#1  
Old 05-31-2008, 03:57 PM
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull



(Steven Spielberg, 2008)

The original Indiana Jones trilogy was a spectacle to behold. It played perhaps the most important part in my youth of any film or group of films, except maybe Star Wars. In attempting to re-create what excited him as a kid growing up on old 1930’s television serials and children’s adventure books, Steven Spielberg managed to create a trilogy of movies that embodied everything that excited ME as a kid – archaeology, swashbuckling adventure, mystical objects, and sticking it to the Nazis. I guess you could say that what got me so interested in movies in the first place was personified by the Indiana Jones and Star Wars trilogies.

The thing is, that Spielberg is and was always a much smarter director than it would have seemed as a child. The movies that I enjoyed growing up now have no more value to me other than nostalgia – movies like Gremlins and The Goonies. With Indiana Jones, though, Spielberg created movies that have equal value to intelligent, thinking adults as they do to wide-eyed, easily entertained kids. Raiders of the Lost Ark introduced us to a new kind of action hero – flawed, getting out of sticky situations not with wit but with luck, making things up as he goes along, afraid of snakes, and whose main profession is as a bespectacled college professor. The skills that help Indiana Jones along his adventures aren’t strength or courage but rather knowledge and luck. And in the third film, The Last Crusade, Spielberg upped the ante even more by introducing an extremely touching and poignant father-son relationship involving Indy’s father.

It playing such an important part in my childhood, I was as excited as anybody else with the announcement that the long-anticipated fourth Indiana Jones film was actually getting made. Casting announcements got me excited – Cate Blanchett as a Russian villain; John Hurt as an absent-minded professor; the return of Karen Allen. The knowledge that the film would take place in the 1950’s with the Soviets as the villains and acknowledging the characters’ increased age suited me. It seemed like Spielberg was taking this on the right track; and after 19 years of anticipation, the movie definitely had a lot to live up to. After seeing it, I can say that for the most part I wasn’t disappointed, but that in some departments I didn’t quite get what I was hoping for.

The one much-circulated quote that finally put my worries to rest was from the film’s producer, Frank Marshall, who stated that the film would be shot the same way as the previous three, using CGI only when necessary. This excited me more than anything else – the prospect that at long last we would have a return to what made the original films so good in the first place – relying on well-choreographed and amazingly executed set pieces and the wit and panache of the characters. I must admit that my biggest disappointment with Kingdom of the Crystal Skull started out from the first frame, when a painfully obviously CGI gopher burrows its way out of the ground. I was hoping for a far more practical approach, but was disappointed when much of the movie ended up relying on very obviously CGI elements. Perhaps the cheesiness of the choppy CGI was meant to continue the whole low-tech approach, giving us a B-movie for the 21st century, but I felt that for the most part it was distracting.

I had absolutely no problem with the plot. If the previous trilogy took place in the 1930’s and thus emulated the style and sense of the old serials from that same time period, it’s only fitting that this film, set in the 1950’s, would similarly follow a more 1950’s post-World War II B-movie approach, both in terms of tone but also in terms of plot. Soviets, conspiracies, Area 51… I wouldn’t want to give anything away, but the direction is pretty clear. That said, I felt that the film at some points pushed the boundaries of suspension of disbelief far beyond what any of the previous three movies did. Naturally the trilogy is riddled with plot holes and inconsistencies, but when you’re so caught up in the swashbuckling adventure, you don’t even notice. And yet, there were a few moments in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull when I just asked myself what they were thinking – be it flying refrigerators, giant man-eating ants, vine swinging or monkeys with loyalties.

