|Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Single Disc)
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Nearly 20 years after riding his last Crusade, Harrison Ford makes a welcome return as archaeologist/relic hunter Indiana Jones in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, an action-packed fourth installment that's, in a nutshell, less memorable than the first three but great nostalgia for fans of the series. Producer George Lucas and screenwriter David Koepp (War of the Worlds) set the film during the cold war, as the Soviets--replacing Nazis as Indy's villains of choice and led by a sword-wielding Cate Blanchett with black bob and sunglasses--are in pursuit of a crystal skull, which has mystical powers related to a city of gold. After escaping from them in a spectacular opening action sequence, Indy is coerced to head to Peru at the behest of a young greaser (Shia LaBeouf) whose friend--and Indy's colleague--Professor Oxley (John Hurt) has been captured for his knowledge of the skull's whereabouts. Whatever secrets the skull holds are tertiary; its reveal is the weakest part of the movie, as the CGI effects that inevitably accompany it feel jarring next to the boulder-rolling world of Indy audiences knew and loved. There's plenty of comedy, delightful stunts--ants play a deadly role here--and the return of Raiders love interest Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood, once shrill but now softened, giving her ex-love bemused glances and eye-rolls as he huffs his way to save the day. Which brings us to Ford: bullwhip still in hand, he's a little creakier, a lot grayer, but still twice the action hero of anyone in film today. With all the anticipation and hype leading up to the film's release, perhaps no reunion is sweeter than that of Ford with the role that fits him as snugly as that fedora hat. --Ellen A. Kim
Stills from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Click for larger image)
- A complete letdown
I love the original Indiana Jones movies even though they go against the grain of my profession. As an archaeologist I cringe every time I see Indy or someone else in the movie destroy an artifact or remove an artifact without recording its context. Indiana Jones is nothing more than a grave robber purporting to be an archaeologist. With that being understood, every archaeologist I know denounces Indy's practices but secretly wants to be as cool as he and with a certain amount of suspension of belief, or disbelief, really enjoys the original Indy movies. With that being said, the "fourth" installment is truly horrible. The special effects were terrible, the story line was so implausible that even people outside the realm of reality, not to mention archaeology, were wondering what the writers were on when they penned this, and the whole premise of the movie was nothing more than a bridge between the originals and a new series with a new Indy. This movie basically killed all that was good in Indiana Jones forever....more info
- What a waste of time and money
Like just about everyone else on planet earth, I loved the first three Indiana Jones movies. So, like just about everyone else on the planet, I was seriously jazzed for the new one. MY LORD, IT SUCKED. Ford is walking through his scenes, there's no thrill, no adrenaline, lame CG, unbelievable nuclear blast scenes, unbelievable scenes where multiple Russians are spraying full auto fire at our heroes and no one's ever hit, etc etc. It's just not exciting--period. Unforgiveable...Spielberg, you signed off on this? People, be warned--it's BAD. And it's a damn shame....more info
- 2.5 Stars - I was wrong
Originally I gave this film a positive review, but after seeing it again recently I have to withdraw that praise: this film has major story problems.
First off, the story is told in the clumsiest manner possible. I actually don't mind the aliens storyline, but it seems like Spielberg totally forget the techniques he used to such great effect on Jaws and Close Encounters and many of his most succesful films. In those movies he had a fantastic monster/visual to reveal, and he built suspense accordingly by *not* showing it to you until the end of the film. Here, we see the aliens in the first ten minutes. Where is the suspense, or sense of mystery and anticipation? What are we supposed to look forward to in this film? It is never clear until the end, and even then it doesn't make a lot of sense. Of course the 50's sci-fi B movies didn't make a lot of sense either, but Indy should be imitating the spirit of those films, not their actual ineptitude.
I would have liked to have seen a structure where you have some teaser shots of the mothership early on, or the aliens, or perhaps the skull and a brief teaser scene of it's powers in action (I'm still not clear on exactly what the skull does or means) and then gradually weave the ship/aliens/skull in over the course of the story - or at least attempt a story structure that played up a sense of mystery and danger, like Independence Day, or the X-Files, or any other competent big-budget aliens-related film. Which, if they'd really gone over the top with it and made a flat-out exploitation film here, might have been kind of fun, or at least would have been an approach more in keeping with the B-movie aspects of the films that supposedly inspired this one. Instead, we get a story approach that involves corny Hardy Boys type interactions and pointless, cartoonish graveyard stumbling which you've seen a thousand times before. It kind of makes sense for the target family audience, and the actors are likeable enough to make the material feel less boring and shopworn than it actually is, but to mature audiences in search of thrills and chills it is pretty tame stuff.
