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Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull: Teaser trailer review

Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones l Photo: Steven Spielberg

Review by Jack Foley

IndieLondon Rating: 4 out of 5

IT WAS kind of appropriate that Steven Spielberg and George Lucas should choose to release the first official footage of Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull on Valentine’s Day – by way of affectionate flirting with movie fans.

But at 2pm, fans devotedly flocked to www.indianajones.com to see the first trailer of their idol back in action and they weren’t disappointed.

It may be almost 19 years since Harrison Ford last crapped that whip and dusted off the world-famous hat but it’s clear from the 60 seconds or so of new footage that he has lost none of his enthusiasm or physical ability.

In true teaser fashion, of course, viewers have to wait for a glimpse of new action. The trailer begins with a sweeping shot of some mountains, before reminding us how Indy has saved the world on three previous occasions. Flashback glimpses of key moments from Raider of The Lost Ark, Indiana Jones & The Temple of Doom and Indiana Jones & The Last Crusade are featured, without so much as a glimpse of our hero.

And then comes the moment we’ve all been waiting for – Indy’s return to the screeen. And in typically bruising fashion, he doesn’t so much ride triumphantly across the screen, as get bundled out of a car and thrown to the ground by a bunch of American soldiers.

Then it’s all about the raising of expectation. We’ve still not see our hero…

But the camera focuses upon the hat, and then a man standing over it, before casting our gaze onto a shadow as the hat is put onto the head to recreate one of the most iconic images in movie history.

Surrounded by hostile soldiers, Indy has chance for a quick-witted quip to his companion (Ray Winstone) about nothing being as easy as it once was, and then Spielberg tosses a few action moments our way to prove that age has not diminished the action hero whatsoever.

The trailer highlight, for me, came as Indiana Jones attempts to swing onto a truck he’s been chasing, only to miss the jump completely and wind up crashing through the windscreen of the vehicle following right behind it. The look on Harrison Ford’s face is priceless as he attempts to fashom what’s just happened, before quickly dealing with the two men sat either side of him.

Cate Blanchett’s villain gets a couple of scenes and looks suitably menacing, Shia LaBeouf looks wide-eyed and in awe of Indy, and there’s a blink-and-you’ll miss it nod to something about Roswell on a metallic object (or spaceship?).

But very little (if nothing at all) is given away about the plot, which remains a closely guarded secret.

For now, though, it’s clear that Spielberg, Ford and company have lost none of their ability to stage a memorable set piece and continue to treat the character with the respect and reverance he deserves.

The action looks brisk and typically feel-good, the humour appears spot-on and in keeping with both the character’s age and previous adventures, and the overall look seems to have recaptured everything we’ve come to love about this franchise (and that’s saying something after only a minute and a half of material!).

With the world-wide release date of May 22 rapidly approaching, we can only draw closer with feverish anticipation. The wait was worth it (for the trailer at least), but we’re willing to stick our necks out and predict that Indiana Jones & The Kingdom of The Crystal Skull will be a great, rollicking adventure and a glorious return of an iconic movie character.

Watch the trailer