In order to catch up on the overwhelming backlog of movies I intend to cover here on this blog, this blogger is going to keep it brief with a few disconnected bullet points:
• The 2008 DVD reissues of the classic Indiana Jones trilogy have terribly designed menus; it looks like everything’s been overprocessed with Photoshop’s “Dust and Scratches” filter.
• The zippy, witty screenplay is by Laurence Kasdan, known to genre geeks as the beloved writer of the best Star Wars script, now and forever: The Empire Strikes Back.
• Hey, it’s that guy! A young Alfred Molina briefly appears in his first film role. In the DVD bonus features, he recounts an amusing tale involving his lack of difficulty in evoking fear in his performance as a batch of real tarantulas scrambled across his face.
• Karen Allen is really winning as the hard-drinkin’ Marion, and it’s a pity she never became a bigger star, or at least appeared in the second and third installments. She was robbed!
• Does the Indiana Jones franchise really give the field of archaeology a good name? Indy is motivated by money; he loots relics without the permission of indigenous peoples, and sells them to a museum associated with the university where he teaches. It’s implied his job or tenure – and that of his boss Marcus – depend on it.
• I think I had the official coloring book as a kid, and I recall being fascinated by the concept of lost cities buried under sand.
• For better or for worse, the practical details of the phantasmagoric climax are left unexplained: why is the Ark empty, why does it make bad guys’ heads explode and/or melt, why does it matter if your eyes are open or not, and how does Indy know all this information?
• There’s lotsa drinking, gunplay, gore, and German profanity – in other words, all the stuff kids love! They don’t make PG movies like this anymore.
• Kids, the moral of the story is: anyone with an accent is not to be trusted.