I think it is also pretty clear from the press and the interviews leading up to Indy 4's release that Spielberg didn't want this film to be made: in essence he was coerced. He is professional enough not to say who or how, but if you saw the interviews he did he was practically drawing a diagram: I thought the Last Crusade was it, I designed a closing shot to signal that, Harrison got the ball rolling, I was against the aliens idea, etc. I think it is obvious that he was voted down by Lucas and Ford - who recorgnized the opportunity for a big payday while no one was looking. Also, it is sad but true that during times of war, economic uncertainty, political change, or general distress, Americans have demonstrated that their solace-of-choice is the movies. If you have a franchise like Indiana Jones - one that is loved and appreciated as almost any franchise in film - you know that, under these types of conditions, you don't necessarily have to have a great movie up your sleeve in order to get people into the theaters. And the proof is in the pudding: Indy 4 was the third highest grossing film of 08 - behind The Dark Knight and Iron Man - doing roughly 320 million domestic (worldwide it was an unmitigated bonanza). And, without naming names, there are few people who understand timing and market forces like George Lucas.
I'm not saying that this movie isn't worth a look - there is too much talent involved for it to be an outright disaster, and Cate Blanchett is quite good (and quite nice to look at) in her role as the Soviet villian. But one should keep the above elements in mind before deciding to make the purchase....more info
- pretty dang good if you ask me
"Fans are clinging, complaining dip***** who will never ever be grateful for any concession you make. The moment you shut out their shrilled tremulous voices the happier you'll be for it."
-A saying from Yahtzee the video game reviewer (who I think actually hated this movie too)
This is true for the unfortunate who actually think that this movie is so terrible that it should have never been made. These same fans were the ones who hated the prequel star wars trilogy.
I'll admit that when I first saw this movie in theaters I had the same feeling of dissatisfaction that I felt when I watched the star wars prequels, which I thought had horrible acting. However I never hated any of these movies but was grateful that the same people who made the originals were willing to put out the hard work to make more of what I liked.
Although, I recently watched the entire star wars saga with my girlfriend (who hasn't seen any of them) and found that I enjoyed watching the prequel trilogy a lot more than I did the first time around. When watching these films together for the first time, I was extremely shocked to find that the original trilogy had just as horrible acting as the prequel trilogy did, which is something I couldn't notice as a kid. My girlfriend actually liked the prequel trilogy the most (which still drives me crazy).
When I watched Indy 4 for the second time along with the first three in the series, it was a similar feeling. I realized that Indy 4 is just as ridiculous, unrealistic, and fun as the first 3 in the series. It really isn't that much different. The story is the same, in that Indy tries to find an ancient artifact before its power falls in the hands of evil-doers. The only disappointment is that it seems as though Lucas has been adding more and more cartoony elements in his films over time. While they existed in his previous films (R2D2, C3P0) its gotten worse (Jar Jar Binks, the stupid prairie dog in the beginning of this movie, and the dumb vine swinging scene). This film has a lot of those elements but it doesn't ruin the movie. The best part about this movie is how good Harrison Ford still is and I was surprised to see that.
Yeah yeah they probably could have made this film better but whoopty-freakin-do. Just take it for what it is and enjoy it. When I watched it the second time, I realized that it I changed more than the indy or star wars films have. I think that its the same for everyone. If you hate this film as much as the people who rate it one star then that just means that you are missing out on the fun and its your loss. I would give this four stars, but I'm giving it five to try and cancel out the ridiculously low ratings that this film doesn't deserve....more info
- Don't take it too seriously and just enjoy it
Raiders and Last Crusade it isn't, but Crystal Skull is at least better than the gross-me-out-Aztec-style bloodfest that is Temple of Doom, and if you don't get your hopes up too high or take it too seriously, it's fine Indiana Jones fodder. This movie has grown on me since I saw it in the theater. Yes, it could have and should have been better, but I enjoyed the humorous nods to the previous movies, I wanted closure between Indy and Marion, it was kind of interesting to find out what Jones has been doing in the intervening years, Shia is cute, and if you watch this movie with the mindset of a kid seeing Indiana Jones for the first time, it is a satisfying experience.
It's definitely a little more Sci-Fi than the previous ones, but the Indiana Jones movies are classified as Sci Fi, and if you know anything about 1950s genre movies (and the movie is set in the 1950's), wacky alternative historical theories (like astronauts in Mayan glyphs), you remember the Cold War, Atom Bomb fears, and McCarthyism, (and you enjoy sight gags with furry little animals), then alot of the action and plot-line makes sense and is just plain fun.
