Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom Trailer Breakdown

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

by Chris Hewitt |

The first teaser for Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom — the sequel to 2015’s Jurassic World, aka the fourth-biggest movie of all time — dropped last night, pouncing on unsuspecting audiences in much the same way that bloody raptor pounced on poor old Robert Muldoon. May he rest in peace. The new trailer promises plenty of spectacle, suspense and some truly terrifying lizards. We sat down in London this week with the film’s director, J.A. Bayona, and got him to spill (as much as he can at this early stage) on the latest dino-tastic instalment.

A Film Of Two Halves

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

Tired of trailers that give away pretty much the entire movie, up to and including the final sequence? (You know who you are, Major Motion Picture) According to Bayona, that’s not the case with the Fallen Kingdom trailer. Everything you see here, on the original island of Isla Nublar, effectively takes place in the first half of the film. “It’s a very short section of the film,” says Bayona. “Where the movie is moving forward after the volcano is one of the main reasons why I wanted to be involved. The trailer is only hinting at a section of the film.” Indeed, Bayona says there isn’t a single shot from the film’s second half here. And, given the events of the trailer, it’s likely to take place off-island. Start speculating now…

Dino-Friends Reunited

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

The trailer begins with the heroes of Jurassic World, Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard), having a chat. But it’s far from a cosy one — clearly, having got together at the end of the last movie, they’re a couple no longer. "The film takes place four years after Jurassic World,” says Bayona. “Owen is off the grid, isolated, doesn’t want to know anything about the past.” Claire only shows up on his door because Isla Nublar, and the dinosaurs now living wild there, are in imminent danger.

Volc-Ing Hell

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

For, due to the sort of oversight that should have got the people who chose Isla Nublar as the site of Jurassic Park fired, it turns out the island is home to a volcano, which is about to explode. “Claire shows up and convinces Owen to join her to go back to the island to rescue the dinosaurs. There’s a full debate worldwide about what to do with the dinosaurs — are we going to give them the same protection as other species, or just let them die?” If your money is on the rescue operation going smoothly, with no casualties, then we have a bridge to sell you.

Blue And Owen

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

On Isla Nublar, Owen receives a raptor-ous reception from Blue, the velociraptor he raised from birth (that is Baby Blue we see in the trailer). “This one is about how we commit to the dinosaurs,” says Bayona. “That relationship established between Owen and Blue in the last movie moves forward in this one.”

Bernard Herrmann’s Jurassic Park

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

As a series, Jurassic Park has by and large steered clear of pop songs. But the trailer begins with Irma Thomas’ Anyone Who Knows What Love Is (Will Understand), with lyrics that seem to describe Owen and Claire and Owen and Blue’s relationships (“you can run around/even put me down/Still I’ll be there for you”). But the musical cue that really catches the ear here is that short, sharp, discordant take on John Williams’ classic Jurassic Park theme — an indication that Bayona, who cut his teeth on the terrifying horror The Orphanage, is ready to make people scream. “The music is very Bernard Herrmann,” he says. “Those high-pitched strings remind me a lot of him. We’re bringing back this element of terror and fear and Hitchcockian suspense.”

Deux Rex Machina

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

No Jurassic Park film is complete without our old friend, the T-Rex, popping in for a quick roar and to save the hero. Both of which happen here, as Trexy puts the hurt on new dinosaur, the carnotaurus, just as it’s about to turn Owen into an amuse bouche. “You cannot have the T-rex be the main dinosaur in all the films,” says Bayona. “But we’re playing with it as much as we can. The whole T-rex situation is very symbolic.”

50 Ways To Leave Your Lava

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

The T-rex shows up here during an action sequence Bayona calls “the biggest seen in a Jurassic movie”. Understandably, given that the volcano is erupting, forcing Pratt, Howard, newcomer Justice Smith, and dozens of the park’s dino-zens, to run for their lives. It’s a sequence that incorporates CG, location shooting, plenty of moving parts, the sphere from Jurassic World (now reimagined as a getaway car), and a pyroclastic cloud. “It’s massive,” says Bayona. “But it’s essential to the story. I like having a massive action scene in the centre.” Following this, it seems that the film will become smaller, more intimate, even claustrophobic.

The New Blood

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

As well as the carnotaurus, Bayona promises plenty of new dinosaurs. “There are some more that are not featured in the trailer.” But the presence of the baryonyx has caused quite a stir amongst Jurassic Park fans, delighted that the giant fish-eating reptile has finally made its debut in the series, after near misses in both the original Spielberg movie and Joe Johnston’s Jurassic Park III. The characters having a close shave with it in what appears to be tunnels under the Jurassic World complex seem less enamoured, though.

You Do Plan To Have Jeff Goldblum In Your Dinosaur Movie

Jeff Goldblum

And here he is, after a back-of-a-book cameo in Jurassic World: Jeff ruddy Goldblum, returning as chaos theoretician Ian Malcolm for a scene discussing the merits of treating dinosaurs as living, breathing creatures, and not simply lab experiments that can be destroyed at a whim. And, though this Malcolm is older, greyer, beardier, he’s still much given to making proclamations about man’s foolishness in meddling with its unpredictable predecessors. “They were here before us,” he says. “If we’re not careful, they’ll be here after us.”

Goldblum said recently that he wasn’t sure if he was going to be in the movie, but here he is. Cat’s out of the bag. “Well, he’s in the trailer!” laughs Bayona. “But we try all the time to find connections between the first trilogy and the second trilogy.” James Cromwell, for example, is playing an old business partner of Richard Attenborough’s John Hammond. “Ian Malcolm is not a major role in the action of the film, but is a meaningful one to the story. He’s like Jiminy Cricket in the Jurassic stories — he’s there all the time telling us we’re about to cross the red line.”

Owen Owen… Gone?

Jurassic World Fallen Kingdom

The trailer ends with a cliffhanger, as Owen is seemingly swallowed up by that pyroclastic cloud. In other words, a very hot shroud of smoke. So, is our hero done for? There have been rumours about a twist in the movie that will knock your socks off. If so, is this it? After all, there’s nowt much more Hitchcockian than bumping off your lead character halfway through, although we doubt they’d reveal it in the trailer. So, we ask Bayona, can he reassure people that Owen Grady is going to be ok, and that he’s not going to be a nice crispy-fried snack for any dinosaurs lucky enough to escape the eruption? “No!” he laughs. “I can tell you that, doing the research, I saw YouTube videos about these guys recording a massive cloud coming in from a volcano, and they were swallowed by the cloud. But the video is there, so…” He laughs. “Life finds a way.”

It’s not the only cliffhanger, ending with Claire in the sea surrounded by hungry dinosaurs and, seemingly, no way out of the gyrosphere, while the fates of the other major characters, not to mention Blue and the old T-rex, are very much up in the air. Second trailer, anyone?

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