Four years after the destruction of Isla Nublar, dinosaurs now live–and hunt–alongside humans all over the world. This fragile balance will reshape the future and determine, once and for all, whether human beings are to remain the apex predators on a planet they now share with history’s most fearsome creatures in a new Era.

Chuck says:

To be sure, the “Jurassic Park/World” franchise(s) has suffered from the law of diminishing returns, as Universal Pictures’ Dino epics have strained to thrill with each successive entry. However, I was genuinely surprised at the conclusion of the 2018’s “Fallen Kingdom,” as producers Frank Marshall and Steven Spielberg left viewers with a situation, I never thought they’d have the nerve to explore – a world in which humans and dinosaurs are forced to co-exist.

Much like “Top Gun: Maverick,” the latest in the franchise, “Jurassic World: Dominion,” goes out of its way to replicate the past, calling back to so many seminal moments from the previous entries, the sense of déjà vu will likely be experienced by many viewers. However, there are benefits to ignoring the theme of “The Great Gatsby,” and the presence of fan favorites Sam Neill, Laura Dern and Jeff Goldblum, reprising their roles from the 1993 original. (Yes, you read that year correctly…) is certainly a highlight.

Unfortunately, Chris Pratt and Bryce Dallas Howard from the “World” films are front and center, getting most of the screen time as Owen Grady and Claire Dearing, respectively. This is not a knock on these two actors; their characters were simply never allowed to develop as fully as the original trio and as such, their scenes here lack nuance and urgency.

The plot, such as it is, plays like a selection of the franchise’s greatest hits. Much of the action takes place in a remote dinosaur sanctuary run by Biosyn, a corporation owned by Lewis Dodgson (Campbell Scott) who’s breeding dinosaurs and splicing their DNA with that of other creatures for fun and profit. For some inexplicable reason, he keeps Dr. Malcolm (Goldblum) in his employ and when the chaos theorist realizes what his boss is up to, he calls in his cohorts, Drs. Grant and Sattler (Neill and Dern), to help him gather some evidence to take to the press. Meanwhile, Dodgson has had Maisie Lockwood (Isabella Sermon), who was in the care of Grady and Dearing, kidnapped because she has a unique DNA structure he wants to exploit. The surrogate parents, of course, set out to rescue her.

There’s an awful lot going on in “Dominion” and it all looks the same. The far too numerous action sequences blur together, nearly all of them indistinguishable from the other, many of them failing to advance the plot in any meaningful way. Director Colin Trevorrow, who co-wrote the script with Emily Carmichael, adheres to the notion that too much is never enough in terms of dinosaur attacks. Yes, these prehistoric creatures attacking humans is what puts butts in seats, and I enjoy seeing a random villain devoured like a Sim Jim by a T-Rex as much as the next guy. That being said, I like chocolate too, but I know if I eat too much of it that not only will I get sick, but I’ll lose my taste for it as well.

This notion is never in play. By the time the film hits the two-hour mark, and our heroes split into groups AGAIN, and are threatened by the dinos AGAIN, peril fatigue had set in. Sheer repetition had exhausted my ability to be thrilled by anything Trevorrow could have conjured. Had he leaned towards including a few more scenes focused on the blossoming romance between Grant and Sattler and allowed Malcolm to employ his lovable sense of snark more often, a far more entertaining film would have resulted.  As it is, the lazily written “Dominion” goes out of its way to give the audience what it thinks it wants ad nauseum. In the end, this approach renders any sense of excitement extinct.

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