Tuesday, December 11, 2007

All Time Greatest films in the World(9) : Jurassic Park (1993)

Jurassic Park is a 1993 science fiction film directed by Steven Spielberg, based on the novel of the same name by Michael Crichton. The film centers on the island of Isla Nublar, where scientists have created an amusement park of cloned dinosaurs. John Hammond (Richard Attenborough) invites a group of scientists, played by Sam Neill, Jeff Goldblum and Laura Dern, to visit the park. Sabotage sets the dinosaurs on the loose, and technicians and visitors attempt to escape the island.Development of the film began before the novel was even published, and Crichton was hired to contribute to a script that cut much of its story. Spielberg hired Stan Winston Studios's puppets and worked with Industrial Light and Magic to develop cutting-edge computer-generated imagery to portray the dinosaurs. Jurassic Park was well received by critics, although they criticized the characterization. During its release, the film grossed more than $914 million, becoming the most successful film yet released, and it is currently the tenth-highest grossing feature film, significantly inspiring a new breed of films that primarily used CGI for special effects. Jurassic Park was the first film in the Jurassic Park franchise, followed by The Lost World: Jurassic Park in 1997 and by Jurassic Park III in 2001, with Jurassic Park IV in development.
Story and Plot Point
On Isla Nublar, an InGen employee is killed while releasing a Velociraptor into a specially built enclosure, prompting a lawsuit from his family. CEO John Hammond is pressured by his investors to allow a safety investigation by experts before opening the park. He invites paleontologist Alan Grant, paleobotanist Ellie Sattler, chaos theorist Dr. Ian Malcolm and his investors' attorney Donald Gennaro, to perform the inspection. The group meets a Brachiosaurus when they set out into the park. At the park, they learn that InGen recreated the dinosaurs by cloning genetic material found in mosquitoes that fed on dinosaur blood, preserved in Dominican amber. The DNA from these samples was spliced with DNA from frogs to fill in gaps: during this process, the dinosaurs are bred as females to control the population. The team is also shown the Velociraptor enclosure seen at the beginning of the film, which contains the ferocious and intelligent adults.
Malcolm and Sattler are concerned, but Grant remains neutral. They meet Hammond's grandchildren, Alexis and Tim Murphy, and go on a vehicular tour of the park. Ellie leaves the tour to take care of a sick Triceratops. A tropical storm hits the island and most InGen employees leave, except for Hammond, game warden Robert Muldoon, chief engineer Ray Arnold, and lead computer programmer Dennis Nedry. Commissioned by rival businessman Lewis Dodgson, Nedry takes an opportunity to shut down the park's security system so he can steal dinosaur embryos and deliver them to an auxiliary dock. Soon, a Tyrannosaurus breaks through the electric fence surrounding its pen, killing Gennaro, wounding Malcolm, and then attacking Tim and Lex hiding in the car. The children and Grant only narrowly avoid being killed and eaten. Meanwhile, Ellie and Muldoon rescue Malcolm and are almost caught by the T. rex during an intense chase. Nedry crashes his car and after trying to fix it is killed by a Dilophosaurus. Grant, Tim, and Lex spend the night in a tree and while hiking to safety the next morning discover some of the dinosaurs are actually breeding. Grant realizes that the frog DNA is responsible, as some species of frog are known to spontaneously change gender in a single-sex environment. Arnold tries to hack Nedry’s computer to turn the power back on and fails, so he does a full system restart, which requires the circuit breakers to be manually reset from the utility shed. When he fails to return, Ellie and Muldoon follow and discover the Raptors have escaped. Muldoon tells Ellie to go to the utility shed herself and turn the power back on while he hunts the Raptors that have been stalking them. Muldoon is attacked and killed by a lurking Raptor while Ellie escapes from another after discovering Arnold's remains. After managing to turn on the power and escaping the Raptor, she meets up with Grant. They both go back to Malcolm and Hammond, and Grant grabs a shotgun after learning that two Raptors have escaped their pen and a third has been contained. Lex and Tim narrowly escape two of the Raptors in the kitchen, and Lex is finally able to restore the Park's computer systems in