Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull 4K Blu-ray Review & Comments

SunnyIntervals

Well-known Member
To be fair, the whole aliens thing was a nod to the 50's obsession with sci-fi (which itself was as much about "the Reds"), so I can forgive it that, but for me what spoiled what could have been another fun Indy adventure was the sheer size of the supporting cast.

They could have all played their role at the beginning and end to bookend events, but let Indy go off and do his thing. It just felt that the writers had no faith in Ford being able to carry the film in his own. As for "Mutt", the less said the better.

I don't mind them doing a fifth; but they need to go and watch the first three and remember what makes these great films. Indiana Jones. JUST Indiana Jones.
 

4K UHD Fan

Active Member
Great movie haters need to rewatch & understand 1950s were alien themed & communist paranoia was very common :thumbsup:

Spielberg is fully to blame for this movie as he refused to make this in 1996 when ID4 hit big he decided to back away hence the massive delay between 1989-2008! it was originally called Indiana Jones & The Saucermen From Mars!!! Lucas & Spielberg between them took elements of that Jeb Stuart screenplay & other unused material (nuke fridge was partially lifted from an early BTTF1 screenplay concept!).

Also the late great Sean Connery pulled out in 2007 (Lucas assumed he would do it but Sean was happy to leave it alone!) as he was retired & no amount of money was enough to get him back so a hasty rewrite put Jim Broadbent into his role instead at short notice. Lucas later said it was ok Connery did not want to do it as his entire role was in the college not with Indy so it would have hurt audience expectations and he is right you would expect them to be together again for 1 last adventure.

Sallah turned down a greenscreen cameo at the wedding scene at the end.

Frank Darabont had a screenplay (leaked online somewhere nowadays to read virtually none of it is in KOTCS) Spielberg liked in 2006 but Lucas disliked it so they never went forward on that one.
 
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Kotatsu Neko

Well-known Member
8/10 for Crystal Skull. Brave, very brave!

I get why Lucas went for the alien stuff, on paper it seems like a perfect fit. In reality though, it just doesn't work and turns a fantasy movie into bad sci-fi. Then there's the tarzan sequence, the terrible CGI, Ford looking completely bored, the fridge sequence, every scene with Mutt in it, the list goes on. The movie is a car crash and no amount of WCG or HDR can save it.
 

lostinspace

Well-known Member
I really don't get the hatred for this movie. Why does a film about aliens go too far for some, but immortality doesn't?

It's still a romp, though I'll admit it is the weakest of the four. Last Crusade is my favourite.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
8/10 for Crystal Skull. Brave, very brave!

I get why Lucas went for the alien stuff, on paper it seems like a perfect fit. In reality though, it just doesn't work and turns a fantasy movie into bad sci-fi. Then there's the tarzan sequence, the terrible CGI, Ford looking completely bored, the fridge sequence, every scene with Mutt in it, the list goes on. The movie is a car crash and no amount of WCG or HDR can save it.

Mate, you fell for the newbie trap! I defo didn't give Crystal 8/10 lol.

And funnily enough I think I actually noted all the same criticisms in the review, although I didn't hate the fridge scene anywhere near as much as the gophers that were the nail in the coffin of that particular moment.

Totally agree on the alien stuff. Works on paper, in reality it was clunky as hell.
 

Kotatsu Neko

Well-known Member
I really don't get the hatred for this movie. Why does a film about aliens go too far for some, but immortality doesn't?

It's still a romp, though I'll admit it is the weakest of the four. Last Crusade is my favourite.

It would be like adding a flying saucer into Lord of the Rings, or a troll in 2001.

Movies create their own worlds and the rules within which the game is played. In the world of Indy ancient religious artefacts exist with their associated supernatural stuff. Yes it's complete guff but it works in the context of the genre. The fourth movie throws that away and all of a sudden we're into science fiction territory. It just jars with what has gone before.

That said it's really just one of this movie's countless failings and not even the worst one.
 

MarkusThatch

Distinguished Member
There's no getting away from it, it's a pretty terrible film and it won't be getting lifted out of the case from my copy. It's not the subject matter that's the problem, the writing is awful, the tone and attempts at humor back fire horribly. Rancid.
 
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Kotatsu Neko

Well-known Member
You could argue The Holy Grail and The Ark Of The Covenant is just as fantasy as aliens.
Of course logically speaking, but as I said, it's all about genre and tone. An archaeologist robbing tombs fits with ancient religious artefacts.

Maybe it could have worked had it been done better, we'll never know, but what we got just didn't gel.
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
Of course logically speaking, but as I said, it's all about genre and tone. An archaeologist robbing tombs fits with ancient religious artefacts.

