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The news site of Robert Morris University

RMU Sentry Media

The news site of Robert Morris University

RMU Sentry Media

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny Gives Indy One Last Great Adventure

For most fans, “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” did not do the “Indiana Jones” franchise justice, and I certainly agree. “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” is a lackluster movie that does not give a hero such as Indy the ending he deserves.

Many people, including myself, came into “Dial of Destiny” with lower expectations, simply hoping for a good conclusion to the story. I for one think the movie exceeded my expectations.

“Dial of Destiny” starts nearly perfectly with a flashback sequence to 1943, where Indy is trying to steal a relic from the Nazis. This flashback emulates the classic “Indiana Jones” style from the original three movies. It has witty humor and the iconic action you would expect from an “Indiana Jones” movie. My only real gripe with the beginning of the movie is the de-aging technology, which seems a bit off. This is not too noticeable but it is certainly something to take into account. During this flashback, we are introduced to the Antikythera (the real name for the “Dial of Destiny”). Indy is not too interested in it as he appears to lose it in a river at the end of the flashback.

After the flashback, we get about 20 minutes of catching the audiance up on what has happened in Indy’s life since the last movie. During this time we also get introduced to our main villain of the story Dr. Voller, played brilliantly by Mads Mikkelsen. We also get introduced to Indy’s goddaughter Helena, again brilliantly played this time by Phoebe Waller-Bridge. This part of the movie is a nice slow section after a quick action-packed beginning. Things pick back up very quickly as our three main characters get into conflict.

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Once the real chase begins, the movie feels great. The movie almost captures the feeling of the first three movies. It has the action, the great character chemistry, the fun desert setting, but the one thing I think it lacks is that sense of grand mystery that “Raiders of the Lost Ark” and “The Last Crusade” had. In those movies there was a sense of “Well, what does the Ark do?” or “Which cup is the Holy Grail, and what does it do?” In “Dial of Destiny” it is laid out from the start exactly what the Antikythera does and how it does it. There really is no mystery there. The biggest mystery does not come in until the end of the third act. It is a good mystery, and I will not spoil it since the movie is so new, but it did not feel as satisfying because we only got to think about for around 15 minutes of the movie, which leaves us with the ending.

The ending of the movie is bad, simply put. Now, I will be spoiling this because it is integral to my biggest criticism of the movie. At the climax of the film, Indy and Dr. Voller are on a plane heading towards a portal that is supposed to bring them back in time. The portal actually works, and they go back to the year 213 and the Siege of Syracuse. This whole part is just goofy. “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” had this same problem the ending was completely wacky and not even close to being based in reality. At least in the orginal three films the endings were based on real ideas and things not out of the realm of possibility. In “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” the ending is based off of actual Biblical and theological ideas of the Ark of the Covenant. “Temple of Doom” is based on actual cult practices. “Last Crusade” is again based off of actual Biblical, and theological ideas of the Holy Grail. “Kingdom of the Crystal Skull” and “Dial of Destiny” are both outlandish. First, a giant alien spaceship hiding in a native city, then time travel that was created in the year 213 A? Both these are just stupid in principal not to even get into the things that happen during these sequences.

Ranting aside the ending after the time travel event is perfect. We get a whole reunion with Marion, Sallah, and Helena and a happily ever after. It is a nice send off for the greatest action hero of all time. “Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny” gets a 3.5/5 from me.

Overall, my rankings of the “Indiana Jones” films is as follows.

  1. Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade
  2. Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark
  3. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny
  4. Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
  5. Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

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About the Contributor
Finn Lyons
Finn Lyons, Head Arts and Entertainment Editor
Finn is a junior News and Sports Communication major from Buffalo Ny. He is the Head Editor for A&E, and a reporter for CSN and can be found on RMU Tv and RMU Radio.