But for the most part, the movie was just what I was hoping and expecting it to be – a bar-none, non-stop swashbuckling action-adventure. The strong cast kept things going along well; Cate Blanchett is absolutely divine as the villain, and the older, craggier version of Harrison Ford is fitting of an older, more experienced Indiana Jones who had by now gotten though a world war and an atomic revolution. The post-World War II cynicism is clearly visible on Indiana, and Ford played it out most fittingly. Special mention also must go out to Shia LaBeouf, an actor who didn’t impress me much at first but who bought me over in the Spielberg-produced Transformers. He embodied and personified his character excellently, and really did an all-around excellent job in holding out with actors such as Blanchett and Ford. The film contains, as is with all the other Indiana Jones movies, action sequences and set pieces that are just absolutely so much better than anything else we’re used to these days in terms of execution, choreography and excitement. Scenes such as the motorcycle chase through the college or the dueling cars in the jungle are as high-caliber and as stylish as any of the sequences seen in the original trilogy.

I haven’t yet mentioned the second installment in the trilogy, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. This is because I personally feel that, although entertaining and extremely enjoyable, the second film is sub-par to the first and third installments. The bookend films each have something special, something different and new that they bring to the table; in addition, the MacGuffins – the objects Indy seeks after – in the first and third films grant them a far more epic sense of importance, be it the ark of the covenant or the holy grail. Temple of Doom seems less important, less grand and epic, as if it is just one of those numerous marginal adventures Indy had along the way. So while Kingdom of the Crystal Skull delivered on the visuals, the characterizations, and the action sequences, it disappointingly down-played the elements that made the first and third films so good, and that is Indy’s romantic tendencies and the father-son relationship, and so I am unfortunately inclined to liken it more to Temple of Doom than to Raiders of the Lost Ark or The Last Crusade. Still, it was exciting to return to what may be the single greatest film character of all time, and even though the film isn’t quite up there with the others, it was one hell of a ride, and definitely better entertainment then what we’ve been accustomed to lately.

RATING: 7/10.
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  #2  
Old 06-01-2008, 07:44 AM
My biggest issue with the movie is that it just didn't feel like an Indiana Jones movie. The story and plot felt rushed with little to no detail. The action scenes had too much CGI and it was obvious somebody (*cough* LUCAS *cough*) was pushing for Shia Lebouf to take part of the center stage. The story wasn't as good as the previous three either, with the Russians lacking the villainy of the Nazis or even the heart-stealing Indians. That being said, Harrison Ford kicked all kinds of ass in the movie, as he always does. It was cool seeing Indy again in another adventure. And Shia Lebouf swinging from vines aside, the action sequences were pretty cool and fun to watch. It was good seeing Indy again, but I wish it lived up to the previous three . . . unfortunately, it doesn't come close.

6/10
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  #3  
Old 06-01-2008, 11:14 AM
9/10

Everything I expected. Worthy of the name Indiana Jones if you ask me.
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  #4  
Old 06-01-2008, 12:07 PM


Blank Blank and the Blankdom of the Blank Blank

Where to begin? Where to begin critiquing a movie that's made up almost entirely of brain numbing, soul crushing disappointment? Where to begin? I suppose at the beginning.

The film begins strangely enough, with that Paramount logo doing what it does best.. fading.. into a prairie dog mound. Strangely enough because the prairie dogs are one of only two marginally enjoyable things about this film. George Lucas's influence is obvious enough from zero hour, with American Graffiti kids charging up and down a freeway, bothering what seems to be U.S. military personnel driving a familiar desert to Area Nondescript.

Though the opening lines are so bad that it seemed that Harrison Ford was channeling the vengeful spirit of John Wayne, the film seems to pick up soon after. For a too brief moment, it seems that this is indeed an Indiana Jones film. But things soon go terribly wrong.

Before I really start: This is hardly an Indiana Jones film at all. Harrison Ford is in front of the camera. Steven Spielberg is behind it. This is where the similarities end. This is not Indiana Jones. This is some strange, unknown person impersonating Indiana Jones badly in a parallel universe. The film seems to devolve into a skewed sort of magic realism at too many points. The first "Are they fucking kidding me?" comes after the opening sequence, in which Harrison Ford, after wandering through the desert for a bit, stumbles into what by all means seems to be a textbook image of American Suburbia. What he doesn't know is that this town is a test site for nuclear fallout. A test which his about to proceed.

