001 Jurassic Park pt 1, Finish Your Book, John C. Maxwell

The Self-Publish Strong Podcast
The Self-Publish Strong Podcast
001 Jurassic Park pt 1, Finish Your Book, John C. Maxwell

In celebration of the launch of this podcast, all of Andrea Pearson’s book marketing courses are available at 50% off. Enter PODCASTLAUNCH – one word – at checkout. This deal expires March 24, 2018 at midnight. Go to selfpublishstrongcourses.com for information on currently available courses. Thank you.


Andrea: Hi, everyone! Welcome to the Self-Publish Strong podcast. I’m your host, Andrea Pearson, and I’m joined by my husband, Nolan. We started this podcast for several different reasons. The first of which is I’m very passionate about marketing and being an author in books and I love teaching others how to be successful at self-publishing. But, we’ve got two little kids and actually getting out to conferences is really difficult, and so I’ve started doing things to simplify our lives including creating a self-publishing school and marketing classes. You can find information about those at selfpublishstrong.com. But that’s the first reason.

The second reason is publishing is exciting and fun and there’s a lot of people that are kind of discouraging and depressing about it, who like to drag people down about the possibilities of being successful and even big authors who are successful, sometimes… I don’t know if it’s unconscious, but they sometimes get a little bit of a Debbie Downer attitude when it comes to new authors just trying out and we want to make things more positive and upbeat and uplifting than that.

And the third reason is because my husband and I are huge entertainment buffs and the last segment of our podcast is dedicated to movies and board games and things like that. We plan on discussing popular and some not so popular movies and what they did right, what they did wrong, and we’re going to tie everything back into writing and self-publishing. We believe that every movie has something to teach about being a good writer, and whether it’s a good lesson or not, that’s debatable. But, join us to discover your favorite movies all over again. And, like I said, we’re also going to be hopefully doing board games. We play a lot of board games, mostly cooperative, with my brother and we comment all the time on the writing and on the artwork and things like that. We just thought it’d be fun to be able to discuss those in podcast format

Anyway, just a little bit about me. I’ve been self-publishing since early 2011. I was offered a contract with one of the big five, but turned it down to self-publish. And 10 days after we got married, we decided to hit the road on our own. Since then, I’ve published over two million words under three pen names, including 35+ novels, several nonfiction books, multiple novellas and short stories, and over 100 articles for professional blogs and websites. And, I’ve been interviewed on a science fiction and fantasy marketing podcast and a bunch of others, including Rocking Self-Publishing and The Author Hangout, and I’ve guest posted on JA Konrath’s The Newbie’s Guide to Publishing blog. And, anyway, just a bunch of stuff. Basically, I love self-publishing and marketing and I do have some experience doing it. Anyway, that’s enough of about me. Nolan…

Nolan: Yes.

Andrea: Yes, what about you?

Nolan: What about me? This is actually super relevant to the movie that we’re watching. There is a scene where I will go on a rant about something very personal to me that they get wrong in the movie and…

Andrea: I think I know what you’re talking about.

Nolan: Yeah, but, anyway, I work in a hospital. I have a degree in biology, but I also started a degree in drawing, painting, and printmaking, and so I will be adding some artistic analysis to what were doing. In addition to a scientific rant in one of the scenes in particular.

Andrea: Yeah, and we wanted to do this because we both have experience when it comes to writing, obviously. I mean, he’s a huge reader and it’s important for authors to get their facts right and things like that. But, what Nolan didn’t say was he’s actually a professional illustrator. He’s done book covers for publishers and authors and he’s illustrated a lot of books for me. He illustrates books for local schools and things like that. He’s very talented and you can check out some of his art on his blog, jamesecurwen.blogspot.com, which we actually haven’t updated in couple of years.

Nolan: True.

Andrea: If you want to see any of his art, you can always email me and say, “Hey, I want to see your husband’s latest artwork.” Anyway.

Okay, so the format we’re going to follow for this blog is we’ll first give brief updates. Nolan’s smiling at me knowingly. Are you smiling…

Nolan: You said blog, not podcast.

