Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal SkullMay. 21,2008 PG-13
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During the Cold War, Soviet agents watch Professor Henry Jones when a young man brings him a coded message from an aged, demented colleague, Henry Oxley. Led by the brilliant Irina Spalko, the Soviets tail Jones and the young man, Mutt, to Peru. With Oxley's code, they find a legendary skull made of a single piece of quartz. If Jones can deliver the skull to its rightful place, all may be well; but if Irina takes it to its origin, she'll gain powers that could endanger the West. Aging professor and young buck join forces with a woman from Jones's past to face the dangers of the jungle, Russia, and the supernatural.
This movie really ruined Indiana Jones for me but I hope they make at least one more and I hope it brings the series back to the former glory it deserves. There are many missteps they took with this one that ruined it for me... this is where the spoilers lie FYI....1) escaping a nuclear blast in a fridge? Oh OK 2) the whole alien thing, too over the top and dumb 3) Shia La Beouf? WHY OH WHY??? 4) actions scenes were decent but not up to snuff for an Indy film 5) villains weren't as good as earlier movies 6) no return of Brody, Sallah or Connery characters... though two for very obvious reasons, still miss 'emJust my two cents brothers and sisters.
Like others, many years ago I would have said that it was a weak entry in the series. Now it's run to death on cable and it is best viewed uncut without a million "breaks" in it. The first half is o.k. and I especially like the Atomic Test in Area 51 (where it actually occurred) as Indy goes flying off in a "lead-lined" fridge! Please note that the mysterious warehouse of top-secret artifacts is there also. Shia LaBeouf showed great promise here as "Indy Jr.". Karen Allen still has it and she is a great co-star after so many years. There is much intentional similarity here to the other 3 films. I especially like the totally impossible "3 waterfall drop" in what appears to be a recycled amphibious "Duck". I rode in one of these many years ago in Wisconsin. They are not really as nimble, fast or seaworthy as they are in this movie! The last 50 minutes are spellbinding and like all "Indy" films, totally outrageously implausible. The villain dies a terrible death, as she "melts away" after absorbing too much alien energy and knowledge. Somewhat similar to the Nazi "Rabbi" in Raiders. The reason my rating has improved is due to the fact that this film is still hard-to-top and I am still a big fan of Harrison Ford.
Steven Spielberg is back as director, with a George Lucas story and a John Williams score. Harrison Ford reprises his role as Indiana Jones, Karen Allen is back as Marion Ravenwood, other stars to feature include John Hurt, Cate Blanchett, Shia LeBouf and Ray Winstone. It's the era of the cold war, the Russian's replace the Nazi's as the main threat. When a young man brings Indiana a coded message from Harold Oxley he sets forth on an epic adventure to rescue him and uncover the truth about the crystal skull, an ancient myth and treasure. Indiana Jones fans have been waiting almost 20 years for this film and unfortunately most fans were extremely let down by it. Not much has changed for Indiana which was sorely needed as film goers have grown and become more intelligent. The story is extremely far fetched and the delivery at times is wet and almost camp. It's almost like this is a tongue in cheek parody of the Indiana Jones films which came before it. It feels like this was a retirement pay check for a lot of the senior crew and cast, and a last ditch attempt for younger turns to make a name for themselves. Maybe I'm too old, maybe this film is aimed at a really young and juvenile audience rather than somebody who grew up watching these films. Perhaps the intention was to spawn a video game from this because with the blocks of action that there is, I'm sure it could easily be translated into different levels of a platform adventure game. This, for me, and evidently a lot of others, is the worst Indiana Jones film to date. Where as with the other films, if I got a chance to watch them I'd jump at it, with this one I'd happily keep walking and not bother. Too much CGI and green screen, far fetched action (casing point being that stupid Tarzan scene - you!). I honestly could keep rolling with the negatives but I feel I should force myself to stop writing and just say that the previous films are much better and I'd happily forget that this was made. For God's sake please don't let there be a spin off with Shia LeBouf as the new Henry Jones the 3rd because that's what it felt like this was building up for, just let the dead rest because this seems to have practically killed off the franchise. I'm giving it a 5 out of 10, is this was the only Indiana Jones film it would be harmless to watch, but knowing what has come before I just couldn't buy into and enjoy this. Good luck!
The movie was okay until about halfway through, but it became progressively more stupid by the scene until, finally, it really jumped the shark at the end. Who could possibly have thought this movie was worth a rating above "5"? Maybe 12-year olds will like it, or people with the intelligence of a 12- year old.