Let's play a game. A nuclear bomb is coming. What does Indiana Jones do?

A) Find a way to realistically avoid the nuclear fallout. B) Charge at the camera, cursing David Koepp for writing such an arbitrary and meaningless plot coupon?, or C) Climb into a refrigerator. If you chose A or B, you don't know David Koepp. He's pulled this one before: Continuing what we can now call David Koepp's Guide to Extreme Fire Safety, we know that Brobdingnagian alien fireballs ala War of the Worlds are easily survivable, nay harmless to human flesh, and that fallout from a nuclear weapon is easily avoidable in the belly of a refrigerator.

In a level of such extreme lameness, I would have been more satisfied if Harrison Ford had waved his whip around and sang some magic words while doing a pygmy dance before he got in. It would have been more believable than what we got.

The film stumbles along some awful exposition about nonsense that adds nothing to the plot (with tasteful cameos by TV's Charles Widmore and The Janitor) before leading to the first truly movie-crippling handicap: Shia LaBeouf.

This was this kid's last chance to impress me. I knew that he had never put in a good performance before, but he had also never been directed by Steven Spielberg. This black hole of a film cements my conscience into reality. Where Shia LaBeouf will never be a good actor and Steven Spielberg hasn't just lost his touch, his fingers have decayed and turned to rot. LaBeuof's presence in the film meanders from testing to absolutely unbearable. See: swinging through the trees like Greaser Tarzan with a bunch of monkeys, ruining the tension of what should have been the most tense scene in the film.

Also note the mini "Are they fucking kidding me?" occurs with the nonchalant mutilation of Jones alumni Marcus Brody's In Memoriam statue, which brought my jaw to the floor in wake of its tastelessness.

The film perhaps reaches its peak of being intolerable near the end when, betraying everything the story of Indiana Jones is about, the story once again barrel rolls into Steven Spielberg's favorite fetish: ALIENS. We have officially crashed into a wall and are now suffocating on the fumes of "ARE THEY FUCKING KIDDING ME?"

Shortly after walking out the theater, my mind in disbelief of what I just saw, I tried to pick my brains for one sequence in this entire film I enjoyed. I could not think of ONE set piece in this entire film I enjoyed.

I mentioned before that there were two things enjoyable about this film, the first being the prairie dogs, reminiscent of the librarian in Last Crusade, they were a cute addition that brought the familiar humor of Indiana Jones that the rest of the film would be in dire drought of for the next two hours. The second, more important factor is Cate Blanchett. Cate Blanchett delivers the sole good performance in this film. She seems to be the only person trying to have a good time here. Harrison Ford sleepwalked through this flick. Karen Allen was a nonentity. Shia LaBeouf as well, though that could be attributed to his astonishing lack of character and charisma. Ray Winstone was entirely wasted here. You could take him out entirely and you'd have the same movie.

Even John Williams let me down. There was not one memorable theme in this entire film. The only recognizable theme was Spalko's, which comes and gos so abruptly that it seemed like the sound mixer was having a laugh.

George Lucas has a power, a very terrible power to, beyond all threads of logic and all omens, make the viewer, in merry delusion toss common sense into the wind and give him just one more chance. Just one more chance. Six truly great, paragons of cinema is enough to buy anyone the benefit of the doubt.

It's a tall and nasty history, this past decade of chance after chance. The Phantom Menace was awful. Let's give him one more chance. Attack of the Clones was abysmal. Let's give him one more chance. Revenge of the Sith was abhorrent. Let's give one more chance. Most states would give twenty-five to life after so many strikes, but Indiana Jones fan that I am, I gave the man one more chance.

