Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom

BLU-RAY REVIEW: 

Street Date 9/18/18;
Universal;
Sci-Fi;
Box Office $415.98 million;
$29.98 DVD, $39.98 Blu-ray, $44.98 3D BD, $44.98 UHD BD;
Rated ‘PG-13’ for intense sequences of science-fiction violence and peril.
Stars Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, Rafe Spall, Justice Smith, Daniella Pineda, James Cromwell, Toby Jones, Ted Levine, B.D. Wong, Isabella Sermon, Geraldine Chaplin, Jeff Goldblum.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom really cements the notion that the “Jurassic Park” films are perfect metaphors for the creative approach to the franchise as a whole. In particular, an overriding premise of the “Jurassic World” movies is that the more people see the dinosaurs at the center of them, the less awe-inspiring they become. So, the powers that be make up new dinosaurs to entice the audience, and when the theme park idea runs its course, it all gets blown up in order to change the setting.

The formula is so ingrained in the DNA of the franchise that the Fallen Kingdom Blu-ray even offers a featurette detailing all the tropes it borrowed from the other movies.

In this fifth “Jurassic” movie and the second of the “World” brand, the island that housed the dinosaur-themed amusement park in the previous film (and the 1993 original) is experiencing a catastrophic volcanic eruption that will wipe out all the genetically engineered dinosaurs that have been roaming free there the past three years.

As the U.S. government debates whether or not to rescue the animals (and decides not to, thanks to some prodding from fan-favorite character Dr. Ian Malcolm, played again by Jeff Goldblum in little more than a cameo), a private dinosaur fanatic recruits the two main survivors of the previous film, Owen and Claire (Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard), to help rescue some of the creatures and move them to a sanctuary island.

Little do they know that the mission is a ruse to capture a selection of the dinosaurs and sell them for nefarious purposes at auction at a massive Northern California estate. The centerpiece of the auction is the Indoraptor, which was designed with military applications in mind.

And, of course, one thing leads to another and the dinosaurs get loose and start killing everyone.

Just as Jurassic World revisited some of the core premise of the original film set at the theme park, Fallen Kingdom takes a few cues from the 1997 sequel, The Lost World, in that the first half takes place on the island, only to have greedy entrepreneurs send mercenary teams to capture the dinosaurs to bring them back to America to make money.

The movie also seeks to evolve the film’s ethical questions about cloning and genetic engineering by advancing the storyline off the island, something hinted at by the end of 2001’s Jurassic Park III but never followed up on until now. The filmmakers have called this the middle chapter of a trilogy so there are a few plot threads left to explore in the third installment.

The visual effects are of course top notch, and the film looks great in the first half as it shows off more of the island (now with volcanic ash and lava). By this point in the franchise, there are even recurring dinosaur characters, in the form of Blue the velociraptor (introduced in the last movie) and Rexy the T-Rex (the big beast from the original film).

The island sequences culminate in one of the most spectacular and emotionally charged shots of the franchise.

The second half of the film is much darker by design, as deadly dinos stalk their prey within the confines of a mansion as the human heroes try to keep them from escaping.

The Blu-ray includes a dozen or so short featurettes totaling about 75 minutes in behind-the-scenes material.

Among the most notable of these are a roundtable discussion with Pratt, Howard, Goldblum, director J.A. Bayona and executive producer Colin Trevorrow. This is the only part of the disc, the movie included, where you’ll get to see the film’s stars interact with Goldblum.

Another section offers 12 minutes of Chris Pratt’s production diaries, as he introduces us to various members of the production crew.

While most of the bonus material is on both the DVD and Blu-ray, about 22 minutes is exclusive to the Blu-ray. These include the featurettes “The Kingdom Evolves,” a discussion of the story; “Return to Hawaii,” about the state’s history with the franchise; “Island Action,” which looks at two specific action scenes from the island; “Aboard the Arcadia,” about working with animatronic dinosaurs; and “Start the Bidding!,” a look at the auction scene.

The remaining featurettes are similarly focused mostly on visual effects and stunts. One of the most interesting aspects of all of this is seeing how much the visual effects to depict the dinosaurs has advanced in 25 years while still remaining faithful to some of the tried and true methods of the past.

‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’ Coming to Home Video in September

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, the latest installment in the celebrated “Jurassic Park” franchise, will be released for home audiences as a digital purchase (and through the digital movie app Movies Anywhere) Sept. 4 from Universal Pictures Home Entertainment.

Two weeks later, on Sept. 18, the film — with a domestic gross of just under $385 million, the fourth-biggest theatrical hit of the year — will be issued on DVD, Blu-ray Disc, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, 3D Blu-ray and on demand.

All home versions of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom come with more than an hour of bonus content, including Chris Pratt’s behind-the-scenes “Jurassic Journals; an inside look at the genetically designed Indoraptor; and a behind-the-scenes featurette with Jeff Goldblum, an original cast member from the first Jurassic Park movie, which was released theatrically in 1993. He also appeared in the 1997 sequel The Lost World: Jurassic Park, and this year reprised his role as Dr. Ian Malcolm in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.

The “Jurassic Park” franchise is now one of the top grossing franchises of all-time, with a worldwide box office gross of more than $4.7 billion.

Aside from Pratt and Goldblum, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom also stars Bryce Dallas Howard and BD Wong (also a Jurassic Park original).

