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Awake In The Dark
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:16 PM   #16
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Here's a reply I posted over at DVXuser

Okay - just got back from seeing it for the 2nd time. Probably the one time I've seen the same movie twice in 12 hours. First with my buddy from high school whom I sluffed with to see Last Crusade and second to take my wife.

I've got a lot of mixed feelings as Raiders was THE film that made me want to work in the film industry, first as an fx artist, gravitated to camera / editing and now is ending up with screenwriting ;)

Overall I have to say the second time around was much better and I watched it for pure entertainment, hokey as it is and while being less critical the second time around, it made for a more enjoyable experience.

Was it sequel that should have been made. I'd have to say no, but 19 years later, it is what it is and they could have done a much worse job with it.

Where to start... I'd have to blame Uncle George "The Flanneled One" at the get go. He just doesn't know when to say when. He's run the SW franchise into a complete farse of its original self and the same can be said with Indy 4, although not nearly as awful as the SW prequels were. You can thank Spielberg for that one. I liken George Lucas to a crazy old inventor. The kindof guy that comes up with some really great and briliant ideas but once the idea is on paper, you kindly take him by the hand and lead him to a closet where you can lock him away during the next few months / years or he'll just get in the way and ruin things more. I've done video work for 3 inventors and they're all cut from the same cloth. In fact I think Harold Oxley in Indy 4 was a character based on Lucas. That's about how wacked out he is at this point and I think I can safely say most of the more silly and far out ideas / scenes in the new film are a result of his not being locked long enough in the closet.

Spielberg... I still think the guy is a great and talented director. There isn't anyone that has worked with him that would say otherwise. Spielberg was born to direct. Aside from AI and War of the Worlds, I have enjoyed every one of Spielberg's films, but like the best of the best, everyone has a bad story or two in them. I don't think Spielberg purposely set out to ruin Indy 4 but I feel that there was a sense of "Let's play again this one last time." It was very obvious that this was a fun film for them to do and very tongue-in-cheek, however I think it's a sign that Spielberg has indeed grown up and adventure to him now is not the adventure we grew to love in the 80's. I still think he has some wonderful films left in his career and I'm very much looking for ward to Lincoln being one of his greatest landmark films yet to come.

Ford... Ya gotta love the guy still. He's cantakerous and officially a senior citizen but he played Indy as a 65 year old and did a pretty good job with it. I think Ford's biggest problem was that the script just wasn't as polished as it needed to be. But Indy was back in character and Ford after 19 years did a wonderful job in the role. We'll see what's to come, I about laughed myself silly after watching his last fight in Firewall. Indy 4 redeemed him a bit regardless of his age.

Koepp.. I think he's a good screenwriter. Is he a brilliant screenwriter? Not sure I'd go that far but he's got a good track record for the most part. His biggest problem script IMO, War of the Worlds, another Spielberg film. Another I didn't like? Lost World: Jurassic Park, another Spielberg film. Both of them lacked any serious character development and became mostly forgotten films. I see the same with Indy 4. There's so much going on there just isn't time to really develop the new and returning characters like I feel he should of. The Russians were as wooden as any Indy baddie and there was just so much mixed about it really came across muddled by the time it was shot and edited. I will give Dave Koepp the benefit of the doubt though and that's the fact that this script has been in more hands than a cheap whore and isn't really any fault of the writer more the guy who kept passing it around until HE felt it was right and that was George Lucas who hasn't been a good storyteller since about 1981. After that, the third parts of both the SW and Indy trilogies were very much a retelling of the first in the series. A sign that he was running out of material fast.

Cinematography - I have great admiration for Janusz Kaminski and have had the priviledge to interview him. He's a brilliant DP and he knows his craft. I don't believe he was the right artist to paint this Indy canvas though. It just didn't fit. Nor was it his best work and I feel he wasn't quite in his element with this film. He and Steven very much have a non-verbal and very visual way of communicating on set and I think that relationship will keep Janusz shooting everyone of Steven's films regardless of if he's the right man for the job or not.

As for the other issues, effects, goofy scenes... you can pretty much just put Lucas to blame for those. I think ILM is not near the powerhouse they used to be and most of their stuff now looks inferior to many of the other post / fx houses now.

Well.. that's all I have to say about that. All in all, it was a fun, popcorn flick and sure a nice change from all of the recent more crappy sequels to other franchises.

cheno
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:31 PM   #17
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Hey guys, I've changed the title of this thread, since the movie it out now. It's open for spoiler discussion.

I saw it yesterday, didn't expect too much and enjoyed it.

Except for the whole CE3K ending... What the f--k....
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Old May 24th, 2008, 09:41 PM   #18
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Wow
I am not sure I want to see it based on all the reviews I have read. I was planning to see it for years. Lucas almost ruined Star Wars for me and I was a BIG BIG BIG fan of IJ movies-saw them a few times in the theater(and still have tons of merchandise lol). I especially liked the religious artifacts and fantasy mixed in with stunts.

