For its 20th birthday, ‘Jurassic Park’ gets a 3-D coat.
To celebrate 20 years, Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park returns to theaters starting today, this time with a conversion to 3-D.
Does the 3-D add anything? No. Does the movie still work? Yes.
So ubiquitous in our current pop culture is the 1993 blockbuster that there’s no need for me to rehash its plot beyond “man clones dinosaurs.” (For kids, all one has to say is “dinosaurs,” and they’re onboard.) It’s been ages — 19 years, I’m guessing — since I last saw it before this week, and it was a pleasure to revisit its big set pieces, which have stood the test of time.
What hasn’t aged well is the film’s opening — basically, everything before chaos reigns on the theme-park island. It takes too long to get to the goods, and this chunk of time stands as Park’s weakest portion. The 3-D is not only an unnecessary addition, but actually proves problematic by spatially disorienting viewers during scenes of action. Spielberg’s frames wow enough because of how realistic the dinosaurs look (and still do); they’re not in need of the View-Master treatment.
It didn’t bother my 8-year-old, however, and I suspect he’s the real reason Universal Pictures has reopened Jurassic Park’s gates: Now, a whole generation exists that wasn’t around to see the movie when it first broke ground ... or to see 2001’s Jurassic Park III, for that matter. Certainly the studio wishes to prime this batch of youngsters so they’ll be in line for Jurassic Park IV (reportedly with Safety Not Guaranteed director Colin Trevorrow at the helm), and just judging from my son’s case, it’s safe to say they’ve wildly succeeded. —Rod Lott
‘Trainspotting’ engineer Danny Boyle delves back into the world of crime with ‘Trance,’ with less-than-hypnotic results.
Thriller Rod Lott
After fiddling around with Oscar a couple of times with Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours, director Danny Boyle gets back to doing what he does best: the thriller. However, in Trance, opening today in Oklahoma City, the flashy filmmaker bears a light coat of rust.
Thriller Phil Bacharach
Baby boomers can be their own worst enemy. The generation that was going
to change the world instead settled on thinking the world of
themselves. Youthful idealism, aging and compromised idealism, pining
for that youthful idealism — nothing fuels anti-boomer sentiment like
The route of ‘The Place Beyond the Pines’ is great to good.
Thriller Phil Bacharach The Place Beyond the Pines is two-thirds of a great movie. Director Derek Cianfrance’s follow-up to 2010’s Oscar-nominated Blue Valentine
is a tense, powerful crime thriller with some weighty stuff on its
mind. It speaks to the filmmaker’s know-how that not even a crazily
contrived third act can damper its haunting power.
When brokenhearted, middle-aged people assemble for a wedding in Italy, that’s amore.
Drama Rod Lott
On paper — or computer screen — Love Is All You Need sounds like an overdose of saccharine. Even swallowing just a few plot keywords could trigger symptoms: “widower,” “wedding” and “breast cancer.”
Make time for the brilliant, moving conclusion to Richard Linklater’s trilogy of tales of Jesse and Celine.
Drama Phil Bacharach
In Before Midnight, the latest of director Richard Linklater’s odes to romance — a high-minded odyssey begun with Before Sunrise in 1995 and continued with Before Sunset in 2004 — there’s a sly bit that reflects the personal baggage fans of this trilogy bring to the multiplex.