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom was directed by J.A. Bayona (The Impossible, The Orphanage) and executive-produced by Steven Spielberg and Colin Trevorrow. The film follows Owen Grady (Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Howard) returning to Isla Nublar three years after the destruction of the Jurassic World theme park to rescue any remaining dinosaurs on the island from a catastrophic volcano that threatens to leave dinosaurs extinct once again.

Grady is driven to save his lead raptor, Blue, while Dearing makes it her mission to preserve the creatures she has grown to respect. When the lava begins to rain down, they soon discover terrifying new breeds of ferocious dinosaurs along with a conspiracy that could threaten the entire world.

All five “Jurassic” films also will be available in a five-movie collection on Sept. 18 on DVD, Blu-Disc and 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray.

The Blu-ray Disc, 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray and digital purchase come with several exclusive bonus featurettes, including “The Kingdom Evolves,” in which filmmakers discuss how the second chapter in the “Jurassic World” trilogy pushes the franchise in a new direction; “Return to Hawaii,” in which cast and crew discuss shooting the film in Hawaii; “Island Action,” a behind-the-scenes look at the bunker scene and runaway gyrosphere sequence; “Aboard the Arcadia,” in which cast and crew talk about working with the animatronic dinosaurs; and “Start the Bidding,” a behind-the-scenes look at the auction scene.

Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom will be available on 4K Ultra HD in a combo pack which includes an 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, a Blu-ray Disc and a digital copy.

View an exclusive behind-the-scenes clip from the new bonus feature “On Set with Chris and Bryce” here:

‘Jurassic Park 25th Anniversary Collection’ coming May 22 from Universal

Universal Pictures Home Entertainment will release the Jurassic Park 25th Anniversary Collection on May 22, in time for the theatrical debut of Jurassic Word: Fallen Kingdom, the fifth installment in the series due in theaters June 22.

Available for the first time ever in 4K Ultra HD and featuring newly remastered versions of the films, the collection also includes Blu-ray and Digital via the Movies Anywhere app. The set features book-style packaging and hours of bonus content, including deleted scenes, storyboards, interviews and behind-the-scenes featurettes.

Jurassic Park, based on the best-selling book by Michael Crichton, won three Academy Awards, spawned a series of sequels, and continues to be one of the highest-grossing franchises of all time, grossing more than $3 billion worldwide.

The set includes Jurassic Park and The Lost World: Jurassic Park, from director Steven Spielberg; Jurassic Park III, from director Joe Johnston; and Jurassic World, from director Colin Trevorrow. Among the films’ stars are Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard.

Bonus features include:

  • “Return to Jurassic Park,” a six-part documentary featuring interviews with the many of the cast members from the first three films, the filmmakers and Spielberg;
  • “Welcome to Jurassic World,” an in-depth look at the creation, look and feel of Jurassic World in whichTrevorrow and Spielberg discuss how the idea of the film came together and how the casting was decided with actors’ commentary on their roles and filming locations;
  • “Dinosaurs Roam Once Again,” behind-the-scenes look at the making ofJurassic World’s visual effects, how the dinosaurs came to life and how actors filmed scenes;
  • “Jurassic World: All-Access Pass,” in which Pratt and Trevorrow discuss key moments in the film, supported by behind-the-scenes footage and VFX breakdowns;
  • deleted scenes;
  • and more than 40 additional bonus featurettes from all four films.

The 4K Ultra HD combo pack includes 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, Blu-ray and Digital. The 4K Ultra HD disc will include the same bonus features as the Blu-ray version in 4K resolution.

Universal Hosts Contest for Best ‘Jurassic Park’ Fan Videos

Universal Brand Development and creative network Tongal have teamed for a user-generated-content contest for fans to re-create their favorite moments from Jurassic Park, in honor of the sci-fi adventure film’s 25th anniversary and the upcoming theatrical release of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.

Compilations of the best videos will be posted to the “Jurassic World” YouTube, Facebook and Instagram channels, as well as JurassicWorld.com, every #ThrowbackThursday through April.

To kickstart the contest and inspire fans, a video featuring Jurassic World stars Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard was posted on YouTube and at JurassicWorld.com/JP25.

“Twenty-five years ago, Jurassic Park captured the imaginations of global audiences and transported them to a world where dinosaurs roam the Earth,” said David O’Connor, EVP and head of franchise management and brand strategy at Universal Brand Development. “With this call to action, we’re bringing together fans of all ages to showcase their creativity and celebrate all things Jurassic.”

Interested fans are asked to submit a video about their favorite scene from the film and the impact it had on them. Alternatively, fans who want to re-create their most memorable moments are challenged to use their imaginations and remake scenes from Jurassic Park using animation, illustration, toys, family members, costumes, pets, special effects and whatever other appropriate means come to mind. Videos must be submitted by Jan. 22 at JurassicWorld.com/JP25.

Up to 48 winners will be awarded $250 each, as well as “Jurassic Park” merchandise, and their videos will be shared on social channels. Two grand-prize winners will be selected (one for each project) to receive $1,000, plus “Jurassic Park” products and a DVD set. More information is available at JurassicWorld.com/JP25 and by following #JurassicPark25.

“Jurassic Park began a lifelong bond with its fans, building an incredibly loyal culture and community,” said Tongal co-founder and chief creative officer James DeJulio. “This opportunity to celebrate its 25th anniversary is an example of how Universal is deepening those connections by allowing fans to put their own spin on the story, while inspiring the next generation.”