There’s always going to be places where geeks disagree on the direction of our beloved culture – especially when it comes to reboots, remakes and sequels of old classics. Over the last few years we’ve seen A LOOOOOTTTT of them and everyone has battle lines drawn as to how “acceptable” these newer films are. Latest to be announced was a 5th installment of Indiana Jones, about which myself and the lovely and talented Jenesee Grey (of the Grey Area Podcast, and now here!) had some.. disagreements. She is all about the Indy 5 hype while I have my reservations. You be the judge.
She Said (Jenesee)
Yes, I am excited about the new Indiana Jones, the question is, why aren’t you? I don’t know the plot; I have not followed the latest news on who else is starring in it, and I haven’t a clue about where or when the film will take place…not one clue. All that is essential to know about this movie is – does it contain Dr. Henry Walton “Indiana” Jones, Jr. reprising his role that made my favorite childhood movies? If that is the case, I will likely go see it because I love that character; I grew up with that character, and I lived many a mental adventure while enjoying those movies with him.
Why should we be afraid to bring him back to the silver screen? We already have movies like The Expendables, which starred some beloved yet aging actors who ran around blowing things up in a franchise that none of us were familiar with before. Apparently they are so very expendable that they repeated it three times. If the draw of these movies is purely based on the names of actors we have enjoyed and is enough to justify not one, but three released movies with a questionable plot, why should we not support the expansion of a series we have followed through four successful movies already? OK… three, if you don’t count the travesty of Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, where the only true Ancient Alien was Ray Winstone and where the main character was ranked number 10 of the 100 Greatest Fictional Characters by Fandomania.com.
I do have hopes that this new film will follow in the footsteps of the Last Crusade, the very best of the trilogy IMO. Yes, I would love to see Harrison Ford pass the torch to his son/daughter so we can continue to join them on future adventures that would prevent the inevitable hip replacements of the future with a new spry anti-hero. Preferably a new undiscovered son/daughter who is miraculously found after the tragic death of the previous descendant played by Shia LaBeouf. As his father, Sean Connery, did before him, Indiana could accept his age and share his wisdom and experience with a new generation, all while still kicking some collective ass.
Call me an optimist, but I do not think an aging actor like Harrison Ford has to suddenly disappear from the face of the planet, nor do I think that beauty obsessed America is incapable of enjoying a solid performance by someone who is over the age of 25. I understand that they can evolve from a sex symbol into the classic sage and still enchant us the same way they have in the past. Sure, I also fondly recall the days when Harrison’s nose was centered squarely on his face and his eyes were bright and his smile flashing. However, as a 73 year old man I can echo Ford’s own famous words back to him: “it’s not the age, it’s the mileage” and you sir, still have a long way to go before you expire.
He said (Tushar)
Why are we the generation that can’t seem to let go of our childhoods? These past few years looking up movie times makes me feel like I’m a kid in the 90’s again. At what point does it stop being nostalgia and start becoming a shameless cash grab? Why is this the place Hollywood goes when their idea wells run dry? It seems efforts have been turning away from making original content, and instead trying to sell me back my own childhood in 3D for 20 bucks a show.
Now, I’m a fan of a lot of the older franchises and trilogies – Star Wars, Back to the Future, and Indiana Jones were some of my favorite movies from back in the day. And until recently, they were the same ones that were left alone – untouched and classic. Granted Star Wars has more movies to come, but there’s more story, so I’ll give that a pass – there’s scores of lore in the expanded universe that can serve for a decent base for more films. At least they didn’t do remakes. Luckily, Back to the Future will never be remade. Good. Robert Zemeckis put the kibosh on that last year and I’m happy for it. There’s some things I think should stay in their classic form. And this is where I take issue with Indiana Jones.
Me and Indy have history. Raiders of the Lost Ark and The Last Crusade were two of the greatest movies I’ve ever seen. Temple of Doom really only succeeded in making the other kids in school ask whether or not I eat monkey brains for dinner, so we’ll blow by that one for now. However, I have always loved Harrison Ford in the title role, and all was well until Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. It tried a new formula – Indy being the elder statesman of Nazi-battling archaeology adventurism, and introducing his son, the new swashbuckler primed to take over the family business. It just didn’t work for me. It was putting old man Indy in a story that really didn’t hold up to the others, though it proved that people would pay to see because it was Indiana Jones.
And now we learn that an Indy 5 will hit theaters in 2019. Twenty. Nineteen. For those playing the home game that will be the year that marks Harrison Ford turning 77. Granted, he was in The Force Awakens well into his seventies as well, but he wasn’t carrying the lead role, and his place in the film made sense.
Sure, Spielberg has recruited Jurassic Park writer David Koepp to pen the screenplay and Ford will be surrounded by a star studded cast for Indy 5, but what’s this going to prove? The formula already didn’t work with the fourth installation of the franchise, and there’s no point in this 5th one even being scripted out. I love the franchise, and Harrison Ford will always be my “Indiana Solo,” but It’s time to hang up the fedora and whip. All good things must come to an end, and I would prefer that one of my childhood legends goes out with dignity instead of being squeezed for his last drops by Steven Spielberg. The last thing we need is this incredible actor and icon to become the Brett Favre of Hollywood so that producers can make a couple extra bucks in residual checks.
So that’s what we’ve got – What’s your verdict?