The Lost World Jurassic Park Review 1997 Film

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The Underrated Sequel: The Lost World – Jurassic Park


When it comes to discussing Jurassic Park, the groundbreaking and iconic 1993 film, there is not much left unsaid. It is widely regarded as one of the greatest movies of all time, leaving little room for a fresh perspective. However, its sequel, The Lost World: Jurassic Park, deserves more recognition. Directed by Steven Spielberg, this underrated sequel takes the franchise in a darker direction and offers a unique and suspenseful dinosaur thriller.

A Unique History

The Lost World holds a special place for me due to my personal experience with it. I first watched it as a child, shortly after falling in love with the first Jurassic Park installment. Initially, it left a modest impression, entertaining but not remarkable. For years, it faded from memory. However, a few years ago, I decided to give it another chance and was pleasantly surprised. While it may not reach the overall quality of its predecessor, The Lost World has its own unique qualities that make it a worthwhile entry in the franchise.

A Believable Continuation of the Story

The Lost World takes place four years after the events of the original Jurassic Park. Following the disastrous aftermath of the park’s main island, John Hammond, the park’s creator, reveals to scientist Ian Malcolm that there is another island where dinosaurs roam freely. Hammond’s nephew, Ludlow, plans to bring these dinosaurs to a new park in the United States. In opposition to Ludlow’s plans, Malcolm’s girlfriend, Sarah, volunteers for a mission to study the dinosaurs on the island. As Malcolm and a small crew set off to retrieve Sarah, they find themselves entangled with Ludlow’s endeavors and facing life-threatening dangers from the formidable creatures that inhabit the lost world.

A Unique Direction

Unlike many sequels that merely rehash the original film, The Lost World takes a different approach. Though it does include some similarities, it explores new concepts and themes. While Jurassic Park focused on the ethical dilemmas of reviving extinct species, The Lost World delves into the human responsibility now that these creatures exist. Should we intervene to protect or study them, or is it best to simply observe from a distance? The film raises thought-provoking questions about our role in their existence and the consequences of our actions.

A Darker and Suspenseful Tone

The Lost World diverges from the upbeat and awe-inspiring feel of Jurassic Park. It adopts a moodier tone, akin to a thrilling suspense movie. The absence of theme park aesthetics and a higher representation of night settings contribute to this shift. Spielberg is no stranger to darker sequels, evident in Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. However, these changes do not diminish the film’s visual effects, which remain impressive. Through a combination of CGI for wide shots and animatronics for close-ups, The Lost World delivers a spectacular visual spectacle.

Thrilling Sequences

One sequence that stands out is the intense attack by two T-Rexes on the main characters’ trailer. It keeps viewers on the edge of their seats, with each moment ratcheting up the tension. Another memorable scene involves a pursuit by a pack of Compsognathus, reminiscent of a slasher flick with its slow and menacing pacing. Even the seemingly adorable and tiny Compys become unexpected threats. The film amplifies the terror with a pack of raptors prowling through tall grass, reminiscent of the first film’s iconic raptor scene. With a significant portion of the second act dedicated to a relentless chase between humans and dinosaurs, The Lost World keeps audiences engaged without sacrificing plot depth.

Continued Commitment to Visual Effects

The Lost World maintains Jurassic Park’s approach to visual effects, combining CGI and practical effects. While the reliance on CGI increases due to the higher demand for dinosaur shots, the film still showcases impressive animatronics and puppets. The use of practical stunts and props enhances the authenticity, aligning with the film’s darker and more visceral tone. Spielberg’s commitment ensures that The Lost World remains a visually stunning spectacle, rivaling its predecessor in sheer grandeur.

A Mixed Bag of Characters

Although The Lost World does not boast the same caliber of characters as Jurassic Park, they are not poorly written or uninteresting. Julianne Moore’s portrayal of Sarah stands out with her bubbly enthusiasm, while Pete Postlethwaite delivers an unexpected standout performance as a big game hunter grappling with his own desires. However, the remaining cast falls into the category of being acceptable but not exceptional. The chemistry between the characters, particularly the romantic connection between Malcolm and Sarah, lacks authenticity, making it harder to fully invest in their relationships. This deficiency causes the first act to drag slightly as the characters come together. However, the film’s strength lies in the logical progression of alliances and betrayals, keeping the audience engaged without losing focus on the key players.

A Worthy Sequel

These limitations do not overshadow The Lost World as a worthy sequel to the renowned original or as a stand-alone film. While it may not achieve the groundbreaking status of Jurassic Park, it is undeniably an expertly crafted and exciting movie. With its creative sequences and a bold shift in tone, The Lost World captures the essence of what made the franchise captivating in the first place. Its ability to introduce new elements while honoring its roots allows it to stand alongside the initial installment, offering a fresh perspective that may surprise and delight viewers who give it a second chance.


In a franchise that has sometimes fallen victim to formulaic repetition, The Lost World stands out for its willingness to explore new territory. It may not receive the same level of recognition as its predecessor, but it deserves acknowledgment for its darker tone, thrilling sequences, and willingness to challenge the audience’s expectations. Whether you are a dedicated fan or someone who initially had mixed feelings, revisiting The Lost World might just reveal its hidden charms.


  1. Is The Lost World: Jurassic Park a direct continuation of the first film?

    Yes, The Lost World takes place four years after the events of Jurassic Park and builds upon the consequences of the original park’s failures.