Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Running Time: 1hr 55 min – Genre: Action/Adventure
Indiana Jones Archeologist / Professor of Archeology has been asked to find the Ark of the Covenent before the Nazi’s do, now it’s a race between Indy and Belloq who is helping the Nazi find the Arc.
This is one of my favorite films of all time so I picked it.
You can never go wrong with a classic, even when I was a little boy and I heard the theme to Indiana Jones I would stop what I was doing and go running in to watch it, Something about Raiders of the Lost Ark that is just so amazing I can watch it multiple times. I grew up wanting to be like Indy. That being said here is the review.
Raiders of the Lost Ark is a classic for Speilberg and Lucas it introduces us to this brilliant, daring professor/archeologist that we all know and love. Indiana Jones, Harrison ford who while making the Indy films portrayed a scruffy looking nerf herder Han Solo, so we see him in his bold, sarcastic, brilliance as a rouge pirate basically in Star Wars…alot of Han is shown in Indy, but since it’s in a Galaxy far far away…. you can’t really compare the two, But Harrison Ford has created a staple for many to attempt and follow as the loveable, charismatic character Indiana Jones.
Karen Allen playing to me the ONLY love interest that Indy has ever had and that would be Marion a Spit-Fire brunette that can hold her own but is madly in love with Indy but keeps her guard up. I cannot see anyone else playing this character because she at the time this was created had a decent career and was very beautiful for the tom-boy next door look. If anything I could have seen her easily replace Margot Kidder as Lois Lane but that’s neither here nor there.
John Rhys- Davies also played very well as Indy’s friend that was a “Digger” for the archeologists in Cairo. He speaks english very well and honestly hearing him talk I can trace a hint of UK English in his voice which can sometimes be annoying but since some people in Cairo do go to Oxford for studying I am not really out ruling on that.
As for the plot, it’s original at its time but it felt like a chess game between Belloq and Indy, I got your prize, now I got you prize, no I got your prize, nope sorry I got your prize, HAHA neither of us get it. Kind of situation which keeps the movie rolling, but I mean the last time the Nazi’s take it from Indy…seriously enough is enough.
I did have a few quirks about the movie that annoyed me, When he’s a professor he has his glasses on, when he’s Indy he doesn’t need them… Does he think he’s Superman/Clark Kent… Daily Professor and then Treasure Hunting, Adventure seeking Archeologist by night?
The graphics were pretty cheesy but at the time they were top of the line, the stop animation of the face melt is a classic. Or when Alfred Molina gets skewered and see the fake face still jiggling with the spikes like a rubber mask it is.
Overall though for the special effects and wardrobe it all seemed to be ok for the time, looking back though as we are spoiled moving forward it’s kind of cheesy but I still love it. This is a classic you must see, you can’t miss this.
To start this review it has been many, many years since I watched this movie. It amazes me what the film industry used to consider PG in the 1980’s. If I had to rate this movie I would give it a rating of PG-13. It’s got faces melting off and heads blowing up but I guess it is a bit cheesy by today’s standards.
I must say that Harrison Ford was quite the stud muffin in his younger days and he aged rather well at that. I don’t think anybody else could have played Indiana Jones the way he did. He was quirky and when he gave his “sexy” look…the female heart just sighs. Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood was a good choice. She can drink most men under the table and isn’t above trying to save herself when Indy won’t. I have to say my favorite scene was when she climbed up Indy to get away from all of the snakes. It made me giggle because I would have done the same thing.
Now the theme song is known everywhere. I have to say it is one of the best written out there. It plays and the since of adventure fills the year. I have to say it is one of my favorites.
The script was original and super fun to watch. The dialog was easy to follow and fun to listen to.
After watching this one I’m gonna have to go back and watch the others. Maybe not the last one, but that’s a different review.
So I give this one…
Harrison Ford before he was a legend but you can tell that he was well on his way. The first installment of the Indiana Jones series still proves to be my second favorite of them all (4). What makes it come in runner up? I can tell ya!
First of all I would like to state that I was a Star Wars fan way before I was a suedo fan of Indiana Jones. As a kid I had always looked at Harrison Ford playing this boring teacher guy as something I wasn’t at all interested in. So, needless to say I had passed up Raiders of the Lost Arc the first time around. I saw bits and pieces but like I said I had no interest because Harrison was NOT Indiana he was Han. Period. Fast forward to 2014 and I’m watching Raiders not for the first time but, still it feels new in places. Karen Allen plays a formidable partner for Indy and helps drive along the story very well. Minus the fact that we never know much about their past. I guess that’s how Kasdan likes to write. He always puts that stuff in his movies (Star Wars) that reference the characters past to give them depth. Too bad he didn’t have a hand in the prequels. Ok, I know… off topic.
The flow of the movie seems to go pretty well, until the Nazi’s steal the arc after Indy had stole it back from them after they stole it from him initially which happens to be the 2nd time that we know of as an audience that Belloq steals something from Indy after he went to the trouble of getting it. Phew! It just becomes a bit “done” and honestly it gets old after awhile. Hey look kids he fighting Nazi’s for like an hour. Maybe not that long but at times it feels like it.
The movie starts off with an actor that we all know pretty well nowadays especially if you’ve seen Spider-Man 2. Alfred Molina had his big movie break here and what seems confusing to me is that he gets opening credits fanfare. I’m confused only because (spoiler) he doesn’t make it too far into the movie before he gets “stuck”.
Storywise the movie follows a pretty straightforward story. Find arc – bring it back. Don’t trust anyone because it’s going to be dangerous. Simple enough right? Well, one of the things that bothers me the most is that after Indiana Jones goes off on these dangerous artifact finds he runs into opposition that end up shooting guns, arrows and swinging swords at his face. After he makes it out alive he comes back to his teaching job and nobody ever thinks to follow him and continue their fight. It’s like he’s in a “safe” zone and I’m wondering to myself “now, why didn’t I ever notice that before?” If I were Belloq why wouldn’t I just follow Mr. Jones back to his teaching job and take him out while he is going through his lecture? Some might say “well, Belloq needs Indy to get the artifacts for him so that he can steal them from him.” To that I say, then why does Belloq try to kill Indiana every time they run into each other? Yeah, thought so. Magically delicious safe zone.
Classic soundtrack by Williams and you can feel a Star Wars influence in this movie. Directly after Empire so, it still feels thematic. Very good though. I liked it, but only second best to me. Stay tuned until next week and you might find out what comes in at number one.
Comic book Connection: Alfred Molina- Spider-Man 2
Nudity Bonus: n/a (there is a whip though…)