Our Cinematic Autobiography: Jurassic Park
I am willing to admit to some nostalgic bias, because no matter when I watch Jurassic Park, I'm immediately pulled back in time to that summer of 1993. That was the summer when the best dinosaur movie of all time busted every block and when generations of children's dreams came true. It was also the summer before my parents separated and my life changed considerably, before my mother and I moved from our suburban house to a near-urban apartment, before I left all my friends and had to start all over at a new school. That aforementioned dollar theater was in the new city and it became my fortress of solitude, and the adventure on Isla Nublar was the only movie I wanted to see. So that's what I did, until it finally left multiplexes for good. It's safe to say that I identified with Joseph Mazzello's Tim Murphy, whose parents were also going through a bitter separation, and looked up to Dr. Grant like the heroic father figure I always wanted, too. Jurassic Park, more than almost anything else, helped me survive the hazards of my parents' crumbling relationship.
My parents did eventually get back together, and maybe even stronger than ever, but it's always a pleasure to go back to that place. To be transported back to a time that was far from the best of times, but just before the worst. 1993 was the year when dinosaurs returned to rule the Earth for practically everyone. For me, and I'm sure for many of you, dinosaurs have never stopped ruling.
Rob Payne also writes the indie comic The Unstoppable Force, tweets on the Twitter, tumbls on the Tumblr, and his wares can be purchased here (if you're into that sort of thing). He's pretty sure Jurassic Park is the reason he watches and re-watches "Walking with Dinosaurs" and its ilk on Netflix Instant.