Dr. Grant (Sam Neill) steps back into the spotlight in this third Jurassic Park movie, directed by Joe Johnston and released in 2001.Thanks to Grant's expertise in dinosaurs, he and his protégé Billy are asked to be tour guides to rich couple, the Kirbys, and their company, who desire to see Isla Sorna. They need funds for their research, so they agree. But not until they arrive there is the truth revealed: the party is not there as tourists, but as rescuers to the couple’s son, Eric, who disappeared near the island a while ago.Like its predecessors, JP III spawned half a dozen Licensed Games.
This film provides examples of:
Absurdly Ineffective Barricade: Inverted. The spinosaur, moments after breaking through a wall to get to the protagonists, is foiled in its pursuit when the protagonists shut and lock a door on it. Let me repeat: The giant dinosaur is stopped by a locked door. People have lost their minds trying to explain this.
One popular suggestion is that the spinosaur simply decided the four little snackettes were not worth this much bother. Another is that it was not particularly intelligent and assumed that since it could not see them, its prey had simply escaped.
Note that it uses its entire body to break through the fence, but presumably only has its snout to break down the door - or fail to.
All Flyers Are Birds: The Pteranodon nest is made in a very bird-like way. The current paleontological evidence certainly says otherwise.
The Pteranodons in general act alarmingly bird-like, between grabbing prey with a set of eagle-like talons (something that would have been physically impossible for real pterosaurs of any kind), the babies begging for food the way baby birds would be expected to (a point rendered moot by the fact that they're shown to be capable of flight already), the constant pecking...
Always a Bigger Fish: The producers wanted a dinosaur that could kick the T. rex's ass, so they selected the Spinosaurus, which had new material discovered which indicated that it would have been a larger than T. rex, if only slightly larger. Scientists now know from the dinosaur's anatomy that it would have been a mismatch in the T. rex's favor. "Larger" doesn't necessarily mean "more dangerous" or "has a bigger bite". Possibly justified given Ingen modifies its dinosaurs and Jurassic Park's general abandoning of scientific accuracy in favour of Rule of Cool.
Animals Not to Scale: According to later discoveries, it turns out the Spinosaurus in the film was actually smaller than its real life counterpart.
Artifact Title: Like the second film, JP III is set on Isla Sorna — Site B, where the dinosaurs were bred by InGen. The fact gets brought up later in the film:
Dr. Grant: Why me?
Paul Kirby: (indicating Udesky) He said we needed someone who'd been on the island before.
Udesky: Yes. But I did not tell you to kidnap somebody!
Dr. Grant: I have never been on this island.
Paul Kirby: Sure ya have. You wrote that book.
Billy: That was Isla Nublar, this is Isla Sorna: Site B.
Udesky: You mean there's two islands with dinosaurs on them?
Artistic License - Geography: The juxtaposition scene has the Spinosaurus attacking Grant & co. during nighttime, and Ellie's son being distracted by Barney during the afternoon. Costa Rica is in the same timezone as the Central Standard Time, so there's no place in America where such a huge time difference would happen.
One big mistake that stands out when it comes to Dinosaur inaccuracies? Pteranodons didn't eat red meat (they didn't have the teeth for it).
Speaking of which, the Pteranodons do have teeth in this movie despite the fact that Pteranodon means "Wing without Tooth".
Aside Glance: A dinosaur, no less, does this. When the Ceratosaurus finds Paul, Alan, and Amanda by the Spinosaurus dung, it looks up at the camera with an expression that says "No way am I sticking around here."
Badass: The Spinosaurus wins a head-on collision with a plane before literally ripping it apart, takes down a T-rex after shrugging off its immensely powerful bite to the neck, smashes right through a massive steel gate, and is considered the unrivaled ruler of Isla Sorna in the novelisation.
The group arrives at the deserted beach to find a lone man in a suit calling out for them with a megaphone. There's no boats, no parachute, nothing to indicate where he came from. The beach, the sea, and the sky are all perfectly vacant. They run at him to make him stop, and all of a sudden an entire landing force, complete with several amphibious vehicles and helicopters, appear spontaneously on the beach.
When Dr. Grant and Eric meet up with the rest of the group, the Spinosaurus somehow manages to sneak up on all of them, even though half of them are facing it.
Brick Joke: When the party lands on Isla Sorna, Amanda calls for Eric through a megaphone and Grant yells at her to stop because it's "a very bad idea." Later, when they're about to be rescued, the government agent is doing the same thing and they all run out onto the beach yelling "It's a very bad idea!"
When Grant and co. are confronted by T. rex, he still remembers that it can’t detect movement. Too bad that nobody listens to him.
The scene where everyone is digging through Spinosaurus dung to find the ringing satellite phone is a Call Back to the first movie where Ellie is digging through Triceratops droppings to discover why the animal has fallen ill.
In the end Dr. Grant looks out of the helicopter window to see a flock Pteranodons. He did the same thing in the first film, albeit he saw pelicans.
The model of the raptor voice box is one of the most straight-forward examples of this trope in any of the films.
When the characters escape the Bird-Cage, we see Amanda left the door unlocked and half-open. At the end, we see the Pteranodons found their way out of the cage and are flying into the sunset.
The eggs Billy takes from the raptor nest.
Chekhov's Hobby: Billy has experience in base jumping, which comes handy during the Bird-Cage chase when he deploys the parachute.
