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Reel Critic:

Welcome return for Indiana Jones

May 24, 2008|By Matt Bellner

The event movie of the summer has finally arrived, “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.” This big-budget thrill ride is a must-see for fans of the series. The juiced-up PG-13 production is a little over the top but it’s still a fun ride for kids of all ages.

Harrison Ford once again reprises his role as the famous archaeologist Indiana Jones. This time, Dr. Jones must keep some mysterious crystal skulls out of the hands of the nasty Russian army by traveling all over the world and then some.

As usual, Indy has a sidekick. This time, his name is Mutt Williams and played to perfection by Shia LaBeouf. Does Mutt have a secret past, and what is his connection to the skulls and Indiana? Why are the skulls so mysterious and where did they come from? Can this film live up to the hype? There are many questions to be answered, but that’s what makes an adventure movie so adventurous.

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In 1981, I saw the first Indiana Jones movie and I was hooked. There was no way I was going to miss this film. That being said, most of the people in my theater weren’t even born when the original epic was released. That’s a testament to the great directing of Steven Spielberg and the power of cable TV and DVD rentals.

I was astonished at how many film nerds showed up for my sold-out show in costume and ready for action. If at all possible, see this movie with a large audience at a great theater. It will definitely add flavor to the moment.

Since the “Crystal Skull” is the fourth film in the franchise, there was a huge potential for a letdown but I feel the movie delivers on all areas. Yes, the story is a little corny and some of the scenes are literally nothing but monkey business but this is true escapism for people looking to get away from the bad news that fills our newspaper. I took my old college roommate along so we could relive some nostalgic moments from our youth. We weren’t disappointed and neither will you if you enter the theater in the right frame of mind.

Even though this is just a fantasy, most of the acting is fantastic.

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