Maybe it could have worked had it been done better, we'll never know, but what we got just didn't gel.

Completely agree.

It wasn't just the subject (which was already uncomfortably beyond the scope of Indy's established universe) but the handling.

And that goes for everything in the movie.

Have aliens? Show them too much, too stupidly, too OTT
Have swinging through trees? Do it too much, too comedically, too OTT
Have someone blown through the air by a nuke? Gophers

Even that grave scene, which had a superb classic shot of Indy standing in the mist, devolved into OTT nonsense.

There isn't an idea in this movie that wasn't taken way beyond the limit of what audiences wanted from an Indy movie. So, indeed, I genuinely believe a lot of it could have worked had they reined it in.

AND NO PORGS OR GOPHERS.
 

Jim Di Griz

Distinguished Member
It would be like adding a flying saucer into Lord of the Rings, or a troll in 2001.

Movies create their own worlds and the rules within which the game is played. In the world of Indy ancient religious artefacts exist with their associated supernatural stuff. Yes it's complete guff but it works in the context of the genre. The fourth movie throws that away and all of a sudden we're into science fiction territory. It just jars with what has gone before.

That said it's really just one of this movie's countless failings and not even the worst one.

A troll you say? Troll 2?! :clap:
 

Evinger

Distinguished Member
Thanks Cas. Had managed to wipe most of this out of my brain. Now the Gophers are back.
 

Evinger

Distinguished Member
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JohnnyMN

Active Member
Completely agree.

It wasn't just the subject (which was already uncomfortably beyond the scope of Indy's established universe) but the handling.

And that goes for everything in the movie.

Have aliens? Show them too much, too stupidly, too OTT
Have swinging through trees? Do it too much, too comedically, too OTT
Have someone blown through the air by a nuke? Gophers

Even that grave scene, which had a superb classic shot of Indy standing in the mist, devolved into OTT nonsense.

There isn't an idea in this movie that wasn't taken way beyond the limit of what audiences wanted from an Indy movie. So, indeed, I genuinely believe a lot of it could have worked had they reined it in.

AND NO PORGS OR GOPHERS.
Omg I forgot about the Tarzan scene! :rotfl:
 

bmwracer

Member
Granted, it's my least favorite of the Indy films, but I'd take it over any of the Die Hard sequels after Die Hard 2.
 

4K UHD Fan

Active Member
So much of KOTCS is fantastic though compared to the Disney SW Trilogy its quality is Lawrence Of Arabia level!

Fans are just way too picky :p that is why no more Lucas + Spielberg Indy 5 they both had enough of picky fans (I bet they are both consulting & executive producing hands on though behind the scenes!)! Lets hope James Mangold can wrangle something worthy out of the Indy 5 concept they are filming this week in NE England & Pinewood for most of the shoot!

Elvis singing over the main titles with the 1950s teens hot rod racing the commie vehicles. Great dynamic camera moves as well gives you such subtle little clues of what is about to unfold.

Indy shadow reveal from the car trunk.

Indy in the Area 51 warehouse briefly seeing the Ark again.

Indy in the Area 51 warehouse using the metal shotgun pellets to locate the magnetic Crystal Skull Alien.

Rocket Sled sequence & fight with the commies getting melted by the engine ignition.

Nuke Town sequence. Great 1950s nostalgia ending with a shocking detonation but such classic Indy images looking at the mushroom cloud in the distance.

Escaping in the fridge is no better or worse than surviving the raft drop from the plane in TOD, climbing up from under the truck in ROTLA, surviving the plane crash in TLC! All of these have a low survival rate but Indy being Indy can survive as its pure 1940s serial escapism!

Bill Halley playing in the diner when the teens fight!

So much of the film just works as intended & designed its a pretty stunning achievement to give it such a strong authentic 1950s alien-communist paranoia flavour over 50 years later.

Too bad so many fans pick on the lesser aspects rather than celebrate what did work really well! :facepalm:
 

Casimir Harlow

Blu-ray Reviewer
So much of KOTCS is fantastic though compared to the Disney SW Trilogy its quality is Lawrence Of Arabia level!

Fans are just way too picky :p that is why no more Lucas + Spielberg Indy 5 they both had enough of picky fans (I bet they are both consulting & executive producing hands on though behind the scenes!)! Lets hope James Mangold can wrangle something worthy out of the Indy 5 concept they are filming this week in NE England & Pinewood for most of the shoot!

Elvis singing over the main titles with the 1950s teens hot rod racing the commie vehicles. Great dynamic camera moves as well gives you such subtle little clues of what is about to unfold.

Indy shadow reveal from the car trunk.

Indy in the Area 51 warehouse briefly seeing the Ark again.

