After the Jurassic Park novel in 1990, author Michael Crichton came under pressure from Steven Spielberg to write a sequel.
Crichton didn’t want to. But eventually gave in and had the thing penned and published by 1995, which immediately became a techno thriller bestseller.
The Lost World (Michael Crichton’s novel)
Crichton (1942-2008) didn’t actually want to write a sequel to the first outing, but Spielberg pressured him into doing so.
Why? Obviously because he wanted material for a new film (more on that below).
Crichton eventually relented and got to work on The Lost World. He set the plot six years after the original in 1995.
Now at this point we should point out Ian Malcolm is declared dead in the closing epilogue of Jurassic Park.
We can’t help but feel he was resurrected thanks to Jeff Goldblum’s immense popularity from the first film, so that he could return to his role.
Anyway, we catch up with the chaos theorist and mathematician, who reluctantly teams up with paleontologist Richard Levine to search for a “lost world”.
Turns out there’s a Site B on Isla Sorna and dinosaurs are still running riot, even after InGen has shut down.
Levine is worried the Costa Rivan government will want to destroy the remaining dinosaurs, so orders an expedition out there with WITHOUT Malcolm as he dithers on his involved.
Sure enough, the troop is soon attacked by dinosaurs upon arrival, forcing Malcolm to rush to the island a troop of uni professor Jack Thorne and engineer Eddie Carr (whose character made the leap to the big screen adaptation, unlike many others from the book).
Dr. Sarah Harding also joins them, plus two stowaway kids.
So, the plot is getting pretty thick and heavy there already with character overload. But Crichton does a good job of managing the descent into chaos.
Ultimately, this is a page turner—a thriller. And it does its job well enough, even if its existence is down to Steven Spielberg’s persistence.
It kind of rumbles on as you’d expect to as you wait to see who survives the mayhem.
Fun? Yes, if that’s your type of thing. A bit dumb? Yeah, after the remarkable concept from the first novel.
It certainly didn’t need a sequel but, hey, it made a load of money and got Jeff Goldblum back onto the big screen. So that’s something.
The Lost World Film Adaptation
Okay, so we covered before with The Lost World movie (1997), this was a disappointing sequel from Steven Spielberg.
The film is all over the place in its mediocrity. Granted, Jurassic Park (1993) is hardly watertight as a plot, but Lost World suffers with a stodgy screenplay.
The screenplay from David Koepp picked loosely from the material presented in the novel, like a dino scavenger picking at some rotting corpse.
In the end, the film ended up a lot different to the book. Not a good idea.
And it’s not a terrible film, really, and there are a couple of amazing set pieces to enjoy. But on the whole, you just expect much better from the talent involved.
We recommend the book over the film here as Crichton at least tried something new with his concept.
Whereas the film retreads old ground rather tediously. Roar? No. More of a dead silence as the T. Rex is extinct.