Why Jurassic Park's Visual Effects Still Look Amazing Today

Jurassic Park still holds up. It’s an excellent movie that’s still fun to watch, the dinosaurs are still scary as hell, and the visual effects still look spectacular. How is that possible? Even though Jurassic Park changed the way films use visual effects, the restraint it used with its own effects is what has made it stand the test of time.

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Kaptain Kristian dives into the visual effects of Jurassic Park and reveals that, of the 14 minutes of dinosaur visual effects, only 6 were done in CG. That’s only 63 individual visual effects shots. Jurassic World, on the other hand, had over 2000 visual effects shots.

The trick in making the visual effects sing in Jurassic Park is the set up. They would use practical effects in the close up shots to make the dinosaurs feel real when the scene eventually cut to a computer-generated shot. It’s a smart way to dose the audience with visual effects, basically.

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DISCUSSION

You already said what made it great. Restraint. When I first saw the movie, I figured that when the T-Rex crushed the Explorer, they used cables to pull the car down and crush the roof. In no way did I know that the entire car was also CGI until later. There were no wild zoom shots or camera motions and angles that were unrealistic. Aside from a dinosaur being in the shot, you would not have known anything was CGI.

CGI is the same as makeup on a woman. If you can see it or tell it’s there, it’s too much.