I did not go into this movie expecting the second coming of Christ. I did not go into this movie expecting a film as good as Raiders of the Lost Ark. I went into this movie, hoping hoping for at least a good film, hoping at the very least that I would have a good time. What I got was a film so painstakingly lame that I feel ashamed I was ever thick enough to expect anything anything other then what ALL signs pointed to in the first place.

This film was everything I hoped it wouldn't be and it betrayed the Indiana Jones story. Indiana Jones is about man and faith. Whether it was faith in God, Christ, Shiva, the Ark, the Sankara stones, or the Holy Grail. It was about faith and man's quest to understand the nature of the unknowable.

NOT FUCKING ALIENS.

These films were my Star Wars when I was a kid, while everyone was playing wookie I was dreaming about Egypt and India and Jordan and all the adventures to be had on this planet. Raiders of the Lost Ark is the first film that I ever remember seeing in my entire life, and this film makes me sick.

Everyone involved in this film apart from Mrs. Blanchett are on shit watch from this point forward, and I'm not spending a dime on anything they're involved with.

Though I don't doubt that this film was well worth the ticket price. It was worth it to know that I can never trust George Lucas to make a decent film ever again.

1/10
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  #5  
Old 06-05-2008, 07:19 PM


Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - 6/10

Is it the surfeit of thrills, the glorious action sequences, the mysterious and intriguing plots, the quaint nostalgia, or the sheer fun of it all that has made Indiana Jones one cinema’s most beloved creations? After a near twenty year absence from the silver screen, one can easily and justifiably expect a triumphant return that recaptures all of those assets and delivers the goods that we all know and enjoy, be it within a plentiful amount of colorful characters or as many thrills can be mustered from a surefire plot. Does “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” disappoint? If one is expecting more than a silly good time, then yes, it painfully does so.

Set in 1959, the fourth Indy chapter has our now venerable hero going up against not the Nazis but, you guessed it, the Russians in the search for a mystical artifact known as the “crystal skull”, which of course can only grant great omnipotence to whomever collects all six of the skulls that are known to exist. As a group of hostile KGB soldiers led by Cate Blanchett’s compelling Agent Spalko hunt down try to hunt down Indiana Jones for answers and guidance in their power-hungry search, Jones finds himself pulled into the fast lane once again with a newfound sidekick in a greaser named Mutt and a rediscovered old flame in Marion Ravenwood. While this plot rundown does initially resonate along the lines of the pulp comic-book/Saturday-morning serial inspired spirit of the previous three Indy ventures, the film’s central and biggest flaw undeniably comes within its floppy, lazily executed plot. In fact, there is one question in particular that still boggles my mind, and that is how, after twenty years of brainstorming, such creative minds as George Lucas and Steven Spielberg could come up with such a weak crux to their gloriously anticipated return to one of the most vital projects of their careers.

In a sense I could see where Lucas and Spielberg were coming from. With their first three outings coming from the pulpy B-grade adventure serials of their childhoods, they this time set their foray strictly on their new timer period: the 1950’s; a decade riddled with a surplus of cheesy science fiction pictures suffused with invading extraterrestrials, government conspiracies, and journeys into the unknown. It’s all very kitsch and for the sole sake of entertainment, which is what Indiana Jones has always been about in the first place, and yet, one can’t help but feel that by having Kingdom of the Crystal Skull model its foray after this cheesy, implausible, and admittedly silly genre, it simply detaches the film from its predecessors by lacking in their grand sense of wonder and intelligence. With such excellent, intriguing, and even thought-provoking utilizations of the Arc of the Covenant and the Holy Grail, the gist of a crystal skull with, spoilers aside, boring and predictable capabilities just falls flat on its face and adds barely any extra layers and themes to the story like the previous “MacGuffins” did so splendidly.

