Jones-ah! Mr. Jones-ah!

A guy who knows a guy who’s on the Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull team has passed along #2′s impressions of the finished film. I’m not 100% comfortable running them, given the obvious fact that #2 is a coward, cowering like an eight year-old girl behind the creased khaki slacks of #1, as well as a shill and a spinner, but here goes anyway:


Bondage & discipline: Cate Blanchett‘s Agent Spalko

“I felt compelled to write, having just read Anne Thompson‘s 4.17 Variety column which states that ‘the advance buzz on Indy 4 is getting damaging enough that Lucas and Spielberg may want to reconsider the current strategy of waiting until May 18 to show the film…that’s a long way off.’
Composer John Williams, Guy #2 says, was initially correct on the Indy 4 running time of 140 minutes, but the film “underwent belt tightening and has been receiving customary tweaking for its final mix.”
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull “is the best of the Indy sequels,” he declares. “Steven Spielberg‘s helming puts the imitators (The Mummy, National Treasure) to shame. There are many breakneck set pieces, with a protracted jungle chase being particularly memorable. As well as being evocative of the truck chase from the first movie.
Harrison Ford, he claims, “gives his best performance in the role, not only physically belying his age but layering in welcome poignancy. More than before, audiences will be rooting for Indy. Shia LaBeouf makes essential contributions. Chemistry between he and Ford is palpable, yielding some nice character comedy.
“Jones is particularly beleaguered throughout the adventure, making his predicaments all the more entertaining.
“The film has the strongest supporting cast of the sequels. They all raise the bar. Ray Winstone amuses and fascinates, but the strongest impression is left by Cate Blanchett‘s Agent Spalko, a characterization that achieves instant cult status.
“Hopefully, the surprises in this film can continue to be guarded. Eventually, these spoilers will get out, but it would be shameful for reviewers and bloggers to reveal an ending that any longtime diehard fan of the films could only dream about. Expect a particularly resounding reaction in the theater.
“Kudos to screenwriter David Koepp for pulling all this together on the page. This will easily be the biggest hit of the year.”

104 thoughts on “Jones-ah! Mr. Jones-ah!

  1. Why do I get the feeling that whatever marvelous surprises this film might have will be spoiled here and elsewhere throughout the Internet long before opening day. I hope I am proven wrong, but…

  2. Nothing on Karen Allen?
    That’s the one piece of casting I”m dying to hear more about. It’s too cool to have Marion back in the action.

  3. Amen. Right there with you, Joe. I’ll be avoiding all articles entitled “Indy….” from here on in.
    I guess I’ll be the one to take the bait…. why is #2 considered a “coward” for wanting to remain anonymous?
    Uhhhggg… why do I ask “why” anymore?

  4. This reads like a typical Harry Knowles fanboy knobjob review. If you’re inclined to suck back whatever Spielberg and Lucas serve up time after time, of course you’ll go bonkers for Indy 4. How many bullshit positive reviews did I read about the insufferable Star Wars Episodes II and III?

  5. Negative buzz didn’t hurt TPM, and won’t hurt Indy 4. (At least in terms of opening weekends.)
    I’m not sure why age should be brought up in the script in the first place, though. I was fine with Connery’s performance in the last one, and that had to do with his relationship to the lead, not the generation gap. Also, Agent Spaiko is not a Russian name, and “cult” is the last term I’d want to be used in association with a tent-pole film.

  6. I’m also not sure why Anne Thompson thinks an early screening of The Da Vinci Code “backfired”, since it didn’t impact the box office one bit. P.S. It came out two years ago, not one year ago, Anne.

  7. If this ran on AICN, the fanboys would be screaming plant. Judging from first paragraph, it sure sounds like damage control to me.
    So, John Williams was right about the 140 minute running time just a few weeks ago, but now since then they’ve cut out 20 whole minutes? That’s a big chunk of change. Belt tightening is right.
    And yes, Joe is 100% correct. Now that Jeffrey knows that the film has a surprise ending, he will move heaven and earth to learn it and post it here. And he will do so in the opening paragraph of the post. You have been warned.

  8. HE acknowledgments: (a) Obviously losing 20 minutes off a 140-minute cut (one seventh of the initial running time) constitutes a massive belt-tightening and is therefore suspect, but if it wasn’t 140 or something close to that why did John Williams say on that YouTube video that it was “7 reels [at] 20 minutes each”? Even if you’re talking a shorter seventh reel the earlier length had to have been at least close to that; (b) Of course this opinion reads like studio plant material (which is why I set it up with words like coward and shill), but I couldn’t resist the mention of the alleged surprise ending; and (c) I will not divulge or even hint at any surprise ending particulars — I have never done anything like that except for that glancing allusion to Llewelyn Moss’s fate in my recorded discussion with Ethan Coen about same at Cannes last May, and I therefore resent the “uh-oh… watchout” comments from the likes of Joe Leydon and others.

