Jurassic Park 3 (2001)

I often feel that people often understate just how difficult it is to make a good sequel. There are plenty of jokes about how sequels are bad, but relatively little discussion about exactly why that is. Jurassic Park 3 is a great example of a good movie that is hampered by the fact that it is a sequel.park1Let's start with the good. Sam Neill is back, which is always a plus in my book. This film really feels more like a continuation of the first film than The Lost World did, largely because Neill was really the main character of the first one. William H. Macy and Tea Lioni are both great in the movie and go went from being unlikable to characters that I was really rooting for. I also like that this is more of a straight action survival movie, as opposed to the hard sci-if action hybrid that I see the first movie as. I never complain about a 90 minute running time either.This seems familiar...Now for the things I didn't like. As I was saying at the start, I think most of these complaints can be summed up as things shoved in to relate back to the first movie. The classic Jurassic Park score is way overused, especially at the start of the film, and it quickly loses what makes it so special. While the dinosaur sequences are entertaining, it can be tough not to feel as if we have seen this before. I often found myself thinking things like "another T. Rex type chase" or "another raptor scene". There are two great sequences near the end of the movie, the pterodactyls an the boat escape, that succeed because that are so different from anything we have seen before. This is partly because these scenes are in a different setting besides vaguely prehistoric vegetation. It's tough to know what is studio pressure and what is homage, but the balancing act between new story and referencing what are the original great is what kills many sequels.Jurassic Park III (2001)I wouldn't call Jurassic Park 3 a failure, but it wasn't a rousing success either.3/5