Choosing the Russians as the film’s villains this time around is another utilization of the film’s setting that works on a very hit-or-miss level. On one hand, Agent Spalko and her group of KGB agents do fill in for the Nazi’s mercilessness quite well, but are far from delivering on the same freight train. Cate Blanchett’s Agent Spalko, while compelling, just isn’t as formidable as she had the potential of being. She barely shows any passion in her power-hungry pursuit and her only mark as a villain seems to only come from her accent and the sword she carries at her hip. Is Spalko at all formidable against the whip-wielding archeologist? Barely.

But what Crystal Skull lacks in the sharpness we would expect to find in an Indy movie it makes up for in its wit and lightheartedness, and once one comes to accept those two assets as the film’s central intentions one can certainly appreciate its efforts by some margin. Everyone involved clearly had a hell of a time while making the film. Great talents in the likes of Ray Winstone, Cate Blanchett, and John Hurt, while wasted in their weak and limited roles, do make the most of David Koepp’s poorly written script with all of the fun one would expect to find on the globe-trotting set of an Indy picture. With Harrison Ford delivering once again to pitch-perfection and Karen Allen as radiant as ever, the true surprise performance came from Shia LaBeouf. With character that could have easily been rubbed as annoying, LaBeouf succeeds in the same way he carried last summer’s Transformers by just igniting his performance with his natural charm, wit, and charisma.

Watching Crystal Skull was definitely one of the most fickle film experiences I’ve ever had. I just couldn’t help but be simultaneously entertained and disappointed – as odd as that sounds. There are a numerous amount of things that sets the film apart from the original trilogy – David Koepp’s debacle of a screenplay, the nearly devoid sense of the character development I was hoping to see, and even Janusz Kaminski’s unfitting
cinematography that fails to capture the pulpy, comic book-like essence of the previous films. Creative qualms aside, this is a very fun film that does have its share of thrills and action sequences that do manage to capture the awesome experience of its predecessors, if only limitedly.
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  #6  
Old 06-06-2008, 09:56 PM

I actually found the film quite enteirtaining, but I'll love anything with the words Indiana Jones And...

3/4
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  #7  
Old 06-26-2008, 05:34 PM
Very bad sequel....wasn't needed and def outdated. I had high hopes at one point but after watching a half assed effort I realized Spielberg and Lucas need some new inspiration.

6/10
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  #8  
Old 08-26-2008, 09:48 PM
I know this is not the popular opinion, but I really enjoyed the movie. I am able to get over the alien ending. I thought it went along well. I did not care for much of Mutt's stuff and the ants part, but still good in the tradition of the others. An enjoyable summer movie.

8/10
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  #9  
Old 08-27-2008, 04:35 AM
A good action movie but It will never get over the first three movies The cast is very good, they all did a brilliant job, the special effects are OK, but the problem is with the script. It's a good script but doesn't seem like Indiana Jones at all It's too scientific, too modern, too childish. There're too many special effects just like a super hero movie Indiana Jones is not just a super hero, he's much more I'll give this 7/10 mostly for its perfect cast.

Last edited by Et3rnal L1ght; 08-27-2008 at 11:28 PM..
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  #10  
Old 08-27-2008, 10:17 AM
I don't know why so many people say it is not as good as the first three. There are so many people (maybe not on here) that rate the second as a 5/10 or lower. Many people hate the second one. I find it hard to believe those same people hate the 4th more.
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  #11  
Old 09-10-2008, 01:58 PM

Being that Raiders of the Lost Ark is one of the most exciting films ever produced and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, is in my opinion an exceptional sequel, I was a bit disappointed with the latest installment. I absolutely hated the entire stupid alien subplot (this is Indiana Jones not fucking Star Wars,) I can't fucking stand that annoying punkass Shia LaBeouf (watching him swinging from vine to vine with those awful cheap looking CGI monkey's reminded me of The Jungle Book, I was waiting for Baloo the Bear to start singing "Bare Nessecities") Cate Blanchett's villian was extremely bland and I thought Karen Allen was completely wasted here as well (but it was still great to see here again) Harrison Ford was the fucking man as always (no one can play this role but him,) the action was well paced, and overall I was pleased with the outcome. I will say this with great relish, at least it was better than Temple of Doom (my least favorite Indy movie,) and there was no sign of Short Round or Willie Scott.