  9. “Hey, you’re that guy that f*cked the pie!” An old piece of HE reportage, but a goody.
    I wasn’t casting any aspersions on your original reporting of John Williams’ quote. I was suggesting that maybe they did lop out that much at the last minute, and if so, the movie’s in bigger trouble than anyone imagined.
    In any event, I like stuff like this as long as it’s clear that we understand the leak in question is a studio spin monkey.

  10. Peanut Gallery to HE: you “resent” Leydon’s comment??? It was only two days ago you were name-calling (remember “whiney”?) the non-spoiler crowd, so you will excuse us if we know from experience that as soon as you find out about some big twist you will be wink-wink, nudge-nudging with ADD glee wanting to give it away.
    Or perhaps you’re just jealous that Leydon got that mention from Seth Rogen on the KNOCKED UP commentary?

  11. How many bullshit positive reviews did I read about the insufferable Star Wars Episodes II and III?
    people give lucas too much shit.
    The movies were not his literal creation.
    they were based of off serial space adventures.
    and bad lead casting certainly didn’t help.

  12. People give Lucas too much shit?
    Bad lead casting or not, Hayden Christensen is a decent actor, as are Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor etc… but for some reason they all turned in wooden (to say the least) performances.
    Who wrote the scripts? Who directed the actors? Who decided to shoot nearly the entire film on green screen? Who invented Jar Jar Binks? Who decided to go with some of the worst voice over acting I’ve ever seen (Androids and non-human characters) in Episodes I – III? Who decided that he couldn’t leave well enough alone and destroyed the magic and mystery that made the original Star Wars films so good.
    I’m not one of those fanboys that rant about George Lucas raping my childhood, but those new Star Wars films fail completely on multiple levels.
    George Lucas hasn’t made a good film in years, he deserves exactly the amount of shit he gets and fans of the Indiana Jones series have every reason to be wary after the Star Wars prequel disasters.

  13. Does noone remember that these crystal skulls were the premise for the crappy Phantom movie with Billy Zane? They were trying to find them beofre Treat Williams and the other treasure hunters did for world dominatioin. Super lame for speilberg and lucas.

  14. “Who wrote the scripts? Who directed the actors? Who decided to shoot nearly the entire film on green screen? Who invented Jar Jar Binks?”
    Actually, Lucas reportedly received a Tom Stoppard-assist on the EPISODE III script (just like he did on LAST CRUSADE), and Jonathan Hales did the rewrites on EPISODE II.
    (And Zane’s THE PHANTOM could’ve used a bit more James Remar, but I digress)

  15. That’s a pretty thin hair you’re trying to split. The buck stops with the director, especially with a control freak like Lucas.

  16. How many bullshit positive reviews did I read about the insufferable Star Wars Episodes II and III?

    people give lucas too much shit.
    The movies were not his literal creation.
    they were based of off serial space adventures.
    and bad lead casting certainly didn’t help.

  17. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 10:33 AM
    Bad lead casting or not, Hayden Christensen is a decent actor, as are Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor etc… but for some reason they all turned in wooden (to say the least) performances.
    that guy is a decent actor. decent being the key word.
    and i don’t know if you ‘ve ever acted before or are familar with direction at all..but it’s often the lead who sets the tone.
    there have been many a movie where the script sucked, but the lead gives such a dedicated performance, he makes everyone else put their best foot foward.
    and also-alot of those serials often have wooden performances.
    so you really can’t comment on this movie like regular movies, if the director is going for a certain feel.
    Who wrote the scripts? Who directed the actors? Who decided to shoot nearly the entire film on green screen? Who invented Jar Jar Binks?
    well..technically.. he didn’t invent him.
    have you ever seen those republic serials?
    a lot of them have characters like jar jar.
    now, in those serials(as in stuff like flash gordon-directly portrayed there-ming the merciless)
    the villains were thinly veiled or completely racist characters.
    I think with Jar Jar he just wanted a sidekick.
    Who decided to go with some of the worst voice over acting I’ve ever seen (Androids and non-human characters) in Episodes I – III? Who decided that he couldn’t leave well enough alone and destroyed the magic and mystery that made the original Star Wars films so good.
    uhh..he needed the money.
    he said it himself in a charlie rose interview.
    and also, when you have prequels..it’s probably not going to be as interesting because you have to set everything up.
    the only reason the original three were good was because everything was set up so you could just have fun and explore with the characters.
    I’m not one of those fanboys that rant about George Lucas raping my childhood, but those new Star Wars films fail completely on multiple levels.
    again-see above comment.
    George Lucas hasn’t made a good film in years, he deserves exactly the amount of shit he gets and fans of the Indiana Jones series have every reason to be wary after the Star Wars prequel disasters.
    again.
    see above above comment.

