There's a lot of trepidation going into "Jurassic World," the fourth installment of the "Jurassic" film franchise.
It's been 14 years since the last sequel and 22 years since Steven Spielberg wowed moviegoers with "Jurassic Park." There is a new director, Colin Trevorrow, with only a single feature film, "Safety Not Guaranteed," on his resume and nearly an entirely new cast (BD Wong's Dr. Henry Wu is the only holdover).
I'm glad to report that "Jurassic World's" fresh, new take on the world of dinosaurs is just the thing to bring the franchise out of, if you'll excuse the pun, extinction.
The film is set in the present day, in a world where dinosaurs have lived for years and it takes a bigger, badder attraction to get people interested in coming to the park. The latest creation is the Indominus rex, an intelligent, vicious dino created from the DNA of lots of different species. In the immortal words of Jeff Goldblum's Dr. Ian Malcolm from the first film, "Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could that they didn't stop to think if they should."
We enter "Jurassic World" with siblings Zach (Nick Robinson) and Gray (Ty Simpkins) heading to the island off the coast of Costa Rica to meet their aunt Claire (a strong Bryce Dallas Howard) for a fun weekend seeing dinosaurs.
Meanwhile, the park is having troubles with its new attraction and calls on Owen (Chris Pratt, action superstar), a former Navy man who trains raptors.
Of course, things go awry and the Indominus rex breaks free, which unfolds into an all-out catastrophe on the island for our main cast, not to mention the entirety of the people vacationing there.
Trevorrow, who co-wrote the film, keeps things moving and fun. The action is intense, the dinosaurs are impressive and there are a few legit scares, though the quippy script keeps things light.
It's really all you want out of a "Jurassic Park" sequel: chills, spills, thrills and, of course, dinosaurs.