Indy in the Area 51 warehouse using the metal shotgun pellets to locate the magnetic Crystal Skull Alien.

Yes, using shot was great. Gunpowder clouds? Not so much.
Full reveal of crystal skull? Too much, should have left the mystery (like with the Ark)

Rocket Sled sequence & fight with the commies getting melted by the engine ignition.

Nuke Town sequence. Great 1950s nostalgia ending with a shocking detonation but such classic Indy images looking at the mushroom cloud in the distance.

Escaping in the fridge is no better or worse than surviving the raft drop from the plane in TOD, climbing up from under the truck in ROTLA, surviving the plane crash in TLC! All of these have a low survival rate but Indy being Indy can survive as its pure 1940s serial escapism!

Actually didn't mind it. But GOPHERS!!! Really, that's five steps too far.

Bill Halley playing in the diner when the teens fight!

So much of the film just works as intended & designed its a pretty stunning achievement to give it such a strong authentic 1950s alien-communist paranoia flavour over 50 years later.

Too bad so many fans pick on the lesser aspects rather than celebrate what did work really well! :facepalm:

I think a lot could work well, but they go too far. All the ideas are pretty good, but their execution is questionable at best.
 

WhyDoIBother

Active Member
It's a pity the prequel trilogy didn't make it obvious to Spielberg (and Ridley Scott for that matter) that mavericks of the 70s and 80s really shouldn't return to their glory days and think CGI could cover up their lack of effort. We should all be grateful back then directors were held back by practical effects which in turn helped keep them a bit more grounded in physical reality.

This film just felt slightly off from the start and only got worse with very few glimmers of what made the first 3 great. Could barely stand any of the characters regardless of the calibre of the cast. I didn't mind the alien/red scare theme due to the time it was set in but it just seemed so badly handled it was borderline unwatchable at times, particuarly the finale.

Not as bad an experience as Phantom Menace but still a big disappointment when films that heavily riff off the originals such as the Mummy (1999) are more cohesive and enjoyable than actual canon.

Both the billionaires running the show had fallen up their own backsides by this time and were taking the audience that made them for granted. 'You will gladly pay and enjoy this plebs or it's your fault for being x,y or z' - an attitude Hollywood has taken and run with and could possibly die by...

With the state of Hollywood right now Indy V is all but destined to be worse than this, probably be titled 'Indiana Jones the Bad White Parent Leaving His Other Kids at Woodstock in a Drug Fueled Haze Only to be Corrected By A Middle Class Over Educated Woman That's Only Ever Read About Life From A Book But Is Stunning And Brave' and then we'll all be begging for 'Indiana Jones and the Raider of the Lost Ark'. o_O

Steelbook boxset turned up yesterday evening and I have to say it looks like the design had as much thought put into it as this film did - If the bland orange tones weren't bad enough they even messed with the iconic font, loosing the drop shadow and changing the gradient - blasphemers!

Hoping there will be a single release with original artwork for first three films so I can punt this cash in...

Unless the kids want to watch the Crystal Skull the chances of the disc ever seeing the inside of my player are slim to none, more than happy to take Cas's word that this film looks and sounds stunning but remains every bit as crap as I remember!
 

4K UHD Fan

Active Member
First Indy 5 pictures are up from Friday night shooting do not click if you want to remain spoiler free all I will say is WOW the image is very similar to a very well loved & famous movie from the early 1960s :clap: if this is where they are heading story wise its a good sign!
 

SunnyIntervals

Well-known Member
I'll pick these up individually later in the year, the first three anyway..

I don't want to write off the next one before I've even seen it. I hope the team behind it will do a better job, and rekindle some of the magic.
 

Stepalex

Member
Phantom Menace
Phantom Menace was actually good when it came out (whole new era, best music score and best sword fight of all Star Wars etc), and looking back at its legacy (this whole Droids-Clone Wars era) it actually has become even more appreciated since release - even before the absolutely pathetic and awful Disney fan-fic.

Indy 4 was absolutely awful upon release though, and with it's reliance on CGI which looked poor back then, I can't even make myself rewatch it as it should fare much worse in 2021.
 

WhyDoIBother

Active Member
Phantom Menace was actually good when it came out (whole new era, best music score and best sword fight of all Star Wars etc)
Must've been a different Phantom Menace, the one I saw in 1999 had none of that and has aged terribly. ;)

Indy 4 was absolutely awful upon release though, and with it's reliance on CGI which looked poor back then, I can't even make myself rewatch it as it should fare much worse in 2021.

Indy 4 and Phantom Menace are perfectly interchangeable here. Though I'd maybe add 'complete' reliance on CGI for TPM :)

Agree with Disney fan-fic but then they never had a plot to lose only an agenda to push. :smashin:
 

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