Posts tagged #universal studios

Jurassic Park vs. Jurassic World: Trailer Comparative Study

Come with us on a Jeff Goldblum-esque journey as we scientifically compare the Jurassic Park trailer to the Jurassic World trailer...

I've been a little surprised with the amount of negativity aimed at the Jurassic World trailer that launched on Tuesday. I actually really dug what I saw in the trailer and feel like if you're going to make another Jurassic Park film, this is probably the way to do it. In fact, a lot of it felt really familiar to the first film... As an experiment, I decided to compare this trailer to the original trailer for Jurassic Park from around 1992 in terms of structurally how they were presented as well as narratively what they were conveying.

Here's the results:

:15 (Both Films)

In 1992, Jurassic Park begins its trailer by introducing us to the world that we know: archeologists excavating a fossil while a narrator who sounds like Littlefinger from Game of Thrones sets the stage that mankind has always searched for its past. In 2014, Jurassic World opens on a young kid at an airport, his mother tells her how proud she is of him going on the trip but at the first sign of danger: run. Okay, so in 1992 we have to establish to audiences how and why dinosaurs have been brought back to life but in 2014, we automatically assume that it's possible and that people have knowledge of the dangers (even the past events) of a Jurassic Park. Not much comparison here quite yet.

:29 (Both Films)

In 1992, Sir Richard Attenborough tells us that he owns an island off the coast of Costa Rica and it immediately cuts to a beautiful shot of the InGen helicopter traveling to Isla Nublar. Incidentally, at the exact same time into the Jurassic World trailer in 2014, we see a similar shot of the plush boat traveling to the exact same island. Now we're talking.

:47 (Jurassic Park) / :42 (Jurassic World)

The 1992 trailer needs to drop in a little more exposition to establish how these dinosaurs have been genetically engineered, while the 2014 trailer hits us right with the familiar Jurassic World gates. However both trailers both literally and figuratively tell us that the "Park is Open" (the 2014 trailer by dropping it as a full-screen text card) followed by a shot of a Downtown Disney-looking environment... around the same time that the 1992 trailer opens the doors to the iconic atrium in a similar over the shoulder shot.

:58 (Jurassic Park) / :53 (Jurassic World)

John Hammond tells us in the 1992 trailer that his creatures are going to capture the imaginations of every living creature... and we immediately reveal character reactions to the Brachiosaurus. What happens in the 2014 trailer? We see hordes of audiences at the park with their imaginations being captured and, sure enough, at around the same time get a similar reaction to our friends, the brachiosaurus.

1:08 (Jurassic Park) / 1:04 (Jurassic World)

Jurassic Park: King Kong reference. Jurassic World: Jaws reference.

1:25 (Jurassic Park) / 1:29 (Jurassic World)

Dr. Alan Grant ominously begins explaining the science to us talking about the dangers of genetic modification while in the new trailer, Bryce Dallas Howard's Claire discusses genetic modification. Both lines of dialogue set up what will fundamentally be the harbinger for what's to come in the remainder of the trailer's events.

1:32 (Jurassic Park) / 1:30 (Jurassic World)

At the conclusion of Dr. Grant's speech, your subwoofer gets a workout with a big thump to the LFE channel as you see the iconic waterglass shot from the first film. Meanwhile, in 2014 as Claire's speech comes to a conclusion, your subwoofer also gets a workout from a big thump revealing this weird genetically modified spinal column-type thing.

2:00 (Jurassic Park) / 1:56 (Jurassic World)

In Jurassic Park, we learn that the fences are down all over the park and Samuel L. Jackson can't get anything back online without Dennis Nedry... then it cuts to this fantastic shot of Dr. Sadler surveying post-attack wreckage. In Jurassic World, Chris Pratt warns against the danger of something that escaped its fence and cuts to this image of his character: surveying post-attack wreckage.

2:04 (Jurassic Park) / 2:02 (Jurassic World)

Both trailers getting into their action montage sequences - both hit a similar palms sweating moment because our main characters are up in the air without a net at roughly the same time (Jurassic Park: the characters climbing over the high-reaching electric fence, Jurassic World: the characters jumping off a waterfall). A bit of a stretch, but identical moments eliciting the same type of response.

2:07 (Jurassic Park) / 2:05 (Jurassic World)

Jurassic Park: "Oh no." / Jurassic World: "Oh god."

2:14 (Both Films)

The young boy character sees something with a high eye-line that makes their jaws both drop.

2:21 (Both Films)


2:28 (Both Films)

Raptors... who learn how to open doors (Jurassic Park) / Raptors... who learn to ride with Chris Pratt (Jurassic World). And both trailers end on that note of the dinosaurs evolving in ways that we would never expect them to have.

Conclusion: Did you like the first movie? There's a good chance you might like the new one.

Jurassic World Trailer Drops

Whadda they got in there? Jaws? E.T.? Maybe the Matterhorn?

So much for waiting for the big reveal on Turkey Day... Universal Pictures did an about-face and released the trailer for the new Jurassic World film today. Clocking in at over two-minutes, the trailer gives us a really good feel for what this film is going to be and I have to say: I'm pretty $#@! excited. Dr. Ian Malcolm told us that life was going to find a way but apparently, so did humans and Jurassic Park (now World) is a thriving theme park akin to the the Disney empire. But, as they famously say, something goes wrong. And what goes wrong was incredibly unexpected on my part. Check out the trailer, now and let us know what you think!