Andrea: Oh, did I? All right, fine. Here’s how the podcast will go. Thank you. We’ll first give updates on our lives and our projects and then we’ll give a shout out to our Patreon supporters and you can find out about the perks that we offered through our Patreon account which is patreon.com/selfpublishstrong. Going along with the theme of positive and uplifting, we’ll also be sharing a positive quote, one per episode, just to kind of get you excited about being an author and ready to, basically, take on the world. Then we’ll give a self-publishing tip and, like I said, my passion is marketing but we’ll cover the entire gamut of topics self-publishing related. Then, like we’ve already said, we’ll discuss a popular or not so popular movie.

Just so you know, we don’t compare notes before episodes because we want to have natural dialogue and be able to discover together what we’re thinking. We’re going to try to avoid spoilers, but we can’t make any promises with that just because sometimes, with some of the movies, the ending ruins the movie and you’ve got to get this right when it comes to your books. You need to make sure that you’re nailing everything and so we’ll be talking about all of those things and if there’s going be spoilers, we’ll try to warn you.

As an FYI, the microphone that we’re using right here is my digital recorder that I use for dictating. We are in the process of building a house, and our nice microphone is packed away in the storage unit. Rather than unpack half the storage unit to find it, because we actually thought our house would be finished in November and we’re at the first of February right now, we decided just to use my digital recorder. It picks up a lot of weird things like stupid drivers driving down the road really loud just a couple seconds ago.

All right, so for our first episode, we’re going to talk about Jurassic Park, which is one of my favorite movies. But before that, do you have any updates on projects you’re working on right now?

Nolan: My son stole my stylus for my drawing pad and I just found it yesterday, so I think that’s probably the biggest update.

Andrea: Awesome. My life has been revolving around nonfiction stuff. I love teaching. I’m very passionate about it, but I am a writer. I’m a fiction writer. I want to get back to my fiction writing and so, once we get all this stuff taken care of, I’m really looking forward to digging back into writing the third book in my Koven Chronicles. A lot of our time is spent wandering around the house cleaning up after two little kids. We have a five-year-old girl and a two-year-old son, who is very mischievous and pretty messy.

Okay, so the motivational quote for the day. Nolan’s going to read that.

Nolan: “Dreams don’t work unless you do,” by John C. Maxwell.

Andrea: How does that make you feel?

Nolan: Like I have to work a lot.

Andrea: Yes. We picked that as our first quote because the theme of our podcast is to be uplifting and encouraging, but at some point dreaming needs to stop and working has to begin because if you don’t put the work in, then your dreams will never come true. So, as John C. Maxwell said, dreams don’t work unless you do.

All right, is that everything? Oh! Self-publishing. The tip. The tip on self-publishing. We’re going to get this down, I promise. If you’re just starting out, some of the tips that I’m going to be sharing will be very overwhelming because I want to mix in advanced tips with brand-new authors tips. I’m going to try to alternate them and I’ll have sequences of tips. You know, I don’t want the tip section overtake the entire podcast, and so I’ll be using the tips in sequences and some tips will stand on their own completely.

But the tip today is for new authors just starting out. I just wanted to say that the most important thing for you is to get your book written. Don’t worry about editing it until it’s complete and that includes self-editing. So after you finish writing something, don’t go back and work on it and work it over and over and over to death because the goal when you’re first starting is to get the book finished. If you do not have a finished product then you can’t actually start self-publishing. I think that applies even when you’ve got one or two books out because we tend to get distracted and the best way to get experience is by writing more. So, basically, start at the beginning and work your way forward with writing and marketing and everything. But, publishing, it can be difficult, but it’s one of the most exciting, liberating things you will ever do for yourself. So, make sure you’re enjoying the ride, too.

Anyway. So, we’ve got free courses available through selfpublishstrong.com. If you go there, I think I’ve got a tab that says something about free courses. The first one goes over the basic automation sequence I used to build up my ARC team and it’s been selling my books on autopilot for about two years now. Is that how long I’ve been using it? Yeah. Royalties have doubled, quadrupled. I mean, they’ve gone up quite a bit since I started using an automation sequence. It basically sells your book on autopilot. I also teach a little-known tip to increase productivity in that course and then a great way to get readers to download your books when you want them to and not whenever they get around to it.

The second free course is called Am I Ready? It talks about everything you need to have in place before you really start digging into marketing because marking is difficult and if everything isn’t set up correctly, the possibility of losing a great deal of money and time is really high, so make sure you got your ducks in a row first. Check those out at selfpublishstrong.com, like I said.

And, now, we’re going to talk about Jurassic Park. Do you want to go first?

