Friday, June 27, 2008

Indiana Jones, Again

Indiana Jones & Family

When a film becomes more of an institution than a unique event, the film-going experience is different. In a series such as Indiana Jones, the film-maker can make some assumptions about the audience's knowledge -- they are generally familiar with the character and backstory. One the other hand, the film-maker is almost required to advance the entire story, and explain how the present circumstance came to be in the film's timeline. Indiana Jones & Villians

This can be interesting, noting the changes and how the film-maker explains them, or dreadful -- depending upon how the changes are explained, and where the film-maker goes with the story. Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull tends more towards the latter. The films have always delved into the supernatural, but this one goes a bit too far, weaving a variety of South American and United States folk stories together to justify a romp through the jungle. When watching a film, it's important that the audience gets into a state of 'suspension of disbelief'. The audience knows it's watching a film, but chooses to believe it's watching reality, at least for the duration of the film. Mrs. Jones

In Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull, I was unable to get into this state of 'suspension of disbelief'. The film deviated from reality too much, requiring me to believe that gunpowder, lead, and gold were all magnetic somehow. Also, while much of the stunts in the Indiana Jones films are patently impossible, the film-makers pushed too far this time -- with the main characters surviving a series of deadly waterfall drops, and far too many improbable fight scenes, chase scenes, and chase-fight scenes.

Don't get me wrong, the movie was enjoyable overall, with high production values and tight editing, good lighting -- except, notably, the lead actress, who wore her years rather harshly in her introductory scene. It's a good movie, worth seeing, but don't expect too much.

Shot in the Dark

Movies on Whidbey Island.

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