Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny (30th June 2023)

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  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 8,020
    Her motives change because Indy grows on her throughout the film to the point that by the end she cares more about him than an artifact. At least, that was my impression. I dunno why others would miss that? It’s sort of like how we see Henry Sr. being obsessed with the Holy Grail to the point it caused a rift between father and son, but by the end it’s him that tells Indy to “let it go” when reaching for the grail.

    This makes me wish CRYSTAL SKULL had more of that focus on Indy and Mutt in the second half of the movie.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    Posts: 14,924
    Also she realises she’s in search more of a father figure: that’s why she’s so invested in the object her own father was fascinated with. As you say, it’s absolutely the sort of realisation that Skull missed.
  • Rewatched Skull the other night and it reiterates that I think it’s a much better Indy film than Dial for my tastes. I actually find it a bit surprising how much they share thematically (both films set up Indy in old age at a point where he’s more or less all alone — only to have a family reunion through adventure — in a new decade that’s antithetical to his old fashioned adventurer persona) and in terms of their flaws (distracting VFX, not the clearest rules for the MacGuffin & paranormal stuff, poor climax).

    But Skulls flaws really don’t bother me that much until the last half hour because most of the film just moves so briskly and is filled with classic Indy gags, and I like Mutt quite a bit more than Helena (who frankly, reminds me more of Mac than I’d like). The main point in Dial’s favor is that it never quite hits the same lows that Skull does, like the Tarzan bit, but its baseline quality is so much less inspired and more stodgy. Even Skull’s score, which got a bit of flack at the time has more memorable unique cues than Dial, which I don’t remember anything of outside of the times it quoted Raiders and Crusade.

    Also very glad the new 4k disc of Skull retooled the color grade, most of the movie actually looks surprisingly in line with the original trilogy. It still can’t fix those problematic jungle VFX plates, but it’s a huge improvement overall.
  • Did anyone else feel that there were too many locations in DOD?
  • j_w_pepperj_w_pepper Born on the bayou. I can still hear my old hound dog barkin'.
    Posts: 8,675
    Did anyone else feel that there were too many locations in DOD?
    I'd agree that this might be an issue, just like those set pieces should (or at least could) have been trimmed quite a bit. I'm usually in the faction that prefers a longer movie. But here, maybe 20 minutes less might have improved it. I suppose the numerous locations have something to do with the respective governments paying subsidies for filming there, just like it was when they filmed TND in Hamburg.
  • Posts: 1,706
    During the second viewing I appreciated the writing and directing even more. Lots of foreshadowing that is hard to pick up during the first viewing. Things like Mutt's photo and folded flag in Indy's apartment and dialog about the dial were hard to catch the first time around.
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    edited July 2023 Posts: 14,924
    Rewatched Skull the other night and it reiterates that I think it’s a much better Indy film than Dial for my tastes. I actually find it a bit surprising how much they share thematically (both films set up Indy in old age at a point where he’s more or less all alone — only to have a family reunion through adventure — in a new decade that’s antithetical to his old fashioned adventurer persona) and in terms of their flaws (distracting VFX, not the clearest rules for the MacGuffin & paranormal stuff, poor climax).

    But Skulls flaws really don’t bother me that much until the last half hour because most of the film just moves so briskly and is filled with classic Indy gags, and I like Mutt quite a bit more than Helena (who frankly, reminds me more of Mac than I’d like). The main point in Dial’s favor is that it never quite hits the same lows that Skull does, like the Tarzan bit, but its baseline quality is so much less inspired and more stodgy. Even Skull’s score, which got a bit of flack at the time has more memorable unique cues than Dial, which I don’t remember anything of outside of the times it quoted Raiders and Crusade.

    Also very glad the new 4k disc of Skull retooled the color grade, most of the movie actually looks surprisingly in line with the original trilogy. It still can’t fix those problematic jungle VFX plates, but it’s a huge improvement overall.

    If I could mix the two into one film I would, as each has the elements which the other lacks. DOD could do with the gags and Spielberg wit which KOTCS has (even if it's Spielberg on a low gas mark, it's still Spielberg and you can feel it); whereas what DOD has which KOTCS needs is the story which has actually been worked out, complete with character development and emotional core, together with a sense of danger and peril, and actual genuine overseas locations. Mix them together and I think you've got an Indy movie which would sit alongside the originals.
    I think both have good macguffin plots though, and I'm glad they both went with new, differently out there ideas and not just Christian relics again.
    delfloria wrote: »
    During the second viewing I appreciated the writing and directing even more. Lots of foreshadowing that is hard to pick up during the first viewing. Things like Mutt's photo and folded flag in Indy's apartment and dialog about the dial were hard to catch the first time around.