  18. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 10:33 AM
    George Lucas hasn’t made a good film in years, he deserves exactly the amount of shit he gets and fans of the Indiana Jones series have every reason to be wary after the Star Wars prequel disasters.
    well, of course he hasn’t.
    he’s been turning out indiana jones crap for the majority of the 90s as well as overseeing a lot of star wars crap.
    you guys said he was a control freak, right?
    so wouldn’t he be in charge of all that?
    you really can’t judge the guy as a filmmaker, if he is running a business as well.
    let’s look at what he has done beside star wars-
    american graffiti and thx1138.
    AG wasn’t bad,right?
    it was actually pretty tender.
    -well, he didn’t write the script-
    ok, well, he did direct it,right?
    and how about thx1138?
    impressive,yes?
    but weirder than hell, right?
    an that’s why he doesn’t make movies.
    no one will really see them.
    he’s like one of those artsy guys who paints homless clowns for money because he knows they will sell, and paints like indian massacres,etc for himself and doesn’t sell them, because he knows no one wants to buy them.

  19. I think with Jar Jar he just wanted a sidekick.
    let me add-
    and yes he was probably going for one of those old fashioned types of sidekicks who are most of the time,pretty racist..but when you are going for a certain feel..you just don’t really think about those things.. you are just trying to get everything to fit.

  20. “you really can’t comment on this movie like regular movies, if the director is going for a certain feel.”
    What they felt like were three shitty movies based entirely on over-produced CGI.
    Sorry for pissing in your C3PO’s buddy, why don’t you go pour yourself another bowl and work on your argument because that one

  21. Who decided to go with some of the worst voice over acting I’ve ever seen (Androids and non-human characters) in Episodes I – III?
    they aren’t reciting Hamlet.
    they’re mostly there to move the story along.
    and (my guess) is he is putting them there only to satisfy the fans who like seeing those types of characters.
    android?
    seriously?
    who?
    c-3po?
    I think I know what you mean…some of his reading is kinda off..
    but i think it’s mostly due to the “newness” of the sequels.
    also-he did have his brain erased..

  22. Monument [TypeKey Profile Page] says …
    “you really can’t comment on this movie like regular movies, if the director is going for a certain feel.”
    What they felt like were three shitty movies based entirely on over-produced CGI.
    Sorry for pissing in your C3PO’s buddy, why don’t you go pour yourself another bowl and work on your argument because that one
    that’s all you are going to comment on?
    c’mon, I put forth a more crappier argument right?
    I don’t know if you ever seen the behind the scenes on SW, but they were a little difficult to work on.
    cgi was a freaking life saver.
    if not, cgi, what would you like?

  23. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 04:59 PM
    …and CGI now that I think about it.
    when cgi came out, it was a godsend.
    the ability to full create worlds and effects beyond what anyone had seen.
    and it was a beautiful thing.
    however, in recent times, it has been over used.
    the fast and the furious,every big action movie in recent years, and to some extent star wars.
    i did love the sequels though.
    I enjoyed the craftsmanship that came with the originals from the sets to the effects..it did kind of add a human element to the whole world..but it’s probably cheaper with cgi. and a whole lot easier.

  24. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 10:33 AM
    Bad lead casting or not, Hayden Christensen is a decent actor, as are Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor etc… but for some reason they all turned in wooden (to say the least) performances.

    that guy is a decent actor. decent being the key word.
    and i don’t know if you ‘ve ever acted before or are familar with direction at all..but it’s often the lead who sets the tone.
    there have been many a movie where the script sucked, but the lead gives such a dedicated performance, he makes everyone else put their best foot foward.
    and also-alot of those serials often have wooden performances.
    so you really can’t comment on this movie like regular movies, if the director is going for a certain feel.

    Who wrote the scripts? Who directed the actors? Who decided to shoot nearly the entire film on green screen? Who invented Jar Jar Binks?

    well..technically.. he didn’t invent him.
    have you ever seen those republic serials?
    a lot of them have characters like jar jar.
    now, in those serials(as in stuff like flash gordon-directly portrayed there-ming the merciless)
    the villains were thinly veiled or completely racist characters.
    I think with Jar Jar he just wanted a sidekick.

