Jurassic World Dominion is here: The fantabulous journey of the franchise
Jurassic World Dominion is already off to a great start in some of the international markets it has been released in

Jurassic World Dominion is here: The fantabulous journey of the franchise

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In 1993, Hollywood director Steven Spielberg took film-lovers on a fantasy journey to a tropical island to bring pre-historic, extinct dinosaurs to life making them real and relatable. He crafted a world in Jurassic Park, where actors and audience alike would exclaim with deep wonder and awe at the majestic beauty of the long-necked Dreadnoughtus or scream with terror and cower with fright at the cunning-looking rapacious raptors. The giant T-Rex too stood tall and menacing waiting to chomp down its prey as it walked among diminutive humans scurrying for their lives.

As Jurassic World Dominion, the final film in this world-famous franchise, is all set to release on Friday June 10 in theatres, the excitement is building up among fans once again over dinosaurs walking the earth along with humans.

The Federal revisits Jurassic Park and its unforgettable cinematic moments and the sequels it spawned:

The protagonists in the very first Jurassic Park are few but memorable: maverick industrialist John Hammond (Richard Attenborough), whose ambition to open a unique- themed park filled with dinosaurs is tinged with a sense of impending doom; two palaeontologists Alan Grant (Sam Neill) and Elle Sattler (Laura Dern) who are invited to the park to give a safety chit for this theme park; a mathematician Ian Malcolm (played by Jeff Goldblum who gets to utter the most popular line in the film – Life finds a way), a slimy disgruntled computer programmer Dennis Nedry, who triggers the chain of events that lead to the dinosaurs to escape their enclosures and run amok in the island, and Hammond’s two grandchildren.

The basic premise of the film that you should not tinker with nature is interesting. Why bring back something that has gone extinct for a reason? It does, however, boggle the mind how the dinosaurs are cloned in the first place in the movie. Blood is drawn from a prehistoric mosquito preserved in amber, which does seem to be more than a tad far-fetched because that particular mosquito should have sucked on dinosaur blood and carried their DNA.

Fans, however, did not quibble if the scientific facts behind the movie were foggy. They were more caught up with the CGI and animatronics (it’s estimated that there were just around 60 CGI shots used by Spielberg) that breathed life into the most convincing looking dinosaurs of all time on celluloid. The audience was mesmerised, it was enough to soak in the visuals, the thrills and the nail-biting terror.

Also read: ‘Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness’ on Disney+ Hotstar from June 22

The scary scenes are vintage Spielberg: when T-Rex pops up suddenly to gobble up a man sitting in a toilet and another time, the deadly dinosaur topples a vehicle to try and get to the terrified children inside. They are classic edge-of-the-seat entertainment. There is one iconic kitchen sequence when a raptor cunningly tries to catch the children hiding inside. The sight of the raptor framed in the circular glass on the door sending chills down the children’s spine went on to become the movie’s signature visual.

Another memorable scene in the film happened towards the end of the film, when the scientists and the children are about to be attacked by two raptors, a T-Rex descends on the scene in the nick of time. The T-Rex and the raptors engage in a vicious battle forgetting the humans who escape. The powerful T-Rex finally flings the raptors to their death and, lets out a victorious roar even as the banner ‘When the dinosaurs ruled the earth’ drops over the reptile.

Jurassic Park spawned multiple sequels

Jurassic Park is based on the 1990 book written by Michael Crichton by the same name. (Crichton also pitched in for writing the screenplay of the film). The film’s sequel ‘The Lost World’ (1997), meanwhile, was loosely based on characters from the book.

It picked up four years after the first film and shows how Hammond managed to keep the existence of a second island, Isla Sorna used for breeding dinosaurs, a secret. Following an accident on the second island, Hammond recruits Ian Malcolm once again to visit it with a new team. The film was a box office success and also earned an Academy Award nomination but it was slammed by critics, who said it looked like it was made by Spielberg’s protégé and seemed like an ‘imitation’.

Jurassic Park 3 in 2001 was a disappointment as well since it was firstly not directed by Spielberg, secondly, it did not have all the original characters and there were fewer scares. Alan Grant is tricked into flying into Isle Sorna to rescue the little son of an estranged couple. The child actor however had some moments with the dinosaurs.

The Jurassic World series

The Jurassic World series was introduced in 2015. The film was based on the premise that Dr Grant had made that raptors could communicate and were smarter than first given credit for. There was enhanced CGI (over 2,000 CGI shots), which was received well by younger audiences, and coupled with an immersive storyline the film was a huge hit.

Set 22 years after the events of Jurassic Park, Jurassic World took place on the same fictional island of Isla Nublar, located off the Pacific coast of Costa Rica. The story followed Simon Masrani (Irrfan Khan), CEO of the Masrani Global Corporation, who bought InGen in 1997 to create his own theme park, Jurassic World, an improvement of Hammond’s Jurassic Park.

Similar to the original film, a seemingly normal day goes haywire when the park’s newest attraction, a genetically engineered hybrid known as Indominus Rex, escapes from its enclosure and wreaks havoc. The film was highly successful at the box office, earning $1.6 billion worldwide, and was the third highest-grossing movie of its time.

The second instalment of the Jurassic World franchise, Fallen Kingdom, had more dinosaurs and remains a favourite with the kids. However, the storyline was weak. While the first movie, titled Jurassic World, grossed $1.67 billion, the sequel, Fallen Kingdom, grossed $1.30 billion.

Jurassic World: Dominion, directed by Colin Trevorrow, ostensibly picks up from the events of Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom. This film ended with dinosaurs escaping into the world after being freed and Dominion addresses the fallout. The prehistoric beasts live uneasily beside humans and there is chaos all around.

Jurassic Park fans will get to see Neill, Dern, Jeff Goldblum make a comeback, while Chris Pratt (Owen Grady) and Bryce Dallas Howard (Claire Dearing) also return from the previous two Jurassic movies.

A clip released recently by the filmmakers shows two of the original trio from the first film in the franchise— Dr Alan Grant (Sam Neill) and Dr Ellie Sattler (Laura Dern) – sitting inside a helicopter that is approaching an island, which is explained to them as a safe haven for twenty displaced dinosaur species.

As the chopper approaches the destination, they see snow-covered hills and valleys and it is revealed there is a T-Rex on the island too. The duo are startled considering their bloody run-ins with that crazy reptile, but they also spot a Dreadnoughtus, just chilling on the ground. Dr Grant is happy and they express the same wonder and awe they show in the first Jurassic Park, when they see the same animal. It’s that sense of wonder and excitement about dinosaurs that this franchise keeps alive and the cash registers ringing.

Jurassic World Dominion is already off to a great start in some of the international markets it has been released in. It has collected $25.9 million so far, which augurs well for its prospects when it gets out in the rest of the world, including India and its domestic market North America.

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