The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)


Dave’s 3-Word Review:
Jurassic Park = Godzilla.

As the days progress, we await the turnout of Jurassic World. Will it be good, will it be bad – who knows. While we wait, however, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to go back and watch the classic films. I rewatched the first and second last night, and because I already have a review of Jurassic Park, I thought I would review The Lost World. It’s been a few years, and I remember loving this movie too, but things do change, because this film lacked a certain…hoorah that the first held.

Ian Malcolm is our main hero in the sequel – you remember him right? He was the cool guy in the leather jacket that made a lot of sarcastic remarks in the first one? Played by Jeff Golblum. He’s back and ready to battle more dinosaurs as John Hammond let’s him in on a little secret: there’s a Site B. That’s right, a whole other island with more dinosaurs that they use to breed and raise the animals before they move them to the park – that means no gates or fences – just pure dino land. However, he needs a team to investigate how they are still living – since their science allowed them to live as long as they administered a certain serum every few months. But life, as Ian Malcolm likes to say, found a way. So it’s back to the island he goes to battle even more dinos than before.

This movie is a little ridiculous. The foundation of the plot makes some sense, but not enough to have people go to the island to investigate and document. John Hammond knows first hand that dinosaurs are dangerous, but he sends more people in regardless – just to investigate and document? I don’t really believe that. Instead, this movie was really about the “poaching”, as I’d like to call it. A whole other team comes in with a plan to poach the dinosaurs and steal them for a park in the United States – which of course, is a terrible idea. This introduces you to the idea that the dinosaurs aren’t the monsters this time, but the humans…because you start to feel bad for these animals.

The switch in theme is somewhat remarkable and respectable, but you watch a Jurassic Park movie for the danger the dinosaurs bring while matched with human interference. You still get some of that at the same time, thanks to momma and poppa T-Rex, but there’s a lot of caring and love for the dinos in this film. Again, good in theory, but a bit boring in execution. Of course, the only real thing you actually remember about this movie is the last 15 minutes or so. When people say “Wasn’t The Lost World the movie where the dinosaur roams the city”, you know the rest of the movie made no impact on them whatsoever. You know what also had that same problem? The Phantom Menace. You want an entire movie memorable, not just the end. Which, by the way, was basically just Godzilla.

That being said, there are still some pretty good action sequences in the movie that I personally really enjoyed, and I think the characters are also pretty good – not as good as the first movie, mind you – but still good nonetheless. Yes, even Vince Vaughn’s character. As far as the visual graphics go, there was some improvement since the first film, but you’d be surprised at how much things still don’t look that great when CGI came into question. There was MORE CGI, which probably meant they had more money to work with, but the improvement wasn’t too much if you ask me.

The Good:

The Lost World is not as terrible as people would like to have you believe, there are some great action sequences in this film, more dinosaurs in this film (more of the same, as well as different dinosaurs), and more danger all around – as well as a very memorable ending.

The Bad:

At the same time, it doesn’t meet the criteria the first film held either. It doesn’t have that same level of innocence, simplicity, and danger the first had, but instead….it had sarcasm, arguments, paranoia, and reverse/danger (humans are the bad guys instead) – and some of that made the film a little dull and boring at times.

4 thoughts on “The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)

  1. The film tries an interesting twist by placing a dinosaur family at the heart of the story as opposed to a human family. It carries a not too subtle environmental, leave animals alone, message, that I think Spielberg misjudged. It’s an interesting film as it features Vince Vaughn in a straight role. If memory serves from the extras on the DVD Spielberg picked him out as one-to-watch. Oops! It was interested to see they decided on what I call a King Kong ending to the film which I felt gave some great visuals but was a jarring change in scene. Plenty of fun to watch but lacked the humanity of the first.


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