Jurassic World Dominion appears in an aspect ratio of 2.00:1 on this Blu-ray Disc. The image offered the expected high quality affair.
Overall sharpness appeared solid. A few slightly soft shots materialized along the way, but they stayed minor and negligible.
The image lacked shimmering or jagged edges, and edge haloes failed to mar the presentation. I also didn’t see any print flaws.
Hello, orange/amber and teal! Dominion emphasized the modern palette, and the results seemed fine. The colors didn’t overcome their stylistic restrictions, but they appeared appropriate.
Blacks were deep and dark, while shadows seemed smooth and clear. The movie gave us a fairly strong transfer.
I also felt pleased with the immersive DTS-HD X soundtrack of Dominion, as the audio accentuated the visuals well. Downconverted to DTS-HD MA 7.1, the audio mixed creepy atmosphere with a mix of jolts and “dinosaur moments” from the sides/rear.
In the front, the track showed good stereo music and presented various elements in a logical and natural manner. The elements blended neatly and created a seamless sense of the environment. From the back, aggressive violent components and various dinosaurs added kick to the proceedings and made the mix more involving.
Audio quality seemed positive. Dialogue consistently appeared natural and crisp, with no edginess or intelligibility issues on display.
Music was clear and dynamic. The score seemed broadly reproduced and complemented the mix nicely.
Effects always were distinctive and concise, and the mix boasted fine clarity for the louder moments. Bass response always seemed rich and firm. This became a pretty terrific track.
The disc comes with both the film’s theatrical cut (2:26:57) as well as an Extended Edition (2:40:40). How do the two differ?
The biggest single change comes from a three-minute, 20-second prologue that goes back millions of years to show dinosaurs in their original habitat. This allows us to view the mosquito that sampled the blood of a T Rex.
This leads into a modern-day sequence in which we see hunters track and try to take down a creature. This then moves a scene in which an aquatic dino attacks a fishing boat until after we see a news report.
From there the two remain identical until Extended hits about 14:15, at which point Owen and friends meet some poachers. This goes for about two minutes, and then soon thereafter, we see minor extensions to the scene in which Maisie goes into town.
Not long after this we see hunters as they try to kill raptors. Theatrical hints at this, as it shows Owen’s reaction to the gunfire, but it doesn’t show the actual hunters.
The campfire discussion of Maisie’s development gets a minor extension. The sequence in which Ellie investigates the giant locust receives another 50 seconds of screen time.
Alan’s introduction also gets a bit more time, as he deals with some young women unimpressed by dinosaurs. The opening meeting between Sattler and Grant also receives a smidgen more space.
That gets us to around 34 minutes into Extended, at which point we’ve seen about eight minutes of the added 14 minutes. Nothing changes until about 58:30, at which time Kayla sells a small dino to a dude who uses the critter in a cockfighting-type situation.
Expect a few seconds of extra violence as Owen confronts the poacher around 1:04:20. Minor slivers of added mayhem come from the subject chase as well, though none of these last more than a couple seconds each.
At 1:13:31, we see Owen and Claire check on each other after their escape, and this goes about 40 seconds. The two versions stay identical until Extended gets to 1:40:32, at which time we see the “Hyperloop” vehicle with Ellie/Alan/Maisie stop and leave them in the amber mine in an elongated bit.
Their entrance to this domain spans about 75 seconds and reorganizes shots that depict Dodgson’s involvement. 1:48:10 starts a two and a half minute piece in which Dodgson deletes files for nefarious motives, and Ramsay attempts – unsuccessfully – to get him to do the right thing.
When the flaming locusts escape, we see a tad more of their departure. And that becomes the last change made for Extended, as the rest of the film matches Theatrical.
Does one version work better than the other? Not really.
That doesn’t mean I don’t like some of the additions. In particular, I feel happy to see more of the characters from Park.
Otherwise, I can’t find much here that seems beneficial, and some of the additions create narrative problems. For example, a reference Owen makes to the poacher leader recognizing him makes no sense in Extended since we already saw the two interact.
The prehistoric prologue feels entirely superfluous. We don’t need to see a mosquito suck blood from a dino, as we know that concept already.
At 147 minutes, Theatrical already offered the longest Jurassic film to date – and by nearly 20 minutes. None of its predecessors went past the 129 minutes of Lost World.
As such, the Theatrical Dominion already stretched audience patience, so an extra 14 minutes seems like a difficult proposition. If the Extended managed to bring consistent value to the added bits, I could recommend it, but a lot of this footage feels fairly gratuitous.
I feel happy that we get the option to watch the Extended cut. However, even with its flaws, I’d take Theatrical instead, just because it feels tighter.
A new short film called Battle at Black Rock runs 10 minutes, 17 seconds. It shows a family threatened by dinos while on a camping trip.
“Rock” concentrates almost entirely on action, with only minimal story/character material. That makes it entertaining enough but fairly superficial. It appears to exist mainly as a teaser for Dominion, though, so its lack of real depth becomes less of an issue in that context.
A featurette called A New Breed of VFX lasts six minutes, 16 seconds. It brings info from writer/director Colin Treverrow, VFX supervisor David Vickery, CG supervisors Steve Hardy and Steve Ellis, digital artist lead Sally Wilson, digital artist supervisor Richard Bentley, digital artist Jamie Haydock, and actors Laura Dern, Bryce Dallas Howard and Chris Pratt.
Unsurprisingly, “Breed” examines creature design and various effects. The program mixes useful insights and promotional hyperbole, though the former dominates.
Dinosaurs Among Us breaks into five parts and spans a total of 47 minutes, nine seconds. Across these segments, we hear from Trevorrow, Pratt, Howard, Dern, Vickery, Hardy, producers Patrick Crowley and Frank Marshall, co-writer Emily Carmichael, production designer Kevin Jenkins, set decorator Richard Roberts, puppet captain Derek Arnold, stunt coordinator Ben Cooke, 2nd unit VFX supervisor Michael Ellis, senior previs supervisor Pawl Fulker, stunt double Alistair Whitton, camera bike stunt driver Regis Harrington III, live action dinosaurs supervisor John Nolan, creature effects HOD painter Henrik Svensson, creature effects senior fabricator Fiona Barnes, special effects senior technician Chris Clarke, special effects senior floor manager Ian Corbould, VFX producer Ann Podlozny, paleontology consultant Steve Brusatte, and actors Sam Neill, Jeff Goldblum, DeWanda Wise, Scott Haze, Dichen Lachman, Campbell Scott, Mamoudou Athie, Isabella Sermon, and BD Wong.
The documentary looks at the 1993 film and the mix of World and Park characters, sets and locations, creature design and execution, stunts and action, and the end of the World trilogy.
Topics related to effects and the creation of the movie’s dinos heavily dominate “Among”, which becomes a positive and a negative. On one hand, we get a nice look at those domains.
However, I’d like a broader view of the production than little more than these technical domains. “Among” offers some good info – and a lot of cool shots from the set – but a more comprehensive program would fare better.
The disc opens with an ad for Universal Parks. No trailer for Dominion appears here.
A second disc provides a DVD copy of the film. It includes Battle at Big Rock but lacks the rest of the extras, and it also only provides the movie’s theatrical cut.
With Dominion, the Jurassic World series ends with a modest thud. While not a bad movie, it fails to deliver the thrills and excitement one would expect. The Blu-ray brings good picture, excellent audio and a decent smattering of supplements. If/when we get a new Jurassic series, I hope it works better than the second and third parts of the World trilogy.