Sunday, November 9, 2008

Conformity

Last night, Husband & I watched the new Indiana Jones movie. I have to say, I liked it. I wasn't sure how I would feel, considering all the bad reviews it got, but it is still Harrison Ford Indiana Jones after all. Considering it's been 19 years since The Last Crusade, I'm not surprised that this movie was set in the 50s instead of the 30s - and they acknowledged the passing of time & aging of the characters. (Not to mention that Ford STILL did most of his own stunts. Wow!)

There was one scene of the movie, however, that bugged me. As with all Lucas movies, there has to be a chase scene. This one was rather spectacular, and at one point involved Indy's sidekick fencing with the main Russain villain - while they are on side-by-side moving vehicles. (This is not the part that bugged me. I always thought fencing was cool. Wish I could do it!). No, the part that bugged me was when Mutt (the rebellious teenager) ended up straddling both vehicles at the same time. The camera panned back, and we are 'treated' to a series of shots of shrubberies aimed at the guy's manly bits.

It saddened me that the movie resorted to cheap tricks, when previous iterations of this series didn't need to rely on such ridiculousness to garner a laugh. It reminded me of the later Muppet movies (Muppets From Space & the Muppet Wizard of Oz) that all of a sudden started using fart jokes and innuendos (sadly, I think Jim Henson would be spinning in his grave, and I don't think Frank Oz was even associated with at least the latter movie.)

Yet, it is a sign of the change in culture under new (younger) management. I hate it when movies play to the lowest common denominator, rather than letting the comedy naturally arise from great writing and/or acting. It's like the filmmakers insinuate that we are too dumb to understand anything above the base line.

Not to mention the fact that I think we're all called to a higher standard anyhow.
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