Appearing for the first time in 1981, Indiana Jones quickly became a favorite pop culture icon in the US, being the inspiration for a series of entertainment products born later.
This year, the brand returned to the silver screen after 15 years of absence with part 5 called Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (Vietnamese title: Indiana Jones and the wheel of destiny). This is also the last part, closing the 42-year adventure journey of the most famous archaeologist in the world.
Adventure in the late afternoon
The story of the film is set in 1969, exactly 12 years after the events of the 4th part Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008). At that time, the movement against the Vietnam War in the US was on the rise. At the same time, the space race also exploded with the launch of Apollo 11 into space.
Before the great advancement of technology, Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) wishes to retire but unexpectedly meets her goddaughter Helena (Phoebe Waller-Bridge). She drags him into a new adventure, together to find the time-traveling wheel of the ancient Greek mathematician Archimedes.
However, their journey encounters many challenges when constantly being thwarted by an old enemy: Jürgen Voller (Mads Mikkelsen), a Nazi veteran who is plotting to change the outcome of World War II.
Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford) unexpectedly meets her daughter (Phoebe Waller-Bridge) in the movie.
The script is simple, following the familiar motif of the brand. However, the crew also skillfully brought the image of an Indiana Jones that was both strange and familiar in the late afternoon.
In the movie, the main character has turned 70 years old, no longer an ambitious guy with many ambitions. In turn, Indiana Jones is experienced and calm, with many reflections on the changes of the times. He found himself behind with technology, but the fire of passion for adventure inside was always burning, never extinguished.
Since the late 1970s, before the first part of Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) was released, producer George Lucas and director Steven Spielberg had dreamed of making a long-term series. According to the duo, the famous archaeologist’s journey only officially ended after 5 movies.
However, it was not until 2016 that Indiana Jones 5 was scheduled for production. The process was interrupted and changed for many reasons, so it could not be released in theaters as originally planned.
Farewells tinged with nostalgia
One of the factors that helped the Indiana Jones franchise succeed is the talent of director Steven Spielberg – who directed all four previous films. Unfortunately, this time he did not continue to sit in the director’s chair. According to Variety, the filmmaker withdrew because he wanted to make room for a “new generation” to continue telling the classic story.
Replacing Spielberg is James Mangold – famous for many action movies such as 3:10 to Yuma (2007), Knight and Day (2010), Logan (2017)… With long experience, the director handled the action scenes well. dynamic, constantly entertaining the audience with battle scenes that are both attractive and beautiful.
The crew focused on the effects and the background, recreating many majestic ancient scenes, increasing the attractiveness of the chase and fighting scenes.
Image from Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny.
To bridge the time gap, James Mangold integrated many details to create a brand mark, helping fans like to relive childhood memories. From dark caves to dangerous creatures, there is a mysterious, creepy Indiana Jones atmosphere.
The filmmaker prefers yellow tones, covering the work with nostalgic colors. At the same time, he also recreated the American atmosphere of the 1960s with the bold Rock and Roll music.
In particular, the appearance of Harrison Ford is very important, the soul of the whole movie. At the age of 80, the actor still retains his form, proving that “the older the ginger, the spicier it is”.
He performed well in thrilling action scenes, and brought a lot of emotion in psychological scenes. According to DailyMail, Harrison Ford had to undergo an extreme exercise regimen, including cycling nearly 65 km daily to get in shape before returning to the role.
In a few scenes, the crew used de-aging technology to help the actor look no different from 40 years ago.
The Indiana Jones brand lost its quality
Before the global premiere, Indiana Jones 5 had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival in May but did not create a good effect. Most of the comments about the film are low, the fact that Harrison Ford is “rejuvenated” by CGI technology also leaves many mixed opinions.
The work received only 66% positive reviews from experts on Rotten Tomatoes, scoring 57/100 on Metacritics. This makes Indiana Jones 5 the lowest-scoring entry in the franchise.
Actor Harrison Ford was “rejuvenated” by computer effects.
Many fans also think that the film loses its quality because of the lack of leadership by Steven Spielberg. The work is more about pure action but no longer retains the spirit of adventure and discovery.
The script has not yet succeeded in building brain puzzles. Most of the challenges are easily solved by the characters, more or less reducing the difficulty and attractiveness.
The length of 154 minutes makes the film long, but the director does not handle the rhythm well. Interweaving the chase scenes are unattractive dialogues, creating a dull feeling. The technical part still has minus points, not worthy of the budget of up to 295 million USD.
Basically, Indiana Jones 5 has not yet escaped the familiar formula of action blockbusters. The script did not leave a strong impression with a familiar, uncreative story.
However, the work still succeeds in evoking the viewers’ emotions. The film is a gift for fans who want to see actor Harrison Ford play Indiana Jones for the last time on the silver screen.