Nolan: Yes, let’s talk about why we picked Jurassic Park.

Andrea: Okay.

Nolan: It’s a movie most people have already seen. It came out in ’94 I believe.

Andrea: ’93?

Nolan: Something like that. A very popular book, very popular movie. And it’s both so the author of the book was very instrumental in the creation of the movie. He wrote a book and then he converted it to a screenplay. He took a 25, 30 hour read and had to compress it into two hours. So the scenes that are in that movie are very important and were very carefully constructed. That is the kind of attention that you need to put into the scenes that you write in your book. Be very selective about what it’s telling your readers.

Andrea: I actually had a very similar comment about especially the opening scene. Everything in the opening scene, everything in every scene actually, they did a very good job with this movie of making sure every scene does two things: pushes the story forward and informs you of something. So, like in the first scene, we’ve got a dark forest and we’ve got the music and we’ve got the buildup. It introduces us to… is his name Robert Muldoon? I know his last name is Muldoon. Anyway, it introduces us to him and, basically, the Velociraptor, all you see is the eyes, so it’s teasing you about what is about to come, while also setting the mood with music and everything.

Nolan: The theme of the movie is control is an illusion. This is repeated over and over again and this scene starts out, the danger is in a box. There’s a big, steel crate. You don’t know what’s in it. There’s a bunch of guys with guns surrounding it. They look like they’re taking every precaution they possibly can. Then, somebody get grabbed. In the classic horror movie style, he’s drug on the ground towards this box that you can’t see what’s in it. Then something crazy happens. He gets lifted like 5 feet into the air, something completely unexpected.

Andrea: Yes, that’s right, I remember the first time I watched it, I was like, “How is that possible?”

Nolan: And then you’re like, “Whoa!” and then all you do see is the eye and they’re shouting, “Shooter! Shooter!” as the guy slowly gets pulled into the box while they’re trying to keep him from going in there. So, again, control was an illusion. They thought they had it, they did not. Somebody died.

Andrea: Unfortunately, it was the minority who died.

Nolan: Yes. Well, to be fair, they’re in Costa Rica. A lot of the local workers would be Costa Ricans.

Andrea: That’s true, fair point.

Nolan: So, that’s the first scene of the movie.

Andrea: Right.

Nolan: So what’s the second scene? Very similar. Scene two, instead of being a blue-colored night scene, it’s a day scene.

Andrea: Stark.

Nolan: Bright.

Andrea: Very dramatic.

Nolan: And there’s a guy in a suit in the middle of the jungle. It’s kind of the opposite, right? Instead of the thing being a box, he’s in the wilderness.

Andrea: Open.

Nolan: Yes, and he’s getting pulled on a little raft to shoreline. It’s the lawyer that nobody likes.

Andrea: Gennaro.

Nolan: Yes, he looks completely out of place, unprepared for the wilderness that he’s in. He’s wearing a business suit and nice shoes.

Andrea: Carrying a briefcase.

Nolan: Carrying a briefcase, walking through the mud. He doesn’t have respect for what is going on there. Ultimately, they go into a cave and they find some amber and contained within that amber is the DNA that they used to create the dinosaur. So, again, the dinosaur is contained in the symbolic item.

Andrea: Nice. I like that. We didn’t talk about this ahead of time.

Nolan: No. So, in the first two scenes, we’ve reinforced that multiple times. We’ve introduced two characters. The game’s keeper and the lawyer. He’ll end up being more pivotal later on in the movie. And, reinforced the theme of the movie two completely different ways that control’s an illusion.

Andrea: And one thing about Michael Crichton is that he is absolutely fantastic at with his books is he knew how to start a book with a hook that you could not ignore. And, I mean, I remember the first time I read Jurassic Park, the book, I was probably 11. The movie came out at that time and I had to read the book. An 11-year-old reading Jurassic Park, now I kind of cringe at that. But, that opening scene really caught my attention and it was the excitement and the thrill of future dinosaurs that kept me reading through what an 11-year-old would consider the boring parts. But Michael Crichton, everything in his book, even the boring, quote unquote boring, parts, were interesting. You know, he got really involved into the science behind things. I really liked that as even a teenager.

But, going on to that theme of every scene doing two things. We get introduced to Grant in that scene where the lawyer’s approaching the guy who gets the resin. I don’t remember his name. The dude who gets the resin out of the cave. They’re talking about Dr. Grant and how they’re going to try to get them to go there and the guy’s like, “Grant’s like me. He’s a digger.” And, so, that just was introducing us to Grant before we even meet him. So we kind of get this idea of who Grant is.

