Reviewed by: Carrie Rostollan
Editor’s Note: Of particular interest to Christians should be the worldview presented in this film. We caution parents to look at the underlying assumptions this film may present in terms of its possible Evolutionary teaching. Children (and adults) are constantly bombarded with such teaching, presented as fact, when they are nothing more than theories or guesses.
We also recommend the 20-minute video, “The Great Dinosaur Mystery”, which can be viewed online. The book version is presented in the “Discovery Trail” portion of The Great Dinosaur Mystery online and includes audio track portions from the video. We also sell various materials from a Christian perspective useful in teaching a biblical view of these issues.
|Featuring:||Sam Neill … Dr. Alan Grant
William H. Macy … Paul Kirby
Téa Leoni … Amanda Kirby
Alessandro Nivola … Billy Brennan
Steven Spielberg … executive producer
“Ooh, aah. that’s how it always starts. Then later there’s running, and screaming.”
—Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum), “The Lost World”
“Some of the most terrible things have been done with the best of intentions.”
—Alan Grant (Sam Neill), “Jurassic Park III”
Please let this movie be something more than eye candy,” I thought as I went into “Jurassic Park III”, but my hopes turned out to be forlorn. “JPIII” falls flat, simply a vehicle for a long string of action sequences with no memorable moments.
Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Niell) reluctantly accompanies a man and his wife (divorced) on a search-and-rescue mission to Isla Sorna, the location of the second “Jurassic Park” film. Paul and the former Mrs. Amanda Kirby are trying to find their son, who has gone missing in the vicinity. Following the inevitable marooning of this group on the island, the story moves through one pulse-pounding chase after another. The final resolution made me want to remark, “So that’s it?”
I dislike writing that, but I feel justified because the film wasn’t even directed by Steven Spielberg, as I had expected. Joe Johnston (“The Rocketeer,” “Jumanji”) directed a script by debut screenwriter Peter Buchman. Michael Crichton served as one of the producers, but none of the story appears to have his touch. Also, the music uses themes from John Williams’ original score, but all additional music was done by Don Davis (“The Matrix”, “House on Haunted Hill”, “Beauty and the Beast”), another name I didn’t personally recognize. Is it really “Jurassic Park” without Spielberg at the helm and Williams at the podium? Sorry, I don’t feel it.
Unlike the first two films, which discussed the ethics of science and what some people call progress, there’s no enduring message (even a secular one) to come out of this film. The closest it comes is the portrayal of velociraptors as smarter even than humans; now they even use complex vocal patterns to actually talk to each other. Grant remarks that if the asteroid hadn’t wiped them out millions of years ago (Please don’t get me started refuting that one!), the velociraptors would have become the dominant lifeform on the Earth. Spare me! By the way, Grant seems to be very fast on picking up their language.
This film runs 1 hour and 32 minutes, and according to one Web site is scheduled to come out on video on December 11th, 2001. If you really must be the first on your block to critique ILM’s special effects work on this picture, go ahead and see it. Otherwise, I’d suggest you catch “Jurassic Park III” on video. There’s nothing objectionable as far as language is concerned. I counted two uses of “hell,” and that’s all. The rest is action, wound around a plot that struggles to find a voice. it’s less preachy about evolution, but it doesn’t find anything new to say, either.