Oh, boy, THIS one.
I was gonna include it in the original Dino December, but i eventually relented.
Not because it looked like crap, like really atomic level of trash, just a smidge above the realm of stuff like Weasels Rip My Flesh, quite the opposite, i’m even more intrigued by the fact it looks and most likely is utter bungum, as i keep gazing into the abyss (Mondo Zappa style) until the abyss itself gets bored or produces some new unholy artifact for my collection. Which it often does, actually.
I eventually didn’t bother as i was so irritated and angry at it, and i did want to review it, not use the movie as a verbal punching ball. So i let some time pass, and combined with the fact i don’t want to pity people in general, i’d say it’s time to review Jurassic Thunder in proper and earnest and whathaveyou.
Personally, i feel it’s kinda pointless to complain about the artwork used in posters for movies like these.. being deceitful. I mean, i also wished that Monster Island (the Asylum Godzilla II mockbuster) actually featured half of the monster roster it sported on the DVD cover, but this low budget genre cinema marketing 101, the title and promotional artwork do most the legwork, the movie itself… might differ from what the poster promises. It was true even in the 50s, but leaving aside that it promises more than one type of dinosaurs (and instead it’s just one decent low budget dinosaur puppet prop), it does have a dinosaur with head-mounted machine guns.
Frigging machine guns attached to its head.
And it feels exactly like that, a movie made out of a meme, of a joke and “wouldn’t it be fun if” nerdy discussions, which often go thankfully nowhere, otherwise i would have put out “Mesozoic Murder Massacre” or other random movie ideas that my brain sometimes… excretes.
Look, there’s some fun to be had by going with intention into the territory of nonsense and random bullshit thrown together, all strung by a childlike glee of putting gladiators, dinosaurs, machine guns, references, ninja, pyramids….. it sounds it at least it would make for some absolutely brain-dead but entertaining non-sense, so bad it’s actually amazing to witness and fun to watch.
It sounds fun, at least. On paper. When you tell your friends about it for a laugh. If you sit down and actually think about, even if you do it with the best intent and with passion for the subjects and stuff you pull from older trash cinema to make this new type of bad movie… without really getting why it worked for the stuff you pulled from older movies, as you just rip it for yourself “because”.
The prologue starts in “Wakangu African Jungle” where non-descript men with guns shoot at what i think are supposed to be zombies-cannibals, then a T-rex with machine guns on his head shows up, freezeframes, fades to a comic book style rendition of the frame… then title screen, with the actual intro, where a guy in a comic book shop tells two girls of this awesome comic book called Jurassic Thunder (which exists in-universe as there are collectables of it on the shop, and they even made the fake cover), after some incredibly akward and cliched “ geek shop comedy moments”.
Which include the line “Jurassic Park? Never heard of it” followed by the actors looking at the camera. BRAVO. BRAVISSIMO, even.
Yeah, this is the framing, the manager of the comic book shop basically reading out and describing the Jurassic Thunder comic to the girls and the rest of the customers in the shop, who all gather round like it’s uncle Tom at the bonfire telling of movies Disney refuses to aknowledge.
Which is intentional and a joke, but an unfunny one none the less. And this is basically Jurassic Thunder, a big unfunny joke, played as a spoof of various bad movies (and 80s action movies that the makers loved but seems to display a childish understanding of) as an excuse to be shit exactly like other no-budget dinosaurs/monster movies that at least have the balls to be just random shitty movies where economy brand commandos fight puppet dinosaurs in the woods near where the director (and often crew) lives, and a lot of really shitty greenscreening its involved.
This is the kind of movie that makes a crappy joke and then gleefully revels in pointing out it made a crappy joke, like the mercs commenting how one of them is using a NERF gun. Constantly.
Or deliberatly misreferences other better movies in an attempt to bait nerd-rage fits, but still making you wish you were watching those, instead of this.
The plot is about american soldiers in a cover desert base fighting an african warlord in order to avoid World War III to happen, and ultimately is up to a group of commandos and weaponized dinosaurs (created by the russian) to get the job done. Also, a virus that is spreading and making people in cannibal zombies, is involved, somehow.
Something like that, it’s hard to tell since is total, complete non-sense, as nothing amount to anything with a shred of logic or sensible narrative with any kind of structure, it’s padded to hell and back, it’s not funny and not only you get virus and vaccine talk (because 2019) and many boring jokes (often homophobic to boot), but also one of the worst Trump impersonations ever witnessed.
This one of those cases where you could joke that the crew shouldn’t have made the movie that day. Singular, as the whole film sound like a huge drunken bet, and not everyone can master the way of Buckethead. At least some of the actors had fun, you can tell from some downright laughing at others goofing around, and i’m genuinely happy they enjoyed it. Wish i could say the same.
If this movie serves any purpose, it’s not to be actually watched, but it did make me appreciate a lot more the no-budget stuff Mark Polonia makes, his movies are even cheaper looking than Jurassic Thunder (and have worse actors), but even with that he tries to some degree, instead of making a cowardly piece of shit movie, so spineless it tries to play as a spoof of the very thing it is to enduce some laughs or giggles, and it doesn’t work anyway. As expected.
So it’s just a no-effort and nearly no-budget shitfest where nothing makes sense, but it’s also so desperate in wanting to be a “so bad it’s good” movie, forgetting or not understanding that usually you have to actually try still the same, so obviously the result it’s a shitty, unfunny “spoof” that it’s doesn’t even qualify as a method of torture, at it’s so difficult is to get through, yes, but it’s also so dull it’s hard to even genuinely get angry at, it can’t even manage to become obnoxious in order to get any reaction from the viewers, as that would require some semblance of effort.
Most of the times anyway, the Trump segments are stone cold horrendous and plain embarassing (also, what the hell is with movies with or about Trump somehow involving him dancing and/or a floating magical orb?!), which also highlights how this is the kind of shit movie where you’d expect the writers to drown the script in memes… but surprisingly don’t, they just cram in every random references they can, some of which are cute in a “newborn giraffe standing up” kinda way, like the Guardian Of The Galaxy-styled music cassette labeled “Awesome Mix Vol 2”. Most are just dumb.
It’s baffling that it’s not the cheapest looking movie i’ve seen or featured here (the special effects are appalling in how bad they are, but i simply have seen far worse), but it’s one of the worst ones for sure, since it has a lote more resources and budget than homegrown projects, but doesn’t even wanna bother trying a bit to make a proper movie. Or a somewhat enjoyable one.
Jurassic Thunder is neither, just a sad, drunken, cynical half-attempt at a crap movie that doesn’t even manage that, and just should have been a 30 minutes thing on Youtube, if it had to happen.
It really had not, but now it exists, that enough it’s fair, watching it… AH AH AH AH. Nope.
Even for masochists like me this was a hard piece of dreg to slog my way through.
So NOT the perfect movie to end the year on, really, avoid it if you can. And you can.