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Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull [Blu-ray]

3.5 out of 5 stars 1,297 customer reviews

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Product Description

The newest Indiana Jones adventure begins in the desert Southwest in 1957 the height of the Cold War. Indy and his sidekick Mac (Ray Winstone) have barely escaped a close scrape with nefarious Soviet agents on a remote airfield. Now, Professor Jones has returned home to Marshall College only to find things have gone from bad to worse. His close friend and dean of the college (Jim Broadbent) explains that Indy's recent activities have made him the object of suspicion, and that the government has put pressure on the university to fire him. On his way out of town, Indiana meets rebellious young Mutt (Shia LaBeouf), who carries both a grudge and a proposition for the adventurous archaeologist: If he'll help Mutt on a mission with deeply personal stakes, Indy could very well make one of the most spectacular archaeological finds in history the Crystal Skull of Akator, a legendary object of fascination, superstition and fear. But as Indy and Mutt set out for the most remote corners of Peru a land of ancient tombs, forgotten explorers and a rumored city of gold they quickly realize they are not alone in their search. The Soviet agents are also hot on the trail of the Crystal Skull. Chief among them is icy cold, devastatingly beautiful Irina Spalko (Cate Blanchett), whose elite military unit is scouring the globe for the eerie Crystal Skull, which they believe can help the Soviets dominate the world... if they can unlock its secrets. Indy and Mutt must find a way to evade the ruthless Soviets, follow an impenetrable trail of mystery, grapple with enemies and friends of questionable motives, and, above all, stop the powerful Crystal Skull from falling into the deadliest of hands.


Nearly 20 years after riding his last Crusade, Harrison Ford makes a welcome return as archaeologist/relic hunter Indiana Jones in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, an action-packed fourth installment that's, in a nutshell, less memorable than the first three but great nostalgia for fans of the series. Producer George Lucas and screenwriter David Koepp (War of the Worlds) set the film during the cold war, as the Soviets--replacing Nazis as Indy's villains of choice and led by a sword-wielding Cate Blanchett with black bob and sunglasses--are in pursuit of a crystal skull, which has mystical powers related to a city of gold. After escaping from them in a spectacular opening action sequence, Indy is coerced to head to Peru at the behest of a young greaser (Shia LaBeouf) whose friend--and Indy's colleague--Professor Oxley (John Hurt) has been captured for his knowledge of the skull's whereabouts. Whatever secrets the skull holds are tertiary; its reveal is the weakest part of the movie, as the CGI effects that inevitably accompany it feel jarring next to the boulder-rolling world of Indy audiences knew and loved. There's plenty of comedy, delightful stunts--ants play a deadly role here--and the return of Raiders love interest Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood, once shrill but now softened, giving her ex-love bemused glances and eye-rolls as he huffs his way to save the day. Which brings us to Ford: bullwhip still in hand, he's a little creakier, a lot grayer, but still twice the action hero of anyone in film today. With all the anticipation and hype leading up to the film's release, perhaps no reunion is sweeter than that of Ford with the role that fits him as snugly as that fedora hat. --Ellen A. Kim

Stills from Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (Click for larger image)

Special Features


Product Details

  • Actors: Harrison Ford, Cate Blanchett, Shia LaBeouf, Karen Allen, Ray Winstone
  • Directors: Steven Spielberg
  • Writers: David Koepp, George Lucas, Jeff Nathanson, Philip Kaufman
  • Producers: Denis L. Stewart, Flávio R. Tambellini, Frank Marshall
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Blu-ray, Closed-captioned, Color, Widescreen
  • Language: English (Dolby Digital 5.1), French (Dolby Digital 5.1), Spanish (Dolby Digital 5.1)
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish, Portuguese
  • Dubbed: French, Spanish
  • Region: Region A/1 (Read more about DVD/Blu-ray formats.)
  • Number of discs: 2
  • Rated:
    Parental Guidance Suggested
  • Studio: Paramount
  • DVD Release Date: October 14, 2008
  • Run Time: 122 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1,297 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001E75QGG
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #20,615 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull [Blu-ray]" on IMDb

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Joseph A. Bergeron on August 18, 2008
Format: DVD
I love the first three Indy films. Like so many others I was greatly looking forward to seeing a new one. I thought (or hoped) that the very long time they took to come up with a script meant they were polishing it to a brilliant shine. After seeing the movie, I conclude it was really a long negotiation between Lucas, Spielberg, and Ford, with some of them eager to make a crappy movie, and some of them not, with the end result being crappy, but perhaps not as crappy as it might have been.

