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memories



I am thoroughly enjoying this recounting of youthful memories by this group
of kindred spirits (don't be so shy, Rachel, give us some details), but I
especially enjoyed your account, Dr. Holtz.  It brought back memories of
paging through the How and Why Wonder Book of Dinosaurs.  I was well aware
that the names of dinosaurs were scientific names, and I remember wondering
why paleontologists didn't give dinosaurs common names.  I also have a
vivid recollection of reading the account of the T. rex-Triceratops battle
in the aforementioned book (which incidentally I haven't seen in many
years) to my friends.  I remember this because normally they wouldn't have
sat down to hear me read anything.  But this passage entranced them.

I have to say that the initial dinosaur scene in JP, with brachiosaurs and
hadrosaurs, did get my hopes up for nice presentation of dinosaurs as
living breathing animals.  I was very disappointed when it developed into a
rather silly monster movie with the ever-popular animals obsessed with
human flesh theme.  I think what makes so many of us livid about these
movies is that they bring us closer to something we hold rather dear, i.e.,
the images we have long held in our imaginations, only to have them
tarnished by caricatures and anthropocentric horror.  I don't think it's an
issue of marketing, at least not with Spielberg.  Accurate dinosaurs with
realistic behavior are no less exciting than inaccurate ones, and I think
he knows it.  I think it's more that his purpose is really a very
anthropocentric one, of expressing cultural icons and supposed deep-seated
fears, and this is the rub.  We think a movie about dinosaurs should be
about dinosaurs.  This is what Hollywood has never given us.

Best regards,

Dave