Friday, May 23, 2008

KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL


SPOILER ALERT - DON'T READ THIS IF YOU HAVEN'T SEEN THE MOVIE

A few days ago I mentioned that Raiders is a perfect film and now that I’ve seen Crystal Skull I can say that this one is far from perfect. After saying that, I still enjoyed the film and had a lot of fun, even though I’m getting too old for midnight showings.

I can say this is my least favorite of the four movies. I’m not able to put my finger on one specific reason why this one didn’t work as well as the last movies. My guess, is that the movie had way too many cooks in the kitchen. Before filming ever started this movie had a revolving door of writers coming and going. After filming started, I can only imagine how many ideas were being thrown at Spielberg from Lucas, Marshall and Ford. Also, this movie had too many characters on the screen at the same time. Were they worried that Ford wasn’t able to hold a scene together by himself? It’s hard to care for a character when they’re all bunched up together.

Ok I’m trying not to be nitpicky, but it’s kind of hard not too. So here’s my nitpicks - Indy blabbed way too much. Marion’s only purpose was to tell Indy about Mutt and to get hitched (I felt like it was the last episode of Happy Days). Just say no to forced humor. The fridge, waterfalls (sing the theme from Land of the Lost next time you see it), Tarzan and of course Indy’s encounter of the third kind. I think Indy is best suited with artifacts based in legend and historical facts. What’s wrong with the real crystal skulls like the Mitchell-Hedges one? (Of course the Phantom found some back in 1996)

After all that said, I still enjoyed it! I was with the first lady and friends watching one of my favorite characters from my youth back on the big screen. There were many scenes that I did like. Ants are cool! For the most part I liked it and I look forward to seeing it again. I would really like to see it at a drive-in, as this movie would be fun at the drive-in.

I know there’s talk about Indy 5 with Indy taking a back seat to Mutt. Instead, how about another adventure? One last adventure. One that only focuses on Indy by himself in some far away jungle fighting the bad guys and looking for fortune and glory!

2 comments:

Mike Middleton said...

No Indy 5 NC! I can't handle any more. I think if this movie was made pre computer effects it would have been much better. The computer effects were very distracting. I did see it at a drive-in and it did make it feel more like 50's sci-fi.

Karswell said...

I was left very underwhelmed by Crystal Skull too... for me all the faults lie pretty much with the meandering script, poor pacing, and the tediously staged ho-hum action sequences that drug on and on and on endlessly without much REAL excitement factor (the tired truck chase through the jungle was excrutiating to me for some reason and felt very repetative of the truck chases from the pevious films), and the SF alien ending probably sounded like a good idea on paper but as HUGE as it all looked onscreen as the city erased itself in a whirlpool of rock and water it's ultimate conclusion didn't feel like an ending at all and it just sort of climaxed with a whimper instead of a trademark powerhouse Jones finale.

An Indy movie should give you the feeling like you never want it to end, but around mid-film I was looking at my watch and thinking about sushi afterwards instead. And was Karen Allen really in this film? The woman I saw onscreen seemed more like an endlessly smiling animatronic robot or CGI addition, and not the slightest bit in character with the Marion Ravenwood I know and love from Raiders. There's actually not much I can recommend about any it. Big bummer thumbs down from me...