Believe it or not, it’s been twenty years since Jurassic Park came out, and now it’s back in 3D. Where I often wonder how well a lot of movies hold up today, judging by the press reports I’ve been seeing, Steven Spielberg’s dino epic is still great fun, even if Vulture wrote it had “aging effects.” Not to mention several other critics weren’t thrilled with the 3D conversion, calling it little more than a marketing gimmick.
The “aging effects” comment is amusing, like a critic making a quaint allusion to stop motion, because Jurassic was such a groundbreaking film in its time. It of course launched the whole CGI explosion that dominates effects today, which a lot of fans will curse because CG has been so overdone. But these days we’re so blasé about CG, it’s easy to forget how realistic Spielberg’s dinosaurs looked twenty years ago.
The big Spiel recalled to Entertainment Weekly the first time saw the CG effects created by Dennis Muren and Phil Tippett, “The last time my jaw dropped like that was when George Lucas showed me the shot of the Imperial cruiser [in Star Wars]. I showed it to Ray Harryhausen. He looked at the test and said, ‘Well, that’s the future.’” He sure got that right.
However the 3D or CG may look today, Vulture writes that “the movie itself has gained some surprising profundity in the intervening years…Watching it, we can sense Spielberg trying his damnedest to take this wide-eyed blockbuster into curiously dark corners…it feels more clearly personal, more like the work of an artist pushing his relationship with an (immense) audience.”
Like Jaws, Raiders of the Lost Ark, E.T., and other Spielberg blockbusters, Jurassic Park became a major even in pop culture when it exploded at the box office. Not to mention that back in those days going to see the latest blockbuster was like going to see your favorite band at The Forum or Madison Square Garden.
Entertainment Weekly’s Chris Nashawaty remembers standing in line for six or seven hours until he could get in to the film opening day. “You couldn’t purchase tickets by simply clicking your mouse,” he writes. While he’s not nuts about the 3D conversion, “The good news is that Jurassic Park is still one of the giddiest joy rides that Hollywood has ever engineered…You’ll walk out stunned and exhausted…even if you didn’t wait in line all day for tickets.”
Will you be taking a trip down memory lane and seeing this epic film again in 3D? It’s always a great chance to share this film with a generation that didn’t get to experience it on the big screen as well. Share your thoughts in the comment section below!