A FORD sandwich no less!
Thanks to my 'special' contacts here in the 'Deen
I got to go to attend a preview screening (ok, only by a day or so)
of INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL
. So, what follows obviously
includes plot points and SPOILERS
so if you wanna remain free of info then this post is best revisited once you've seen it. However
for those desperate
to know what I thought of it (I know at least a few will)
I will say that the film is most enjoyable despite
some pacing issues and inexplicable
Packing a punch? Let's find out...
there are plot~points/spoilers
in this review so move on now! One of the trademarks of an INDY
film is how SPIELBERG
utilizes the PARAMOUNT
logo at the beginning. Here it's handled very amusingly and most unexpected as it blends into a mound of dirt with some kind of gopher (probably a gopher)
coming out of it. Well, it made me
beginning is also a crucial part and this one, sadly,
falls a bit flat. It's too slow (a problem I had with the starts of the previous two flicks)
and doesn't really feel like the fanfare it should've.
She's looking for me and my opinion. It's here bee~atch!
The direction, in general, is tops with the car 'action' scenes all (yes, there's more than one)
coming off interesting and mirthsome; the moment were Mutt
ride through the library and stop is most amusing. Back to the start.
After the ramblings in the hangar (where we get a glimpse of THE ark)
we then witness Indy
surrounded by Fifties Americana as he stumbles on a faux
town about to be destroyed by a nuclear bomb. I kid you not.
That scene felt weird. Very
anachronistic but it was
striking. Him in all his attire in the home of the future was quite a sight and, visually
, one of the best shots in the whole thing.
Pullz ze string!
Indy sees the resulting mushroom cloud which was another surprising moment (there's more to come!) - his era has come to an end as the Cold War begins. This is a theme strong in the first half, communism. Indy gets suspected and is questioned by The Janitor from Scrubs (who claimed, in an episode of said show, that he played a cop in 'The Fugitive' and he actually did!) which made me larf. ALAN DALE also makes a brief appearance, is there anything he ain't in? JIM BROADBENT also popped up filling in for the thrice mentioned MARCUS BRODY. Now dead along with Indy's dad apparently.
Nice earring Harry!SHIA LABEOUF
makes a fine young rebel and giggles ensued as he appeared MARLON BRANDO~esque
on his bike through the smoke. Although I was glad to see KAREN ALLEN
back, I forgot about her acting abilities. And they haven't got better, I can assure you. CATE BLANCHETT
does a nice line in European Eighties villain who tries to use the force
whenever she gets the opportunity. RAY WINSTONE
plays the the sidekick/double/triple agent
note perfect but, like the plot, his part is over~complicated
The essential cave scene.JOHN HURT
was forgettable as the mad man and I cannot comprehend why they didn't just make him ABNER RAVENWOOD
. It would have made so
much more sense with Marion
, in case you're wondering, Mutt is Indy's
son which does provide a slew of top gags. Why didn't we see the link earlier? Mutt
- another name for a dog. Indiana
- named after a dog. Music~wise, JOHN WILLIAMS
does nothing remarkable here whatsoever
with no new notable themes or motifs but is serves its purpose.
The good guy! Or was he... (answer - no)
The story itself was odd
. It seemed to waddle on from scene~to~scene
rather than your normal three act
action/adventure. The guys and gals would learn something new then move on to solve the next piece of the puzzle. It is much more of a mystery than previous Indy
films. You don't really get sense of the journey, you just know they're moving. Whereas we don't see the power of the Ark
or the Grail
'til the end of their respective movies, we do witness the Crystal Skull
's powers (or at least part of)
It's over complicated for something that needn't have been. Explanations and reasoning were found wanting
which was weird considering how much exposition there was. There's a lot of Indy
explaining legends, etc...
It used to be you only got that once but here it happens quite a bit. Sadly
the explanations do not
lead to a better understanding of why certain things happen the way they do. The dialogue is as zippy
as ever, however
, and the cast do a good job with it. Having said that, HARRY F
did seem to sleep through some of his longer speeches.
Design~wise, the Crystal Skull
itself is quite alien. Literally
. The scene at the end (which I am about to address)
was done beautifully with the circle of crystal aliens (or trans~dimensional beings)
looking excellent. When the 'thing' was manifested in physical form it was well realised (though pretty much in the style of your normal 'Grey' alien).
The collapse of the temple and the spaceship's appearance (and subsequent disappearance)
featured some highly impressive FX shots and was well executed within the framework of the film.
Good work too
on the red ant
scene. Nice 'n' creepy
in a typical Indiana Jones
fashion. There were a number
of scenes which I think we could have all done without. Mutt swingin'
on a rope in the jungle
as Tarzan (and I'm gonna assume that was at George's behest)
surrounded by monkeys was as unnecessary
as it was ridiculous. Further incredulity
ensued during the scene where their boat~car
falls down not one
but three huge waterfalls. Un~needed, unwanted and stretching the realms of believability too
one of the selling points in an Indiana Jones
film, granted. But this certainly is the most fantastical of the four. The premise, which Indy
himself mocks - constantly grinning "Come on!"
gets all psychic - until he sees it. Big bloody aliens!
I think this ending may
divide audiences: those who can accept Indy
getting involved in a sci~fi
caper and those cannot. Me?
I can accept anything. People?
Not so sure about them. They might laugh. Certainly there were heads~a~turning
during the 'alien scene' as I am now calling it.
Allen floored! Rhumba, snort!
it was God's
power so everyone could identify with that 'cos that's what we knew. We could believe his wrath (or ever lasting life)
because we were raised on the Bible
and the 'fear of God'. Nowadays,
I'm 'over' the Old Testamant
and all those shenanigans
. For some folks, aliens are
a religion no less
valid than the Thugees (no, I didn't mis~spell a well~known Nineties hip~hip band)
Hhmm, zexy cow!
Oh, you want me to sum it all up. Well, there's a wedding at the end and my least favourite thing - people applauding whilst a couple kiss. Ggggrrrrr. Indy's
hat blows into the church and we think Mutt
will pick it up, blazing the way for more sequels - Mutt Williams And The Cuban Missile Crisis
. But, thankfully
, it is Indy
who picks it up, he's not going anywhere just yet. Spielberg
says he'll make more
if there's a demand for it. The pacing of this film is exactly
like it was in the Eighties (which, in itself, is no bad thing)
so, while it may appeal to us old guys, I'm not so sure that it'll find new fans. It's less than an adventure and more of, well
, some stuff that happens. I am glad they made it though.'Til the next time,C.