Bits & Bobs - 4th Edition

Bits & Bobs collects some of the cool things around the interwebs that I think are noteworthy and worth your time but don't necessarily fill up a full blog post or news item. On with the show...


As part of the upcoming 30th Anniversary of Back to the Future, Universal is planning a re-release of the film in theaters with a very special difference from the original 1985 film: a live orchestra will be playing in time to the action on screen creating a live concert/viewing experience. Composer Alan Silvestri has composed an additional 15 minutes worth of music to accompany the film. Along the same lines, UK based Secret Cinema has plans to bring its live event to Los Angeles to celebrate the 30th anniversary as well. You can read a recap of my experience at the version in London here.


Fans of the cult-favorite (but famously unsuccessful) live-action adaptation of Super Mario Bros. with Bob Hoskins and John Leguizamo will be happy to know that Second Sight Films is releasing the film on Blu-ray. A new remaster of the feature is the centerpiece, with exclusive special features including an in-depth behind the scenes documentary that Second Sight created in conjunction with the Super Mario Bros. Movie Archive fan site. The Blu-ray release was originally slated for March of 2014 but looks to hit stores in the UK this November. What does that mean for folks in the US? Unfortunately the disc is region locked to the UK (Region 2), so you'll need a region-free player in order to view it (much like the recent release of Joe Dante's The Burbs from Arrow Films, which has an abundance of cool special features and a new HD master, but is UK only). Hopefully Disney will capitalize on bonus features already being in the can and release the disc in the US soon.


Rebel Force Radio has an amazing podcast program called Star Wars Oxygen, which is essentially a masters class on the John Williams orchestral score throughout all the films. Hosted by Jimmy Mac and Former LucasArts Sound Designer David W. Collins, each episode focuses on a particular section within one of the Star Wars films on a granular level. This week, Episode 11 was just released focusing on the source music of Return of the Jedi (all of the "in-world" music as heard by the characters in the film sourced from an element seen on screen like a certain Rebo band). But if you have the time, or the ridiculous commute like I do, definitely start back at Episode 1 where the team dissects A New Hope, then Empire Strikes Back and helps you hear the score of Star Wars in a whole new light. The show is available on iTunes by searching Rebel Force Radio or by clicking the link above.

The Wizard - 25 Years Later

Lucas and his oh-so-bad Power Glove in a behind the scenes image courtesy of director Todd Holland.

It's hard to believe that it's been 25 years since kids were introduced to Super Mario Bros. 3 in one of the most elaborate marketing moves of its time. For over 90-minutes, Universal Pictures' The Wizard took us on the journey to California of Jimmy Woods ("Gimme gimme gimme... Jimmy Woods") and his brother Corey, played by Fred Savage.

I was eight at the time that the movie was released, and I was at that highly impressionable age where everything I saw in movies, I wanted. Proton packs, Talkboys, heavy-so-they-must-be-expensive night vision goggles, you name it - if it was featured in a film and made an impression, I wanted one. So it's no surprise that in an era where we were eating, sleeping, and breathing Nintendo that a film came out featuring all-new Nintendo products and I went bananas. 

We all wanted to be Jimmy Woods, on a trip to California with our big brother to play in the Video Armageddon. We all wanted our sage-like guide to be a feisty redhead who made us feel kinda funny in our stomachs. We all wanted to spend all day on the Nintendo Power Play Tip Hotline getting the best ways to beat games (without paying the 95¢ a minute or whatever ridiculousness the hotline cost at that point). And of course, the film did its job and made us all salivate over the prospect of a third Super Mario game.

Thanks to social media director Todd Holland has been "live Tweeting" production of the film as if it were happening today. Twenty-five years to each day, he's Tweeting out never before seen photos from each day of production giving us a glimpse behind the scenes and actors Fred Savage and Jenny Lewis have been interacting with him. It's an interesting commentary on the making of the film, something which I'm sure the DVD/Blu-ray world will never have a chance of seeing based upon how studio heads view the film (in fact, I think it was just Universal hitting the dredges toward the tail end of DVD's heyday that made The Wizard actually see the light of digital day. Which is unfortunate.)

Critics panned the film, mainly put off that The Wizard is a thinly veiled commercial/product tie-in. But despite promotional intent, The Wizard was and still is a fun road trip coming of age story. Sentiment and nostalgia for the film help, but Holland is able to evoke real emotion and character through all of the actors particularly the three kid leads but also Beau Bridges and Christian Slater as they chase after the kids. The beautiful "on the road" imagery shot by cinematographer Robert D. Yeoman (now a frequent collaborator with Wes Anderson since Rushmore having recently filmed The Grant Budapest Hotel and Moonrise Kingdom) is gorgeous and one wishes the film would get a proper remaster just for the landscapes of late 1980's America. A 1080p HD version is available through iTunes but appears that it could benefit from a little love and care.

The movie acts as an intriguing musical time capsule of 1989, with Bobby Brown/New Kids on the Block pumping at full volume and my original introduction to Real Life's "Send Me an Angel" which continues to make it onto road trip playlists because of the film to this day.

Twenty-five years later, I still look back at the film fondly both as a memory of being a kid in the late 80s and also as a catalyst for so much excitement and fun in a Nintendo brand feeding frenzy that more recent generations have yet to experience. Getting the rare glimpse behind the scenes care of Holland has been a treat and a welcome bit of nostalgia to kick off the summer.

Be sure to follow director Todd Holland @ToddHolland3 to view all of his behind the scenes imagery and to get a glimpse into a world not so far away. 

Posted on June 23, 2014 and filed under Movies.