The movie started with a bit of promise (other than the infantile CGI prairie dog). I'm not as offended by the nuclear fridge scene as many are, because I know those mock towns weren't built at Ground Zero (or they would have been vaporized). They were built at a distance to judge the effect of the blast on places some miles from the explosion. So while it's not credible for Indy to survive being tossed around that much, he didn't exactly survive a nuclear explosion. Some of the other early scenes, such as those where Indy is actually discovering something, are also good.


About halfway through the movie, despite my fervent desire to like it, I realized it just wasn't working for me. No suspense. No real sense of urgency or danger. Low stakes. Too many marginal or pointless characters. Too much cartoon nonsense going on, far less believable than anything from the previous films (the stupid monkey vine swinging, Marian's idiotic tree-driving stunt, the multiple waterfall drops...none of it scary, none of it remotely convincing, or even fun). Marian's long-awaited big reveal was one of the biggest, flattest duds in film history.
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Format: Blu-ray
It's no "Raiders of the Lost Ark." But what movie is? Nor is it another "Temple of Doom" or "Last Crusade." None of us is as young as we used to be, and it's hard to recapture the pleasures of the past, especially when those pleasures were as bright and bracing as they were in 1981's "Raiders" and its two immediate sequels. What a lot of people forget is that while director Steven Spielberg and co-writer and executive producer George Lucas attempted in "Raiders" to make a movie based on all the old-time serials and cliff-hangers they remembered from their youth, they did so in an entirely new and refreshing way. They practically reinvented the adventure-movie genre, and "Raiders" went on to spawn not only the three sequels we have now but a host of other adventure films that continue to this day.

In 2008's "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" Spielberg and Lucas, after an absence from the series of nineteen years, tried to recover some of the old spark. If they didn't entirely succeed, it wasn't for lack of trying.

The fact is, though, that by now we've all become so used to the action-adventure epic that Spielberg and Lucas helped create, it's hard even for them to top themselves. As a result, much of "The Crystal Skull" seems tired or recycled. Yet that is, I'm sure, exactly what the filmmakers wanted. It's supposed to remind viewers of the old days, and it does so at almost every turn.

Needless to say, the most important ingredient in the movie series is back: Harrison Ford as Dr. Henry "Indiana" Jones, Jr., archaeologist and adventurer supreme.
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Format: DVD
The only reason I can think of to watch this film is that you obtained the DVD for free, you have nothing else to watch, you're trapped indoors by inclement weather, it's too late at night to do anything else, you're resigned to the fact that George Lucas has become a fool, you've forgiven Spielberg because even a director of his caliber makes a bad film now and them, you have a bunch of friends over who want to watch something funny, and you've either downloaded the Rifftrax commentary or you're all planning to yell at the movie for being a steaming pile of alien-skulled poopie.

Otherwise, it's a 0 star experience.
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Format: DVD
Personal sadness and disappointment here: what a great franchise this was, what a lovable character, now destroyed by pure Lucasian incompetence. I'd really loved all the first three movies, because in my opinion, they were perfect examples for timeless adventure classics and movie magic extraordinaire, each in its own style. Indy himself was one of my childhood heroes ... heck, I even loved the TV series (well, mostly), but when I saw this one, I almost puked my guts out. Honestly, I wanted to like it badly, but this flick is so incredibly stupid, so inconsistent and amazingly badly written, it's plain unbearable. All things which made the other movies so great are missing: the excitement of discovery, the thrilling adventure, the enjoyable character relations, the sarcastic yet charming humor, the over-the-top but still believable action scenes - all gone. What remains is this brainless, soulless, uninspired load of junk that (sadly) will score at the box office anyway, just because it's Indy - sort of. But worst of all, as you can clearly see in almost every take, the love is gone from the franchise. Even Harrison Ford looks mostly like he's just going through the motions. For my part, I blame it all on the ABSOLUTELY CRAPPY AND THOROUGHLY DUMB SCRIPT that 1) DENIES THE ACTORS ALMOST EVERY POSSIBILITY TO ACT (Karen Allen being the worst example) and 2) has literally everything that also made the star wars prequels fail: the ham-fisted dialogue, the completely ridiculous "storytelling", forced character development and relations, plot holes one could fly the death star through, overused CGI effects, the lamest humor imaginable ... the list goes on and on.Read more ›
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