Here’s some random thoughts that popped into my head yesterday after watching the first new Indiana Jones movie in 19 years:
- Whether she’s playing Bob Dylan in the mind-blowing “I’m Not There” or just a run-of-the mill Russian stereotype villain in “Indiana Jones,” I cannot take my eyes of Cate Blanchett’s nose whenever she’s on screen. It’s the same thing with me and Jewel’s teeth.
- Indiana Jones at 93 years old is still a jerk towards women and young people, but he runs, punches, and escapes evil at the speed of a Bob Hamelin chasing a chicken.
- Shia Lebeouf is still the gayest name of a budding young movie star since Orlando Bloom. And he also has the worst hair I’ve seen since Samuel L. Jackson in “Unbreakable.” A small internet pic does not do his do’ justice–it’s this weird greaser slickback thing that has a part down the middle in the back so he ends up looking like Gary Oldham’s old rickety dracula in “Bram Stoker’s Dracula.” The movie takes place in 1957 and there’s even a scene in a malt shop where greasers and soc’s duke it out, and all the extras posing as greasers have better hair than Shia Lebeouf’s Mutt Williams. He even combs his hair with Coca-Cola and it doesn’t move nor get wet. It’s like a red brillo pad stapled to his scalp.
- Best line of the movie. Lebeouf’s Mutt Williams says to Indiana Jones, “You’re really old. What are you, like eighty?’
- Even though his character is a slippery turncoat, Ray Winstone manages to steal a few scenes. He’s like the James Gandolfini of Britian–huge guy with interesting hair that you can’t take your eyes off of. He was a certified badass in “Sexy Beast” and “The Departed” so seeing him play a lighter role in a big budget action movie was interesting. Also, Indiana Jones breaking his nose was pretty harsh.
- *SPOILER ALERT* The scene were Indy ends up in the Rockwell 1950s American dream town was really, really creepy. It reminded me of the video for “Black Hole Sun” with mannequins getting their faces melted instead of real people. Indy walking into a house while “Howdy Doody” is blasting on the vaccum tube, all the while asking for a help from a family of smiling plastic bodies was amazing. Kudos to Spielberg for giving kids nightmares during that sequence. And I’m not a science geek by any means, but can jumping inside a refrigerator lined with lead really save you from atomic bombs?
- When Indy and Mutt first find the Crystal Skull in the tomb of the dead conquistadors, I thought the skull looked like it was stolen from the new X-Files movie, but totally blinged out. It figures the only thing left for Indiana Jones to conquer is aliens. They ain’t got shit for that whip.
- Speaking of the whip, I felt like Indy didn’t do enough damage with that thing. He swung on steel beams and whacked a couple Russian soldiers here and there, but I always liked when Indy used the whip like Spiderman’s webs to grab stuff that was inconveniently kicked 15 feet away. The whip is highly useful to strangle Incan tomb guardians as well as get your car keys when they fall off the hook by the door and you totally just settled down on the couch.
- *SPOILER ALERT* Those red killer ants were completely terrifying. They could eat a grown man as well as form a climbing rope to bite Cate Blanchett as she hung from a tree branch. Spielberg really had some horriffic images in this movie: Russian soldiers getting melted from the waist up by the engine of a nuclear war head, skinny jungle monkeys clawing and picking at Cate Blanchett’s face, the “atomic” mannequin families, the tribal council of E.T.’s and their silicone bodies. The other Indiana Jones movies all had moments like these and “Crystal Skull” definitely kept true to the original trilogy.
As a whole, “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” is a fun-filled adventerous family movie. It’s completely ridiculous and about half way through I totally forgot the plot. It does offer you a motorcycle chase, a sword fight on the back of an army tugboat, attacks by midnight indigenous defenders of lost tombs, some college courses, the red scare, swinging on vines with CGI monkeys, quicksand, telepathy, and 15,000 spider webs.
I give it 3 Stallone Claps out of 4.