If the success of "Jurassic Park III" is any indication, this film series from Steven Spielberg's shop will likely continue for as long as, well, for as long as dinosaurs are cool.
The latest installment has already raked in more than $82 million since its opening last weekend, beating its box office competition by a brachiosaurus' stride.
Serious fans may be disappointed with "Jurassic Park III" considering it's leaner and meaner than the previous versions, wrapping things up in a little more than 90 minutes.
The script, in fact, is a thinly disguised excuse for another romp with the genetically altered beasts of the Isla Sorna, off the Costa Rican coast.
It seems a 14-year-old parasailor (Trevor Morgan) and his mother's boyfriend have disappeared during an outing near the forbidden island. His divorced parents (William Macy and Tea Leoni) trick good old Dr. Grant (Sam Neill) into leading an expedition to the island in search of the boy.
The rest of the movie can be summarized in three words: run, run, run, as the search team's arrival prompts a steady stream of attacks by the island's dinosaur population.
One by one, members of the team are crushed, chewed or stabbed to death by beasts, obviously programmed to kill anything with a human scent.
Occasionally, the characters pause long enough for a few words of dialogue but the words do little to move the action along. But who cares. There's another beast waiting in the wings to give chase.
Paradoxically, the dialogue is sufficient to broaden awareness of who these people are and what makes them tick. Think of that as a nice surprise in what is otherwise a simple action-horror flick.
The highpoint of the film, of course, is the special effects and the 45-foot, 12-ton dino built especially for this installment. Most of the film's creatures seem believable, if not always real, in their movements, which adds to the thrill.
Some of the human stunts are also interesting, especially those performed on parasails.
Best of all for "Jurassic" fans another sequel is indicated by the film's closing scene, as flying pteranodons glide away from the island in search of something yet to be identified. Stay tuned for Part Four.
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