As America flocked to theaters to catch the new Jurassic World movie, audiences had one universal complaint: bad CGI. And I have to agree. The humans they created in this movie feel completely artificial and unemotive.

Why, even after the decades of progress technology has made, did these computer-generated humans feel so unbelievable?

 

Claire (Voiced by Bryce Dallas Howard)
jurassic world special effects CLAIRE

Sonically, the Claire character is stunning. Bryce Dallas Howard did her best work lending her voice to this character, but ultimately the animators’ poor rendering skills gave Claire flat affectation and ambiguous character motivation.

Claire’s character spent the entire film running around in the mud wearing heels. No real human would ever prioritize their footwear in the face of a dinosaur attack. I have to wonder if that was a cost-saving measure. Is it too expensive for the technicians to render multiple types of shoes?

If movies can resurrect the Titanic and make it sink again, they should be able to figure out a way to make Claire’s facial expressions behave in a realistic way. I blame bad technicians.

 

Owen (Voiced by Chris Pratt)
jurassic world special effects OWEN

It’s a shame Owen didn’t behave like a real human, because the animators made the character look JUST like Chris Pratt.

If the animators had done any research, they would know that people have flaws. The animators were unable to render any weaknesses in Owen. At least a limp or something.

 


The Dinosaurs
jurassic world special effects dinosaurs

Dinosaurs were great. Very cool, very believable.

 

The Two Boy Characters
jurassic world special effects BOYS

There is a particularly artificial scene wherein the older brother tells his younger brother to shut up after he reveals their parents are getting a divorce. I’m no CGI expert, but that doesn’t feel like any human behavior I’ve ever seen.

Earlier in the film, the younger boy exhibits a savant-like passion for numbers and obsessive counting, leading the viewer to believe that he may have some sort of autism. Halfway through the story, this behavior all but disappears. You would have expected this behavior to come back and affect the story in some way, but it didn’t. The only hypothesis I have is that two different special effects teams must have rendered this character in separate buildings, years apart.

 

Romantic Interactions
jurassic world ROMANCE

About halfway through the movie, Owen and Claire decide to kiss in the middle of a pterodactyl attack. Whoa, whoa, whoa. If the director had spent any time with humans, they would know how phony it looks to have a human pause during a life-or-death situation to snag some tongue from a person they, up until now, have loathed. I have to assume that the CGI animators were pulling ideas from some sort of fantasy they created, because this kind of interaction just does not happen in the real world.

 

All in all, the failings of technology created a very “Jar Jar Binks” situation. None of these characters felt like humans, which is what happens when you create an entire film using CGI.

From an outsider’s perspective, the fix is simple: Make your movie humans do what real humans would do. Interview a real human. Spend some time with them. Or, like they did in the original Jurassic Park, just use real humans.

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