It's been 19 years, as the press is fond of reminding us, since we saw Indiana Jones ride off into the sunset at the end of Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. Now after nearly two decades in what we shall call Indiana Jones and Development Hell, the man in the fedora is back in action!
And it is good.
Not great, though. But it is better than Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, though not quite as good as the aforementioned Last Crusade. It comes close, though.
You know the plot by now. Indiana Jones goes looking for a McGuffin, while eluding the bad-guys. A simple formual that can work very, very well indeed. It worked so well with Raiders of the Lost Ark that Roger Ebert considers it one of the Great Movies.
As for how well it really works in this movie? Well, there wasn't anything about it I specifically disliked. Shia LeBeoff does a good job of playing a rebel without a pause. It was nice to see Karen Allen again. Jim Broadbent was good, but along with Ray Winstone, his appearance was completely unneeded, though in the case of Winstone it was interesting seeing him after seeing Beowulf. Removing his character and Broadbent's wouldn't have changed the movie in any fundamental way, though it might've streamlined things.
Basically the only real gripe I guess I have can be summed up like this: It seemed like they were trying to hard. Like Lucas and Spielberg were saying, "Look! We can still make a movie that's good and popular! LOOK, DAMN YOU!" As a result, just about everything seemed to be set to eleven. This sometimes took the form of silly things, like someone surviving a nuke by a: hiding in a fridge, and b: being hurled miles away and not dying on impact.
There's also the fact that there didn't seem to be any real stakes in this movie. With Raiders and Crusade you had clearly defined objects. You knew what they were and what they'd do. You knew why it would be bad if the Nazis got a hold of them. That just didn't seem to be the case here. The franchise seems to work best when looking for holy artifacts. Maybe next time we can have Indiana Jones and the Spear of Longinus?
Despite this, it made for a good movie and I was pleased to see Harrison Ford up there doing what he does best. I'm hopeful there will be another movie, and I have great confidence that it will be even better than this one!
You know how The Last Crusade was a step in the right direction for Indiana Jones after the disappointing sequel? Well, this is another step, a re-step if you will in the wrong direction, and easily the worst film in one of the greatest series of all time. This film brings the good old-school action and must have been quite the breath of fresh air at the time it came out, but it's still very disappointing and has very questionable special effects, plus one plot element that ruined the entire … more
So, based on some reviews I've read and comments I've seen from viewers on TV...apparently INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDON OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL is supposed to have been a life-changing movie. At least a groundbreaking film sure to vault to "all-time classic" status. Because there sure are a lot of disappointed viewers around. If, however, you have the more reasonable expectation of a highly-entertaining, highly-implausible action film that hearkens back to the "cliff-hanger" … more
Had I known then what I know now I would have passed on seeing this movie and settled for a root canal or possibly done my taxes again. The idea of bringing Indiana Jones back to the big screen is a great one, one that can appeal to both the young and old. However when the rubber hits the road this movie is a disaster. There is zero character development, and the storyline is incredibly lame. Lucas has done it again, like Star Wars, he has taken a great … more
Well it's not as good as Raiders of the Lost Ark or The Last Crusade, but Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of Crystal Skull is still better then The Temple of Doom and will stand proud with its predecessors as a solid action flick living up to an American icon. This long awaited final chapter to the story of treasure hunter Harry "Indiana" Jones Jr. may not live up to the greatness which were the first and third entries, but don't let a simple comparison ruin the fun of this fourth movie; … more
WARNING: This review contains spoilers! After 19 years, Indiana Jones returns to the silver screen in what may be Steven Spielberg's worst film ever (or until now, anyway). Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is a bust. The screenplay was amateurishly written and the film itself is directed with juvenile enthusiasm. The overall mood of the picture doesn't even feel like that of Indiana Jones, but rather more like National Treasure, The Mummy Returns or … more
Looking back at my childhood in South London, the fact my parents had no money and worked very hard for very little was tempered by the escape from reality afforded me by film. And as a child, the films that stood out above all else, that revealed another world of possibility and adventure, were Indiana Jones and Star Wars. I've also probably seen The Neverending Story a hundred times too, but the enduring quality of Indiana Jones meant that even last year we dropped $60 on the box trilogy set to … more
Nearly 20 years after riding his last Crusade, Harrison Ford makes a welcome return as archaeologist/relic hunter Indiana Jones inIndiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, an action-packed fourth installment that's, in a nutshell, less memorable than the first three but great nostalgia for fans of the series. Producer George Lucas and screenwriter David Koepp (War of the Worlds) set the film during the cold war, as the Soviets--replacing Nazis as Indy's villains of choice and led by a sword-wielding Cate Blanchett with black bob and sunglasses--are in pursuit of a crystal skull, which has mystical powers related to a city of gold. After escaping from them in a spectacular opening action sequence, Indy is coerced to head to Peru at the behest of a young greaser (Shia LaBeouf) whose friend--and Indy's colleague--Professor Oxley (John Hurt) has been captured for his knowledge of the skull's whereabouts. Whatever secrets the skull holds are tertiary; its reveal is the weakest part of the movie, as the CGI effects that inevitably accompany it feel jarring next to the boulder-rolling world of Indy audiences knew and loved. There's plenty of comedy, delightful stunts--ants play a deadly role here--and the return ofRaiderslove interest Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood, once shrill but now softened, giving her ex-love bemused glances and eye-rolls as he huffs his way to save the day. Which brings us to Ford: bullwhip still in hand, he's a little ...