Just a little bit of trivia. Harrison Ford was offered the role of Grant and he turned it down and after watching it, he was like, “Yeah, I made the right choice,” and I have to agree with him. I don’t think he would’ve been good for the role.

Nolan: Agreed.

Andrea: I think that… is it Sam Neill? I don’t remember his name.

Nolan: Sam Neill.

Andrea: Yeah, I thought he did a fantastic job as Grant. Okay, so then you get into the third scene of the movie, and we’re not going to go scene by scene like this, this is just what was pulling out at me. Okay, so the first one sets the tones and the characters it introduces including the dinosaurs. It introduces the dinosaurs as a pretty big character in the story. And then the second one introduces even more of the danger because they’re talking about how people have been dying while they’ve been working on the park. It introduces more characters including Grant and Gennaro, and then, of course, the mosquito in the resin. Then, in the third scene, we meet Grant, and they show us, rather than tell us, that he dislikes kids and they show us the danger of our main predator of the movie, which is the Velociraptor.

Nolan: Which we were introduced partially in the first scene. In the first scene, there was the eye, and in the third scene there’s a claw.

Andrea: Yeah, the claw, and then the story about what they’re capable of doing.

Nolan: Exactly, yes. So they’ve indirectly started building tension around this creature you haven’t seen very well.

Andrea: Yeah.

Nolan: Yes, so the first scene was like a night scene. Second scene was a day scene in the jungle. And the third scenes contrasts…

Andrea: In the desert.

Nolan: Yes, it’s in the desert. So, now, we’re out in the middle of nowhere.

Andrea: Montana.

Nolan: Yeah, Montana.

Andrea: Which is not the middle of nowhere!

Nolan: Montana’s amazing, but it is a desert. So they’re out there in some – I don’t know what you call it, technically – but there out there at this dig site and they have everything cordoned off. Right? Safely, scientifically, dissecting the site, collecting all their data on this thing that they are trying to understand. Right? And then who arrives?

Andrea: The helicopter with Hammond.

Nolan: The helicopter with Hammond, and that shows his personality because he’s like a bull in a china shop. He arrives. Everything’s done the way he wants it, he won’t take no for an answer.

Andrea: Doesn’t care about the mess he leaves behind.

Nolan: Exactly. He didn’t have respect for the dinosaurs that they were digging up when his helicopter lands and blows sand all over their site. So, he didn’t have any respect for the process for what they were trying to accomplish.

Andrea: A little bit of the note on Hammond. Michael Crichton, and I don’t know how many of you read the book, but Hammond was the bad guy in the book. He was not a good guy. I mean, Michael Crichton wanted him to be considered as a dark Walt Disney. So in the movie he’s whimsical, upbeat, happy, but in the book he cut corners. He blackmailed Nedry, He hired one person to take over the entire security of the whole, entire park and then he blackmailed and low-balled him, didn’t actually pay him well. Of course Nedry is going to try to find a way to make more money. And then, of course, he lied about the safety of the park. But, I mean, how would the movie have gone if Hammond had been that way? I really, actually, liked Hammond in the book just because he’s a good villain, but I really liked him in the movie. The kind of clueless, idealistic, optimistic person, you know?

Nolan: I’m not sure why they made that change. I think it works in the movie. I don’t know how it would have been had they made him that way.

Andrea: It’s interesting.

Nolan: Yeah, I’m trying to think of why they made that choice. I don’t know. It works either way. They made it work both ways.

Andrea: Probably because everybody in the movie is… they’re all down on the park.

Nolan: Yeah, they needed someone to contrast. They need somebody rooting for the park that we want it…

Andrea: We want it to work, frankly.

Nolan: Right, and we’re sympathetic to him and the park, and why he was doing it.

Andrea: One thing that I noticed throughout this movie is the tone in the settings. There are several scenes where, when you watch again, you know nothing’s going to happen, but the first time watching it, you expect something to happen. I don’t know, a good example of that would be when Timmy’s walking through the grass. You expect something to pounce on him from behind. So they have all these little things.

