent. The first movie, and the novel, had a lot to say about morality, wonder, and the dangers of playing god. This is an action romp that tries to include those ideas but flunks.

Some long-time characters get redeeming ends, and all of them get flat dialog. There are some meh fan service romantic moments that are cute on the surface but weird if you think about it too much.

It’s not really a good movie, but it is an excuse to escape into an air-conditioned theater and turn your brain off. The nostalgia works sometimes. It has great monsters and fun action sequences. The final dino fight is worth the price of admission.

If you’re already a fan of the Jurassic World trilogy (or dinosaurs), might as well round it out on a big screen. If the trailers didn’t grab you, skip it till it gets a home release.

‘Jurassic World: Dominion’ hits theaters on Friday, June 10.

jurassic world dominion review star rating


Author: Mars Garrett
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