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Tales of the Forgotten Sequels: 'Jurassic Park 3'

In Tales of the Forgotten Sequels, we take a look at film follow-ups that have been lost to time, either by accident or on purpose. Did these Part 2s and Part 3s deserve the bargain bin, or were they victims of unfair expectations? Let’s find out!

Warning: Spoilers Ahead!

Back in 1993, Steven Spielberg took Michael Crichton’s novel about an amusement park full of live dinosaurs and turned it into a groundbreaking sensation. One of the few ’90s movies where the effects still hold up, Jurassic Park was an awe-inspiring journey full of action, humor, and great characters.

Naturally, Hollywood couldn’t leave well enough alone: There had to be a sequel. In 1997’s The Lost World: Jurassic Park, the action was amped up, but the film fell short on cohesive plot. It felt like the cash grab Spielberg desperately didn’t want it to be. Fans weren’t fooled, and it was universally panned.

But it still made money, prompting Universal Pictures to make a third one. The production was a disaster. With an ever-changing script and a new director in Joe Johnston (The Rocketeer, Captain America), Jurassic Park 3 was the final nail in the franchise coffin. With this week’s resurrection in the form of Jurassic World, let’s take a look at this oft-ignored sequel and decide if it really deserves to be extinct.

A T-Rex gets angry in Jurassic Park 3.

The Good

Solid Visuals: With the exception of a few horrendous moments, Jurassic Park 3‘s dinosaurs look pretty solid. While nothing will replace the believability of the original, the dinos are realistic enough to keep us from falling out of the movie.

Good, Varied Action: This is important for a film that’s 75 percent screaming and running. The action scenes are competently put together. There’s also good variety in the settings and types of battles. Involving a flying dinosaur was a very good choice, adding an exciting element to the mayhem.

Simple Yet Strong Narrative Drive: Through all of the nonsense that is the plot, the central motivation is simple and strong. Kid is lost, family wants to find him. Basic, straightforward, and effective. How he survived eight weeks inside an empty water tank with nothing but Crunch bars to eat is another question altogether.

It’s Short: The film is shockingly short, clocking in at barely 90 minutes. This is a very good thing.

The raptor of Dr Grant

The Bad

It’s Too Damn Short!: Jurassic Park 3‘s best feature is also its worst. It’s entirely too short. The opening is rushed and ridiculous, and the “get to know the characters” moments fly by. The result is a movie that always seems like it’s in a big hurry to get to the screeching and smashing. And when you know nothing about the characters running for their lives—and worse, don’t care—it gives the film an emotional flatline.

Nothing Makes Any Sense: When you rewrite a script mid-production, you know you’re going to have some holes. Jurassic Park 3 has dozens of WTF moments. From Dr. Grant getting knocked out on the airplane to the wife’s “whatevs” reaction to the death of her husband, Jurassic Park 3 has a Swiss-cheese plot. And don’t get me started on Dr. Grant’s fever dream. “ALAN!”

No Goldblum: Some say The Lost World was too much Goldblum. I say there’s no such thing. Having Dr. Grant in a Jurassic Park movie without Dr. Malcolm is like the Beach Boys without Brian Wilson. You can do it, but why bother?

A Flying Dinosaur Walks on a Bridge Like a Horror-Movie Villain: In a film full of stupid things, this is by far the stupidest.

Dr. Grant Can Talk to Raptors by Blowing into a Plastic Replica Larynx: Never mind. This takes the stupid cake.

Dr Grant pretends he

The Baffling

Dino-monsters: Question: When did dinosaurs stop being animals and start becoming monsters? The charm of the original film was in the wonder of discovery. For every scene of running and screaming, there was a quiet moment of fascination. The dinosaurs weren’t bloodthirsty creatures. They were animals protecting their boundaries and being, well, animals.

Jurassic Park 3 continues The Lost World‘s descent into creature-feature territory. Here, we get a roller-coaster ride full of reptilian demons smashing everything in sight. It’s one thing to amp up the excitement. It’s quite another to turn dinosaurs into Godzilla and Mothra.

The Ending: Surviving is one thing. Bringing an entire battalion of naval, air, and ground troops to save five people is a bit excessive. And stupid. And mind-boggling that it got past the first draft.

Half of the US Army shows up to save our heroes in Jurassic Park 3.

The Verdict

With all of its nonsense, Jurassic Park 3 wasn’t as bad as I expected, possibly because it was so short. If I had to sit there for another half-hour, I might be whistling a different tune. The bad bits are actually endearing, and the near constant action is distracting enough … if you don’t mind turning off your brain for 90 minutes.

But it doesn’t deserve to be a part of the fantastic original’s canon. If they swapped Dr. Grant with another scientist and called it Escape from Dino Island, it would have been a passable, forgettable summer flick. As it sits, it’s better off left in a fossilized state.

TV Families | EW.com
Mark Harris
February 23, 1990 AT 05:00 AM EST

The Bradys are back, with a passel of 90’s hassles. Do they represent the typical American Family? Did they ever? Who does? Stare and compare!