I hope you’re okay with this, but I’m going to move on to when when they first see the big dinosaurs. They ask how fast the dinosaurs run and Hammond says, “We clocked the T Rex at 32 miles an hour,” and Grant and Ellie are both freaking out. “You’ve got a T Rex? You’ve got a T Rex?” Right there, that’s showing us the importance of the T Rex to the story. Anyway, so, again, it’s showing us the importance of these creatures. We’ve got the buildup to the Velociraptor, which, I don’t know about you, but the Velociraptor, this was the first time I’d been introduced to a Velociraptor, while everybody knows what a T Rex is. He’s nodding his head.

Nolan: Yes.

Andrea: In case you can’t see him nodding his head, he is.

Nolan: Yeah, so the first scene with dinosaurs, when they see the big whatever it is with the long neck…

Andrea: Brachiosaurus or brontosaurus.

Nolan: Yeah, whatever. It’s 20 minutes into the movie before you even see a dinosaur.

Andrea: Besides the eye.

Nolan: Besides the eye and the scale.

Andrea: Yes, yeah.

Nolan: The first thing they do is introduce you to one that’s gigantic. To get that sense of scale and awe, they went for that.

Andrea: That was a fantastic scene. It was thrilling the first time I saw that.

Nolan: And it still looks pretty good.

Andrea: Yeah.

Nolan: Almost 25 years later.

Andrea: Yeah, the CGI is still believable. It’s pretty awesome.

Nolan: And they do stuff like they show a panoramic. They turn around and you see herds of them.

Andrea: Or hair-eds as Grant says.

Nolan: Hair-eds.

Andrea: They do grow them in hair-eds!

Nolan: Trying to stifle his British accent is only partially successful.

Andrea: Poor man. I hope he never hears this.

Nolan: He won’t.

Anyway, so, yeah, so, I mean, they do delay. You know it’s a dinosaur movie going into it. Jurassic Park. But they’re 20 minutes into a two-hour movie before you see a friendly-ish dinosaur, let alone the predatory ones. They start off with nice ones that you see fully. They don’t show you… they mention a T Rex and they mention the Velociraptors, but you haven’t seen those ones yet.

Andrea: That’s fantastic. I mean, that’s one thing that, we’re going to talk about this movie, but the new Godzilla that they did awful. They would tease and tease and tease and they never fully built on that. But Jurassic Park doesn’t have that problem. They tease and tease, and they put mood in there, and then they actually, really, what’s the word? Fulfill or complete that.

Nolan: Yeah.

Andrea: Teasing. Okay, so a little bit of trivia here. Or not even trivia. As I was saying earlier, Michael Crichton’s books are really long. He puts a lot of detail into them and when I was first reading them, the first time I read it, I read the whole thing, but every time after that, and I’ve actually read Jurassic Park 11 times. I haven’t read it since I was probably 18, but I read it all growing up. All the time in high school and junior high. But, in the movie, they take that little DNA cartoon, you know, John Hammond’s little cartoon guy, Mr. DNA or whatever. They condense a ton of exposition into just a very few minutes and I appreciate that. I mean, it’s fascinating, but they do take quite a bit and put into a couple of minutes.

Nolan: Well, it’s nice that they do that as part of a ride so you feel like, don’t you hate it when characters explain the plot to you?

Andrea: Oh, yes, yeah.

Nolan: They did it by having something that would naturally do that to you. The ride, explaining. The attraction is the explanation so that they could put it in there, like, a lot of exposition stuff.

Andrea: And it’s good because the characters are learning with us. So it’s not, you know, it wasn’t like Maid and Butler where they’re telling each other…

Nolan: It’s actually informing the characters in the movie and us at the same time. It is very nice.

Andrea: Yeah, exactly.

Nolan: And this is where I get to my science rant scene.

Andrea: Okay, let’s hear your rant.

Nolan: What we’re talking about is the scene where they’re sitting down in the chairs and they’re watching the video and it’s moving on and they see the lab.

Andrea: My husband works in a lab.

Nolan: I work in a lab. And then it moves on from the lab and they’re mad because they want to see the lab. So they break out of the ride and go into the lab where everyone else is wearing lab coats, but them, because I guess you don’t need lab coats.

Andrea: And they don’t stop and make them put on…

Nolan: They don’t stop them and throw them out like anybody would if you had to have a lab coat in that area, which you would. Just saying…

Andrea: I’m nodding.

Nolan: You’re nodding. But that’s not the part that I hate. We are introduced to a dastardly villain.