    Who decided to go with some of the worst voice over acting I’ve ever seen (Androids and non-human characters) in Episodes I – III? Who decided that he couldn’t leave well enough alone and destroyed the magic and mystery that made the original Star Wars films so good.

    uhh..he needed the money.
    he said it himself in a charlie rose interview.
    and also, when you have prequels..it’s probably not going to be as interesting because you have to set everything up.
    the only reason the original three were good was because everything was set up so you could just have fun and explore with the characters.

    I’m not one of those fanboys that rant about George Lucas raping my childhood, but those new Star Wars films fail completely on multiple levels.

    again-see above comment.

    George Lucas hasn’t made a good film in years, he deserves exactly the amount of shit he gets and fans of the Indiana Jones series have every reason to be wary after the Star Wars prequel disasters.

    again.
    see above above comment.

  25. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 10:33 AM
    George Lucas hasn’t made a good film in years, he deserves exactly the amount of shit he gets and fans of the Indiana Jones series have every reason to be wary after the Star Wars prequel disasters.

    well, of course he hasn’t.
    he’s been turning out indiana jones crap for the majority of the 90s as well as overseeing a lot of star wars crap.
    you guys said he was a control freak, right?
    so wouldn’t he be in charge of all that?

    you really can’t judge the guy as a filmmaker, if he is running a business as well.
    let’s look at what he has done beside star wars-
    american graffiti and thx1138.

    AG wasn’t bad,right?
    it was actually pretty tender.
    -well, he didn’t write the script-
    ok, well, he did direct it,right?

    and how about thx1138?
    impressive,yes?
    but weirder than hell, right?

    an that’s why he doesn’t make movies.
    no one will really see them.
    he’s like one of those artsy guys who paints homless clowns for money because he knows they will sell, and paints like indian massacres,etc for himself and doesn’t sell them, because he knows no one wants to buy them.

  26. I think with Jar Jar he just wanted a sidekick.

    let me add-
    and yes he was probably going for one of those old fashioned types of sidekicks who are most of the time,pretty racist..but when you are going for a certain feel..you just don’t really think about those things.. you are just trying to get everything to fit.

  27. Who decided to go with some of the worst voice over acting I’ve ever seen (Androids and non-human characters) in Episodes I – III?

    they aren’t reciting Hamlet.
    they’re mostly there to move the story along.
    and (my guess) is he is putting them there only to satisfy the fans who like seeing those types of characters.
    android?
    seriously?
    who?
    c-3po?
    I think I know what you mean…some of his reading is kinda off..
    but i think it’s mostly due to the “newness” of the sequels.
    also-he did have his brain erased..

  28. Monument [TypeKey Profile Page] says …

    “you really can’t comment on this movie like regular movies, if the director is going for a certain feel.”

    What they felt like were three shitty movies based entirely on over-produced CGI.

    Sorry for pissing in your C3PO’s buddy, why don’t you go pour yourself another bowl and work on your argument because that one

    that’s all you are going to comment on?
    c’mon, I put forth a more crappier argument right?

    I don’t know if you ever seen the behind the scenes on SW, but they were a little difficult to work on.
    cgi was a freaking life saver.
    if not, cgi, what would you like?

  29. I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.

  30. Posted by D.Z. at April 21, 2008 08:53 PM
    I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.
    I guess I was different.
    I liked that movie.

  31. Posted by Monument at April 21, 2008 04:59 PM

    …and CGI now that I think about it.

    when cgi came out, it was a godsend.
    the ability to full create worlds and effects beyond what anyone had seen.
    and it was a beautiful thing.
    however, in recent times, it has been over used.
    the fast and the furious,every big action movie in recent years, and to some extent star wars.
    i did love the sequels though.
    I enjoyed the craftsmanship that came with the originals from the sets to the effects..it did kind of add a human element to the whole world..but it’s probably cheaper with cgi. and a whole lot easier.

  32. Posted by D.Z. at April 21, 2008 08:53 PM

    I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.

    I guess I was different.
    I liked that movie.

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  34. I’m a little confused about the aspect ratio change between the two films. IMDB had them both listed as 2.35. I don’t doubt that Soderbergh would change aspect ratios, I’m just curious if it’s true or not.
    Also, does anyone know if the awards ceremony is being aired in the US? IFC seems to have gone strictly internet this year.
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  35. I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.I actually thought early CG was awful, because it was only capable of animating giant reptiles. It’s improved a lot since those days.
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