Jaws and Jurassic Park

Tonight I was reading about Jaws and realized that I could not remember the scene in question, in fact, I can’t remember much of anything between the beginning and the ending. That’s probably because I’ve never been able to really get into JAWS. I’ve seen it once and I’ve never really wanted to see it again, frankly.

But then something else comes to mind, the fact that I rather like Jurassic Park and enjoy watching it. Both Jaws and Jarassic park are Special Effect popcorn monster movies, but I think one is entertaining and the other is rather dull.

So I’m wondering, is Jurassic Park really a better movie or is it because I came of age in the 1990’s and thus Jurassic park is part of my Generation?

Do people who saw Jaws going up think it’s a better movie?

Jurassic Park’s scenes where you first see the T. Rex, and it’s threatening the children, are goddamn amazing scenes. IMHO, those scenes alone make the film better and more tense than damn near any film I can think of, let alone Jaws.

I liked Jaws a lot, but there’s still no comparison.

I think Jaws is a far better movie. It has real characters that are better acted, significantly better dialogue, effective emotional and humorous scenes, a better score, and kids that you don’t want to have eaten. The only thing JP has is CG, but the shark, generally speaking, isn’t bad so that’s a wash. Aside from the technology aspect and a few tense moments, I find JP tedious; I think Jaws remains in the Top 5 of SS’s films.

For me, there’s no comparison.

I agree with everything ArchiveGuy said. (Except I find the fake shark very scary. I have a shark phobia.)

I love dinosaurs.

I agree with Revtim.

Jaws. Period.

Because of technical difficulties with Bruce, Jaws is much more a movie about people. Jurassic Park is about “hey, look at all the cool stuff I can do with my computer!”

It is a tough call for me. I really like both movies. But I think Jaws is a slightly better movie. With the exception of the Richard Dreyfus character, I can connect with the people in Jaws far more than the people in JP. In JP, everyone is either really really rich or really really smart or they are that big game hunter dude. Jaws is filled with ordinary everyday people.
I also think Jurrassic Park the book, is basically Jaws with dinosaurs.

Jurassic Park is an action movie where Jaws is a suspense movie. The manner that they go about to get to the payoff is different.

[small hijack] I have always wanted to see Jaws in a movie theater with a balcony. With a warm can of some sort of chunky soup. I am so sick. [/small hijack]

Jaws is far superior. The acting, the pacing, the suspense… It’s all better. Jurassic Park had cute kids, a smart-alec math professor, a fat clownish bad guy, and other cartoon caricatures of characters. But it had way cool CGI stuff in it.

Both of them are good movies, but Jaws is the one people will still remember 50 years from now.

[j]Jurassic Park* is a fun movie, while Jaws is a brilliant film. It’s sort of like comparing Return of the Jedi and Empire Strikes Back- both movies are fun to watch, but only one of them has characters that feel realistic, memorable dialogue, and good acting.

Plus, Jaws has Quint’s monologue about the Lusitania, one of film history’s most chilling and well-written scenes (even if, as a shark buff, it pains me to see how it paints sharks as mindless killers :)).

Wasn’t that the USS Indianapolis—sunk in 1945, not the Luistania, a casualty of the first world war?

It was the Indianapolis.

Agree with everything else you said - however, at least for me, I’ll always remember Jurassic Park because it was the first time that I saw the power of CGI incorporated into the fabric of a movie. I mean, I sat there going “Holy Crap, those dinosaurs look real!”

Jaws was the better movie by far…in fact, I would go so far as to say that Jaws is perhaps the best monster movie ever made. It works 30 years later as well as it did when it opened, and the acting, pacing, music and plot are awesome.
Jurassic Park had landmark SFX and a great score but that’s about it.

I agree Jurassic Park is a popcorn movie and an adequate one IMO, nothing more ( I agree with Sam Stone that some of the characters are little more than caricatures ). I also agree that one is entertaining and the other a bit dull, but I’d reverse your order :).

Jaws is a vastly superior film for reasons already enumerated.

  • Tamerlane

I saw Jaws for the firs time, on TV, three days ago. And I was completely unimpressed. I thought : “Why on earth is this movie famous?”, and considered opening a thread about it.

The special effects in Jaws seemed fine to me. The acting is OK. But the characters are boring stereotypes, there’s no much suspense, no memorable dialogue (I didn’t find the Indianapolis dialogue memorable), no much surprise. Essentially, I didn’t feel anything while watching the movie. I wasn’t moved, I wasn’t affraid, I didn’t care for the characters. The best I could think was a detached : “it’s a well done movie”.

Jaws is superior, without a doubt. Jurassic Park may have better special effects; but that’s a given considering the about twenty years of technological advances.

I can’t remember which movie I saw first; Jaws was made eleven years before I was born, and I was too young to see Jurassic Park on it’s first release. But Jaws still makes me jump everytime I see it; Jurassic Park never had that effect. And as others have said, Jaws has more fully realized characters. The relationship between the three men is fantastic, and there isn’t a character moment in Jurassic Park that can match Quint’s USS Indianapolis monologue.

I’ve also read both of the original novels, and Jaws is on my very, very short list of movies that are better than their original books (Silence of the Lambs is the other, I suspect the Da Vinci Code will be added when it is released; anything would be an improvement of that piece of crap book). Peter Benchley’s book is poorly written, the characters aren’t as sympathetic, and the ending is anti-clamactic. And while I like Jeff Goldblum’s performance is JP, I could never get over how different his Ian Malcolm was from my mental image from the book.

Err… whoops. Next time I’ll look this stuff up before I make a fool of myself. :slight_smile:

Ironically, that’s what started the whole thing. I read that they mention the Indianapolis in Jaws and thought…“Wait, I don’t remember that at all”. Then I realized I couldn’t remember much of the actual movie except the girl getting killed at the beginning, the shark blowing up at the end, and a montage of stills from the rest of the film.