Sunday, May 1, 2011

Doo Dah Doo Doo, Doo Dah DOOOOOOO

Today, we continue the Indiana Jones series with the third movie – The Last Crusade. As you may remember from yesterday, this is a film that I’ve not seen since the first release, so this should be a bit of an adventure for us all.

Made “as an apology for the second film”, The Holy Grail came five years after The Temple of Doom, and was supposed to be the final chapter in the original trilogy envisioned by Spielberg and Lucas.

Taking place primarily in 1938 (although there is an opening set in 1912, introducing us to Young Indiana Jones – and opening the franchise up in a whole new direction), The Last Crusade sees Indy on the trail of his father who has disappeared while on his on trail – that of the Holy Grail (fitting, really, since the first film was all about the Arc of The Covenant). Along the way, he crosses paths with a secret society who are trying to protect the Grail from evil, as well as, you guessed it – the Nazis. After finding his father and learning that they had been doublecrossed, the Jones’, along with their old pal, Sallah, end up at the Canyon of The Crescent Moon – the location of the Grail.

The Last Crusade definitely returns to the lighter tone of the first film and is a fitting end for the original trilogy. One thing I always remembered about my first viewing of this film was that it felt somehow “drier” than the others, and, while it is not as dry as I remembered, it wasn’t as forgettable as I had thought. While nowhere near as memorable as the first two films, it does definitely hold to their spirit. Plus, as a more personal bonus, since my interest in the grail mythology has greatly increased between that first viewing and now, I definitely got a heck of a lot more entertainment from it than I remember.

Now, I know that this film is particularly loved by a lot of Indiana Jones fans, primarily for the interplay between Harrison Ford and Sean Connery as Jones’ Jr and Snr, and I can definitely see that. Both men are at their crotchety best with each other which makes for some fun back and forth, which definitely helps the film move along. One thing I found in my studies of this film is that it had an uncredited rewrite from Tom Stoppard, one of my favourite playwrights – and I can definitely see it in a lot of the dialogue, particularly that of the Jones’.

All in all, I did like the film. It’s not something that I really need to revisit all that often, nor will I; but it did pass the time.

Tomorrow, The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skulls.

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