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Indiana Jones and the... (2008)
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Review Date: November 21, 2008
Director: Steven Spielberg
Writer: David Koepp
Producers: Frank Marshall
Actors:
Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones
Shia LaBeouf as Mutt
Cate Blanchett as Irina
Plot:
Dr. Henry “Indiana” Jones is back and this time he’s got a side-kick who looks like Marlon Brando from THE WILD ONE, a “long-time companion” who looks nothing like his previous long-time companion Sallah, and his original love Marion Ravenwood aka Karen Allen, who (I’m sure) was more than happy to pick up the phone when the name “S. Spielberg” flashed on her caller ID. The adventure this time around isn’t as high-tempo, entertaining and fulfilling as its predecessors, but it goes through a lot of the basics, and with Harrison Ford back as the irrepressible Indiana Jones, you don’t actually need a lot more than that to be entertained for an evening. Well, at least I don’t…fanboy that I am.
Critique:
It’s impossible for me to review any major “fanboy movie” without any bias whatsoever since the whole reason I started this website is because I was so passionate about films growing up, when movies like STAR WARS and INDIANA JONES were my nachos and cheese. Nowadays, there’s no way for me to watch any of the STAR WARS movies or this film, without getting nostalgic and naturally mixing that emotion with my “true feelings” toward the “new generation” follow-ups to these classics. Case in point, check out my reviews of THE PHANTOM MENACE, ATTACK OF THE CLONES and REVENGE OF THE SITH {somewhat embarrassed}. I don’t mind saying all this because, again, that’s been part of the point of our website, which isn’t necessarily to be a “journalist” and all that shit, but rather, to convey that sense of wonder, passion, excitement and anticipation toward movies targeted to us. That’s not to say that I can’t be objective, because I wouldn’t have been able to write over 1,350 reviews without basing them on some level of objectivity, but despite the appearance of a CGI gopher during this film’s opening frame, as well as a slew of CGI monkeys swinging alongside Shia LaBeouf at some point of its duration, I really could not help swelling up in my pants as soon as John Williams’ famous “Tada-dada…tadadaaaaaaaaaaa” score kicked in. I mean, talk about bringing back some great memories! (I got my first handjob during RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK…mind you, I was watching it alone, but still)

Back-story aside, I’m still able to review my likes/dislikes about this movie pretty easily, as they were quite obvious. Besides all of my points below, I think the most important element to consider when rating a movie like this is whether or not it ultimately entertained, and needless to say in this case, kudos to director Steven Spielberg for still being able to entertain us with the wonder of Indiana Jones, a 65-year old Harrison Ford and the world of the 1950s. Granted, he obviously needed to move past the “practical effects” which he utilized to perfection in the previous INDIANA JONES installments, replacing them with computer generated effects throughout, but thankfully none of them went entirely overboard (although I could easily have done without the monkeys and gopher -- reminded me of CADDYSHACK), and the action sequences were still a lot of fun, especially the opening scenes, the stuff in the jungle, as well as the closing sequences underground. The film’s plotline, on the other hand, wasn’t entirely interesting or engaging, despite the inclusion of some extra-terrestrial shit. I wasn’t ever really bored with the story, but a lot of the exposition scenes seemed to go on forever, and I’m not really a fan of “following poems” around when attempting to discover certain items (i.e. John Hurt’s character).

With films like NATIONAL TREASURE killing any greater potential for this genre, Spielberg naturally does add a lot more humor, energy and believability into his picture, but even then, it does go over-the-line in a few sequences, especially one in which LaBoeuf is doing the splits over two vehicles going over 50MPH in a dense jungle (and as if that wasn’t enough…) while fencing an adversary in the other car! Meh. I don’t remember anything that ridiculous in previous Indy flicks, but then again, maybe I was too young to give a shit. At the end of the day, the film did entertain me for most of its way though, with Ford back in the saddle along with his usual scruffy personality, LeBeouf adding a youth injection along with an obvious relation to Doc Jones, his past and perhaps even his future (and thankfully, he didn’t act like the typical LeBeouf from his modern-day movies) and Cate Blanchett continuing to prove that she can act the shit out of anyone, even as a black-haired Latvian daughter-of-a-beeyatch. She wasn’t the most memorable “bad guy” from the series, but she did a fine job, and it was fun to watch her eating up some of the scenery around her. Adding Karen Allen to the movie was also a nice touch, as was the small nod to the “ark” from RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK early on. But yeah, the film still didn’t manage to live up to its previous installments, and after its initial energy-boost, slowed down quite a bit as the exposition got a little too much into bullshit nitty-gritty details that the audience didn’t really care about. And how many scenes featured Indy getting away from his captors, only to be surrounded by a handful of Russian soldiers, three minutes later?? Enough already!

