It's the ghosts of dinosaurs past. Well, at least the ghosts of Hollywood dinosaurs past. Jurassic Park, everyone's favorite archaeological thrill ride, cruised into theaters exactly 22 years ago today! It seemed like everyone and their brother had caught T-Rex Fever! We all wondered: What if dinosaurs really did roam the Earth again? Could it even be possible to clone them?
Now, I'm not a scientist, obviously, so I can't answer those questions. BUT! There's no doubt that Jurassic Park played a pretty monstrous (pun intended...) role in my formative years. Here are three ways the iconic film shaped me...
It helped me bond with my father: I must have seen Jurassic Park at least three times in the theater, and after my mom and sister got tired of seeing it (AFTER ONLY ONE TIMMMEEE!!!!), my father went with me every single time. I remember sitting in that dark theater, watching those giant creatures come to life, and seeing the childlike wonder come alive in my father's eyes. It was such a special time for us to share together.
It awakened my fascination with dinosaurs: Granted, up until that time, most of what I knew about dinosaurs I'd learned in school, so it all seemed SO boring -- like reading from a textbook that was as dry as their old fossil bones. But thanks to Steven Spielberg's imaginative vision and the wonders of CGI technology, the past was suddenly very alive and very real.
It was one of my first forays into the world of scary movies: Being the very young and oh-so-impressionable girl that I was back then, my history with the scary movie genre mainly consisted of watching my VHS copy of Gremlins up until the moment they morphed from cute furry friends to evil green monsters. Before long, I'd be covering my eyes and squirming in my seat; it wasn't a pretty sight. To this day, I can't listen to the holiday classic "Do You Hear What I Hear?" without getting the chills of terror -- those who've seen Gremlins will know exactly what I'm talking about. But with Jurassic Park? Something, well, just felt different. I felt the good kind of scared, the kind of crazy roller coaster in your stomach that makes you want to see what happens and not look away for fear of missing any piece of the ACTION! It was all so thrilling, and I was positively hooked. I was hooked to it all.
P.S. Full disclosure: I'm heading to bed now, and I won't pretend that all this dino talk hasn't left me just a wee bit afraid to turn the lights out...!!!! Can I borrow a nightlight? :)