order to call Hammond to request a helicopter rescue of the survivors. Grant and Ellie hold off a Raptor trying to open the door to the computer room, until the power is restored and the electromagnetic locks begin working. With the door secure, the team climbs up into the ceiling crawlspace and arrive at the Visitors Center skeleton display. After a scuffle on top of the fossil exhibits where the Raptors block their escape route, help comes from an unlikely source when the Tyrannosaurus suddenly appears and kills both Raptors; unintentionally saving Grant, Ellie, Lex and Tim in the process. Grant, Ellie, Lex and Tim climb into Hammond and Malcolm's jeep and leave. Grant says he will not endorse the park, a choice with which Hammond concurs. Flying away in the helicopter, the children fall asleep beside Grant, who contemplatively watches the birds flying nearby, the surviving relatives of the dinosaurs they escaped.
Reaction and Box Office Records
Jurassic Park went on to become the most financially successful film yet released, beating E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial which previously held the title, although it did not top E.T. domestically. The film opened with $47 million in its first weekend, and it grossed $81.7 million by its first week. The film stayed at number one for three weeks and eventually grossed $357 million domestically. The film also did very well in foreign markets, breaking opening records in the U.K., Japan, South Korea, Mexico and Taiwan. Spielberg earned over $250 million from the film. Jurassic Park's worldwide gross was topped five years later by James Cameron's Titanic.
The film received modestly positive reviews. High praise was heaped on the visual effects, although there was a lot of criticism leveled at the characterization and departures from the book. Janet Maslin in The New York Times called it, "A true movie milestone, presenting awe- and fear-inspiring sights never before seen on the screen....On paper, this story is tailor-made for Mr. Spielberg's talents...[but] [i]t becomes less crisp on screen than it was on the page, with much of the enjoyable jargon either mumbled confusingly or otherwise thrown away." In Rolling Stone, Peter Travers described the film as "colossal entertainment - the eye-popping, mind-bending, kick-out-the-jams thrill ride of summer and probably the year....Compared with the dinos, the characters are dry bones, indeed. Crichton and co-screenwriter David Koepp have flattened them into nonentities on the trip from page to screen." Roger Ebert noted, "The movie delivers all too well on its promise to show us dinosaurs. We see them early and often, and they are indeed a triumph of special effects artistry, but the movie is lacking other qualities that it needs even more, such as a sense of awe and wonderment, and strong human story values." Henry Sheehan argued, "The complaints over Jurassic Park's lack of story and character sound a little off the point," pointing out the story arc of Grant learning to protect Hammond's grandchildren despite his initial dislike of them.
The movie won all three Academy Awards it was nominated for: Visual Effects, Sound Effects Editing, and Sound. It won the Hugo Award for Best Dramatic Presentation and the Saturn Awards for Best Science Fiction Film, Best Direction, Best Writing for Crichton and Koepp and Best Special Effects. The film won the People's Choice Awards for Favorite All-Around Motion Picture. Young Artist Awards were given to Ariana Richards and Joseph Mazzello, with the film winning an Outstanding Action/Adventure Family Motion Picture award. The film won honours outside of the U.S., such as the BAFTA for Best Special Effects, as well as the Award for the Public's Favourite Film, and Awards for Best Foreign Language Film from the Japanese Academy, Mainichi Eiga Concours and Blue Ribbon, and the Czech Lions.
Jurassic Park is ranked as fresh on Rotten Tomatoes with an 85% positive rating, with 28 out of 33 critics giving it positive reviews. The American Film Institute named Jurassic Park the 35th most thrilling film of all time on June 13, 2001, and Bravo chose a scene from it as the 95th scariest scene of all time in 2005. In 2004, on their fifteenth anniversary, Empire called it the sixth most influential film of their lifetime. Upon their fifty-fifth anniversary in 2005, Film Review declared it one of the five most important films of their lifetime. In 2006, IGN ranked Jurassic Park as the 19th greatest film franchise of all time.

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