Gloria Katz

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Indiana Jones And The Temple Of Doom Review


Very Good
The second entry in the Indiana Jones series is definitively the "darkest" and worst (George Lucas notes in the DVD supplement material that he was in a bad mood due to his divorce proceedings). But like a bad Star Wars movie (yeah, I'm probably alone in this), Temple of Doom is still plenty of fun and stands up to repeat viewings.

Taking place a year before Raiders of the Lost Ark, Doom is the first movie chronologically in the trilogy. That means no Nazis, and unfortunately that means the stakes are at an all-time low. Indy isn't out to save the world this time; he's just saving a small Indian village... and his own ass, of course. There's also no Jewish/Christian mythology to deal with, which makes for an interesting change of pace but lowers the stakes and the intrigue considerably. Instead we have some magic rocks, some enslaved and starving kids, and an ancient cult quietly sacrificing people in an underground pool of lava. Hell, if Indy hadn't stumbled upon the scene, no one would have ever been the wiser.

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American Graffiti Review


Excellent
The Star Wars prequels have tarnished his rep a little, but give him his due --- George Lucas once understood the possibilities and limitations of film like few others. Lucas' second feature film, American Graffiti, was a self-assured gem that established him as a major director (though a lot of studios still didn't want to bankroll Star Wars, proving that studio execs weren't any smarter in the seventies than they are now).

A cinematic collection of slightly exaggerated memories from Lucas' senior year in high school (1962), Graffiti was well-timed; it caught a wave of fifties nostalgia that would crest with Happy Days, Grease, etc. While the iconoclasm of the sixties and seventies would continue to take youth culture in a very different direction, Graffiti helped spark a cultural backlash (or at least a flashback) after the free-love/acid-rock/anti-war era.

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Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom Movie Review

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom Movie Review

The second entry in the Indiana Jones series is definitively the "darkest" and worst (George...

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