'Star Wars' vs. 'Jurassic Park': Who Wins?

With both movies releasing Thanksgiving trailers, it's time to ask which franchise is best

This Thanksgiving weekend, we have a couple of trailers to be thankful for, with both Jurassic World and Star Wars: The Force Awakens revealing their first footage and launching months of eager speculation by letting fans see just a glimpse of the future of genetically-engineered dinosaurs and galaxies far, far away. But with both franchises vying for eyeballs and attention, it’s time to ask: how do the two stack up against each other?

Best Hero(es)

The focus of the Jurassic Park movies to date has been the dinosaurs. That’s entirely understandable — they are what everyone came to see, after all — but it means that the humans in the movie are somewhat lacking in the charisma department, with a couple of exceptions that we’ll get to soon enough. The problem is especially apparent when it comes to Alan Grant and Ellie Sattler, mainstays of the first and third Jurassic Parks (admittedly, Ellie gets lost in the shuffle a bit in the latter movie). We know that they’re scientists and the good guys, but other than that, they’re just kind of… there. Compare that to Han Solo, Princess Leia or even Luke Skywalker and it just seems like a particularly unfair fight. Really, there’s no contest — at least until we see how Chris Pratt shapes up in Jurassic World.

Advantage: Star Wars

Best Quirky Sidekicks

One of the only humans in the entire Jurassic Park series to date to make an impression? Ian Malcolm, as brought to life by Jeff Goldblum. By a strange, wonderful accident, Malcolm was the lead character of the second Jurassic Park alongside the returning John Hammond (Richard Attenborough), the other memorable human from the first movie. (Both were, sadly, absent from the third installment.) While the Star Wars series can boast sidekicks like C-3PO, R2-D2 or even Jar-Jar Binks (sorry), you have to go a long way to beat Jeff Goldblum leaning into his inherent off-kilter appeal.

Advantage: Jurassic Park

Best Villains

When it comes to actual villains, Jurassic Park is a franchise that’s oddly lacking. You can’t really call the dinosaurs the bad guys, because they’re just doing what comes naturally — at heart, it’s science that’s at fault because we brought them back in the first place. Even if you offload that responsibility from “curiosity” to “greed”, it’s a vague concept to rail against. Star Wars, meanwhile, doesn’t just offer up a larger moral failure to deal with — fascism trumps all in that arena, let’s be honest — it also illustrates that theme with memorable characters with names like “The Emperor,” “Darth Vader” and “The Stormtroopers.”

Advantage: Star Wars

Best Theme Music

In this particular battle, no matter which side loses, John Williams wins. Although the Jurassic Park theme is a wonderful piece of music, I’m going to give it to the Star Wars theme, which is just that much more punchier and succinct. Plus, who can deny the jolt you get with that opening every single time?

Advantage: Star Wars

Best Use of CGI

With the first Jurassic Park, director Steven Spielberg used computer generated imagery to make audiences believe in dinosaurs that looked 100% real. In Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace, director George Lucas used computer generated imagery to make Jar Jar Binks. Let’s be honest here: this contest shouldn’t even be up for discussion.

Advantage: Jurassic Park

Following this entirely scientific comparison, it’s clear that Star Wars is the superior franchise — although if we were only going on the prequel trilogy… actually, it’d probably still come out on top, but it’d be closer. There’s no real reason for these two properties to fight, however; with Jurassic World headed for a summer 2015 release, it can come, dominate the box office, and then leave theaters for a happy afterlife on Blu-ray and digital download before Star Wars: The Force Awakens arrives to own the holiday season.

The real question about these two franchises shouldn’t be which one is better, but how awesome it would be if they were mashed together. I can sell that to you in just six words: dinosaurs with lightsabers, using the Force. Hey Disney, Universal, I’ve got this great idea for you…

Read more Watch the First Full Trailer for ‘Jurassic World’

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