Jurassic Park III (7/31/12)

Movie One Hundred Seventy Nine

Jurassic Park III has some familiar faces traveling to a different island, but one that is also inhabited by a plethora of prehistoric wildlife.

While para-sailing near Isla Sorna, a sister island to Isla Nublar from the original Jurassic Park, with his stepfather, young Erik Kirby (Trevor Morgan) gets detached from the boat and has to land on the island. Back in the US, Dr. Grant (Sam Neill) is still working with dinosaurs and has gained some notoriety for his adventures during the first film. When approached by Mr. (William H. Macy) and Mrs. (Téa Leone) Kirby and promised a huge paycheck under false pretenses, their crew lands on the island for a rescue mission. Obviously the dinosaurs are not pleased by the new visitors.

Make no mistake, I know Jurassic Park III is a pretty bad movie but ever since I was really little, I’ve loved dinosaurs. Jurassic Park III‘s subtitle may as well be “let’s see how many dinosaurs we can cram into this thing” because at every turn there’s a dinosaur. The plot is paper thin and the film kindly asks you to disregard using any logic in what it’s showing you, but dinosaurs, man! DINOSAURS!

While it’s a totally unnecessary sequel that was an obvious cash grab and scheme to sell toys, Jurassic Park III at least brings back Dr. Grant and Ellie Sattler and it tries its best to form a continuation of the characters after the events of the first two films. The upcoming 4th film in the Jurassic Park series may be even more of a cash grab, turd of a film, but I’ll still probably see it. The magic of this film isn’t that it tries to be as good as Spielberg’s films, it’s that it knows that people love dinosaurs and expands on it.

The production values are actually fairly high Jurassic Park III, the special effects notably. I hadn’t watched the film in awhile and was thinking the CGI dinos could end up looking like SyFy’s incredibly crappy movies but they look realistic. There is actually a scene in a river with the main “villain” dino, the spinosaurus, and they use an animatronic instead of CGI and the CGI versions look more alive.

If you go into Jurassic Park III wanting a dumb, dinosaur-mauling good time then I think you’ll be pleased. Thinking Jurassic Park III is anything more than that will likely disappoint.

I give it 3 real-life spinosaurus skeletons out of 5.


Rotten Tomatoes


30 responses to “Jurassic Park III (7/31/12)

  1. I Thought this was quite a decent wee flick Andy. Like you say, if you dont expect too much, it’s quite entertaining. “Dinosaurs man. DINOSAURS”. I’m in your camp mate. Can’t get enough of them.

  2. I didn’t like this one either. I thought the first and even the second were better because they had more thought in them (or maybe that’s because Spielberg directed them). I’m glad they at least brought back Dr. Grant. Good review.

    Is there going to be a Jurassic Park IV? I’ve heard rumors about that for years, but wasn’t sure if they were true.

    • It’s not on the same level as the Spielberg movies (although I really didn’t like Lost World) but it’s serviceable dino goodness.

      Well, I don’t know if anything is solidified, but I kind of hope they do actually make it.

  3. Agree with you completely on this one. Total cash grab, but the presence of Grant elevates the crappy script. Loads better than the second. My only real issue with the flick is the t-Rex gets completely bitched out. I realize they had to make the Spinosaur über powerful — hence the t-rex necksnap — but you could’ve at least let the t-Rex get some revenge. You should check out the original JP4 script by John Sayles they were tossing around years ago. It involved intelligent dinos being trained by the military to become an elite fighting force. No shit, man. Would’ve been terrible but I bet someone like Verhoeven could’ve made it awesomely bad in all the right ways.

  4. There were individual scenes in “Jurassic Park III” that were brilliant and very suspenseful–the “bird cage” scene with the pteranodons, the river scene, the raptors using the guy as bait, the airplane crash. Unfortunately, there were so many missed opportunities in the plot that it made it difficult to enjoy, plus the fact that Macy and Leone bickering got extremely annoying very quickly.

  5. i dont know why but i actually liked JP3, and your review places it neatly in its place within the JP arc and how comparable it is to the other movies in the trilogy and yes JP4 may be a turd, but i’ll be there.

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  7. I wasn’t completely disappointed with this one. When I was younger I too loved dinosaurs so I think any Jurassic Park film just hits home with me especially when it has Sam Neill. Of the three it was the weakest but I really liked the heavy presence of the raptors. And naturally I am pumped to hear of Speilbergs plan to do a fourth.

  8. This series ends at Jurassic Park 2 for me. I just couldn’t get into this movie. It didn’t have any of the life or energy of the first two.

  9. Wow, I haven’t seen this in ages. I vaguely remember it being hella better than the second but nowhere near the first but you make an excellent point – DINOSAURS.

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  11. “The plot is paper thin and the film kindly asks you to disregard using any logic in what it’s showing you, but dinosaurs, man! DINOSAURS!”

    “The upcoming 4th film in the Jurassic Park series may be even more of a cash grab, turd of a film, but I’ll still probably see it.”


    Nice review, man! It’s been a looong time since I’ve seen this one.

  12. I remember watching this film, my expectations being really low after the disappointment of the second, but actually really enjoying the film. The plot isn’t great but the actual set-pieces are very cool, the “bird cage” being a huge highlight.

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