For a generation of children, the coolest movie hero didn’t carry a gun, sword, or even a lightsaber. For over 25 years, a grumpy archaeologist with a whip, and a fondness for hats, has had a place in the hearts of movie fans. Now the whip, the hat, and the famous music all return as Harrison Ford resumes his role as one of the greatest ever screen adventurers in this summer’s Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull!
The idea of a fourth movie has been on producer George Lucas and director Steven Spielberg’s minds for years, essentially since the release of the third film ...The Last Crusade in 1989. It wasn’t until February 2007, however, that Paramount Pictures announced the release date, and that production would start very soon. Fans around the world were further joyous when Harrison Ford himself released this simple statement:
“I'm delighted to be back in business with my old friends. I don't know if the pants still fit, but I know the hat will."
A slight hitch came with another statement, this time from Sean Connery, who played Indy’s father, Henry Snr. The Scotsman has been retired since 2005 and confirmed he would not be involved, saying in a statement, “...in the end, retirement is too much damned fun”.
As one door closed, however, another opened, as rising star Shia LaBeouf was added to the cast. It was widely speculated that he would play Jones’ son, however this has been denied by those involved. LaBeouf’s character’s name, Mutt Williams, would seem to concur with those denials. The cast was filled out with more big name actors - Ray Winstone, Jim Broadbent and John Hurt all signed on, with Cate Blanchett unveiled as evil Soviet spy Irina Spalko. There would be one more familiar face to join Ford as well - Karen Allen returns to the role of Marion Ravenwood, which she last played in 1981’s Raiders of the Lost Ark.
As for the plot? It’s 1957, and a slightly older Dr. Jones is caught up in a Soviet plot to uncover the mysterious artefacts known as The Crystal Skulls. The recently released trailer implies the skulls posses some kind of mythic power, and that they are guarded by the undead!
One final question is Ford’s age - at 65, could he still cut it in an action movie? Ford’s been hitting the gym hard and got himself to the point where he could perform his own stunts for the movie, which isn’t bad going! It’s rumoured Ford always kept his fitness up anyway, in case another Indy movie came along (5 were planned when the series started). Perhaps the last word on the subject should be left with Ford, who quoted the first movie when he said: “It's not the years, it's the mileage.”
The adventure continues for Dr. Jones & Co. when Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull hits cinemas May 22nd!
Click here for Entertainmentwise's exclusive review of Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull.