36 of 38 people found the following review helpful
It would be nearly impossible to trump the first Jurassic Park film. People were blown away by that movie. The technology was cutting edge and the premise was nearly magical in its element of fantasy. Making a third installment to the series presents an obvious challenge. How do you uphold the level of entertainment set by the first two films? The answer: new dinosaurs...
In this film, we get the addition of a few new dinos. The Spinosaur, being even bigger and badder than the T-Rex, is the "guy on the block" now. Flying pteranodons are introduced on Isla Sorna, where they were once housed in a huge cage, now left to patrol the skies freely. The Velociraptors have also gotten an upgrade. They look a bit more menacing than the Raptors from the original Jurassic Park. These new additions are what make this film what it is.
The first film was set on lush pastures of modeled prehistoric land. The setting for this film is far more delapidated. This is the land the dinosaur rules. The premise of the film is a bit cheesy, but you barely notice, given the amazing production and spectacle of the film. Once on the island, all you experience is the thrill of the search and the chase. The fact that a divorced couple are searching for their wayward child becomes secondary to the dinosaur action that ensues once they arrive.
I knew I would enjoy this movie simply because I love the idea of Jurassic Park, yet I was pleasantly surprised by just how good it turned out to be.
The DVD is bursting with bonus material. It would take hours to get through it all - but it's well worth it. There's an extensive "Making of.." featurette, a "New Dinosaurs" featurette, a tour of the studio in which the dinosaurs were conceived and brought to life, storyboards, DVD-rom options, etc... The Special Edition certainly does the process of the movie justice, providing deep insight into the production.
37 of 42 people found the following review helpful
on July 29, 2001
"Jurassic Park III" attempts to pull a new twist on the source material of the first film, taking us to a new place where new dinosaurs will soon be wreaking havoc on human kind. Does it work? Completely! Combining some very effective action sequences with some of the bets humor for a movie of this genre, "JP3" is a thrill machine that doesn't portray itself as anything more or less. One might sneer at the drawn-out franchise, but there's no denying how much fun this film can be on many levels.
The movie brings back the original character of Alan Grant (Sam Neill), who is now a college professor of paleontology. He hopes that his new theory of raptor intelligence will inspire his students as well as earn some funds for his research, though his students seem more interested in his experiences at Jurassic Park so many years ago, experiences he would rather put behind him than rehash to the world.
That is, until Paul and Amanda Kirby (William H. Macy, Tea Leoni) come calling, with the promise of those needed research funds in exchange for Grant coming along with them to the island of Isla Sorna, the second island where the action of "The Lost World: Jurassic Park" took place. Posing as tourists with a taste for adventure, their true intent is to locate their lost son, who they believe to be located on the island after a boating accident eight weeks earlier.
Once Grant finds out their true intentions, he demands that the mission be aborted, but soon, their plane crashes on the island, leaving them stranded among the carnivorous creatures, who are quick to start scaring the hell out of their new prey. Along with some new and quite dangerous dinosaurs, the velociraptors prove Grant's theory of raptor intelligence correct, though I'm sure he was none too thrilled about being right when he finds himself surrounded by them.
Like the first "Jurassic Park," "JP3" brings on its share of action sequences and suspenseful moments, which are a sheer delight for those who enjoy a good jolt. I was sitting up in my seat after the plane crash, as the never-before-seen spinosaurus tosses the wreckage around like a child's toy. A fight between the spinosaurus and a tyrannosaurus rex is charged with intensity, and the group's fight to stay alive is made all-the-more challenging by a high quotient of prehistoric predators.
The film also explores what "The Lost World: Jurassic Park" merely conceived in words. The whole basis for that film was the creation of prehistoric life on the second island, and this movie takes us to the many sites of that creation, as well as showing us their attempts to contain that life in cages. One of those settings is a bird-cage, where pteranodons retrieve their prey for their young. The compound where our group finds temporary refuge recalls that of "Jurassic Park," where the story all began.
Combined with the action is a heavy load of comic relief, lying within some very witty dialogue and situational humor, lightening the impact of scenes that would otherwise be too intense for younger audiences. Even so, this humor is a delight for all ages. At one point, Grant gives the group an ultimatum, to either search for their missing son or follow him, to which the pilot soon after replies, "We'll search for your son, in the direction he's going." Another situation finds them looking for a cell phone in a large pile of dino droppings, possibly one of the funniest scenes in a movie yet.
