We are simply passing thru history, but this – this is history
Who is the Greatest Adventurer of Them All? Who handles a bullwhip with confidence, wears a leather jacket and is recognizable all over the world by only his silhouette? No, it’s not E.T. – it’s Indiana (Indy) Jones. Steven Spielberg’s and George Lucas’ professor of archeology and obtainer of rare antiquities still lives on strong 30 years after the first movie. Funny that Raiders of the Lost Ark, which was meant to be a low-cost B-movie, went on to win four Oscars. It is still studied at film schools and has gone to influence such films as Romancing the Stone (1984), Jewel of the Nile (1985), The Mummy (1999) and Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001).
Some things are better left unopened
Steven Spielberg wanted to make a globetrotting adventure and action movie, which would have a James Bond like main character. A movie, which would give homage to the Saturday matinee movies he grew up watching. George Lucas wanted to make a movie, which he would like to watch himself. During the making of Star Wars Lucas had an idea of one globetrotting Indiana Smith. When these two masterminds came together, film history was made and Indiana Jones was born.
Tom Selleck was cast as Indiana Jones, but he pulled out to make a little known TV-series called Magnum P.I. Harrison Ford from the Star War movies was cast instead and to this day – even though he has done zillion other movies – Harrison Ford is Indiana Jones.
Fundamental part of this movie is its musical score by John Williams. The music is recognizable even today. You only have to hear a couple of beats and in your mind you can see Indiana Jones riding to catch the truck that’s carrying the ark or running away from a gigantic rolling rock.
Each scene in this movie is good. Unforgettable scenes include the opening sequence with a golden statue, and the underground Egyptian temple filled with snakes. Both are my favorites. You just cannot choose only one. The scene that stands out the most for Steven Spielberg is the “basket chase”. George Lucas on the other hand prefers the “truck chase” scene.
At the time the special effects were groundbreaking, especially “the melting face”. Chris Wales, the special make up effects artist, says that still today he gets calls asking him how he did it as it had never been done before. With computer technology nowadays, you could make that special effect even more magnificent, even though the basic process would still be the same.
It has been said that this movie has the best screenplay ever written. You cannot find any fault in it. Even though some lines might sound quite corny, they are delivered in such way that they are believable. Remember – this is a Saturday matinée B-movie! It is supposed to be fun and over-the-top.
Steven Spielberg’s direction is genius. The use of silhouettes and shadows is mind-blowing. It gives the movie depth. The tension build up in the “bad dates” scene is perfection. The fast-moving action sequences are chained together continuously. What else would you want from an entertaining movie?
So; needless to say – I am a fan of the whole Indiana Jones series. I love them all – even the latest one with Shia LaBeouf as the “future Indy”, but my favorite will always be The Temple of Doom.
It’s not the years, honey, it’s the mileage