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Jurassic Park III

movie reviewmovie reviewmovie review out of 4

*Also starring: Sam Neill, Michael Jeter, Alessandro Nivola, Laura Dern, Trevor Morgan

Review by Susan Granger
2½ stars out of 4

This third installment continues the story of a paleontologist, Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neill) who, eight years ago, accepted an invitation from InGen industrialist John Hammond to preview a new tourist attraction featuring genetically engineered dinosaurs on an island near Costa Rica. After barely escaping from that nightmare, he vowed never to return - but he didn't count on his research money becoming extinct. So when a wealthy adventurer (William H. Macy) and his ex-wife (Tea Leoni) offer to fund his new theory on Velociraptor intelligence if he will accompany them on an aerial tour of Isla Sorna, a new InGen site that has become both a dinosaur breeding ground and a magnet for thrill-seekers, he agrees to go, bringing his gung-ho protégé (Alessandro Nivola). But when their plane unexpectedly lands, he discovers that the couple's 14 year-old son (Trevor Morgan) is lost in the dense jungle in a para-gliding accident. Meanwhile, they must fight for survival while under attack by rampaging reptiles, particularly the massive, menacing Spinosaurus that briefly battles with a Tyrannosaurus Rex, the flock of flying Pteranodons and, of course, the wily Velociraptors. Dr. Grant's still a crusty curmudgeon but the brutal behemoths are the stars and that's reflected in the direction by Joe Johnston, who first collaborated with Steven Spielberg on "Raiders of the Lost Ark," and screenplay by Peter Buchman, Alexander Payne and Jim Taylor, based on Michael Crichton's characters. While this is a predictable, by-the-numbers film with a ridiculous climax, CGI fans will relish the 140 visual effects, as compared with 54 in the original and 78 in "The Lost World." On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, "Jurassic Park III" is a scaly, scary 6. It's formulaic but fun, a third-generation thrill-ride.

Copyright © 2001 Susan Granger

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