RANKED: Steven Spielberg (#25 — The Lost World: Jurassic Park)

Photo: Universal Pictures

Photo: Universal Pictures

Chris Luckett


Release Date: May 23, 1997

Chronology: After taking four years off following the one-two punch of Jurassic Park and Schindler’s List in 1993, Spielberg roared back with this action-packed sequel, before switching back to drama for Amistad and Saving Private Ryan.

Box Office: $229 million ($338 million, adjusted for inflation)

Oscars: 1 nomination, 0 wins

Premise: After narrowly escaping death by dinosaur in Jurassic Park, Ian Malcolm discovers billionaire John Hammond had a second island, where young dinosaurs were raised, that is soon to be pillaged by Hammond’s greedy nephew. Oh, and Malcolm’s girlfriend is already on the island.

Over two hours?: Yes

John Williams Score?: Yes

Father Issues?: Oh yeah. Ian Malcolm can’t get his daughter to listen to anything he tells her to do, including not going with him to a dinosaur-populated island

War?: No, no wars in this one

Aliens?: Lots of dinosaurs, but not an alien to be found

Special Appearances: Pete Postlethwaite, Richard Attenborough, Vince Vaughn, Peter Stormare, Camilla Belle, Eli Roth, and Steven Spielberg

Fun Fact: Jon Favreau wanted the rights to use the theme music from Jaws in Swingers. When Spielberg attended a screening of the movie in order to decide to whether to grant them, he was so impressed with Vince Vaughn, he cast the actor as activist Nick Van Owen.

Best Line: “Oh, yeah. ‘Oooh,’ ‘ahhh,’ that’s how it’s always starts. Then later, there’s running and screaming.”

Best Scene: 

Verdict: The interesting premise quickly runs out of gas as the movie slowly reveals that it’s making it up as it goes along. Morphing from a rescue movie to a cruelty-of-man movie to a rampage movie to a teaming-up-with-your-enemies movie to whatever you want to call the 20-minute coda in San Diego, The Lost World: Jurassic Park feels aimless and cobbled together. Still, it has a few great action sequences, including the unbelievably tense scene with the trailer on the cliffside.

Rating: 3 stars /5