Review of Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark

May 16, 2011
By Andrew Partnick SILVER, Roslyn Heights, New York
Andrew Partnick SILVER, Roslyn Heights, New York
6 articles 0 photos 0 comments

Where can one begin when reviewing a film that is considered a classic? Well, according to many people, one can begin with the famous film known as Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. This movie has a wide variety of both pros and cons. Overall, however, the benefits of the movie significantly outweigh the negative aspects of the movie. This movie, in my opinion, supports an unparalleled cast of characters. The three main characters, Indiana Jones, a professor of Archealogy, Marion Ravenwood, a bartender-turned Indiana’s assistant and partner, and Belloq, the film’s antagonist and a servant of Hitler, who he frequently refers to as “the Fuhrer.”

The three characters work together in perfect harmony throughout the film. Indiana Jones is very adventurous and occasionally makes unwise decisions, but is backed up by his stable and intelligent partner, Marion, who has a slightly better head on her shoulders. Belloq is simultaneously a lovable and dislikeable character. His exotic accent, cruelty, and strange behavior actually make him appealing to many fans of the series. (On the other hand, his cruelty and ability to trick and confuse the protagonists anger many fans of the series, and encourage fans to beg for his demise at the end of the film.) In one scene, Jones confronts Belloq at a bar in Cairo, Egypt. The two discuss their passion for archaeology, yet Belloq expresses his evil intentions, while Jones discusses how archeology is a study that should be used for beneficial purposes as opposed to evil ones. This scene is the first introduction to Belloq’s personality, and easily expresses and exposes his character.

Action scenes, which consist of moments such as a situation where Indie and Marion fight off criminals in a bar, a scene where Indiana swims from ship to ship in an attempt to escape pirates at sea, and a predicament where Indiana and Marion are trapped in a pit of snakes are all very diverse and interesting. The action moments of the film all seem to be unbelievably captivating and well thought-out. The backgrounds and graphics in the film lead to an even increased sense of adrenaline and excitement. For example, the last major event of the movie, where the Ark of the Covenant was opened by the Nazis, ghosts and spirits (all created very realistically along with lighting effects), busted out of the Arc to create an intoxicating effect.

Although this movie was done exceptionally well, there were some minor flaws. The sequences of events in the movie lack a sense of consistency. One moment, Indie is on a ship in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean and, five minutes later, he is in an open desert. The action scenes, due to their diversity, do not seem to transition into each other nicely. Sometimes, the randomness of the film makes it relatively difficult to follow. The incorporation of historical facts, exciting moments, great storyline and great backgrounds make this a must-see movie for not only older moviegoers, but modern moviegoers as well. This movie, produced with a budget of $18,000,000, and starring actors and actresses Harrison Ford/Indiana Jones, Karen Allen/ Marion Ravenwood, and Paul Freeman/Belloq, went on to receive an overall profit of almost $400,000,000; not only a fortune now, but an unbelievable sum of money at the time (the film was produced and distributed to the public in 1981). These facts are only further evidence of the film’s influence and popularity at the time of its release. Overall, it is fair to conclude that this movie started a revolution in the adventure-genre of movies, and can easily be enjoyed by anyone.

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