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In honor of the best weekend of 2013, I’d like to do another trilogy review. To my #UniversalHHN pals (those who went on the ride and those who waited): I’m already counting the days until we do VIP at HHN2014. Sooooo: what exactly does Halloween have to do with dinosaurs? Go to Universal Studios for Halloween Horror Nights and ride the JP ride. It makes perfect sense. Unless you don’t like to get wet, in which case, ride the ride and sit in the front. It’s best at night for Jurassic Park In the Dark.

1993
Sam Neill as Dr. Alan Grant
Laura Dern as Dr. Ellie Sattler
Jeff Goldblum as Dr. Ian Malcolm
Richard Attenborough as John Hammond
Directed by Steven Spielberg

Synopsis (on the off chance that those of you reading this have NOT seen this or any of its sister films): John Hammond’s company, InGen, has been funding a spectacular new amusement park set to open near Costa Rica. Due to some legal issues, Hammond needs some scientific representation to help get the project finished on shedyule/er, schedule. Once on site, the trio of doctors and some children encounter a few new problems set in motion by a disgruntled InGen employee.

Again, there’s really no way that anyone alive today and over the age of 5 hasn’t seen JP. But on the off-off-off chance, here’s some key bits that will whet your appetite:

• The doctors’ arrival on-site at the park. Great views of Kauai and Oahu as they drive through to the visitors’ center. And of course, the first views of the attractions. Thanks to John Williams for his addition to the scene. You succeeded, once again, at turning me into a snotty, tear-stained mess.

• Samuel L. Jackson, in his pre-Nick Fury days. My little brother wrote a story for school the year JP came out (I think he was in second grade?); one of the main characters in said story spoke the line “hold onto your butts”, which resulted in a note home from the teacher about his use of language. We all died laughing. Did the man every take a breath WITHOUT a cigarette in his mouth?

• Absolutely incredible animatronics by Stan Winston Studios. I think they made the T-rex head for the ride, too.

• Sam Neill’s wonderful portrayal of the stereotypical Spielberg male (i.e. NOT a father figure).

Weepy Meter: 2/10 My personal rating is an 8, but you already know why, if you’ve read ANYTHING I’ve written on this blog. Other than that: Laura Dern manages to shed a few tears, and Attenborough is such a kindly old man who’s SO disappointed when his dreams are shattered that you almost feel bad for him. Almost. (Read the book and you’ll never feel bad for him again.)

Man Meter: 5/10 Great movie, violence. It’s a classic.

Overall Rating: 9/10 Well written, scored, acted, produced, costumed, everything. Love it.

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