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Jurassic Park 3 Review

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Eight years after escaping the dinosaur rampage on Isla Nublar, palaeontologist Alan Grant is shanghaied to abandoned breeding site Isla Sorna by the Kirbys, on a desperate search for their son. When their plane crashes, the 'rescue party' learn that Grant's controversial theory of velociraptor intelligence is correct, as they become they prey...

★★★★★

Man, this is how Big Brother or Survivor ought to be. Collect a group of annoying people, strand Æem in a genetically-engineered theme park where itÆs all gone ka-ka, and see who gets out alive. Now thatÆs entertainment.ôNo force on Earth or in heaven could get me back on that island!ö Obviously begging to be filed under Famous Last Words, this is the sensibly fervent vow of scholarly dino supremo, Alan Grant. Mysteriously, he has allowed a cameoing Laura Dern (as Ellie, his erstwhile sweetie in the original Jurassic Park) to marry someone else and breed dinosaur enthusiasts of her own. Just as JP opened with a sudden chomp, and The Lost World flaunted a frightful child-in-jeopardy prologue, chapter three opens with a scare for which you are warned to get a good grip on your ice cream or itÆll be in your lap. Fourteen year-old Eric (played with aplomb by Trevor Morgan) is enjoying a turista paraglide billed as The Dino-Soar over Isla Sorna when... Well, you can guess. Cut to Grant expounding his hypothesis that Æraptors were highly intelligent and socially organized to a skeptical audience too amused to fund his dig. Enter the Kirbys, a wealthy couple claiming a yen to fly over Isla Sorna with the worldÆs foremost dinosaur expert for a peek at grazing herds. Before you can say æbriberyÆ, Grant has packed his toothbrush and protÚgÚ (Nivola). Of course, they break the plane! How else could they get trapped? Of course, they lose the only mobile phone! How else could they get cut off from the rest of the world? Half-way in, hearts sink as it looks probable that TÚa LeoniÆs abrasive Amanda will manage to defy death, condemning us to endure her for another 45 minutes. ôItÆs a bad idea to do that,ö Grant cautions when she leaps out of the plane, effectively acting as a blonde dinner bell for every spectacular carnivore of Æsaur ILM can throw at us; of these Mezoic monsters, the Æraptors lack their expected bite, the much-mooted spinosaurus fails to usurp the T-rex as Godfather of the dinosaur, so it is left to the pteranodons to provide the novelty factor, be it eerily emerging from mists or feeding the heroes to their infant offspring. The welcome return of Sam Neill and William H. MacyÆs recruitment bring a degree of class unwarranted by a script suited to Jean-Claude Van Damme. The boy, who behaves like the love child of Tarzan and Sheena, gathering T-rex urine and the junk Jeff Goldblum left behind, is an attractive child-friendly element, while NivolaÆs Billy thickens the plot by blatantly being up to something. Director Johnston gives his outing the look of a dark, claustrophobic jungle adventure, but heÆs a reliable hack who brings more enthusiasm than inspiration to the task, giving it a comfy, family-oriented predictability and minimal gruesomeness in the action set-pieces ù which come thick and fast enough to satisfy lovers of the chase.

Short, scrappy and intermittently scary, this sequel skews young. It lacks the scale, the chills and the wonder of the original, but is more fun as a thrill ride than its sequel predecessor - and certainly gives good pterodactyl.