Okay, okay, okay. I know this was supposed to be a daily blog. But anyone who knows me and my schedule understands that I just don’t have time to do this every single day. So I’m going to shoot for weekly, and if I get in any extras, it’ll be a bonus. And it’s not just for my huge, admiring fan base (how many of you are there, anyway? 3?)—I really feel that this writing is a chance for me to actually WRITE. I’m developing my voice and organization as I go, so naturally the first few are going to be a little rougher, but I really hope that people can get a sense of who I am as I add more and more reviews.
Harrison Ford as Henry Jones
Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood
Denholm Elliot as Marcus Brody
John Rhys-Davies as Sallah
I’m spending the day at the AMC Ahwatukee with my AZ bestie at the Indiana Jones Marathon. We moved in around 10 am and will be here until around 730 tonight (unless we decide to give Crystal Skull a miss; not sure yet how we feel about that one). So you’re getting four for the price of one today.
First up: Raiders of the Lost Ark
Please call it by its real name. It’s not “Indiana Jones AND the Raiders of the Lost Ark”. That was a marketing ploy to make all the movies more similar so they could sell more copies (apparently some people didn’t know that if you read the back of the DVD case, you would learn that this is an Indiana Jones movie).
This is my favorite of the series. There’s always the draw of it being the original, so if the first one rocks, you know the other ones will just because they’re all the same basic story line. There are so many great pieces that make Raiders a fantastic film.
First off: the action. This is why I write about these movies—to expose the fairer sex (!) to more physicality. Marion, the heroine’s, first scene is in the bar she runs, and she’s competing against a big Nepalese man in a drinking contest. Which she wins. That’s pretty awesome, no matter how you cut it. Later on, she’s a bit of a helpless chick, trying to “help” Indy fight off some bad guys in Marrakesh by banging them on the head with some kind of tin container (this is prior to her solo attack with a frying pan, which brings her back up to useful damsel status). But who can possibly question Indy as an action hero? He gets drug beneath/behind a truck, dangles from a rope above a floor writhing with snakes, and swims to/climbs aboard a moving U-boat. He’s awesome.
Next is the storytelling. Who doesn’t love a good treasure hunt? While some might underestimate the importance of the Ark of the Covenant, it’s still a pretty big deal. Anyone who’s ever been to a museum can understand the importance of these artifacts. They tell a story of a time now past. They offer insight to the lives people lived, about the area in which the artifact was found, and more. Artifacts are living history, and for those who know the story of Moses, one can speculate on the Ark and its place in human history. The writers do a fantastic job creating the sense of urgency needed to keep the Ark out of the hands of the Nazis, and at such a critical time in the world. The dialogue isn’t too shabby either; Sallah’s innocent manner and understanding is, at times, hilarious, and listening to Indy and Marion’s banter, you can tell they are clearly made for each other.
- The map room. Maybe I was born to be an archaeologist or an architect, because I love the intricacy of models. This scene is so cool.
- Any scene with the sniveling, sweating German. He’s great. And I especially love when he melts his own hand, then goes outside to cool it off and can’t find a snowdrift ANYWHERE. He’s probably a really good dancer. Light on his feet.
- Marion tries to treat Indy’s numerous injuries. The fighting, the smooching, the mirror-flipping. All I can say is that it’s a good thing he’s Harrison Ford, because he’s really sweaty and bloody and dirty, and not many women would be okay climbing into bed with that.
Weepy meter: 0/10 You can’t cry during this movie. God sends down a special mist that dries up your sinuses and tear ducts and only recalls it when the credits roll. It’s physically impossible.
Man meter: 10/10 Indy is one of a few that can be considered a man’s man. He can quote this movie.
Overall rating: 9/10