By the way, my children actually preferred the audio-book to the movie, as the book tells the story better than the movie does....more info
- I tried so hard to like this...
Well, the movie settles it. George Lucas: NEVER bring back Han Solo! Ruining one childhood hero is enough....more info
- Are they serious?
Remember Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark? The WWII Nazis are now McCarthy era Soviets, and the Ark of the Covenant is now an alien skull. No other changes, except . . .
Harrison Ford has aged, and forgotten how to act. The witty one liners are now tired. This is like a B-Movie with a gold-plated budget.
Stink city....more info
- Like getting kicked in the stomach.
I have only thought of walking out of a movie a few times, and this was one of them. I felt like I was kicked in a very sensitive area with a very large boot ala Simpson's style. South Park's Trey and Parker had it dead on when they aired their response to Indy 4. There were so many things wrong with this movie, and I feel as if it makes Temple of Doom look oscar worthy....more info
- Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
I loved the 1st three, and was excited to find out that they were making a 4th.
I do not want to give any of it away for those that haven't seen it, but it is nice to know the producers/director reprized or mentioned past characters that are familiar.
As for the ending, it is an interesting twist. A rather odd one, but I have heard the theory before for several different civilizations....more info
This movie took everything that made the other films great and threw them out the window. There is a reason this movie was named Worst Movie of the Year by film critics.
It is to the Raiders Legacy what jar Jar and Episode I is to Star Wars. Painful to watch....more info
- a fun adventure movie.
indiana jones and the kingdom of the crystal skull is a real fun adventure movie.i know a lot of people for some reason cry and complain about the movie but i still dont get it.to those people the ones who cry about nuke the fridge go text message and pick out the next movie you want to hype up then complain about as soon as you go see it along with what ever else you whiny children do to waste your time.let us indiana jones fans enjoy are fun action movies.the first part of the movie is better thatn the 2nd half but as i said earler it is a fun action movie for the whole family.harrison ford as indiana jones is awesome as usual,it was nice to see karen allen back as marion and shia labeouf was great as mutt williams.it was also nice the mention of henry jones sr. and marcus brody in the film.the bonus disc was good but i would have liked to have seen more but it was a great movie with a good bonus disc so if you enjoy adventure movies i highly recomend this film.also the book adaptation is better than the movie and i highly recomend it and it is now available in papebak and has some back story on indys and macs world war 2 adventures....more info
- Great ending to the Indian Jones Movies
Bought this movie to complete my Indiana Jones trilogy. I loved all the movies and enjoyed this one as well. Great ending to a great movie epics....more info
- Even Worse Than The Temple of Doom!
This is literally one of the worst movies I have ever seen. Save yourself and do not watch this movie! I can't believe that George Lucas ruined Star Wars and Indiana Jones within a 9 year period (1999-2008)....more info
- Reference Blu-Ray/Not so much story
First, the Blu-Ray is reference material - absolutely outstanding picture and sound quality. This is not always the case with Blu-Ray, even for very recent movies. However, this is a Spielberg flick, which means that it will include lots of softening filters, ad nauseum use of computer images and an impossible group hug ending. While some of his stuff (i.e., Jaws) is clearly masterful, his older work just falls short. He puts huge effort into the production, and it shows; his stuff is almost always entertaining. But his insistence on happy endings ruin an otherwise good story (case in point - AI). This Indiana is no different. Overall, its a fun movie, and you have to accept it as empty action to enjoy, but there is a lot to enjoy. The CG is overwhelming at times, but its just a stupid fun flick, summer blockbuster-ish. Accept it for that, and you'll enjoy. ...more info
- Shockingly Bad
I really really wanted to like this movie, but it is a travesty on many levels. The whole thing seems like a retread, and the script is filled with cliches and nonsense (yes, I do think I could have done a better job).
