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RANDOM REVIEW- Raiders of the Lost Ark- by Emily Bishop

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In honor of Harrison Ford’s recent role in Morning Glory as well as Cowboys and Aliens, starring Ford, coming out this summer, here’s a look back at one of his most iconic roles in one of the most enjoyable movies ever made.

Raiders of the Lost Ark, the first installment of director Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones series, introduces us to its quick-thinking and resourceful hero on a high note; in one of the first scenes, while the crusader is on a perilous expedition to recover some presumably priceless historical golden skull, we see Harrison Ford’s brilliant Indy use his simple, trademark whip to smack a pistol out of some hot-shot opponent’s hand; and from then on Indiana Jones enters the Lexicon as the coolest hero ever. Indy is pitch-perfect; intelligent and enterprising, witty and enduring, delightfully roguish and dapper.

Raiders of the Lost Ark’s plot is thankfully not pushed backseat to accommodate outrageous action sequences. The story is detailed, engaging, and quite simply, it makes sense. Our protagonist Indy is recruited by the cryptic and demanding U.S. government, a conventional portrayal of our leaders. Jones’ newest task is to obtain the legendary and inconveniently lost Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis (villains that are logical both for the movie’s 1936 setting and 1981 release), the crazed Major Arnold Toht played by Ronald Lacey, and Jones’ old rival, Paul Freeman’s mildly evil Belloq, can get to it first. While these iniquitous antiheros yearn for the Ark for a big payday and approval from the Fuehrer, Indy’s reasons further affirm why he’s so idolized. Jones decides to accept the quest for the Ark for purely academic reasons, to preserve a piece of history. Quick as his whip, Indiana Jones sets off, first convincing his beautiful ex-lover Marion to assist him. Predictably, the relationship between the two resurfaces, but the pair does have a noticeable amount of chemistry, and obviously the couple that crusades together stays together. The best parts of Raiders of the Lost Ark are the action sequences ensue as the battle for the supposedly cursed Ark rages on, leading up to a finale with the coveted Ark that is equal parts disturbing and completely awesome. Melting skin is admittedly a step above kids stuff, but it makes the movie even cooler.

Since Raiders of the Lost Ark, we’ve been given three more Indy movies, a brief TV series, and countless amounts of Indy merchandise (although the Lego Indiana Jones video game is more fun than the Lego trademark would lead you to believe). However, as things in Hollywood usually go, nothing beats the original.

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