2013-04-05

Jurassic Park 3D – Still Great 20 Years Later

by Yo Snyder

Still great after all these years. Jurassic Park is
coming back to theaters, and it’s one of those rare films where you don’t want
to miss seeing it on the big screen. Much like Star Wars, there’s just
something special about seeing those dinos chase people on the big screen.
Steven Spielberg crafted a blockbuster made to last when he created Jurassic
Park
; something that’s readily apparent when you get lost in the adventure
and immersed in this world while never once noticing that it’s a 20 year-old
movie. Whether or not it’s worth seeing in 3D, however, is another story
entirely.

First, just seeing this on the big screen is well worth it.
There were several times where I got chills while watching this movie in a
theater; the swell of the iconic score, the roar of the T-Rex in big theater
surround sound, and that awesome moment when John Hammond says, “Welcome to
Jurassic Park.” It’s good stuff, and it was fun seeing it with an audience
again. I’m guessing several hadn’t seen this movie in a long time as they
thrilled and laughed as though it were a new release. Jurassic Park is
blockbuster, pop-corn, have-some-fun-at-the-theater movie making at its best.

However, the whole 3D thing was a big miss for me. I think
there were a couple factors that contributed to my disappointment on this
front. One, I had just recently seen the movie on Blu-Ray. Despite being 20
years old, Jurassic Park looks amazing in HD; it’s crisp, vibrant and
looks as good as new for the most part. Secondly, I just saw The Croods in
3D; one of the better CG animated films recently and one that looked amazing in
3D. It wasn’t dim, the colors were bright and vibrant, and the film had some
fun with the whole 3D gimmick. Jurassic Park in 3D looked dim and washed
out. A big part of that was the due to the glasses, but part of it may have
just been the theater I was in. Regardless of the reason, it just didn’t look
that great; I would have preferred to see it at home on Blu-Ray where it looks
really sharp. Plus, the 3D doesn’t really add anything to the film; if
anything, it can be distracting. My kids were talking about how scary it would
be to have things coming out of the screen at you, but none of that really
happens in this movie; the 3D just gives things a bit more depth and dimension,
which adds nothing to one’s enjoyment.

I would have been perfectly happy seeing Jurassic Park
on the big screen without the 3D conversion. The 20th anniversary
for this landmark film is more than enough reason to put it back in theaters
for a short engagement, I don’t think the added excuse of 3D was necessary,
especially since the boat has pretty much sailed on the fad of converting older
movies into 3D re-releases; aside from a handful, they never really were all
that successful. Jurassic Park is one of those iconic films that just
about everyone has memories of, so seeing it on a big screen in a movie theater
is a fun, nostalgic trip. The 3D proves to be a disappointment, at least it did
for me, so if you have an option to skip, you may want to. Regardless, Jurassic
Park
is an adventure 65 million years in the making that’s still fun even
20 years later. 

Score: 6 of 7 – This
movie is still great, but the 3D (at least at my screening) does more harm than
good. There’s a spattering of a few bad words, and some scary dinosaur stuff
and a few slightly gory scenes. Not for little kids, but Jurassic Park still sparks the awe, wonder and adventurous spirit
of the kid in all of us.