The third trailer for Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom is out, revealing the film's overarching plot, and it looks suspiciously like The Lost World. Universal has been playing a clever game; the first trailer only really included scenes from the first act, and marketing has focused in on that part of the plot too. But there's always been a sense that the trailers were hiding something. The official synopsis, after all, referred to "a conspiracy that threatens the entire planet."
"It was all a lie," Claire shouts in this third trailer. There's a sense in which that's true of Fallen Kingdom's marketing approach. Marketing had bee pointing to the one story, when in reality they had a major twist planned. Sooner or later, though, they were always going to have to change focus and reveal some secrets. This third and final trailer sees the studio hold nothing back. It's clearly an attempt to give viewers a strong sense of what to expect from the film. It's also a justification for the movie's existence, given this franchise started out in 1993. Unfortunately, it also means that the movie is now a lot less secret than it was before.
The Volcano is a Red Herring
Early marketing for the film focused on the threat of an impending volcanic eruption. Isla Nubla was revealed to be a volcanic island, one that had awoken after a period of dormancy, and was preparing for a spectacular eruption. The first trailer showed the volcano "clearing its throat," in the early stages of an eruption cycle. That kind of eruption has the power to wipe out all life on the island.
A viral website reinforced this message, suggesting Claire has dedicated herself to ensuring the safety and protection of the dinosaurs. "We must save the dinosaurs," she insisted in one video on the site. It seemed clear that the main plot would be some sort of rescue mission.
But that's what we - and, indeed, Claire - were supposed to believe. It seems the volcano is a red herring; the powerful forces who have funded the rescue mission aren't really interested in saving the dinosaurs at all. Instead, they want to acquire the DNA samples to continue creating dinosaurs - and, indeed, to create a new breed. That's why they're shown diving for the Indominus Rex DNA. But it's also why Blue is so important.
It's a Direct Sequel To Jurassic World
The first Jurassic World movie saw shadowy forces attempt to create dinosaurs as weapons. While they accomplished their goal, they created a horrific creature that could not be controlled. At the same time, though, the film also proved that some dinosaurs can be trained. Owen raised Blue from when she was just a hatchling, and she grew to trust him. So much so that she even fought against the Indominus Rex for him. Velociraptors, it seems, can actually be controlled.
That's vital information for the villains of Jurassic World, including James Cromwell's Benjamin Lockwood. They don't really care about preserving the lives of dinosaurs; they want to acquire dinosaurs as weapons, and they want to create ever-better weapons too. The Indominus Rex was powerful and effective, but they already dreamed of improving on the creature. "Imagine that one, a fraction of the size," Hoskins commented in the first film. "Deadly. Intelligent. Able to hide from the most advanced military technology. A living weapon unlike anything we’ve ever seen." And, crucially, able to be controlled. That (in theory) is the Indoraptor, the terrifying new creature that's going to be created in Jurassic World 2.
We now know that the film's "big twist" is that the dinosaurs will be sold as weapons. No doubt it's a lucrative business, and the Indoraptor will be their greatest success to date. But, in true Jurassic Park style, it's one thing to create an Indoraptor; it's another thing to control it. The creature will break loose, and go on a rampage across the American estate. That's where the movie will shift tones, becoming darker, more suspenseful, almost Gothic.
It makes sense of the official synopsis, which had already teased that Claire and Owen would "encounter terrifying new breeds of gigantic dinos while uncovering a conspiracy that threatens the entire planet." The danger, no doubt, is that life will always find a way; Lockwood's attempt to auction off dinosaurs as weapons would lead to dinosaurs getting out into the wild. Certainly a recurring "money shot" has been the Indoraptor in a little girl's bedroom, a terrifyingly surreal image that's entirely new to the franchise.
As a "next step" for the Jurassic World franchise, it certainly seems to be a logical one. It's a pretty seamless continuation of the first film, albeit with a few twists in the tale. While the movie won't end with a cliffhanger, writer and producer Colin Trevorrow has described the entire Jurassic World trilogy as one single story. Jurassic World was the beginning, this is the middle, and the third film will be the end. That claim had seemed a little odd, because up until this new trailer, there didn't seem to be a massive thematic throughline between Jurassic World and this sequel. Now, that's changed.
The same character dynamics are in play, including the pivotal relationship between Owen and Blue. Lockwood is cast from the same mold, and have a similar motivation. Conceptually, the films are exploring very similar ideas - ethical questions about how far human beings will go in order to create weapons of war. There's even the straight narrative throughline running from the Indominus Rex to the Indoraptor. Jurassic World 2 is indeed a direct sequel to the first film, more so than it ever seemed from the initial marketing push.
- Jurassic World 3 (2021) release date: Jun 11, 2021
- Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom (2018) release date: Jun 22, 2018