A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this movie.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that The Lost World: Jurassic Park intends to thrill its audience with action-packed, scary, and suspenseful scenes. The film is not recommended for very young or sensitive kids. Dinosaurs, clearly motivated by a desire to protect their young and their environment, attack and often kill the humans whom they perceive as predators. Lengthy sequences of heroes in peril and animal brutality alternate with scenes that attempt to build character and relationships. Steven Spielberg shows some of the mayhem on camera (i.e., a heroic character is pulled apart by two dinos, then eaten); at other times, the director chooses to suggest the animals' savagery and plays it off camera (blood flows in water after a man is attacked). There are a few instances of mild swearing ("bastards," "s--t," "goddamn").
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's the story?
In THE LOST WORLD: JURASSIC PARK, hunters come to poach a dinosaur and bring it to the mainland for a theme park. When Malcolm's (Jeff Goldblum) team rescues the injured baby T-Rex, the angry parents go on a rampage. The group becomes a moveable feast as it tries to escape from the island. The group is rescued, only to discover that the corporation planning the theme park has returned a live T-Rex to the mainland. Mayhem ensues when the dinosaur escapes into downtown Los Angeles, and Tyrannosaurus Rex is front and center. Its attacks on the armored trailer and on the city of Los Angeles are the action highlights of the movie; the enormous heads in the trailer window are especially thrilling.
Is it any good?
This sequel has better dinosaurs and chase sequences that are just as intense as they were in Jurassic Park. Older tweens and teenagers will more than likely love the thrills and the magnificent beasts.
But lack of character development, disjointed editing, and unnecessarily gruesome deaths somewhat lessen The Lost World's appeal. And, this is a much nastier movie than Jurassic Park. Dr. Hammond was simply naive and misguided in the original; here, the capitalist forces are utterly immoral. And if the first movie featured several upsetting deaths, nothing is as gruesome as the munching of kind-hearted Eddy -- the graphic deaths feel gratuitous.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about sequels. In horror movies, the body count is higher the next time around. Why is The Lost World: Jurassic Park so much more gruesome than Jurassic Park?
What do you think of the movie's violence? Is it necessary to the story? Why or why not?
Is this the kind of movie that will stand the test of time, or does it already seem dated?
- In theaters: May 23, 1997
- On DVD or streaming: October 10, 2000
- Cast: Jeff Goldblum, Julianne Moore, Vince Vaughn
- Director: Steven Spielberg
- Studio: Universal Pictures
- Genre: Action/Adventure
- Topics: Dinosaurs
- Run time: 137 minutes
- MPAA rating: PG-13
- MPAA explanation: intense sci-fi terror and violence
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.