Andrea: Dr. Wu.

Nolan: One of the most evil men I can conceive of in science. It’s not just because we know in Jurassic World, the last, most recent movie, where he’s…

Andrea: He’s available for hire for bad things.

Nolan: He’s the mad scientist and we know that later. I knew he was a bad seed from this movie because he has an eraser. He has a pencil and he’s erasing something on a clipboard in the lab. I cannot tell you the heresy that he is guilty of. He should be drawn and quartered for that. Pencils, just so you know, pencils are absolutely not allowed in any reputable lab, which I guess they’re not.

Andrea: Their lab is not. Well, you know, John maybe couldn’t have afforded pens so they only have pencils.

Nolan: Okay. There’s a lot of rules regarding notebooks and documentation in a laboratory. You never erase. You draw a single line through your correction so that your original data is still visible and you sign and date. There is a bunch of letter codes in our lab that we use to say why we made the correction. T is a transcription error, like you just copied something down incorrectly. So if you’re seen with a pencil anywhere near, even if you’re a student, you get that pencil broken in front of your face. It’s thrown in the garbage can.

Andrea: You mean you don’t get fired?

Nolan: You should. If you’re using it to record actual data, you would be in pretty big trouble. But there are no pencils. None allowed.

Andrea: No erasing.

Nolan: There is no erasing.

Andrea: And he actually, Dr. Wu actually erases.

Nolan: He’s actually erasing. The first scene you see him in, he’s got his eraser. He’s erasing. On a clipboard, on his notebook. And then he does it again at the end. He’s, like, talking to them while he’s flaunting his pencil. It’s not right. Sorry.

Andrea: All right We’ll go on from there. So, basically, the moral of the story is get your research right or my husband will stalk you.

Nolan: This scene’s also important for some other reasons. This is the first time we see a complete Velociraptor.

Andrea: And it’s so cute.

Nolan: Yes, and that made you sympathetic.

Andrea: Oh, yes. It’s innocent and weak.

Nolan: It shows them in a disarmed manner.

Andrea: Contained and breaking out of the containment.

Nolan: Exactly. And he’s holding it. He’s holding it and he knows that this is bad, and he’s just staring at it and doesn’t know what to think or… he’s conflicted.

Andrea: Yeah, because when Dr. Grant’s holding that baby raptor, they’re like, “What is this?” He says, “This is a Velociraptor.” He’s like, “You bred Velociraptors?” I mean, totally again, showing us what a Velociraptor, the importance behind it.

By the way, a little bit of trivia. Did you know that they’ve discovered red blood cells and actual soft tissue in a T Rex’s bone?

Nola.: Interesting.

Andrea: Yeah, that happened in 2005 and they still haven’t followed up with actual cloning, but I’m hoping it will happen.

Nolan: You can’t clone from red blood cells. They don’t have nuclei.

Andrea: Well, mix it with the African bullfrog.

Nolan: You’d have to know what genes are missing. You can’t just put genes in there. You need to know what was missing.

Andrea: This is why you work in the lab and I don’t.

Nolan: I specifically work in a molecular biology lab. I work with viruses and not genomics, but just so you know, I don’t…

Andrea: But a little bit of foreshadowing from this lab scene. It’s fantastic foreshadowing because they’re like, “The dinosaurs are only female,” and Malcolm’s very skeptical about that. So that already foreshadows to us that there’s a possibility that their plans are going to go awry, basically.

Nolan: Yeah, and we can talk about that scene in the future real quick if you want. They do find eggs later that have hatched and Grant’s reaction is the same wonder…

Andrea: Yeah.

Nolan: Then, dread.

Andrea: Yeah, like, “Oh, Malcolm was correct!” and then…

Nolan: He’s like, “Wow, eggs, they hatched, look at all the little footprints… wait a second!”

Andrea: “These are Velociraptor footprints!”

Nolan: He has that conflict because he studied dinosaurs his whole life, and now he sees them, and now he realizes how little he knows about them and how dangerous they really are. Because he theoretically knew. He explained to the kid in the second or third scene of the movie how it can disembowel him with this giant claw, but the reality of what he’s really studying… He just has that personality conflict between the wonder of seeing… The theme music parallels that as well.

Andrea: Yeah, it does.

Nolan: The theme music, which we all know, is not super tense.

Andrea: No, and John Williams said that he wanted to be able to encapsulate and to pull us to that feeling of wonder in the music.

