- Action Adventure, Sci-fi
- release date
- Chris Pratt, Bryce Dallas Howard
- J.A. Bayona
- Universal Pictures
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom roars into theaters this weekend. It’s an agreeably daft popcorn blockbuster that jettisons the faux-Spielberg wonder the past film attempted to capture. In its place: a Gothic haunted house, rampaging dinosaurs, vaguely villainous scientists, and — of course — endless sequences of Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard running for their lives. No matter how dire the stakes, of course, life finds a way, in large part thanks to a magnificent overload of B-movie logic that throws common sense, physics, and on two occasions a velociraptor out the window.
Here are 11 of the most gloriously absurd moments. Beware spoilers, all ye who enter here.
1. Dante’s Pratt
That John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) built his theme park designed to revive dinosaurs on the slopes of an active volcano seems rather… short-sighted, to put it nicely. And early on in Fallen Kingdom, his conspicuous lack of forethought literally blows up in everyone’s faces when Isla Nublar’s volcano erupts, spelling destruction for all life on the island.
Well, all life except resident velociraptor dad Owen Grady (Pratt), that is. After a brief bit that’s probably the best Hollywood adaptation of this viral drunk-antics video since Leonardo DiCaprio’s quaaludes scene in The Wolf of Wall Street, Owen shrugs off the effects of a tranquilizer meant for dinosaurs, rolls away from some slow-moving lava, and then books it downhill. Somehow, he outruns not only stampeding dinos but also a massive pyroclastic density current, briefly disappearing within it before diving off a cliff ledge in pursuit of that Gyrosphere (which, by the way, has held up remarkably well for being abandoned on the island for three years).
Now, for the non-volcanologists among us, a pyroclastic density current is an unimaginably hot, fast-moving flow of ash, rock, gas, and debris. PDCs like the one on Isla Nublar typically travel at speeds greater than 50 miles per hour and can reach temperatures of up to 1300 degrees Fahrenheit. In other words, he should have retrieved the motorcycle. No matter how quickly Owen made that offscreen leap into the ocean after being enveloped in a volcanic cloud, why he didn’t immediately become Crisp Pratt is presumably a question for the threequel.
When that dastardly mercenary crew seals Claire (Dallas Howard) and Franklin (Justice Smith) inside a control room on Isla Nublar, the pair quickly realize the place isn’t exactly lava-proof. Luckily, Franklin’s one of those Hackerman types who can make just about anything happen with a keyboard, so he’s able to unseal a random door to the outside — only to let in a rather hungry-looking Baryonyx.
Evading their toothy new friend, Claire spots a convenient ladder to a convenient escape hatch above. With all the bluster of a WWE super-fan, she identifies an equally convenient office chair in the corner, allowing the pair to scamper to safety as the Baryonyx snaps at their feet and magma continues to pour in from the ceiling. It’s an escape so daring one wonders whether it at any point occurs to them later, had they’d simply looked around the room before Franklin played the Jurassic equivalent of Let’s Make a Deal, this all could have been avoided.
3. Et tu, Star-Lord?
Serious question: Is Owen Grady actually superhuman? Let’s consider the evidence. After outrunning a volcanic eruption, this guy (offscreen) dives from a high-up cliff into the ocean, immediately locating the submerged Gyrosphere within which Claire and Franklin are trapped. He tries to shoot through the glass, a bullet literally ricocheting and catching him in the shoulder (it’s never mentioned again). Not to be deterred, he takes a breather then swims back down, jimmying open the glass with a large knife (this works for some reason). Later on, he perfectly times a somersault through a T-rex’s gnashing jaws. Once at the Lockwood estate, he disarms and defeats an entire team of trained (and armed!) soldiers by body-slamming them one after the other, aided only by an awesomely clumsy Stygimoloch. Also of note: He’s effortlessly able to navigate said estate to get to the bedroom of Lockwood’s granddaughter Maisie (Isabella Sermon), fending off a massive killer dinosaur that’s perhaps too busy questioning Owen’s continued survival to simply attack. Who can blame it?
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