    Apparently Mutt gets mentioned in the TV news report in the shop window too..?
  • mtm wrote: »
    Rewatched Skull the other night and it reiterates that I think it’s a much better Indy film than Dial for my tastes. I actually find it a bit surprising how much they share thematically (both films set up Indy in old age at a point where he’s more or less all alone — only to have a family reunion through adventure — in a new decade that’s antithetical to his old fashioned adventurer persona) and in terms of their flaws (distracting VFX, not the clearest rules for the MacGuffin & paranormal stuff, poor climax).

    But Skulls flaws really don’t bother me that much until the last half hour because most of the film just moves so briskly and is filled with classic Indy gags, and I like Mutt quite a bit more than Helena (who frankly, reminds me more of Mac than I’d like). The main point in Dial’s favor is that it never quite hits the same lows that Skull does, like the Tarzan bit, but its baseline quality is so much less inspired and more stodgy. Even Skull’s score, which got a bit of flack at the time has more memorable unique cues than Dial, which I don’t remember anything of outside of the times it quoted Raiders and Crusade.

    Also very glad the new 4k disc of Skull retooled the color grade, most of the movie actually looks surprisingly in line with the original trilogy. It still can’t fix those problematic jungle VFX plates, but it’s a huge improvement overall.

    If I could mix the two into one film I would, as each has the elements which the other lacks. DOD could do with the gags and Spielberg wit which KOTCS has (even if it's Spielberg on a low gas mark, it's still Spielberg and you can feel it); whereas what DOD has which KOTCS needs is the story which has actually been worked out, complete with character development and emotional core, together with a sense of danger and peril, and actual genuine overseas locations. Mix them together and I think you've got an Indy movie which would sit alongside the originals.
    I think both have good macguffin plots though, and I'm glad they both went with new, differently out there ideas and not just Christian relics again.

    Yeah I do really like both the alien and time travel angles, I just think they could have been clarified and/or simplified a little. Honestly I wouldn’t have minded if they committed to those aspects even further, like I was kind of hoping Dial would spend more time in the past, seeing Indy have a big action setpiece with a chariot or something could have been a lot of fun.
  • HildebrandRarityHildebrandRarity Centre international d'assistance aux personnes déplacées, Paris, France
    Posts: 467
    The character of Helena could have written better regarding her motivations, as there's little continuity.
    She's done her PhD on the Antikythera, yet she's just interested in the artefact to make money and pay off her debts by selling it to the highest bidder. She faces Voller and his crew, but it's just that she's double-crossed him, and doesn't even consider that he could have nefarious motivations.
    Many things about her are told, not shown. We have to accept that she owes a lot of money, just like we're supposed to accept nearly halfway through the plot that she was engaged to some guy in Tangiers then broke off, which is only used to make the tuktuk chase more complicated, with one more vehicle, but echoes nothing before or after.
    And finally, even if she's still only interested in the money, rather than studying the full, reunited Antikythera, she admits that she's memorized all of her father's diaries about it.

    It's definitely not Waller-Bridge's fault. If anything, if she had handled the writing for Helena, she would have probably found a way to make her behaviour quirky but consistent, just like she did for Fleabag or Villanelle in Killing Eve.
    Yet, the writers didn't screw the main thing, her relationship with Indy, as the father figure that she lacked when her own father became insane, as a few of you have already posted it.

    And they also give subtle clues in the final scene that
    despite losing Mutt and the toll it took on Marion, Indy and Marion have a new family to care for, with Helena, Teddy and Salah's grandkids, implying that they will be all right.

    Now, regarding country hopping, sure it was fast-paced compared to previous entries (well, at the same time, you can't have large unknown areas to explore in Mediterranean Europe), but have you seen Star Wars, Episode IX: The Rise of ADHD? It's basically, "We've been on this planet for ten minutes, you're about to notice that the plot makes very little sense, let's move to a different world instead!"
  • mtmmtm United Kingdom
    edited July 2023 Posts: 14,924
    mtm wrote: »
    Rewatched Skull the other night and it reiterates that I think it’s a much better Indy film than Dial for my tastes. I actually find it a bit surprising how much they share thematically (both films set up Indy in old age at a point where he’s more or less all alone — only to have a family reunion through adventure — in a new decade that’s antithetical to his old fashioned adventurer persona) and in terms of their flaws (distracting VFX, not the clearest rules for the MacGuffin & paranormal stuff, poor climax).

