May 19, 2008

go forth and see

Cate Blanchett again? Overexposure darling.

No surprise Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is being bashed by critics. Of course. I mean, a critic who thinks Three Colors Red or Blue or whatever - is wonderful has to pan Indiana Jones. Otherwise, it´d go against his imagined intellectual superiority. Its always easier to throw rotten eggs and burnt tires and beer cans. Has any film critic ever gone out and actually produced something? Other than a 1500 word review? Mark Kermode is exempt from any critique on critics. He´s just plain kermodianly awesome. (NB: I did, unfortunately hear his review on Indy - the main critic point being Shia LeBoeu´s hair - which I hate to say it - if hair is an issue, the plot can´t be all that exciting)

But as you say - who cares? I think they are doing it - to a certain extent - to justify their own existences as critics. I am sure you can take it apart, find lots of flaws, and more holes in the plot than in fishnet stockings.
Besides, which film - after years and years trying to find a good enough script to appease Harrison Ford, Steven Spielberg, and producers - can live up to the hype they are generating around this film. Its impossible. Simply impossible. Thats kind of the flaw in Hollywood. They are spending - what - around 100 million on advertising alone. Possibly even more. They are releasing simultaneously worldwide to rake in as much as possible within the first couple of days just incase word-of-mouth spreads faster than the tickets sell. But for any true even mildly avid cinephile, its a must. An absolute must. Going to see this movie says: I just love movie magic. And all it stands for. All it has stood for since the very beginnings. Thats what Spielberg does. With these kinds of movies. (Not such a huge fan of his serious stuff. Decent enough but I have a prejudice against it for some reason)

He just has the formula down pat. I don´t know the mathematical equation which would correctly represent what he can do - but he has the quite uncanny ability to bring cliched stereotypical childhood fantasies to life so that anybody loves it. It must be something like Newman´s Own one pound of popcorn + equal amounts of I can´t believe its not Butter = cotton candy enjoyment. Or something like that.

But one thing the critics can´t detract from or deny - that at least the 3 previous Indy films will, already have gone down in cinematic history.
Firstly, for creating a character - that despite certain ueber human capabilities - isn´t a superhero. He´s a normal guy. A cool simpatico guy. And always knew whips come in handy. And that guns beat saber wielding bad guys any day.
Secondly, for transporting us into a very black and white childlike world of good and evil. Things are as they seem, face value. Allowing us to indulge and believe for a while at least, that good and evil looks as it should according to fairy tales we read as kids.
Thirdly, the music. Hearing that theme in 5.1 DRS THX dolby surround will bring tears to my eyes, as it always did. Tears of excitement, of magic, of passion - the stuff , the trembling anticipation, the full popcorn impact when you say: I´m going to the movies.

So - no matter how disappointing the story might be - it´s kind of mandatory for any popcorn munching movie freak worth his or her weight. In popcorn.

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