The cast seems to be having fun with the film. Sam Neill is as good as new in his reprisal of the role of Alan Grant, the same wit and intelligence pouring from him with ease. William H. Macy makes for a lot of good laughs as the cumbersome Paul, And Tea Leoni plays a well-mannered damsel in distress as his wife. Grant's protégé, Billy, is played by Allesandro Nivola, and after this film, we can expect to be seeing more of him in the future.
The summer season is a time when movie studios bombard audiences with films full of action and humor, with little care for plot or substance. Surprisingly enough, "Jurassic Park III" surpasses any negative expectations you may have (believe me, I had my own). Director Joe Johnston may be no Speilberg, but his latest film beats out some very stiff competition, from "The Mummy Returns" to "Pearl Harbor," to become the best summer movie of the year!
32 of 37 people found the following review helpful
on July 15, 2001
Let's face it, 80% of us will go watch this movie if only because we want to recapture the thrill of the first (and still the best) Jurassic Park. Scenes of the the scientists Grant and Sattler meeting their first live dinosaur on Isla Nublar as well as the way T-Rex gobbled up the lawyer will always be remembered as the gems they are. Plus it had a great storyline to go with it (the book was better, tho).
Which brings us to JP3, the third instalment of the JP series. Sam Neil is back as Dr. Alan Grant, so is Laura Dern (in a minor role), and of course T-Rex. Grant accompanies two 'extreme adventurers' played by Tea Leoni and William H. Macy into Isla Sorna otherwise known as Ingen Corp.'s Site B. Their plane crashes (of course) and they are left to their own devices on the island battling the dinos. Like most sequels, the plot is minimal. "Build them dinos and they will come." must have been their motto. It was as if they didn't have a screenplay to begin with and decided to let the CGI people figure out the plot as they went along creating the dinos.
T-Rex, like Dern, only appears briefly as a new leaner and meaner dinosaur takes centrestage - the spinosaurus. Larger and smarter, it tracks down the dwindling party as they try to find their way out of the island. Oh, and satelite phone sales might skyrocket this year.
The velociraptors also reprise their role as the intelligent almost human creatures. Only this time, they can erm... talk. Well in dino language at least. However, perhaps the best surprise of them all, are the pteradactyls. I was disappointed when the first JP didn't feature these great flying killling machines, but here they're given their fifteen minutes of fame as they soar through the valleys and cliffs pecking away at Grant and the others in what I feel is the best sequence of the entire 90 minutes of the film.
I won't give any more of the (weak) storyline away except to say that it has all the usual (but essential) ingredients needed for a successful summer movie - lots of suspense, action, estranged characters get back together when faced with impending doom..... And no, there are no T-Rex chasing people in San Diego scenes.
I really wasn't expecting much for this film and as a result I was pleasantly surprised. It had that a-thrill-a-minute kind of feel to it that rivalled the first JP. And it is after all a sequel to a sequel. As a result it lacked the element of surprise. But it quite makes up for it with the excellent CGI and cinematography. A word of caution: It's not really suitable for children as the blood and gore is rivals that of the first JP. So, parents beware.
My main complain (as will be yours when you've seen it) is the abrupt and dissapointing ending. Loose ends weren't tied, dinos were still roaming around and worse, Tea Leoni was still alive. It felt as though the director or producer had enough of the film at the 90th minute mark and said, "OK, that's it. We'll end it here." But if you can forgive them for that final gaff (the Marines? What were they thinking??), then perhaps you'll like this show enough to go watch it again if only to see those Pteradactyls soar once more. It's a summer popcorn movie, what did you expect?
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2001
I have been holding off writing my 50th review because I wanted it to be on something big and special. I'm glad I waited. After hitting all the JP3 sites for nearly a year now, waiting for the final day when we here those fated words, "Now Playing At A Theatre Near You." I couldn't sleap the other night! Waiting for my family, I had to pospone my trip to the cinema for two days. Well, after all the wait, and the sleepless night here is my review on something Big and Special:
Welcome to Jurassic Park, for the third time. By comparison it isn't as good as the first, but was better than the second (The Lost World, for those of you who don't know by now.) For the past few days I have had the opportunity to be around theatres, to see the reaction to the third. 19 mil$ in the first day, thats the original fact I learned when I bought my ticket. I saw the wide-eyed and happy expressions of those leaving the theatre in front of me. They were clawing and making jurassic-motions, if you get the meaning. They looked a little goofy, but they didn't care because they seemed too impressed to care. Today I was close to a theater slam full of lines, I must have heard the words, "Jurassic" and "Park" and "3" and "Awesome" a thousand times. (Are they connected? We may never know...) I myself think that a new level was reached for the Jurassic enterprise, and even though I thought I was Jurassic-immune from watching the original about...well I lost count around 63...times. And the Lost World 40+ times. But Friday afternoon proved one thing, the Jurassic series still leaves me grinning cheesily. Maybe I like jumping and yelling "Bite him!" Or maybe I fell in love with the characters. ....As I surrendered my imaginaton to Jurassic Park 3, I realized that it wasn't necessary because it was holding my mind on its own. Things happen so smoothly and so quickly that you don't have time to stop and smell the dino-droppings. (Gross, yeah I know).