Kind Of Family
TheBradyBunch 1969-74: Blended
The Bradys 1990-: Enormous
Married…With Children 1987-: Postnuclear
Thirtysomething 1987-: Extended
The Flintstones 1960-66: Modern Stone Age

Family Pet
The Brady Bunch: Tiger
The Bradys: Alice
Married…With Children: Buck
Thirtysomething: Grendel
The Flintstones: Dino

Typical Guest Star
The Brady Bunch: Davey Jones
The Bradys: There’s no room
Married…With Children: Sam Kinison
Thirtysomething: Carly Simon
The Flintstones: Ann Margrock

Expression Of Joy
The Brady Bunch: Groovy!
The Bradys: Ritual hugging
Married…With Children: ”Oh, great.”
Thirtysomething: ”Of course I’m happy for you. Really. But what about me? Why does it always have to be about you?
The Flintstones: ”Yabba-dabba doo

Expression Of Rage

The Brady Bunch: ”Hmmm…”
The Bradys: ”If you back away from something you really want, then you’re a quitter!” (the angriest any Brady has ever been)
Married…With Children: ”Aaagh, God, take me from this miserable life!”
Thirtysomething: ”I’m not angry, OK?”
The Flintstones: ”Willllmaaaa!”

Typical Problem
The Brady Bunch: Marcia and her rival both want to be the prom queen.
The Bradys: Bobby gets paralyzed.
Married…With Children: Al doesn’t buy his family Christmas presents.
Thirtysomething: Nancy gets cancer.
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney are staying out too late.

Typical Solution
The Brady Bunch: The prom committee decides to have two queens.
The Bradys: Bobby gets married.
Married…With Children: They hate him.
Thirtysomething: If only we knew…
The Flintstones: Wilma and Betty decide to follow them.

House Style
The Brady Bunch: Conservative but mod, circa ’69
The Bradys: Conservative but mod, circa ’90
Married…With Children: Roach motel
Thirtysomething: Enviable
The Flintstones: Suburban cave

Clothing Style
The Brady Bunch: Early Osmonds
The Bradys: Made in the USA
Married…With Children: Flammable fabrics
Thirtysomething: Eclectic earth tones; nice ties
The Flintstones: One-piece

Most Annoying Character
The Brady Bunch: Alice’s cousin Emma, the substitute housekeeper (too strict)
The Bradys: Marcia’s husband, Wally (chronically unemployable)
Married…With Children: Steve (supercilious)
Thirtysomething: Ellyn (goes through Hope’s drawers, babbles, changes hairstyle every other week, generally mistreats her friends)
The Flintstones: Mr. Slate (bossy)

Attitude Toward Sex
The Brady Bunch: Never heard of it
The Bradys: Omigod — even Cindy does it!
Married…With Children: Peg: Yes. Al: No.
Thirtysomething: They didn’t get all those kids by accident.
The Flintstones: Prehistoric

How Spouses Fight
The Brady Bunch: They don’t.
The Bradys: Infrequently, but it happens
Married…With Children: Tooth and nail
Thirtysomething: They stop talking
The Flintstones: Fred and Barney go bowling while Wilma and Betty max out their charge cards.

How Kids Get Into Trouble
The Brady Bunch: Greg takes a puff of a cigarette.
The Bradys: Carol’s grandson steals her business cards and sticks them in the spokes of Bobby’s wheelchair.
Married…With Children: By committing felonies
Thirtysomething: Ethan plays with a forbidden toy rocket.
The Flintstones: They don’t.

How They’re Punished

The Brady Bunch: ”It’s not what you did, honey — it’s that you couldn’t come to us.”
The Bradys ”Next time, ask.”
Married…With Children: By the authorities
Thirtysomething: It blows up in his face.
The Flintstones: They’re not.

What Family Does For Fun
The Brady Bunch: Takes special three-part vacations to Hawaii and the Grand Canyon
The Bradys: Has flashbacks
Married…With Children: Exchanges insults
Thirtysomething: Talks
The Flintstones: Attends showings of The Monster at the Bedrock Drive-In

Unsolved Mysteries
The Brady Bunch: How exactly did Carol’s first husband and Mike’s first wife die?
The Bradys: What’s with Marcia’s new face and Bobby’s blonde hair
Married…With Children: What kind of hair spray does Peg use?
Thirtysomething: Why did Nancy take Elliot back? What do Gary and Susanna see in each other?
The Flintstones: How does Barney’s shirt stay on if he has no shoulders? Where do Fred and Wilma plug in their TV?

Worst Behavior
The Brady Bunch: The Brady children once made Alice feel under-appreciated.

The Bradys: Marcia’s son Mickey watches Bobby’s car-crash tape for fun.
Married…With Children: The Bundy’s kill their neighbor’s dog.
Thirtysomething: Elliot has an affair and talks about it.
The Flintstones: Characters don’t wear under-clothes.

Best Reason To Watch
The Brady Bunch: This is what life should be.
The Bradys: They’re all grown-ups now!
Married…With Children: Terry Rakolta hates it.
Thirtysomething (Tie) This is your life. This isn’t your life.
The Flintstones: This is what life might have been.

Best Reason Not To Watch
The Brady Bunch: Blurred vision from rerun overdoses.
The Bradys: You’re all grown-ups now.
Married…With Children: She has a point.
Thirtysomething: After a while, you think it’s real.
The Flintstones: The Simpsons

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