Saturday, May 11, 2013

Penny Thoughts ‘13—Jurassic Park (1993) ***½

PG-13, 127 min.
Director: Steven Spielberg
Writers: Michael Crichton (also novel), David Koepp
Starring: Sam Neil, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Attenborough, Joseph Mazzello, Ariana Richards, Bob Peck, Martin Ferrero, Wayne Knight, Samuel L. Jackson, B.D. Wong, Jerry Molen, Miguel Sandoval

The greatest thing happened last night when I decided to show my oldest son Steven Spielberg’s sci-fi classic “Jurassic Park”. During the scene in the conference room where the scientists were discussing the problems inherent in the concept of creating a theme park based on genetically engineered dinosaurs, he asked us to stop the movie so we could discuss some of the philosophies in play.

He got it. He was right there with it all. He spoke of how dangerous it is for man to play God. He understood that no matter how much control we think we have, nature has a way of taking that control back. We discussed how although genetic manipulation might lead to some healthy breakthroughs for mankind, it also raises moral questions. How far is too far? He even steered the questions toward the plot of Ray Bradbury’s sci-fi classic “A Sound of Thunder”, and he didn’t even know that book existed.

After discussing the issues at the heart of “Jurassic Park” and many of my other favorite science fiction movies, he announced that we’d discussed enough and that we must start watching the movie again so he could watch his mother jump at every sudden move of this dinosaur and that, and so he could listen to Jeff Goldblum some more. He claimed that Goldblum was a good and smart actor and that he was in “Cats & Dogs”. If there was ever any question as to whether he was really my son (there wasn’t), that question has forever been put to rest.

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