Eight reasons why Jurassic World is awesome
IT CAN be argued that just as director Steven Spielberg created a monster for the Jaws generation in the 1970s, he also created a generation of dinosaur-obsessed kids with Jurassic Park.
The film's long-awaited reboot/sequel opens nationally tomorrow and the first cinema-goers in the country saw the film at national premieres tonight.
Set 22 years after the events of the original film, and premiering exactly 22 years after Jurassic Park, Jurassic World is a worthy follow-up set to inspire a new generation.
Here are eight reasons why Jurassic Park is (j)awesome:
1. John Hammond's dream finally becomes reality
THE original Jurassic Park film promised the tantalising concept of a dinosaur theme park, where visitors could get up close and personal to these long-extinct reptiles.
The park, of course, never opened because of the events of Hammond's ill-fated VIP preview tour. Jurassic World finally sees Hammond's vision come to fruition.
But it wouldn't be an entertaining movie without the park's managers running into some serious trouble.
Jurassic Park director and Jurassic World producer Steve Spielberg says: "Jurassic World is almost like seeing Jurassic Park come true. We wanted to fulfill this dream in Jurassic World: to have a truly working theme park that is devoted to this miracle of creating dinosaurs from DNA.
"This, hopefully, becomes the dream that the audiences have always wanted to see."
2. Chris Pratt
THE beloved funny man from Parks and Recreation proved his bankable, leading man status in last year's Guardians of the Galaxy.
He was buff, charismatic and, best of all, he didn't take himself too seriously.
Pratt brings that same tongue-in-cheek approach to Jurassic World, although his character Owen Grady is a bit more serious than Peter Quill.
He has to be, as he's working with the lethal Velociprators that gave many of us nightmares back in 1993.
Producer Patrick Crowley says of Pratt: "I didn't know much more about Chris than what I had seen on television, and to see him emerge as this strong figure has been incredibly impressive.
"As he became Owen, we all looked at each other and knew he was that hero."
3. Director Colin Trevorrow
STEVEN Spielberg hand-picked Trevorrow to take over the Jurassic mantle. While Spielberg has stayed on as a producer, this film is made by a self-confessed Jurassic Park fan.
Amazingly, Jurassic World is only Trevorrow's second feature-length film after 2012's romantic comedy Safety Not Guaranteed, which starred Pratt's Parks and Recreation co-star Aubrey Plaza.
That film also starred Jake Johnson, who plays technical engineer Lowery (Claire's right-hand man in the control room) in Jurassic World.
In the film's production notes, Spielberg says: "I had seen Safety Not Guaranteed and the very last scene was what convinced me that Colin was the right person to direct Jurassic World."
4. Indominus rex
THIS is the mysterious genetically-modified hybrid which is supposed to be the resort's new attraction. But commercial deadlines and the pressure to constantly offer something new forces staff to push the ethical boundaries.
As its name suggests, the new dino has some DNA from the Tyranosaurus rex but it's the other, classified animals spliced into her genes which make Indominus so dangerous.
She's smarter than any other animal on the island and cleverly escapes her enclosure using capabilities her keepers weren't even aware of.
5. Old meets new
JURASSIC World had to address its origins, after all it takes movie goers back to the island where it all began.
BD Wong helps to bridge the gap as the only original returning cast member.
His Dr Wu is still heading up the research lab, more than 20 years after he discovered the process of revitalising dinosaurs whose DNA was find in amber-frozen mosquitos.
But in the present day he has been pushed beyond the original mission of growing extinct species of dinosaurs to creating a new one.
"We wanted to bring back a character from the original, and although he spent just a couple of minutes in the first film, Dr. Wu is much more fleshed out in the book and is a crucial component in the history," Trevorrow says.
"Having so much genetics and science in this film, it was important to have a character who's informed of everything that's gone on before this moment…and can pull us back into that world."
6. Vincent D'Onofrio
JUST like Jurassic Park, Jurassic World needed a bad guy who wasn't reptilian.
Filling that need is Vincent D'Onofrio, who plays Hoskins, a security contractor who wants to use Owen's raptor research to create the next innovation in military weapons.
If you think laser-clad raptors sound too ridiculous, they're not according to Hoskins. Owen is reluctant for his research to be used to such destructive ends, and knows his status as the alpha of the raptor pack is tenuous.
"The real villain is progress, and Hoskins is really an agent of progress," Pratt says.
"A lot of scientific research is funded for military application and is simply the natural order of that world."
7. We needed space
THERE'S no point doing a reboot of a successful film franchise only a few years after the most recent installment.
Audiences need time and space in between the original films and cast to be ready to accept the new ones.
One recent example is the Spider-Man franchise. Five years just wasn't enough time between Tobey Maguire and Andrew Garfield as hero Peter Parker.
Also, by waiting a decade or more, the new filmmakers can bank on nostalgia as a huge draw card for adult cinema-goers who loved the original franchise as children.
The period of time that has passed since the original Jurassic Park also plays directly into the hands of Jurassic World's writers as we can just skip to the point in time where the furore over the events of the first film has died down and the park is up and running.
A large-scale franchise like this doesn't come full circle overnight.
8. The raptors
THE Velociraptors of Jurassic Park were the stuff of nightmares. Sure, the T rex was scary but he couldn't follow you down a hallway or through a kitchen.
In Jurassic World the raptors are both the heroes and the villains under the supervision of Pratt's character Owen Grady.
Their intelligence and pack mentality are shown as glimmers of hope that these animals can be trained, but of course they're not exactly sitting, rolling over and playing fetch.
I found it hard to contain my smile as Owen sped through the jungle with the four raptors in pursuit. The kids in the film are right, it is pretty "bad-ass".
Jurassic World opens nationally tomorrow.