If you have never watched the two films before this one don't let that stop you! This story stands on its own. The time is not too long, not too short (I am going to pay for that remark), and gives you just enough to smile when you see the credits.
(To Universal, and all involved. Congrats. ....UPDATE! I have now seen it twice! Its still great! Going to see it again on the 30th with some friends. We'll see if the 3rd time breaks my hype.) (Update (Aug 1st) Nope, the third time didn't break it. It is still great. What are you doing reading this long review! I have already seen it three times! You should be at the theater right now!)
13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on December 4, 2001
Jurassic Park III was definitely the best of the summer blockbusters, though it got very underrated. This is a sequal...what more could you expect? A huge dramatic film? I think not. This is Jurassic Park...duh! Jurassic Park III had a great cast list, including the talents of Sam Neill (who starred in the first Jurassic Park movie), William H. Macy, Tea Leoni, Trevor Morgan, and even a cameo role by Laura Dern (who also starred in the first one). I liked Jeff Goldblum better as a supporting character in Jurassic Park more than the leading character in The Lost World. Sam Neill is the real star of the Jurassic Park trilogy!
The plot of this movie is very simple and straight-forward, which makes it easier for audiences to concentrate more on the awesome action, special effects, and the dinosaurs! Also, it's easy for most people to understand.(...)
The only bad thing about this movie was that it was too short! (...) The other two movies had been over two hours long, but Jurassic Park III was only about 92 minutes long. Also, the ending was okay, but it was a little bit cheesy. Still, I enjoyed Jurassic Park III. It was the best movie I saw all summer long. Plus, the ending didn't really seem complete. Perhaps a 4th Jurassic Park movie is in the works? Jurassic Park III has some of the best special effects all summer long. JP3's special effects were even better than the special effects in movies like Planet of the Apes, The Mummy Returns, and Pearl Harbor! And the DVD for this movie looks really great, too with some very cool special features like behind-the-sceens, the making of the new dinosaurs, cast & crew interviews, etc. Joe Johnson did a great job as director and filled Steven Speilberg's shoes perfectly. This movie needs more recognization and credit! It was better than what most critics claimed it would be. If there's one movie you must rent on DVD this winter than it definitely has to be Jurassic Park III!
24 of 30 people found the following review helpful
This film has outstanding special effects, excellent cinematography, a wonderful cast, and a thin script. While it is better than the second film in the Jurassic Park series, it comes nowhere near equaling the original Jurassic Park movie.
This film sees two of the original stars return, Sam Neill, as paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant, and Laura Dern, in a cameo reprising her original role. Add William Macy and Tea Leoni, as a divorced couple who kidnap Dr. Grant and take him to Isla Sorna, site of Jurassic Park II, on a search and rescue mission for their twelve year old son, who disappeared eight weeks earlier while parasailing over Isla Sorna with his mother's boyfriend.
After the initial breathtaking, opening scene of the boy and his mother's friend parasailing, the movie starts going south almost immediately, which is not to say that it is not enjoyable. It is, but not as enjoyable as it could have been, had it been filmed with an intelligent script.
The movie is only an hour and a half long. In the process of making it a succinct film, the actors race through the plot, leaving certain questions unanswered or certain issues unexplained, in the almost indecent haste to get the film over with.
The actions of some of the characters are often unbelievable. Clearly terrorized, the characters do not hesitate to run off by themselves. They also do not hesitate to make as much noise as possible. Obviously, they do this in order to put themselves into a situation where they will be injured, chased, or eaten by a dinosaur.
