Archeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the US government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.
Release Year: 1981
Rating: 8.7/10 (316,922 voted)
Critic's Score: 90/100
Stars: Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, Paul Freeman
The year is 1936. A professor who studies archeology named Indiana Jones is venturing in the jungles in South America searching for a golden statue. Unfortunately, he sets off a deadly trap doing so, miraculously, he escapes. Then, Jones hears from a museum curator named Marcus Brody about a biblical artifact called The Ark of the Covenant, which can hold the key to humanly existence. Jones has to venture to vast places such as Nepal and Egypt to find this artifact. However, he will have to fight his enemy Renee Belloq and a band of Nazis in order to reach it.
Writers: Lawrence Kasdan, George Lucas
Dr. René Belloq
Major Arnold Toht
Dr. Marcus Brody
Indiana Jones – the new hero from the creators of JAWS and STAR WARS.
Lucasfilm / Paramount |
Release Date: 12 June 1981
Filming Locations: Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, England, UK
Box Office Details
Opening Weekend: $8,305,823
(14 June 1981)
Did You Know?
The floatplane in the opening sequence has the registration prefix "OB-", which indicates that the action takes place in Peru.
Incorrectly regarded as goofs:
During the truck chase, the heads of the approaching German soldiers are level with the top of the truck. Just as Indy looks into his side mirror, they crouch down, so their position in the mirrors is correct.
[picking up poison dart]
The Hovitos are near. The poison is still fresh, three days. They're following us.
If they knew we were here, they would've killed us already.
There will never be another film like Raiders
It is a hot sunny day in South America. We see a bunch of men, shot
mostly from the back. They are walking deep into the forest. We see a
tall dark figure. He is wearing an old leather jacket, he has the 5
o'clock shadow looking like it's closer to midnight, he wears a fedora
and he carries a bull-whip ( yes a bull-whip ). Finally, two of the men
enter a cave and we hear about some guy named Forstall, who was good,
very, very good, but he never came out of the place alive. But they
enter anyway. They are confronted with tarantulas, spears that are
triggered by blocking out the light, a pit that they must swing over
and then more tiny poisonous darts that come out of the wall. All this
to protect an ancient gold statue. They recover it. One guy dies and
the other barely makes it out of the room before it all falls on him.
Then he has to get out of the cave and a giant boulder chases him.
Finally he makes it out of the cave only to be surrounded by Hovitos
and his arch enemy named Belloq. He takes the gold statue that this guy
worked so hard for and then the guy runs and makes it to the plane
where he is in the passenger seat and there is big snake in the plane.
He hates snakes. This mans name? Indiana Jones!
Whhhoooooo!! I'm left breathless just describing that opening. But is
there a better beginning of a movie ever? Absolutely not. Does the
beginning have anything to do with the rest of the film. No. It is all
decoration for what the movie is going to put you through in the 90
minutes to come.
Indiana Jones is the best character to ever hit the screens. And he
better be. He is created by George, Steven and played by Harrison Ford.
That may seem normal now that we have lived with him for 20 years, but
can you imagine what that must have been like back in 1981. That would
be like Tom Hanks or Will Smith joining forces with James Cameron and
Steven Spielberg for a completely original idea in today's terms.
Raiders took a simple idea and maybe an idea that the guys had from
watching Saturday afternoon movies and made it larger than life. This
film never stops for you to take your breath. It is filled with rich
characters from Indy himself to Marion to Belloq and even to Marcus
Brody. Each has their own personality that shines through in certain
scenes. Some of my faves were when we first meet Marion having a shot
contest in her bar in Nepal. Then there is her scene with Belloq and
they get drunk together and she tries to leave using only a butter
knife. And of course who can forget Indy's battle with the swordsman
and his unrivaled determination to get the ark. " Indy, there is not
time. If you still want the truck it is being loaded on a truck for
Cairo. " ( a battered and bloody Indy ) " Truck? What truck?" ( and
then later ) "Get some transport back to England, boat, plane,
anything. Meet me at Omar's. I'm going after that truck. "
Sola ) " How? " ( Indy ) I don't know I'm making this up as I go."
Raiders has more energy than three action films. And that is what makes
it the classic that it is. If you like movies, then Raiders is a movie
that will not let you down. It is pure entertainment and that is
indisputable. It finds the youngster in all of us and bombards us with
this silly, whip-cracking, average, incredibly determined archaeologist
and only asks us to have fun. And that we do. And to me, the only
reason that Chariots of Fire won best picture that year is because it
is a serious film. Raiders was heads and shoulders above Chariots and
it should have cleaned up at the Oscars in 81. But more politics with
Raiders of the Lost Ark is the epitome of entertainment. What more can
be said about it. If you haven't seen this movie in a while or if you
haven't seen it at all ( gasp ) then do yourself a favour and rent it
tonight. It is awesome.