Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (PG-13)

Action/Adventure 128 min. June 22, 2018
By David Weiner
Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard return for more dino-dodging adventures in this follow-up to Colin Trevorrow's Jurassic World, this time racing against the clock to save the genetically engineered creatures of Isla Nublar from extinction courtesy of an active volcano. Like all best-laid plans in these movies, things fall apart quickly as nature proves to be dangerous and unpredictable and our heroes stumble onto a sinister plot to sell the dinos for alarming purposes.

Directed by J.A. Bayona (The Orphanage), this at-times crowd-pleasing entry ramps up the action and nail-biting suspense considerably. Unlike the previous Jurassic films, which collectively take their time to set the stage before unleashing full views of their dino stars, Fallen Kingdom goes straight for the jugular with nonstop action and creatively choreographed mayhem. Yet for all of Bayona’s efforts to breathe new life into a tired franchise, the PG-13 Fallen Kingdom still feels like a Frankenstein-pastiche of a film and wanders into disjointed, dark territory that may provide nightmare fuel for the little ones expecting relatively harmless dinosaur action.

Fallen Kingdom gets points for trying on some new ideas and venturing into new directions five films into the franchise, especially when the action leaves the island and settles into a more contained location. But once fully digested, this high-calorie snack will likely not rank very high on the Jurassic franchise food chain.
J.A. Bayona Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard, James Cromwell, Ted Levine, Justice Smith, Geraldine Chaplin, Daniella Pineda, Toby Jones, BD Wong, Jeff Goldblum Universal Pictures

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