Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Dinosaurs - (A)live !?

When I first saw the walking with dinosaurs ad, I immediately decided to see the show (in spite of it being in German – seeing Godzilla in German wasn’t fun, but was a good way to learn the language since you know what the dialogue is going to be from the English version)…but what I had not counted on was the fact that I had already been pampered by Spielberg and Crichton, with the former giving a larger-than-life meaning to the latter’s words.

The show was for 80 minutes (with a 20 minute break in between) and was more or less like a live discovery channel documentary on dinosaurs….note the keyword is ‘live’. It was great to see the dinosaurs walk across just a few feet from me and it was amazingly realistic (I almost nodded when the host told us that we should use the camera flash at our own risk as the dinosaurs might react unexpectedly to modern technology!), but a walk with the dinosaurs also pushes up your expectations to something more exciting and dangerous than just the bellowing of a Tyrannosauras Rex. When you especially see a group of raptors, the mind automatically switches to the Jurassic Park mode and the tidbits about how they are very sharp and hunt in groups cross one’s mind and then when they just eat pieces from a carcass and leave the stage, you can’t help but feel extremely disappointed.

Two Brachiosauras in Love ;) :)

Tyrannosauras Rex with its baby (did you note the dinosaur-tamer in the arena ?)

The journey basically began with a paleontologist (I couldn’t help but think of Ross, his watch with the dinosaur-tail-hands-pointing-to-the-time, and all the dinosaur related stuff he did to drive everyone else crazy!) who explains everything from an egg hatching to reveal a baby dinosaur to the flowers and bees (which finally came into existence in the Cretaceous period) , with all the right stops in between – pre-Jurassic, Jurassic and post-Jurassic periods (depicted with a couple of Triceratops). The music, lighting, and the video screens (for those not positioned well to view the stage) were all right and it would have been one of a kind, had they included a fight or a chase (ok..maybe a chase is too much to ask for considering the size and weight of the dinosaurs!) or something a little more exciting for someone who is not 6 years old and is not scared of a dinosaur crying out in rage at its child being attacked or a carnivore spotting its prey !

Although one can appreciate their efforts in bringing the dinosaurs ''alive'' into the arena, that excitement wears off after a while when you realise that all they do is to walk around and the herbivores occasionally eat conifers while the carnivores try to scare them away.

You should go to the show only if you fall into at least one of the following categories
- you got free tickets to the show (duh!?)
- you have kids who are less than 10 yrs old (all the kids were hopped up with excitement!)
- you are a dinosaur-dude (like Ross :D)
- you have a girl friend who scares easy and is likely to hug you every time she is scared ;)
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