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This article is from our archives and has not been updated and integrated with our "new" site yet... Even so, it's still awesome - so keep reading!

Published on Thu, May 22, 2008

By: The LACar Editorial Staff


INDY'S WILD RIDE By John Grafman and Shani Grafman A fedora, a whip and an all too knowing smirk. Couple this with John Williams' brilliant score and you know you are in for an adventure with Indiana Jones. After 19 long years Steven Spielberg gives us another installment of his iconic character with "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull."

The Nazis have been replaced with cold war Russians, but the Crystal Skull touches on what we love best about this series - good versus bad, car chases, action scenes and a healthy dose of suspension of disbelief. This time we catch up with Indy (Harrison Ford) in 1957 and yes he has aged in real time, well real movie time. The opening scene of teenagers challenging U.S. Army men into a drag race down a long empty dirt road lets you know that you are in for a great ride Indy as usual has gotten himself into a bit of trouble not only with the U.S. government, the Russians, but also with the university where he is a professor. Just when he decides to take the next train out of town, along comes Mutt Williams (Shia LaBeouf), a greaser reminiscent of Brando in The Wild One. Mutt quickly ropes Indy into his plan to find and save his mom Marion Ravenwood (Karen Allen) and their friend Professor Oxley (John Hurt) who are kidnapped in South America. Meanwhile, the Russians led by Irina Spalko (Cate Blanchett) have decided that the Crystal Skull artifact will unlock the great mysteries of the universe and Oxley is the only one that can be their guide.

The chase sequences provide an added dose of adrenaline, as one would expect in an Indiana Jones film. One such sequence is every kid's dream, and it takes place between Mutt and the adventuresome archeologist/college professor Indiana on a motorcycle while the Russians are in hot pursuit, albeit on four wheeled transportation. The brisk tango ends with Mutt and Indy on the floor of the university library. A lengthy episode finds the entire group of principles riding through the dense Amazon jungle jumping back and forth between military vehicles, sword fighting on the trucks and cars, and getting a little wet - in a duck of course. And, as with all Indiana Jones movies, Indy overcomes and you are left with a feeling of exhilaration. Spielberg does what he does best so don't be surprised when you see some of the same tricks, gimmicks and themes that you have seen in his other movies. He also throws in some winks to those of us who have seen the other three installments. Though the movie is 124 minutes long you are never once looking at your watch or feeling as if the movie is dragging. It is, after all, an Indiana Jones movie.

For more information go to Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull - (PG-13)

Indiana Jones: Harrison Ford Mutt Williams: Shiva Libelous Marion Ravenswood: Karen Allen Professor Oxley: John Hurt Irena Salk: Cater Blanched Mac: Ray Winston

Director: Steven Spielberg Screenplay: David Keep Story by George Lucas and Jeff Nathanson Producer: Frank Marshall Executive Producer: George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy

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