ninth symphony films - movie reviews


DIRECTOR  -  joe johnson

RATED  -  pg-13

GENRE  -  sci-fi

LENGTH  -  92 minutes

RELEASED  -  18 july 2001

DISTRIBUTOR  -  universal pictures


ESTIMATED BUDGET  -  $93,000,000
jurassic park iii - a shot from the film


buy the dvd from jurassic park iii at

buy the dvd from jurassic park iii at

dr. alan grant is approached and asked by a wealthy couple to help them rescue their son, who has disappeared on one of the dinosaur inhabited islands.

the effects crew used 250 gallons of oatmeal to simulate spinosaur droppings.


picture from jurassic park iii

picture from jurassic park iii

picture from jurassic park iii


three out of four possible stars

Jurassic Park III takes itself just a little too seriously to be considered a proper follow-up to the last two. The first one and specifically the second one, knew how to make a few jokes about the whole "dopey action thriller" genre that this third film just fails to do. But that's not to say that it's not a film that's a good time at the movies. It has your standard chase scenes, stupid scientist scenes (meaning there's always a few stupid people in the film who get themselves killed by doing stupid things) and the requisite superior special effects that these dinosaur films always have.

And the artists have done it again with this movie by creating special effects that eclipse most movies on the market today with their innovation and "newness." Is that even a word? In any case, the jurassic park films always manage to grab hold of the latest technology in creating their cgi dinosaurs. Something that caught me as weird in this film though is the fact that it was only 85 minutes long (before the credits, which i'm sure added about five more minutes). It's like the filmmakers spent all the money on the first hour and a half and didn't have enough for the rest.

I left the theater obviously wowed by the special effects, but for my money, I expected at least a little more action on the screen. And the ending wasn't flashy enough. There's a spinosauraus that's just waiting to get some revenge on Dr. Grant (expertly played by Sam Neill) and his band of dinosaur watchers. When the film ends, it's kind of a let-down. No flashy dinosaur roar like in the first film where that T-Rex takes a chunk out of my eardrums in the last few frames. The actors in this film were not as well matched as were the performers in the other films either.

The cast just didn't have that symmetry that the first two casts had. And even though the cast was pretty good for their parts, I can't say that there were any break-out performances in this one. But it wasn't hard to root for the characters, even though they weren't my favorite people in the world. Though this was mainly due to the fact that the special effects were just so darn good. I had a hard time telling the animatronics from the CGI. And that's a pretty good feat, given the number of movies with CGI that I've seen in the past few years that have done a lackluster job of combining the two techniques.

Audiences are getting smarter about that cgi stuff and many people can tell the difference between real stuff and computer generated stuff. But Jurassic Park does a good job of doing that. Even though I knew, somewhere deep in my mind, that the fifty food dinosaur chasing sam neill and the dinos weren't real or even animatronic real, I was still able to suspend my disbelief and jump a few times in my seat when the dinosaur got really close to eating somebody. Of course, good special effects do not a great film make. In this case, they make a pretty good film, perhaps even the kind of movie that I'd be willing to pay eight bucks for.

Or even make somebody else pay eight bucks for. Perhaps if it were just a little bit longer, I'd plunk down the change for a bucket of popcorn too. I kind of felt cheated that the movie ended so soon. With all the complaints the actors issued about the movie during its production, I wouldn't be surprised if they chopped the end of the script off so the actors could go home early. So in any case, you should sneak in some candy to the theater for this one. But back to those special effects, they just really blew me away. comparing them to the first film's special effects, this film's accomplishment is monumental.

I think it takes a pretty good filmmaker to make an audience believe that a 50 foot dinosaur is real. In comparing this third installment of the Jurassic series, this one holds up pretty well. In fact, it's better than the second. It could probably never live up to the first Jurassic Park, but it's a pretty good accomplishment. it surpasses the second jurassic park very easily and it is a pleasing addition to the series.

Although it has its weak points, the fact that I had fun at this film means it did exactly what it set out to do. It didn't wow me with performances worthy of an oscar, but it did give me one of the best experiences at a movie theater this summer. What the jurassic park series is really about is the demonstration of the latest computer special effects that have come out. It's also about everybody's favorite subject: dinosaurs! Dinosaurs are such a fascinating subject and this film is two hours (okay, maybe it's a little shorter) of a whole bunch of fun. The new dinosaurs picked for this film were especially interesting and, as usual, it's a visually stunning addition to the franchise.

Review by Kelsey Wyatt.

content 2000 - - ninth symphony films - photographs universal pictures 2001
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