Film review: Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is a huge, crowd-pleasing success
For all its visual flair and dazzling set-pieces, Collin Trevorrow's fourth segment of the Jurassic Park franchise, Jurassic World (2015) failed to match the nerve-shredding tension of Steven Spielberg's seminal first instalment.
It seemed as though it was recycling key climactic moments from that film and its lesser sequels.
Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom suffers from no such faults and director J. A. Bayona has delivered a thrilling and visually arresting sequel.
Set three years after Jurassic World, the sequel sees returning heroes Owen Grady (Chris Pratt) and Claire Dearing (Bryce Dallas Howard) team up once more to rescue the prehistoric inhabitants of the titular theme park before it is destroyed by a soon-to-erupt volcano.
While Bayona handles the action-packed thrills of the first half effectively it is in its second act, when the film transforms from a fast-paced adventure into a tightly-wound thriller, that it shines.
Set in the mansion of Sir Benjamin Lockwood (James Cromwell), Bayona utilises the gothic confines of the vast estate to full effect, expertly capturing the terror of Owen, Claire and Lockwood’s granddaughter Maisie (Isabella Sermon) as they are stalked by genetically engineered dinosaur the Indoraptor.
The cast delivers sterling work. Howard and Pratt are given room to explore the chemistry they developed in Jurassic World and Rafe Spall is on superb hissable form as Lockwood’s unscrupulous right hand man Eli Mills.
Strengthened by a stunning second act and a charismatic cast, Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is a huge, crowd-pleasing success.