As I said, little thought appears to have been given to formulating an intelligent script. Still, if the viewer is willing to suspend all rational thought, one should get some enjoyment from viewing this moderately entertaining film
38 of 49 people found the following review helpful
on June 24, 2001
I recently just read the novelization of JP3 and it sounds like a great movie. Tons better than "The Lost World" and almost on scale with the original.
In JP3, Sam Neill is back as Alan Grant, who is recruited by a wealthy couple (played by Tea Leoni and William H. Macy) to guide them on plane over Isla Sorna for their anniversary. But the couple is actually looking for their son Eric, who accidentally landed on the island while para-sailing. Needless to say, the plane crashes and the group is chased around by fierce dinos (including the new Spinosaurus and Pteranodon). I don't want to spoil the ending, but lots of people are eaten and there are many surprises in store.
Oh and I forget to mention that Laura Dern is back as Alan's now ex-girlfriend Ellie Sattler.
All in all, JP3 (or Jurassic Park III as Universal is keen on calling it) sounds like it'll be a fantastic summer movie and blockbuster.
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
on September 21, 2001
Jurassic Park 3 isn't what it should of been. Clocking in at only 95 minutes or so, it doesn't have that epic blockbuster behemoth feel like the first two films. It appears as if it were slapped together very quickly. The best part about this movie is the return of Sam Neill. A mysterious couple(William H. Macy, Tea Leoni)want Dr. Alan Grant(Neill)to fly them over the dinosaur island. They say they are adventurers. Dr. Grant disagrees until they offer to help fund his projects. He agrees and it's off. The plane they are on crash lands onto the island and the couple reveal that they are not who they say they are. They have a secret agenda. That's all I'll say about that. The action scenes are really fun and exciting. Some of them were even better than The Lost World. Director Joe Johnston is a great director, and he does the best with a flimsy, barely there script. Tea Leoni is, I have to say it, annoying. She keeps yelling. The dinosaurs are impressive as always. They look as real as can be. But, sadly, the magic and majestic beauty created in the first isn't here. Sure there are scenes that look great, but it's not enough. Come back Steven Spielberg!. We miss you!.
23 of 29 people found the following review helpful
on July 21, 2001
Jurassic Park was great. The Lost World was mediocre, but fun to watch. Jurassic Park III is a surprisingly enjoyable blend of its two predecessors. It combines everything that made the first film great with everything that made the second film ...entertaining. You get amazing atmosphere and subtle, eerie effects, while at the same time, being blown away by very blunt and in-your-face shock-horror. They mix to make for a very suspensful and scary summer thrill ride.
I think the best thing about it is the variety it offers. Unlike The Lost World, whose action was practically identical to the original film, it offers new and exciting hazards for the cast to overcome. In the first two films, there were only two main threats, the Tyrannasaurus Rex and the Velociraptors. However, in JP3, the T-Rex is almost completely absent (he makes a pleasing cameo early in the movie), and a great twist is added to the Raptors. Also, two new dinosaurs are thrown into the characters' faces, the Spinosaurus (who even the T-Rex fears) and the Pteradon, a flying dinosaur.
However, like all films, JP3 has its flaws. These flaws include an almost entirely unbelievable ending, which in my opinion, came too soon; the movie ended before things had a chance to wrap up. The ending was mediocre at best, unlike the first, and even the second film. ....Unfortunately, JP3's ending is no where near as memorable.
It won't win the Oscar for best picture, but when you get down to it, good acting, great special effects, a decent script, and amazing action make this one of the best summer popcorn movies in years.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 17, 2001
If you're looking for a quick-paced action flick with awesome special effects, look no further than Jurassic Park 3. JP3 is chocked full of dino's with emphasis on the Pteradactyl scene and the new "super dinosaur" - a formidable foe to the T-Rex. The scenery in the movie, as expected, is gorgeous but the acting (outside of Sam Neill) is average at best. William H. Macy plays the father searching for his son lost on Dino island and Sam Neill is his guide. The basic plot of the film is to escape from the island.
(TV: 32" Sony Trinitron (KV-32S40))
(DVD player: Panasonic RP-56)
(Cables: Acoustic Reasearch top-of-the-line)
Picture quality: Excellent, even the menu is exciting.
Sound quality: Excellent as always. Turn the sub up only half-way and you'll be pleasantly surprised.
Jurassic Park 3 is an average film with action being its very core. While the first JP had action, superb acting and an "epic" feel to it, the third can only live up to the action of the first film.