From the moment I heard of the aliens I didnt like it. Its an an odd mix for an archaeologist and even if its in keeping with 50s serials it has been done and done and done(Alien VS predator, X Files you name it).
In fact it was said that Lucas had the idea since the early 90s and Ford and Spielberg disliked it--but Lucas wouldnt give up and it got to the point where they either did his story or nothing.
That wasnt a good sign.

I kind of figured Spielberg would be full into it, but I agree with the sentiments about Spielberg "growing up." I think its a conscious decision on his part not to be fully engaged in these summer movies anymore. Leaving things somewhat sloppy(LW's unloaded guns, ship crews vanishing without a trace).
Starting with the Lost World(although I felt it was very much like a matinee serial adventure and John Williams score had a 60s jungle vibe to it--plus some dark humor and nasty irony I never associated with Spielberg.).

LW, AI, War or the Worlds and Minority Report were all darker in tone that what he used to do.

Its too bad. Mask of Zorro had some great old fashioned stunts and energy and wasnt Spielberg a producer on that?


I think I'll leave it at Last Crusade and IJ riding off into the sunset.

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Old May 24th, 2008, 10:05 PM   #19
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The alien story on itself isn't what's wrong with the movie. They could've made a good Indy movie of it.

It's the script, the execution, the level of humor, the interaction between characters, the dialogue, the action sequences, the CGI, the structure...
THAT'S what's wrong with Indy4.
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Old May 31st, 2008, 09:18 AM   #20
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Cate Blanchett talking to her agent:

CB: So, is there one line that sums up my character?
Agent: Yes, you shake your fist and yell 'Jones!!!!!!!'
CB: Uh-huh. So will there be a dialog coach to perfect my Russian accent?
Agent: Well, Spielberg is sending you all the Rocky and Bullwinkle episodes on dvd. He wants to pay attention to Natasha.
CB: OK.... right. So there are scads of money involved, right?
Agent: Scads and scads.
CB: Fine, I"m in.
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Old May 31st, 2008, 09:45 AM   #21
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Got around to seeing it.

It's marginally better than "Temple of Doom".

That's the best thing about it.


Script was really awkward. Lots and lots of forced exposition. Had to jam too much 'well, here's what's happened in the last twenty years' into a couple of lines of dialogue. I think they could have actually left some of that out, given us a couple of cryptic inferences - Simply calling him "Colonel Jones" and leaving us to guess the rest - that sort of thing.

CG was okay, not great.

Inside jokes aplenty, enough to keep all fanboys happy.

Ford was terrific being Ford. God bless him.

Frankly, I don't think there was enough 'meat' to the plot. I could have done without the extended jungle chase/fight. I mean, we already had one running fight scene on the motorcycle... so the signature action sequence had already been addressed.

I had fun, enjoyed it, I'm sure it'll make a boatload of money. Good on them.
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Old June 2nd, 2008, 04:02 PM   #22
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Just saw it today, i'm a big fan of indie and i did my absolute best to like this film.....i looked the other way with the atom bomb fridge survival but they lost me with mutt swinging through the trees with a monkey army. And by the time i got to the end and saw the alien flying saucer i was just so dissapointed with how much cgi they used not to mention the ludacris stunts and story line.....no doubt Lucas pouring poison into spielbergs ear.

Andy.
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Old June 5th, 2008, 04:38 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy Graham View Post
Just saw it today, i'm a big fan of indie and i did my absolute best to like this film.....i looked the other way with the atom bomb fridge survival but they lost me with mutt swinging through the trees with a monkey army. And by the time i got to the end and saw the alien flying saucer i was just so dissapointed with how much cgi they used not to mention the ludacris stunts and story line.....no doubt Lucas pouring poison into spielbergs ear.

Andy.
Actually I think you're wrong on this one. Lucas' original concept was shot down. Koepp is Spielberg's guy, and the "Fridge" scene was something from an early draft of Back To The Future where the time machine was a Fridge instead of a DeLorean and they needed a nuke to power it for the return trip.

Car racing? That was Lucas-esque, but the prairie dogs and monkeys? Spielberg all the way. And even the CGI was "Spielbergian" rather than Lucas-style. The whole ending had so much CGI (even the wedding looked like it had been color corrected to death) it reeked of Spielberg. (think about how War of the Worlds and even Minority Report are so desaturated and grainy). That saucer didn't look like a Lucas saucer.

(I'm not a Lucas lover by any stretch...I walked out of Phantom Menace with a hollow feeling in my gut, but you gotta give the credit where it's due here). Spielberg was the director.
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Old June 5th, 2008, 05:48 AM   #24
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Fair enough , i was just guessing considering lucas has ruined star wars for me with those abominations. Im trying to erase the kingdom of the crystal skull from my memory........indie ended when he rode into the sunset with sean connery.

I think they're systematically destroying every film i loved when i was a kid, they're gonna soil the lost boys and i heard he was talking about doing a goonies 2

Spielberg......step away from the goonies

Someone has spiked the water in hollywood.

Andy.
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