A respectable 7/10.

Last edited by poguesfan; 09-11-2008 at 08:00 AM..
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  #12  
Old 10-12-2008, 05:31 AM
Shia's hair was awful. Those furry animals at the beginning were lame. The crystal aliens which turned into an alien was atrocious. Those ants were ridiculous, in the sense that the red army communism issue was over the top, we get it! enough!. Cheeky chimp LaBeouf swinging through the jungle left me crushing my can of beer, and turned my eyes bloodshot with rage. The main disaster was the set pieces, or action scenes, which were old and predictable.

Very disappointing. 4/10.
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  #13  
Old 10-12-2008, 11:37 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zizou View Post
Those furry animals at the beginning were lame.
what furry animals? i thought the movie was pretty over the top and mediocre until the god awful ending. i feel like lucas had way too much involvement because it, just like the prequels, seemed like their really wasnt the same heart in it. and i hate george lucas almost as much as sarah palin and howard schultz. actually, prolly more. i wish spielberg would just hit him over the head with one of his oscars sometime. really hard in the back of his crystal fucking skull. i wanted communists in this move but what happened to the atlantis subplot? if they somehow made it christian mythology to then THAT would've been an indiana jones movie. also, this was the first indy movie where he wouldnt have made a difference to the ending. just fucking stupid. dammit. ill watch up until john hurt comes in with a grin on my face but, really, john hurts awesome and the movie shouldnt work that way. it just shouldnt. i refuse to blame anyone other than lucas for this film not being good. even the people who wrote that they enjoyed it, seemed embarrassed to admit it because they know that it just wasnt that great.
4/10
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  #14  
Old 10-12-2008, 02:05 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by mouldy311 View Post
what furry animals?
I believe they were prairie dogs, though i'm not entirely sure. Perhaps someone with more knowledge of U.S wildlife could be more informative. Anyways, they featured during the first ten minutes, unless I was hallucinating.
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  #15  
Old 10-12-2008, 04:56 PM
I originally gave it an 8/10 but re-watching it recently I'm going to lower it to a 7.

It's a fun time at the movies and seeing Harrison Ford back in action is awesome but both the story and villains left alot to be desired.
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  #16  
Old 10-12-2008, 05:39 PM
I dont get the complaint about the villains. The Indy series has never had strong villains. Thats probably the biggest fault of the whole series. Spalko is probably the most entertaining baddy of the bunch imo.
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  #17  
Old 10-12-2008, 08:08 PM
Quote:
Originally Posted by poopontheshoes7 View Post
I dont get the complaint about the villains. The Indy series has never had strong villains. Thats probably the biggest fault of the whole series. Spalko is probably the most entertaining baddy of the bunch imo.
I originally liked them but after a few viewings they rubbed me the wrong way. I much prefer the villains in the previous films.

I can agree that Spalko was at least entertaining.
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  #18  
Old 10-16-2008, 03:50 PM
I just started watching the special features on this today...George Lucas originally planned to call this Indiana Jones and the Saucer Men............................................... .................................................. ................Wow...
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  #19  
Old 10-20-2008, 01:59 PM
I'm probably gonna get ripped on for this. But, to me, Aliens are just as plausible as the holy grail and the Arc of the Covenant. And there have been unbelivable things in the previous movies, such as jumping out of a crashing plane on a dingy and somehow surviving the fall.


Although this did feel more like a george lucas film than a speilberg one.
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  #20  
Old 10-20-2008, 03:43 PM
I really liked this one a lot, it's not as good as the original three of course but I feel nothing could ever compare to Raiders anyways (which I think is the best action film of all time). The FX work didn't bother me much, it was a major improvement over Last Crusade and all that damn greenscreen/bluescreen work that really made things look like it was filmed in a studio (check out the scenes with Indy and his dad on the plane...).

