Jurassic World Dominion is being billed as the conclusion to the Jurassic era – but will it really be the end of the Jurassic Park franchise?
Warning! Spoilers for Jurassic World: Dominion ahead.
Promotional material for Jurassic World Dominion bills the film as “the epic conclusion of the Jurassic era” – but will it really be the last Jurassic Park movie? The sixth film in the franchise, and the third in the Jurassic World revival, Jurassic World Dominion continued the proliferation of dinosaurs into the wider world that started in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, with a four-year time jump between the movies. Dominion‘s plot explores how humans and dinosaurs attempt to coexist, and reaching a state of harmonious living between the two distinct species proves to be an uphill battle.
Dominion‘s dinosaurs are bad for the planet, but by the end of the movie, fragile stability appears to have been reached. Dinosaurs and contemporary wildlife adapting to each other’s presence, and the UN creates a designated dino sanctuary. However, since the promo for Dominion billed it as a “conclusion,“ many fans worried it could spell the end of the Jurassic Park franchise as a whole, and not just the Jurassic World trilogy. Starting way back in 1993 with Steven Spielberg’s Jurassic Park, the six Jurassic movies have spanned almost three decades so far. After 2015’s Jurassic World reignited the franchise with a new cast, it seemed that the iconic T-Rex skull from Jurassic Park logo would be an icon of cinema for generations to come.
With Jurassic World: Dominion being marketed as the conclusion to the franchise, many are wondering whether or not it will truly be the end. Jurassic Park and Jurassic World come under the same umbrella, but they are separate. Is Dominion the end of only the World chapter of movies based on Michael Crichton’s novels, or the last Jurassic X cinematic outing ever? With dinosaurs free among the wider world, there may well be more stories to tell, and there’s no denying Jurassic World‘s box office appeal, so the idea of further sequels shouldn’t be so quickly dismissed. After all, while the Jurassic Park franchise has its problems, it’s perhaps too popular to ever truly die.
If Jurassic World: Dominion Makes Money, There May Be More Sequels
In this age of seemingly endless reboots and cinematic franchises, it’s hard to envision Jurassic World: Dominion being the very last entry into the franchise. It certainly won’t be easy for humans to maintain the fragile new global ecosystem still in place at the end of Dominion. Continuing with a new story set in the Jurassic Park universe wouldn’t be difficult from a narrative perspective. After all, that’s the exact avenue they went down when Jurassic World (2015) wasn’t released as Jurassic Park 4.
There’s certainly the possibility that Dominion will be the franchise’s end – of sorts, at least. With Jurassic World Dominion using Spielberg’s best sequel idea, this iteration of the franchise could actually be the end, and Jurassic Park will later be rebooted. It would be a way of putting the metaphorical dinosaur-shaped cork back in the bottle and remaking Spielberg’s 1993 classic all at once, and that’s surely something that’s occurred to those with an eye for the franchise’s future.
Exactly how and when Jurassic Park will live on after Jurassic World: Dominion isn’t yet clear. The film received less-than-favorable reviews from critics, but performed healthily on its opening weekend, netting over $143 million at the domestic box office. It’s almost unthinkable that Hollywood would simply retire such an iconic (and profitable) franchise. The best odds would be on Jurassic World Dominion not being the end for the Jurassic Park franchise. Just like its dinosaurs, life will surely find a way.
The Jurassic World Saga Shouldn’t Return
Regardless of what shape the future of the Jurassic Park franchise takes, many are hoping it isn’t Jurassic World 4. Despite the pull of the franchise almost guaranteeing a respectable theatrical run, many fans and critics alike have been vocal about their dissatisfaction with Jurassic World: Dominion. While the premise is certainly strong, the execution was, by most accounts, incredibly lacking. There was little emotional pay-off or resolution for many character arcs – a glaring flaw in a feature with an ensemble cast, many of whom have had story arcs awaiting a satisfying resolution since 1993.
Dominion also fell into a trap set by the franchise in the original Jurassic World: too much focus on the dinosaur cloning science, too little on dinosaurs doing what dinosaurs do. After the hybrid dinosaurs introduced in Jurassic World and Fallen Kingdom weren’t received as positively as expected, Colin Trevorrow aimed to move Dominion in a different direction. However, Dominion was still a source of disappointment for many. While there were no controversial hybrid dinosaurs in Jurassic World: Dominion, way too much screen time was given to the convoluted Blue/Beta cloning arc and Biosyn’s locusts. Fringe science was a feature of the original Jurassic Park, but it was a narrative catalyst, not the focus – something the Jurassic World trilogy seemed to forget.
The way Jurassic World builds the Jurassic Park universe leaves some scope for growth. The new equilibrium at the end of Dominion creates plenty of room for new stories. Dinosaurs roaming the earth would have a phenomenal impact on daily life, throwing everything from politics to the economy to school textbooks into disarray. This was a theme Jurassic World: Dominion touched on briefly, but one that warrants further exploration. It would be more engaging than cloning narratives which are far more science and much less fiction than they were in the early 90s. With Jurassic World: Dominion still in theatres, it’s likely that Universal and Amblin will wait for global box-office returns before deciding the future of the Jurassic Park franchise – if it has one at all.
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- Jurassic World: Dominion (2022)Release date: Jun 10, 2022
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