All You Need to Know Before Watching ‘Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom’

Everything you need to know before you see the new film.

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Universal Pictures

Has it been awhile since you’ve seen all the movies in the “Jurassic” series? Having a hard time remembering what happened in Jurassic World? Are you standing in line waiting to see Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom right now? No problem, here’s a super-short recap of all four movies that have happened before this one, plus a checklist of the only things you really need to remember before you see Fallen Kingdom.

Jurassic Park (1993)

A crazy rich guy named John Hammond figures out how to bring dinosaurs back to life by cloning them. He decides to open up an amusement park/zoo full of those dinosaurs located on an island called Isla Nublar. When he previews the park for two dino experts, two children, one fringe math theorist and a lawyer, things go horribly wrong and tons of people die. The park is abandoned, and everyone assumes the dinosaurs will die too because they won’t receive a special chemical injection that was keeping them alive.

The Lost World: Jurassic Park (1997)

Four years after the disaster on Isla Nublar, John Hammond recruits Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) to help rescue a bunch of dinos located on “Site B,” a smaller island, Isla Sonar, which was secretly next to Isla Nublar. Malcolm brings his daughter along and things go badly, though he and his daughter both survive. The movie ends with a giant T-Rex charging through San Diego, though it is eventually caught.

Jurassic Park III (2001)

Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neil) is conned into returning to Isla Sonar by a rich couple who are just playing him. Grant is really depressed and apparently, no one believes him that he saw real dinosaurs in the first movie. Velociraptors in this movie have little feathers on their heads, and Grant creates an implausible whistle that lets him communicate with them. Notably, neither this film nor its predecessor, actually take place in “Jurassic Park,” since neither returned to Isla Nublar.

Jurassic World

Set roughly twenty years after the first movie, a giant corporation has purchased Isla Nublar and renamed it “Jurassic World.” This movie also doesn’t have any of the original characters and instead focuses on a guy named Owen (Chris Pratt) who is basically a Velociraptor wrangler. Bryce Dallas Howard plays an unlikeable (though somewhat realistic) corporate manager of Jurassic World.

Everything in the new Jurassic World goes horribly wrong again, but this time, it’s because a hybrid dinosaur called “the Indominus Rex” is created in a lab. It is a cross between a raptor and T-Rex. In this movie, the Raptors are pretty much trained, and Chris Pratt leads them through the jungle on his motorcycle to help fight the Indominus Rex. They are more or less successful, though the island has to be evacuated, and all the dinosaurs are basically just left there to run amok.

So, now that you’re caught up, which things from Jurassic World do you really need to remember? Here are the four main things:

  1. There’s only one Velociraptor left alive at the end of the last movie. Her name is Blue and Chris Pratt trained her.
  2. B.D Wong played a geneticist named Dr. Henry Wu. He was actually in the first Jurassic Park, too. In Jurassic World, it turned out he was kind of bad guy, like a crooked cop, only a scientist who breeds dinosaurs. This is somewhat important in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom.
  3. Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) feels really guilty about what happened in the last movie. This (sort of) explains her motivations in this movie.
  4. This movie introduces a business partner of John Hammond’s (the old guy from the first movie) named Lockwood. He’s played by James Cromwell, famous for being the pig trainer in the movie Babe. Don’t worry, there are no references to this guy in any of the other Jurassic movies. You didn’t miss anything. They’re just making shit up now.

Finally, don’t worry about Jeff Goldblum being in this movie at all, mostly because he doesn’t even seem to be the same character, and his scenes are so short and inconsequential. He probably filmed his only scenes in this movie in like 5 minutes. In fact, it’s probably better to just think of him as a character he might play in Portlandia.

-Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is out in wide release this Friday, June 22.

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