Sunday, June 12, 2011

A Remembrance For "Raiders"

Taking a quick break from the Book Challenge, I'd like to mention a particularly auspicious movie anniversary.

Thirty years ago today saw the theatrical release of Raiders of the Lost Ark, by most metrics one of the best films ever made. It's certainly one that had a measurable impact on me, even though I didn't actually see it until I was in my teens.

Once I did, however, it quickly became one of my favorite films*. A large part of this, I think is my appreciation for Indiana Jones as a character - he's a much more intellectual character than many similar heroes, and as many encounters with characters played by Pat Roach shows, isn't always (or even often) able to win a fight simply by overpowering his opponent.

Raiders is also a fairly tightly-plotted movie, moving along from scene to scene with just enough explanation to be understandable, without losing momentum.

And boy is there a lot of momentum.

Despite a few mis-steps (in particular, Brody's recounting of the Ark's appearances in the Bible has always seemed a bit exaggerated to me), it's easy to see why this movie is so highly regarded - and I'm sure that thirty more years won't change that at all.

*Although, to be truthful, I slightly prefer Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. But only slightly.


Anonymous said...

Here's a scary thought: the other weekend I struck up a conversation with my next door neighbor. When the subject turned to movies, it eventually came out that even though she is pushing 40 years old...she has NEVER seen any of the Indiana Jones movies! She was a teenager in the 80's and somehow managed to NEVER see these movies! Not in the theaters, not on VHS, never on cable, and not even in the last 10 years on DVD! How does this happen??? And the only reason this came up is because she remarked how "fun" the 'National Treasure' movies were...

I'm still shaking my head when I think about this.

T. Everett said...

I know, it's really weird to think that someone hasn't seen something with that much cultural resonance - I've also heard of or met people who haven't seen Back to the Future, or even the Star Wars movies.