But all in all, it had enough fun moments, action sequences, interesting characters to recommend to anyone looking for an entertaining evening at home, although it will likely be appreciated more if your expectations have been lowered to the “This might suck” level. I could watch any of the previous INDIANA JONES movies again in a heartbeat, but I sadly cannot say the same for this film. That said, I would surely watch this movie again one day, although it’s not an “automatic” like its predecessors and for that alone, I’m a little saddened. Then again, maybe I should get sad about “real things” in life, as opposed to moving pictures on a big screen, right?
(c) 2015 Berge Garabedian
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8:30PM on 07/10/2010

This movie Blew so much DICK.

This movie doesn't deserve the name Indiana Jones. From CGI gophers, to CGI ants, to CGI monkeys, to CGI Aliens, it's a shame they didn't just make it a straight to DVD cartoon because that's what the movie played out as.

This movie was the actual tipping point for my hate of George Lucas. I guess Frank Darabont's script made too much sense for old Georgie, so he decided to throw it away in favor of this shit pile of a movie. Terrible in every way, this movie actually insults the
This movie doesn't deserve the name Indiana Jones. From CGI gophers, to CGI ants, to CGI monkeys, to CGI Aliens, it's a shame they didn't just make it a straight to DVD cartoon because that's what the movie played out as.

This movie was the actual tipping point for my hate of George Lucas. I guess Frank Darabont's script made too much sense for old Georgie, so he decided to throw it away in favor of this shit pile of a movie. Terrible in every way, this movie actually insults the intelligence of the audience so badly...it has Indiana Jones surviving a NUCLEAR FUCKING BOMB. Fuck this movie. There were only 3 Indiana Jones movies in my book.
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1:14PM on 01/29/2010

A worthy sequel

Like many fans of 80's films, you cannot neglect the Indiana Jones films. Smart, funny, innovative and captivating action scenes without the necessity of today's overdone gore-ific movies. I patiently waited years for Speilburg and company to get the ball rolling on this film, and I was surprisingly pleased with the end result. Thourougly enjoyed the area 51 alien twist they added to the film.
I will admit I am not entirely sold on 'Shy Old Beef's' performance as daddy's boy, but overall this
Like many fans of 80's films, you cannot neglect the Indiana Jones films. Smart, funny, innovative and captivating action scenes without the necessity of today's overdone gore-ific movies. I patiently waited years for Speilburg and company to get the ball rolling on this film, and I was surprisingly pleased with the end result. Thourougly enjoyed the area 51 alien twist they added to the film.
I will admit I am not entirely sold on 'Shy Old Beef's' performance as daddy's boy, but overall this film left me confident that Crystal Skull is a welcome addition to the Indy franchise.
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3:16PM on 02/10/2009
the ending was bloody lame.
the ending was bloody lame.
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2:33AM on 12/19/2008
This movie isn't as similar to the previous 3 movies but unlike others before me, it deserves it spot next to the other 3 films. There were a few scenes that were pretty ridiculous like the fridge and the monkeys but in the end, all of those are just minor nuisances. The only major problem with this movie is Ray Winstone's character, who I felt was a near-waste here.

But seeing Ford putting on the fedora and hearing the classic Raiders March was a sight to behold. The rest of the cast,
This movie isn't as similar to the previous 3 movies but unlike others before me, it deserves it spot next to the other 3 films. There were a few scenes that were pretty ridiculous like the fridge and the monkeys but in the end, all of those are just minor nuisances. The only major problem with this movie is Ray Winstone's character, who I felt was a near-waste here.

But seeing Ford putting on the fedora and hearing the classic Raiders March was a sight to behold. The rest of the cast, including Blanchett do well here to carry the film with Speilberg and Ford. The action scenes were well done and intense as they always have been.

The strong fact that makes me appreciate the movie moreso is stragely enough, a comment from George Lucas. Considering the movie takes place in the 1950's the movie is meant to be more of an homage to the old 1950's sci-fi B-movies with cold war overtones (However deep or shallow) . Similar to how the previous 3 took homage to the 1930's B-movie adventure serials of the same time, with the Nazis as the villains. This actually rings pretty well in Crystal Skull and has actually gotten me to appreciate the movie further, that and repeat viewings.
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11:54PM on 11/23/2008
This movie is like some of the Star Wars prequels. There's an "old school-ness" to Nazi faces melting off in stop-motion, same as Star Wars. Now it's more CGI, less character development. What made me ALMOST walk out of the theater was the ridiculous parts. Surviving a nuclear blast in a fridge? Then standing and watching it? Really? And the movie never got any smarter. Taken on its own, it's okay, but compared to its legacy, bleh! Harrison Ford and Cate Blanchett were incredible though.
This movie is like some of the Star Wars prequels. There's an "old school-ness" to Nazi faces melting off in stop-motion, same as Star Wars. Now it's more CGI, less character development. What made me ALMOST walk out of the theater was the ridiculous parts. Surviving a nuclear blast in a fridge? Then standing and watching it? Really? And the movie never got any smarter. Taken on its own, it's okay, but compared to its legacy, bleh! Harrison Ford and Cate Blanchett were incredible though. Harrison played Indy with a smirk that says "65 year old Indy? Yeah, it's kinda ridiculous, but let's run with it!" and that's what makes this movie so much fun.
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3:44PM on 11/21/2008