    But Skulls flaws really don’t bother me that much until the last half hour because most of the film just moves so briskly and is filled with classic Indy gags, and I like Mutt quite a bit more than Helena (who frankly, reminds me more of Mac than I’d like). The main point in Dial’s favor is that it never quite hits the same lows that Skull does, like the Tarzan bit, but its baseline quality is so much less inspired and more stodgy. Even Skull’s score, which got a bit of flack at the time has more memorable unique cues than Dial, which I don’t remember anything of outside of the times it quoted Raiders and Crusade.

    Also very glad the new 4k disc of Skull retooled the color grade, most of the movie actually looks surprisingly in line with the original trilogy. It still can’t fix those problematic jungle VFX plates, but it’s a huge improvement overall.

    If I could mix the two into one film I would, as each has the elements which the other lacks. DOD could do with the gags and Spielberg wit which KOTCS has (even if it's Spielberg on a low gas mark, it's still Spielberg and you can feel it); whereas what DOD has which KOTCS needs is the story which has actually been worked out, complete with character development and emotional core, together with a sense of danger and peril, and actual genuine overseas locations. Mix them together and I think you've got an Indy movie which would sit alongside the originals.
    I think both have good macguffin plots though, and I'm glad they both went with new, differently out there ideas and not just Christian relics again.

    Yeah I do really like both the alien and time travel angles, I just think they could have been clarified and/or simplified a little. Honestly I wouldn’t have minded if they committed to those aspects even further, like I was kind of hoping Dial would spend more time in the past, seeing Indy have a big action setpiece with a chariot or something could have been a lot of fun.

    Yeah, that could work. I wasn't too disappointed in how they did it though, and there was a least a pretty big action setpiece in that climax. It was nicely different to the old ending of Indy and his foes in a solemn temple where the artefact's power reveals itself, and yet also in keeping with the usual Indy ending too.

    I'd have certainly liked Skull to have been spookier: an Indy film about aliens where the climax is as powerful as Close Encounters? Should have been possible, but we didn't get that. Do something chilling, like the idea that Spalko angered them, and they'll be coming back someday...

    I like to imagine that
    the time rifts that the Antikythera tracks were created by the aliens' spaceships hopping between dimensions :D
    It would have been quite fun if Voller had even pondered where the rifts came from, and Indy spat at him: "I gotta good idea: flyin' saucers!" and Voller had just rolled his eyes as if Indy was mocking him, not realising that Indy was being serious!
  • Posts: 3,166
    Did anyone else feel that there were too many locations in DOD?
    Many locations is a trademark, both for Indy-movies and Bond-movies. It doesn't have more locations than either ROTLA or TLC, but I feel some scenes could have been trimmed. I would have loved for a longer tomb sequence (some cuts from the trailer were not in the final film) but a shorter chase through Tangier for example. And Shaunette Wilsons character should have been cut entirely. It wouldn't make much of a difference.
  • It did feel like there were more locations than ROTLA or TLC but that was possibly due to the length of DOD.
  • Jordo007Jordo007 Merseyside
    Posts: 2,507
    The film wasn't for me, but I'm glad other fans enjoyed it
  • I didn’t have too much of an issue with the number of locations but it did have the Spectre problem where the heavy yellow color grading made some of the different countries look and feel like the same setting.
  • I didn’t have too much of an issue with the number of locations but it did have the Spectre problem where the heavy yellow color grading made some of the different countries look and feel like the same setting.

    Yes! That's it!
  • SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷ Lekki, Lagos, Nigeria
    Posts: 1,358
    I'm still very surprised and shocked that DoD and The Flash bombed at the box office.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 8,020
    Is it really that surprising about THE FLASH?
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,449
    I'm still very surprised and shocked that DoD and The Flash bombed at the box office.

    I didn't expect either to fare as poorly as they did but it's also not as surprising given their bloated budgets. I know reshoots and the like don't help but spending $400 million-plus on a film is just absurd to me in today's climate.
  • SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷ Lekki, Lagos, Nigeria
    Posts: 1,358
    Is it really that surprising about THE FLASH?

    Honestly, I was expecting a blast.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 8,020
    Exaggerating the budget is just a way for studios to explain why they can’t pay writers more. “We didn’t make profit!” Classic Hollywood accounting.
  • SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷SecretAgentMan⁰⁰⁷ Lekki, Lagos, Nigeria
    Posts: 1,358
    Creasy47 wrote: »
    I'm still very surprised and shocked that DoD and The Flash bombed at the box office.