One glaringly awful thing for me was at the beginning at Area 51. It went from being filmed on location to studio work and it stuck out really really bad. The work in the jungle chase was a bit iffy too, but not too bad...

I don't mind the storyline being about aliens considering the inspiration behind these movies. It's not like Indy grabbed a lightsabre and started using it..and these movies were never based on realism anyways. I would have preferred seeing something like Atlantis, but this really didn't bother me much at all and I'm amazed at the amount of hate this movie has gotten. You'd think it was done by Uwe Boll.


I'd give it an 8/10. Not perfect, but what could live up to Raiders?
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  #21  
Old 10-20-2008, 10:34 PM
The pacing was off. The CGI was over-the-top. There was no sense of danger. Shia had his own monkey army. There were useless characters oozing out of every monkey butt.

2/10




.................................................. .................................................. ............................................monkey butt.
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  #22  
Old 10-21-2008, 09:44 AM
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Mattimeo View Post
I'm probably gonna get ripped on for this. But, to me, Aliens are just as plausible as the holy grail and the Arc of the Covenant. And there have been unbelivable things in the previous movies, such as jumping out of a crashing plane on a dingy and somehow surviving the fall.


Although this did feel more like a george lucas film than a speilberg one.
I agree whole heartedly, what makes Aliens more ridiculous than a guy melting from seeing the Ark open, a guy getting his heart ripped out of his chest via chanting, and a guy aging thousands of years is a matter of seconds.
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  #23  
Old 10-22-2008, 07:24 AM
I agree with some of the Schmoes here. While I enjoyed "...Kingdom..." on its own, its just a massive disappointment after such a spectacular trilogy before it. I seriously hope of 5th Indy film never comes to be (at least one with Lucas involved)- with "Crystal Skull" I've had as much of the universe as I could ever want, and then some.
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  #24  
Old 10-30-2008, 01:31 PM
Get over it

This is yet another example of people getting their hopes too high for something that can't possibly live up to everyone's expectations. Indy 4 never had a chance really. There's too much time in between and too many things people want to see but won't. I really liked Indy 4 a lot more than I thought I would. After Spider-Man 3, the best thing I learned was to lower my expectations. If it sucks then I'm not surprised or disappointed as much; or it could be better than I imagined. With Lucas' recent track record it seemed inevitable that he would drive Indy into the ground just as he with Vader. But luckily Spielberg is a smart guy who can handle himself well. The timeframe and the atmosphere all made sense to me. The beginning was great even if it is overblown (what else would you expect? IT'S INDIANA JONES!) Shia didn't ruin anything which to me was a big relief. I read and liked Darabont's script (as well as his title) more but for what it's worth KS is a great entry into the series. Be that as it may, it obviously has its faults: the swinging on trees seemed to bring the credilbility down for action; Indy using a snake as rope was lame and tried too hard for irony that fell flat. But, like I said, Indy is still as fun today as he was twenty years ago.

There is one last thing I want to address and to me it is the most important: I don't care what anyone says, the ridiculous controversy over the inclusion of ETs is blown way out of proportion. People, this is not "Indiana Jones and the War of the Worlds"! They're not major characters, they're not Jar Jar Binks, and anyone who gets mad over this is, well, a moron. To me, given the era of time and the way the ETs were handled in the story, it is just as believable to see Indy find an ancient civilization that made contact thousands of years ago as it is to believe that he drank from the Cup of Christ or opened the Ark. I guess this breaks down to a "science vs. religion" kind if thing but I don't care. Even though the South Park episode was hilarious, they were dead wrong when they said aliens don't belong here. Well, if they don't then neither does the Thuggee, the Ark, the Holy Grail or Hitler. As long as they don't say "We'sa going home!!!" I'll be fine.
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