Saturday, 2 April 2011

The film I always go back to - 'Jurassic Park'

This be part of the Kid in the Front Row blogathon, the idea being that you declare which film you always go back to and why. As Kid says: the film that speaks to you when you need to be spoken to. See Kid's here.

Mine is Jurassic Park.

It's not the greatest film ever made. But it's the first film I saw at the cinema. Tiny five-year-old me, sitting in the front row (yes, I think it was the front row, due to the aforementioned tinyness), eyes wide open, staring tabula rasa at the humongous silver screen. 

Then that ominous music started as the team rolled out the huge crate containing the (unseen) velociraptor. And I was bloody hooked. Scared out of my gorram mind. But hooked.

Then there were the dinosaurs themselves - running around, throwing cars through trees, leaping onto T-Rex skeletons - generally destroying things. And the truly terrifying velociraptor kitchen scene. I remember viewing that through shaking fingers.

Those dinosaurs made such an impression on me that, for the next....12 years, I wanted to be an archaeologist. Part of me still does. Assuming all archaeologists get to endorse dinosaur theme parks. No? Ah well, writing it is.

What really strikes me about this film is that I don't recall being remotely bored at all. If you think about it, a fair bit of the film is taken up with scientific explanations. One scene actually sees the main characters sitting round a table discussing the ethics of bringing dinosaurs back to life (now that's something my script tutor would flay me for!*) This is not writing for little people.

But I was never bored. Why not? There's no way I could have understood the line "what you call discovery.....I call the rape of the natural world." It must have been because there were fucking dinosaurs!!! Massive, man-eating monsters roaming around, waiting to break free and wreak havoc! Perfect!

And that's why I always go back to Jurassic Park. If I'm feeling all smart and sophisticated, I can sit back and marvel at the possibility of using frogs to complete DNA sequences and bring dinosaurs back to life, or get thoroughly invested in the ethical ramifications of such a decision.

And if I'm feeling like a scare, I can regress to Five-Year-Old Neil and rewatch those fecking raptors lurk through the kitchen.

But, finally - and most importantly - if I'm feeling in the mood for destructive dinosaurs and general peril (and, let's face it - when am I not?!), Jurassic Park is always going to deliver.

Honourable mentions:
  • Die Hard (I'll always watch it when it's on, no matter what time it is or how long it's got to go)
  • The Lion King (my favourite Disney movie, and some killer action sequences!)
  • The Terminator (greatest sci-fi horror ever? After Alien, anyway)
  • Predator (same as Die Hard. I can never resist posting quotes on facebook as they happen on-film)
So what about you? What's the film that you always go back to? Please - someone tell me theirs is Jurassic Park! Please?

* My script tutor might not flay me
for writing such a scene.
Perhaps I would just be
dismembered or something....

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