Nolan: It’s beautiful and it’s dangerous. Nature is beautiful and dangerous. Control is an illusion. The theme song and all these themes tie together.

Andrea: At this point they’re still not showing… then we go and feed the raptors. We only see the cow going down and then coming back up with very little blood on the…

Nolan: Surprisingly little blood.

Andrea: We don’t see the bad dinosaurs still. They’re still not showing them to us. Okay, so one thing I noticed while they’re in there. I just saw my note on here. While we were watching this, Nolan was commenting on Gennaro’s hairy, hairy feminine legs.

Nolan: No, I wouldn’t say they were feminine, but they’re very hairy legs.

Andrea: When we get to the scene where they’re watching the Velociraptors eat, Muldoon, and my husband’s like, “And his manly thighs…”

Nolan: Muldoon is much manlier than the lawyer.

Andrea: He is. He’s also pretty cool. I really like his character. I’m ashamed of him for how he died.

Nolan: He’s the one that really had respect and really understood…

Andrea: What was going on.

Nolan: How dangerous things could be. He didn’t have that illusion. He’s the one character, or at least the most, who really had respect for the creatures.

Andrea: He’s been working with them for so long.

Nolan: And it’s still not enough to save him.

Andrea: Exactly, and yet it’s enough to save everybody else.

Nolan: Not everybody.

Andrea: No, not everybody. Let’s see, what was my next comment going to be? Okay. So we are introduced to the kids and one thing I’m sure you’ve noticed is that the kids are there. They’re plot devices. They try to make us care for them. We are supposed care for them. Their plot device is to bring in that the innocent character to add tension and sympathy to us so that we are even more worried because once you throw somebody in who is innocent or in a position to need to be protected, it just makes it more dangerous, more thrilling, more freaky, more scary.

Nolan: I just want to make one final, Hammond gives a speech about standing in the light of discovery and just when he says that, the projector behind him is, like, shining a light halo around him.

Andrea: Oh, yes.

Nolan: I don’t know if they did that on purpose or not, but I thought it was nice.

Andrea: Nice touch.

Nolan: So, before the kids arrive they’re having a discussion. He’s like, “Well, what do you think of my park so far?” And they’re like, “You’re insane. This is the worst.”

Andrea: All of them.

Nolan: Every single one except the bloodsucking lawyer says this is an insane idea, this is dangerous, you need to shut it down. It’s too much, we can’t. They understand how crazy this is. And then the kids show up.

Andrea: Yes.

Nolan: So that ups the ante. They say no way on earth should we be doing this. Then, the kids.

Andrea: Yeah, it’s more contrast again. We get more and more danger and then innocent children appear. One thing that I’d never noticed until this time when we’re watching is Timmy dresses like Dr. Grant. We know that he idolizes Dr. Grant, so it makes sense. He’s got the blue button up. He’s wearing khaki pants. He’s got a neckerchief. I had to ask my husband, “What is that called? Is that a handkerchief?” My husband googles it and he starts to look at pictures of people wearing neckerchiefs.

Nolan: And ascots.

Andrea: I’m gonna get to that. So we’re sitting there, we are all the way, let’s see what part are we at? No dinosaurs visible. They get to the T Rex paddock and my husband has finally moved on to ascots. He’s looking at pictures. He says, “Look at how happy they are!”

Nolan: Everyone that wears ascots look like they’re having a lot of fun.

Andrea: Well, you did say that some of them look like they’re smoldering.

Nolan: Well, they’re smoldering. It’s fun to have a smolder.

Andrea: Anyway, so we got that nice little touch there that shows us just how much Timmy just idolizes Dr. Grant and then, of course, Dr. Grant’s like, “Ugh, these kids are driving me nuts.” So that just shows the beginning of Dr. Grant’s relationship and his character development because by the end, we know that the kids in the helicopter, they fall asleep on him.

Nolan: So, I have similar things to say about that. During the dinosaur tour, there’s no dinosaurs. But what does that show you? It shows you that they’re not cooperating, even by the absence of dinosaurs.

Andrea: Yes.

Nolan: They’re showing they cannot be controlled. They don’t show up when you want them to. Eventually, there will be entirely too many dinosaurs for them. At the moment, they’re like, “Okay, now we want to see dinosaurs.” There aren’t any. They’re not going to play ball.

