Ask Carlyle: Dear Carlyle, with Indy 4 coming out on DVD Tuesday, what do you think Lucas and Spielberg should do with the 5th movie? I for one loved 4. It’s not the best in the series but, it was great to see Harrison Ford with the hat and whip again. However I didn't care for the aliens even though it was still good. What I'm hoping for, is that now that Lucas got the aliens out of his system, and saw how many people didn't like it, he will go back to Indy going after a religious artifact again like the previous three. What are your thoughts?
Look, I loved four. I really enjoyed the hell out of it, Aliens and all. First of all, lets talk aliens. I HATE, HATE, HATE all the fanboyish horseshit about how Indy is all about religious artifacts and not aliens – kind of this Reeses Peanut Butter Cup philosophy of genre filmmaking. “Hey you got your 50’s sci-fi in my late thirties pulp serial!” “No! You got YOUR late thirties pulp serial in my 50’s sci-fi!” There was nothing genre bending about what Lucas and Spielberg did. Watch those late 30’s early 40’s pulp serials. Aliens and archaeologists go hand in hand in those.
But wait! There’s more! The concepts being brought up in Indiana Jones 4? Not new. This is stuff archaeologists have been studying and the outer fringes of science have been examining for quite some time. The Central Americans of this era appear to have been far more technologically advanced than theories show they should have. Where did that knowledge come from? Coupled with a number of bizarre bits of info, many have surmised that this knowledge came from the stars. There are books on the subject. Lots of them.
I found the movie fun, a great throwback to my childhood and a really goofy, entertaining ride.
That said, the film illustrated the problem with making another one. Ford isn’t up to (and doesn’t want to do) the stunts that made Indy famous. Listen to most of the complaints. They all (all save the Alien bits) involve Indy kid and his wild adventures. And that’s what we’d have to see more of in a 5th. Is that what you want, another film with Indy in the background of the action?
Nah. Not me. I liked going back, but like many of the return to my youth movies like Rocky Balboa and Rambo, they only serve to remind me that this is a trip we should only take once. Unless they have a KILLER script that makes the best use of an aged Indiana Jones (you know, more than just making age jokes with) I think this should have been Indy’s last ride. After all, he’ll always live in our dreams and our own adventures.