Nobody does it like Jones.

Sure it doesn't live up to the old ones, but damned if it doesn't try its hardest.

It does keep the tone and excitement of the classic films (my favorite franchise ever) and is vastly superior to the other films of today.
Sure it doesn't live up to the old ones, but damned if it doesn't try its hardest.

It does keep the tone and excitement of the classic films (my favorite franchise ever) and is vastly superior to the other films of today.
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3:14PM on 11/21/2008

i love it

i admit i'm rating this on a scale where i just love Indy movie. it's my 3rd favorite, better/more fun than ToD. I understand the 6/10, but i think like the others it gets better with each viewing. There's lots to love once you get by a few things. the film just doesn't work after the ants. i think everything up to that is great. and the intro till they leave for peru is just freaking Grade A stuff.
i admit i'm rating this on a scale where i just love Indy movie. it's my 3rd favorite, better/more fun than ToD. I understand the 6/10, but i think like the others it gets better with each viewing. There's lots to love once you get by a few things. the film just doesn't work after the ants. i think everything up to that is great. and the intro till they leave for peru is just freaking Grade A stuff.
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2:12PM on 11/21/2008

Just came up short

Watching old-school Harrison Ford made this thing a treat. While I had already accepted it might not be on a par with predecessors, I figured Spielberg wouldn't let it be a total waste. And he didn't, but it's not up to the standards I generally hold the Beard to, either.

The entire cast (minus LeBeouf) seemed all made to be in an Indiana Jones movie (while I never thought it was the plan, Ray Winstone should've played Marcus Brody's son, or something, I found the resemblance to be worth
Watching old-school Harrison Ford made this thing a treat. While I had already accepted it might not be on a par with predecessors, I figured Spielberg wouldn't let it be a total waste. And he didn't, but it's not up to the standards I generally hold the Beard to, either.

The entire cast (minus LeBeouf) seemed all made to be in an Indiana Jones movie (while I never thought it was the plan, Ray Winstone should've played Marcus Brody's son, or something, I found the resemblance to be worth taking note of).

Ultimately, I found the film lacked the necessary evil to make me care. The KGB are not the nazis, or even the Thuggee. They didn't menace the same way. And the ants reminded me too much of the beetles in "The Mummy."

Also, many of the scenes looked to be shallow replicas of other scenes. The two cars racing through the rain forest reminded me of the mining cars in "Temple of Doom," while the finale in the temple was reminiscent of the Ark of the Covenant swallowing up all the Nazis in the first movie.

I enjoyed the chase around the campus, and even the infamous "nuke the fridge" scene, which was one of the few things I hadn't seen Indy go through before.

But when Marion drove into the river, it seemed to remind me of inferior franchises. Indiana Jones and his companions would never be stupid enough to attempt (however successfully) to ride a jeep into a river like that. It would always be an accident.
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1:30PM on 11/21/2008

i love it

i admit i'm rating this on a scale where i just love Indy movie. it's my 3rd favorite, better/more fun than ToD. I understand the 6/10, but i think like the others it gets better with each viewing. There's lots to love once you get by a few things. the film just doesn't work after the ants. i think everything up to that is great. and the intro till they leave for peru is just freaking Grade A stuff.
i admit i'm rating this on a scale where i just love Indy movie. it's my 3rd favorite, better/more fun than ToD. I understand the 6/10, but i think like the others it gets better with each viewing. There's lots to love once you get by a few things. the film just doesn't work after the ants. i think everything up to that is great. and the intro till they leave for peru is just freaking Grade A stuff.
Your Reply:



12:18PM on 11/21/2008

i liked it

it is what it is an entertaining,action packed summer event that entertains and that is what a summer movie should all be about.turn of you'r brain and enjoy the show.
it is what it is an entertaining,action packed summer event that entertains and that is what a summer movie should all be about.turn of you'r brain and enjoy the show.
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