Universal Studios Hollywood - 11th & 12th

Associated parks:
None

Saturday, December 13, 2003 4:17 PM
This was the first park of our USA coaster trips. Nothing overly special to kick the trip off, but a nice park nonetheless. We got there and they were having a deal where you buy a single day you get a season pass for free - they must be struggling for local attendance. Rather than use our $4 off vouchers, we got this and decided to make it a two day park. Strange, considering it's a two-ride park, but there's not much else to see.

Jurassic Park didn't open until after midday, so the first thing we did was Back to the Future. I was familiar with the ride from the Thrillride Imax, which plays at Dreamworld back home, so I sort of knew what I was in for. It's a lot better synchronised than anything I've ever been on, and makes great use of some mind thrills, giving illusions of freefall and whatnot. A great ride the first time, but it gets more and more teadious after that.

We checked out Terminator 3D. It almost wastes the 3D googles, putting them to use only a few times, which is a bit of a shame given the name of the show. The live action bits were a bit unexpected and make the show different to anything I've ever seen.

Backdraft is like every 12 year old pyromaniac's heaven. Great in this freezing weather, and the floor-dropping effect was very unexpected. The special effects show was great and up-to-date, unlike the 12+ year old show running at Warner Bros. Movie World using sets from old Superman movies and old war movies from before I was born. Nothing you don't already know, but interesting and pretty fun the way they throw in some other entertainment.

Jurassic Park is definitely the highlight of this small park. There was absolutely no queue (for anything both days, actually), so it was straight to the first boat that was there. We took our first ride in the front seat for visuals, and then moved to the back after that for the airtime for the rest of our rides. The theming is great, the story is well thought out and the effects are great, especially the falling jeep and just about everything that's in the indoor section.

Shrek 4D was a great attraction. The mechanical chairs are very cool. I didn't think it made as much use of the glasses as some shows I've seen, which is a shame, given that this is really the whole basis of these shows. The fairy thing at the end is very classy!

Waterworld was a very good show. It was probably the best stunt show I've seen, and it had more than enough "Wow!" effects and exlposions.

Take a look out our USH gallery here: http://www.coastertrips.com/gallery.php?dp=index.php&folder=/california/hollywood/

Next week is Disney and Knott's and SFMM after that. Stay tuned for those reports and galleries!

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Monday, December 15, 2003 1:51 PM
Yeah, USH has really aggressive promotions for local business. I must admit that the park does not appeal to me because despite driving past it each and every day on my way to work, I have not been to the park for 15 or so yeras.

I will go there once they FINALLY have a rollercoaster built. I guess that's the jab in the ribs I need.

Anyone hear anyhting about The Mummy's layout yet?

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Monday, December 15, 2003 6:40 PM
I hear the mummy will be less coaster, more scene-ish. But it will be unique to go both forward and backward.
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