I Hate Indiana Jones: Day 1

Walking out of the new Indiana Jones film, I felt as if I'd spent two hours with someone standing on my heart. I felt physically ill in a way that I've only ever equated with the worst lovesickness could offer. Suddenly I understood how all of those Star Wars nerds felt watching the horrible prequel tragedy. Now George Lucas was trying to murder my childhood as well, and he'd brought Steven Spielberg along to do his dirty work.

In an ongoing attempt to understand just how awful this movie (for the record, I'm talking about Indiana Jones and the Valley of the Crystal Skull - yes, that's not what it was called, but come on. That wasn't a hidden kingdom. It was a hidden valley) was, I'm going to pick one topic a day and discuss it until all the hate has left me.

I wonder how long it will take?

Day 1: Indiana Jones and the Superfluous Sidekick

He's the one to the left of Indy, adding nothing to the film

The film gives Indy a sidekick who literally adds nothing to the plot. Seriously. I feel sorry for Ray Winstone, because he was given, by a wide margin, the worst character in an already terrible film. "Mac" is established as Indy's old war buddy, but then, in a surprising twist some ten minutes into the film, it turns out he's working for the communists and pulls a gun on Indy. Then he does it again right at the end, after briefly switching sides a second time.

It's possible that one might say 'But Count Vardulon, by pulling a gun on Indy, isn't he serving some purpose in the film?' No, the response would be, he's not. In both of those scenes, there are a dozen other characters also pointing guns at Indy, rendering his treachery moot.

He has one other moment to shine, when he's visible tailing Indy through a Peruvian marketplace. Of course, this is just idiotic. So, with fifty Russian spies on her payroll, Cate Blanchett sends the one person that Indy can recognize on sight to follow him? It seems like this is going to play into the plot somehow, with Indy noticing Mac and realizing that the commies are on to him. But it doesn't.

In a fascinating sidenote, other than a single line from the villain, no character other than Indy ever speaks to Mac or acknowledges his presence. I honestly believe that if one were to digitally remove every frame of Mac from the film, and cut all the moments where Indy addresses him or punches him in the face, absolutely no one would notice his absence from the film. That's how unimportant his character is.

1 comment:

Alexander Z. said...

2 things.
1) I felt the same way when I exited the theater. To this day I refer to it as "that which shall not be named"
2) Did anyone notice that Mac only says a handful of lines and more than half of those are him shouting "JONESEY!!!" which is irritating enough without being spouted in rapid-succession