Friday, May 23, 2008
Those smiles say we've all been Punk'd.
I’m not saying the new Indiana Jones installment stinks, and I’m not saying I want my money back or that Hollywood thinks we’re all a bunch of morons. All I’m saying is it sucked royal jewels, I paid way too much, and Hollywood has hired a block of cheese to write its scripts. Not even a sharp cheese. A log of Velveeta.
In Indiana Jones and The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull, Harrison Ford insists on being called Henry throughout the film. After adopting a rambunctious grade schooler
he is off to fly on a giant red dot above a map in a quest for knowledge. Fueled by the duty of helping a feeble old man (played by John Hurt and Denholm Elliot’s bronze statue, but most skillfully by a still frame of Sean Connery’s photograph), he encounters a young boy from the O.C. They quickly bond over a love of drag racing with fat white men in suits.
The movie gets a lot of help from the authenticity that Shia LaBoeuf gives his character, and when a movie is helped by Shia LaBoeuf, you know you’re in trouble. See my review of Dis-turd-bia. The most fun I had was watching his naturally curly hair go from blown dry straight to frizzy from a waterfall and back to blown dry straight in the middle of the jungle. The desert jungle of Latin America where Alabama fire ants emerge from the rolling hills of Ireland to devour humans and ooze yolk when crushed.
From a visual perspective there’s enough soft-lighting to make Barbara Walters look like Pulp Fiction's Mia Wallace.
Cate Blanchett stars as Emo Phillip’s sister and dons the world’s most unflattering jump suit (redundant). Oh, an Iowa gas station attendant just called and told me high waists and flat butts are back in. I would praise the editing except two-thirds of the film is old footage from other movies, including George of the Jungle, Back to the Future, The Mummy, and Signs. On the bright side it’s good to see the monkeys from Jumanji getting work again.*
La piece de resistance is the ending that is so baffling, I refuse to talk about it until more people have been as foolish as I was and spend their time on the film. Kind of when you slip on ice, and then you stand around to see if anyone else will crack their butt on it too. On second thought, allow me to be the overly concerned New Yorker warning you about water on a subway seat.
There’s a SPACESHIP in this movie! They put a giant Frisbee-looking spacecraft in the film, the likes of which make War of the Worlds (2005) look like Citizen Cane.
I honestly liked the last third of the film better the first time I saw it when it was called Stargate. Aliens arbitrarily dominating an ancient culture. The transgender prostitute from The Crying Game was a bigger menace than the CGI skeletons. A recent image released from the film:
I will now resign to my room hugging my VHS copy of Temple of Doom, satisfied by the fact that it is no longer the worst Indiana Jones movie ever made.
*paraphrasing an observation by Luke. Two short, round thumbs up!