This film a horrible thing to do a character loved by so many. At least since it's a sequel (unlike the Star Wars prequels), it's not too hard to pretend that it just never happened. As far as I'm concerned, there are only three Indiana Jones movies, which I love dearly (yes, even Temple of Doom, even though it's not nearly as good). Please don't subject yourself or your kids to this, and don't reward anyone associated with this garbage with your hard-earned money....more info
pretty good after all this time... give it a chance... not as bad as all the reviews.
thumbs up!...more info
The shipping was rather slow and when it arrived, it was only packaged in a thin manilla envelope. I'm giving the shipper the benefit of the doubt and assuming that the case was intact when they shipped it but the postal service must have crushed it in processing. It would have probably been OK in a bubble wrap envelope. Although the case is chipped and damaged, the DVD itself was fine. I'm sorry I can't be more positive but thought it was best to be honest and let you know what happened to my shipment. Maybe in the future, you could ship in bubble wrap or padded envelopes. Just a suggestion. Thanks for listening!...more info
This one got pretty trashed by the critics, so maybe that lowered my expectation. But I ended up enjoying this more than I thought I would, and actually liked it better than the other two sequels - it seemed closer in spirit to the original. Sure, there were some incredibly silly parts (the fridge, the waterfalls), but it moved along quickly enough that I didn't get bogged down in the inanity. Plus the appearance of Karen Allen helped pick things up immensely....more info
- A fun return of a cinema icon...
Despite the fact that there are many, many moments in the movie that will have you saying, "Yeah, right", "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" is still a fun movie.
The action is great and sometimes comical. The story is solid. And the cinematography is top notch.
True fans of the franchise will enjoy the story, the time period, and the adventure. The finish is a bit of a suprise, but still works.
In truth, it might not be the best in the series, but it sill holds up for fun, action, and adventure....more info
- Indy 4: A great and entertaining film troubled by nothing more than un-meetable expectations.
Let me first say that "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull "is not a perfect film. It's not the genre defining film "Raiders of the Lost Ark" was back in 1981. But, simply put... it doesn't have to be. I've rarely seen a more fun and exciting film that has been criticized for such petty things. It's been called by some an over-the-top and impossible film. You know what...They're absolutely right! And that's exactly what makes it so great to watch. For 27 years, the Indiana Jones series has always been pushing the limits of what an adventure movie can be. So, if you're someone who's not a fan of cliffhanging adventure with highly improbable set-pieces and doses of the supernatural, then this film is not for you. But if being highly entertained for two hours by watching everyone's favorite archeologist get himself in and out of every mess conceivable, sounds like fun, then this film is right up your alley. There's little need to recap the plot. We have Indy and co. chasing and protecting the mystical Crystal Skull of Akator while dodging numerous bad guys along the way. Set pieces abound throughout in classic Indy fashion all framed by the one and only Steven Spielberg who, despite reports to the contrary, deeply cares about this film, and as much as anyone wanted to make it work. And work it does. There's terrific chases through warehouses, college campuses and dense Amazonian jungles. All set to a rousing score by the master, John Williams. And in the end, it's Harrison Ford, who even at 65, manages to get around better than most 30 year olds.
Also, please keep in mind, that the film is set in the 1950s, and Lucas specifically wanted the film to reflect the sci-fi flavor of the era, so things do get a bit more fantastical than in previous films. But it's nice to know that after all these years, everyone involved still wants to go for broke. And I love that. So if you can set aside years of expectations and simply watch the film as it was intended, then I know you'll have a great time. And in the end that's all this film was ever created to do.
Unfortunately, it does seem true that more and more audience members today want realism, grittiness and logic and cannot seem to just let that go and simply have fun. Kind of a shame.
Just my opinion of course....more info
- Indy's Back
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Two-Disc Special Edition) declares to the world that Indiana Jones is back and in good form. While one may be put off by the reviews that claimed that Indy had gone science fiction, the science fiction content of this new film is minimal and the movie, as a whole, is an action-adventure tale not unlike the previous three movies. The desire of the filmmakers to replicate the look and feel of the new film even compelled them to record in the action on analog film. The extra DVD is full of production diaries and other documentaries on the film making process....more info
- Great Fun!!!
Lots to enjoy here in a big, big movie. You get Indy, interdimensional beings, the 50's, and more in this action adventure multi genre thrill ride. Ford was great as the older Jones, and gave a lot to enrich the character in often subtle ways. The rest of the cast was great as well and the crew did a top notch job putting the film together.
The 2 disc blu ray version has tons of special features and delivers an awesome hi def experience. Cant wait to see the first 3 on blu ray.
Some people didnt like the fact that there were "aliens" in a Indiana Jones movie, but those are the people who tend to make fetish out of the same movies almost the same way people make fetish out of religious iconography. They want pretty much the same old movie run thru a copy machine and sprinkled with pixie dust or something. Ya cant please everyone, but some people cant make up there own minds and need to told what to like. So beware the anti Lucas/Speilberg naysayers club and their blind zombie followers. End of rant...
If you liked previous Indy movies check this one out. At the very least rent it.