Andrea: So when they’re by the T Rex paddock, the goat comes up and it’s.. I really love this because nothing happens with the goat, but then it’s foreshadowing again. It’s very, very light. They leave the goat there, and the goat is revisited later in a super awesome way.

Nolan: True. Okay, so Triceratops.

Andrea: Yep, go ahead.

Nolan: The first dinosaur they encounter up close is helpless. It’s sick. It’s on it’s side and Ellie has single tear.

Andrea: Oh, yes, the single tear.

Nolan: Single tear, which if we ever do The Lord of the Rings trilogy…

Andrea: There’s single tears like every five minutes.

Nolan: There’s a flood of single tears if you can imagine. Resolve that dichotomy. Flood of single tears. That’s a thing that happens. But, their first real encounter with a full grown dinosaur is one where there’s a bunch of other workers around it. Ellie is trying to figure out why it’s sick.

Andrea: It’s not dangerous.

Nolan: It’s not in a state where it can hurt them at all.

Andrea: Okay, so back to, I guess they’re back on the tour, but a little side comment about the part where Malcolm’s trying to explain chaos theory to Ellie and he’s like, “You put a drop of water here…” and then he’s like, “And then you wipe it off. And you put a drop of water here in the same spot, it’ll go down…” I tried that multiple times and I never once got it to work the way he said it would.

Nolan: It’s true. I’ve seen her.

Andrea: The drop of water always follow the same path. I mean, I cheated sometimes and tried to get it to go other ways. Anyway, by the way, their awkward flirting. Did you know that the two of them ended up hooking up for, like, two years after that movie was done?

Nolan: Art imitates life. Life imitates art.

Andrea: Yeah, but they were so awkward together in that movie.

Nolan: It’s because it was genuine. Genuine, awkward flirting. Not the fake kind.

Andrea: I have to laugh that Ian Malcolm was put up, Jeff Goldblum was, like, a sex symbol back then because…

Nolan: Did you see him with his shirt unbuttoned? Come on, now.

Andrea: Yeah, he had his shirt unbuttoned the whole movie after he got injured.

Nolan: It’s half unbuttoned for the first half of the movie and then all unbuttoned for the last half.

Andrea: Yes, Nolan had a funny comment about the part where, and I’m jumping ahead a little bit, when the Tyrannosaurus Rex, when they find him after he’s been attacked and he was like, “He somehow managed to unbutton the rest of his shirt.”

Nolan: He’s horribly injured, and unbuttons his shirt for his leg injury.

Andrea: Yes, and then the rest the movie there’s a lot of open shirt scenes. They’re like, “Behold! Jeff Goldblum.”

Nolan: There’s a lot of memes with him lounging like that.

Andrea: Yes, yes.

Nolan: They have gifs of him just laying there, breathing. It’s pretty great.

Andrea: So a little bit when they’re heading up to the Triceratops, there’s little bits where they’re trying to trick you into thinking something is about to happen. So, for example, Lexi falling and, was it Dr. Grant that helps her up? And how she holds his hand. Well, they kind of zoom the camera in and kind of make it feel more than it is. I know that’s partly because the next little bit when Timmy’s walking through the grass and the camera’s following his ankles. It’s just to make you feel tension that something is about to happen. It’s a fantastic mood setter.

Nolan: They use how they frame the shot to change the mood of the scene.

Andrea: Yeah, yeah and as an author, that’s something that takes a lot of practice to be able to do because you put the reader’s attention on a specific aspect of the scene of the story to give it more tension. I mean, it’s part of telling the story. If you take it from a different emotion or something like that, it won’t be as tense. It’s something that takes some practice to be able to master.

Okay, so I think we’re probably going to end up having to do this as a two-parter.

Nolan: Yeah, I’m only one, almost one and a half, pages. This is the set in the middle of the movie. We’re getting to the big happening.

Andrea: The exciting parts.

Nolan: Yeah. So we’re only halfway through our notes and halfway through the movie.

Andrea: So we can continue this. Yeah, we’ll continue this later in the second episode. What you don’t know is that my husband has to get up at like four o’clock am to go to work and it’s bedtime now.

Anyway, tune in with us next time for the next episode, when we’ll continue discussing Jurassic Park and we’ll see you all later. Bye.

Nolan: Bye.


Credits: “On My Way” Kevin MacLeod (incompetech.com)
Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0 License

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