    I didn't expect either to fare as poorly as they did but it's also not as surprising given their bloated budgets. I know reshoots and the like don't help but spending $400 million-plus on a film is just absurd to me in today's climate.

    True. Their budgets though.
  • Posts: 372
    For the budget of The Flash they could have made eight mid range 50mil films, all with the possibility of being successful movies I their own right and they wouldn't have had to make 800mil just to break even. Time for some radical re-thinking on Hollywood's part I think
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,449
    cooperman2 wrote: »
    For the budget of The Flash they could have made eight mid range 50mil films, all with the possibility of being successful movies I their own right and they wouldn't have had to make 800mil just to break even. Time for some radical re-thinking on Hollywood's part I think

    I do hope so. With more and more films costing $250-400 million-plus and with a lot more hitting the three hour mark, I don't know what they expect.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 8,020
    cooperman2 wrote: »
    For the budget of The Flash they could have made eight mid range 50mil films, all with the possibility of being successful movies I their own right and they wouldn't have had to make 800mil just to break even. Time for some radical re-thinking on Hollywood's part I think

    We’re not in the 1980s anymore. $50m would be too unreasonably dirt cheap for big budget tentpoles. That’s around same budget for SUPERMAN IV when you adjust for inflation.
  • Raiders is lean. Too many modern movies are bloated. DOD included.
  • Posts: 12,251
    I will say I’ve never seen a movie better-paced than Raiders in my whole life. It’s remarkable how brisk it moves while maintaining an epic scope.
  • No scene is wasted. That is the mark of a stone cold classic.
  • Posts: 12,837
    I’d put KOTCS and DOD on about the same level. I like both and I’m glad they kept making them, but nothing tops the first three.
    mtm wrote: »
    Rewatched Skull the other night and it reiterates that I think it’s a much better Indy film than Dial for my tastes. I actually find it a bit surprising how much they share thematically (both films set up Indy in old age at a point where he’s more or less all alone — only to have a family reunion through adventure — in a new decade that’s antithetical to his old fashioned adventurer persona) and in terms of their flaws (distracting VFX, not the clearest rules for the MacGuffin & paranormal stuff, poor climax).

    But Skulls flaws really don’t bother me that much until the last half hour because most of the film just moves so briskly and is filled with classic Indy gags, and I like Mutt quite a bit more than Helena (who frankly, reminds me more of Mac than I’d like). The main point in Dial’s favor is that it never quite hits the same lows that Skull does, like the Tarzan bit, but its baseline quality is so much less inspired and more stodgy. Even Skull’s score, which got a bit of flack at the time has more memorable unique cues than Dial, which I don’t remember anything of outside of the times it quoted Raiders and Crusade.

    Also very glad the new 4k disc of Skull retooled the color grade, most of the movie actually looks surprisingly in line with the original trilogy. It still can’t fix those problematic jungle VFX plates, but it’s a huge improvement overall.

    If I could mix the two into one film I would, as each has the elements which the other lacks. DOD could do with the gags and Spielberg wit which KOTCS has (even if it's Spielberg on a low gas mark, it's still Spielberg and you can feel it); whereas what DOD has which KOTCS needs is the story which has actually been worked out, complete with character development and emotional core, together with a sense of danger and peril, and actual genuine overseas locations. Mix them together and I think you've got an Indy movie which would sit alongside the originals.
    I think both have good macguffin plots though, and I'm glad they both went with new, differently out there ideas and not just Christian relics again.

    Apparently Mutt gets mentioned in the TV news report in the shop window too..?

    Really well said.
    Raiders is lean. Too many modern movies are bloated. DOD included.

    I’ve always said I don’t care about the length of a film as long as it’s good but yeah I am starting to feel it with blockbusters these days, even when it’s a good one like this. Bond could make themselves stand out in a good way if they buck this trend with the next one.
  • MakeshiftPythonMakeshiftPython “Baja?!”
    Posts: 8,020
    Hope you’re okay with the next M:I film’s 163 minute running time!
  • Creasy47Creasy47 In Cuba with Natalya.Moderator
    Posts: 40,449
    Hope you’re okay with the next M:I film’s 163 minute running time!

    I'm more than okay with it if doesn't overstay its welcome, but more often than not these days, Indy included, I do. Felt the same way with NTTD, the latest John Wick, nearly all of these lengthier blockbusters of late.
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