Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)
Dir: Steven Spielberg
I started the year with a trilogy of George Lucas produced films starring Harrison Ford, and here we go again!
It’s been over 3 years since I saw ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’, and to be honest, I wasn’t much impressed. However, I’m now going back to the original three Indiana Jones films as I’ve been assured that they’re much better. According to my friend Quentin, “1 excellent, 2 ok, 3 brilliant, 4 pretty awful” I agreed with his review of the fourth, and I think I could go along with ‘Raiders’ being ‘excellent’ too!
So far, this is echoing my thoughts of Star Wars, that they’re really good as a bit of fun, just an enjoyable bit of action and adventure. ‘Raiders’ was written by Lawrence Kasdan with George Lucas, exactly the same pairing as ‘Episodes V’ & ‘VI’ of Star Wars, but now with the brilliant addition of Mr Steven Spielberg. I think I’ll save my detailed views of Spielberg for another film, but for now, suffice to say that I think he does family entertainment very well, and ‘Raiders’ moves along at a good pace to keep you well awake.
The real strength of the film is that although the plot is overloaded, there are some great performances to enjoy and hold your attention. Harrison Ford is very good, and makes a distinct enough change from being Han Solo. The villains are nicely villainous, especially some very creepy Nazis. Then John Rhys-Davies and Karen Allen fill the needed roles of comic friend and love interest respectively, yet both have a little extra to them and offer more than just token roles.
By the end it is neatly set up for more, Indie is far from hanging up his whip and hat just yet!