Cool vs. Awesome: T.rex vs. Spinosaurus. The Tyrannosaurus Rex was the big heavy of the first two films, but loses the fight and the title of big bad to the Spinosaurus.
The Croc Is Ticking: The Spinosaurus eats Paul’s satellite phone, and its ringing continues in its stomach.
Cutting the Knot: The characters find a row of vending machines, Mr. Kirby starts pulling out change and counting how much he needs. Billy, remembering that they're on an abandoned island, simply walks up and kicks through the display window of the next vending machine and takes what he wants. Mr. Kirby tries to follow suit, to no avail.
Despair Event Horizon: Played with in the third film: All seems lost when the group realizes Nash had the phone on him when he became dino-chow. Said phone not only survives being eaten, but it is later dug up from a pile of dung and successfully used to call for help.
Flanderization: The raptors were always very intelligent, but only by dinosaur standards in the first two films. They are now veritable evil geniuses that have their own language and are capable of setting traps that are at human levels of sophistication. Indeed, at times they seem even smarter than the human protagonists.
Flare Gun: Used to drive off the Spinosaurus the final time the characters bump into it. The Spinosaurus had ruptured the fuel tank when it attacked their boat, so the flare gun sets it on fire, at which point it retreats in pain.
Foreshadowing: When Mr. Kirby tells Grant that he can pay him any amount of money, the song in the background plays the line, "And I lie, lie, lie..."
Genre Savvy: Grant knows all about being in a movie with big lizards: "Either way... you probably won't get off this island alive."
Guns Do Not Work That Way: One of the amazingly short-lived mercs has a Barrett M82A2 anti-material rifle, which he fires during one scene. Apparently due to noise ordinances where the scene was filmed, they couldn't actually fire the weapon; the CGI muzzle flash isn't hugely convincing, and the weapon's action rather conspicuously doesn't cycle.
Logo Joke: The Universal and Amblin logos ripple along with a "THUD!" sound, referencing the Bad Vibrations when the T. rex walked.
Lowered Monster Difficulty: There’s a moment where the Spinosaurus, who was so hellbent on eating the protagonists that it bust through a massive reinforced fence 10 seconds previously... is suddenly unable to break through an ordinary metal door and decides to give up after a few bangs on it.
Oh Crap: Grant has a big one when he realizes that the area he, Amanda, Paul, Eric, and Billy have sought refuge from the Spinosaurus in is a giant aviary...which could only mean Giant Flyers. Given that nearly every animal on the island is from the Mesozoic, it takes him all of half a second to figure out what kinds of creatures those might be...right before one of the said flyers swoops down and snatches Eric away.
Parachute in a Tree: Ben Hildebrand falls victim to this and is later found half-eaten and still dangling from the canopy.
Relationship-Salvaging Disaster: The divorced Paul and Amanda Kirby trick Alan Grant into accompanying them on an expedition to save their son Eric after he got stranded in the dinosaur-filled jungle on Isla Sorna with Amanda's new boyfriend Ben Hildebrand. Through the dangers on the island they reconcile their differences and reunite as a family after Paul is almost killed saving them from the Spinosaurus.
"The Reason You Suck" Speech: Billy is on the receiving end of a rather scathing one when Grant learns that he stole a pair of Velociraptor eggs.
Cooper being the first one to die, and doing so virtually the second he sets foot on the island, could be a shoutout to Dino Crisis, where a team member named Cooper does the exact same thing.
Billy "rescuing" Alan's hat at the end is a mild one to Indiana Jones.
So Last Season: How do we truly know the Spinosaurus means business? He kills the T. rex without much effort!
Stand-In Portrait: A raptor stands behind a glass tube to pretend it's one of the dead test subjects.
Stupid Question Bait: At the start of the movie, Alan Grant has just finished giving a talk to an audience, and asks if anyone has any questions. Hands go up all over the room. Grant adds that he means any questions that aren't about Jurassic Park, and most of the hands go down. When he further specifies that he doesn't want questions about the events of The Lost World: Jurassic Park either, there are hardly any hands left.
Super Cell Reception: Kirby’s satellite phone works perfectly quite some time after being eaten by a dino. He does mention that they'll only get a single call out of it, but fortunately for the protagonists, this doesn't extend to call-backs.
The spinosaur, with the exception of the T. rex fight, spends all of its on-screen time trying to chase down the main characters.
The raptors subvert this; they do go to great lengths to kill the main characters, but it is revealed later on that they were motivated by Billy stealing their eggs, and, once they're returned, the raptors take their eggs and leave.
Take That: Grant and the others are being attacked by the Spinosaurus, so Grant uses the satellite phone to call Ellie for help. Her toddler son picks it up, and he would have gotten it to his mother a lot quicker were he not distracted by another dinosaur....
Too Dumb to Live: Mrs. Kirby seems to genuinely not understand why Grant is advising her not to shout through a megaphone while wandering aimlessly through a jungle full of giant, feral predators. Mr. Kirby too; at one point he tells his wife to shut up because "Dr. Grant says this is very dangerous territory". Obviously, being chased by a Spinosaurus and a T-Rex within seconds of each other wasn't enough for him to realize that by himself... They get better at it.
The Worf Effect: The T-Rex suffers from this. Its species were portrayed as the biggest and baddest creatures, and now one is easily defeated by the Spinosaurus, .