‘The Dial of Destiny’, the last Indiana Jones, is a cynical and sad farewell

What new movies should you see? We list the releases and select the movie of the week. This time, Indiana Jones returns once again to track down long-lost artifacts and take on the Nazis.

Elise Van Dam

A train full of Nazis, archeological artifacts, a whip and a fedora; Indiana Jones is back. And go back in time too. The first half hour or so Indiana Jones and the Dial of Fatethe fifth and final film about the adventurous archaeologist, it is a lengthy prologue featuring a digitally rejuvenated Harrison Ford who, in the twilight of World War II, obtains half of Antikythera, an invention of Archimedes capable of detecting cracks in time.

After that prologue, the film, this time directed not by Steven Spielberg but by James Mangold, jumps to the end of the sixties. As America celebrates the return of astronauts who landed on the moon, Indy retires. Struggling with a world that is only focused on the future and distant galaxies, and has no eyes for the past anymore. But the past is always in motion.

And so one of the prologue Nazis reappears. This Jürgen Voller (Mads Mikkelsen) attacks Antikythera to travel through a rift in time to the past and change the outcome of World War II. With stiff joints, rickety tuk-tuks and rusty boats, Indiana Jones must try to avoid this. Equally opposed and aided by Helena (Phoebe Waller-Bridge), daughter of Indy’s former partner, Basil.

Indiana Jones is an alternate James Bond

The character of Indiana Jones supposedly took shape on a beach in Hawaii. That’s where George Lucas’s idea of ​​an archeology professor who went on far-off adventures came together with Spielberg’s desire to make an alternative James Bond film, with a hero who relies not on fast cars and technical gadgets, but on his ingenuity. After Jeff Bridges and Tom Selleck, among others, passed the role, the role went to Harrison Ford.

Indiana Jones made his first appearance in 1981 Raiders of the Lost Ark. The film was a huge commercial and artistic success, and two more Spielberg-directed installments followed in the 1980s, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom (1984) and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989).

In 2008, Spielberg returns to the beloved character with Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. The film generated mixed reactions, to say the least, and a new term: destroying the fridgea variation of jumping the shark, denoting the point at which a television series (or, for that matter, a movie franchise) has reached its peak and tries to make up for it with increasingly ridiculous ideas. In the case of Indiana Jones, the term refers to the scene where he survives a nuclear bomb test in a refrigerator.

Indiana Jones eighties movies

The Dial of Destiny it seems mostly done to wash away the foul taste of the fourth film and give Indy a dignified send-off. But this is an unstable existence. And the form of this farewell greeting has something cynical and sad about it. Because although I’m not going to claim that Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is an unknown masterpiece, it was at least an attempt to do something new with the character. Spielberg was scorned for it. The Dial of Destiny it is, on the other hand, heating up an old must that mostly resembles the flavor it once had.

American film critic Matt Zoller Seitz compared Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with the ‘Old Man films’ of John Ford and Howard Hawks. “Movies that felt more like adorable musings on mortality than adrenaline-fueled action bikes.” For reflecting is in The Dial of Destiny shortly. The movie is full of references to memorable moments from ’80s Indiana Jones movies, but only as a nostalgic exercise in filler.

When Steven Spielberg handed the helm over to James Mangold in 2020, he did so to allow the next generation to cast a fresh perspective on the character. A somewhat strange reasoning since this would be the last Indiana Jones movie. Of course he felt it was time to say goodbye to the character. Indiana Jones and the Dial of Fate It might not be the send-off it deserved, but the standing ovation Harrison Ford received at the Cannes premiere was well deserved. His Indiana Jones is one of the icons of cinema history.

Indiana Jones and the Dial of Fate

Direction James Mangold
In Harrison Ford, Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Mads Mikkelsen
can be seen at Arena, City, FC Hyena, Filmhallen, De Munt, Pathé Noord, Cinema de Vlugt, The Movies, Tuschinski

Also out this week:

Les Cyclades: while hopping around the Greek islands, polar opposites Magalie and Blandine rekindle a friendship that has been dormant for thirty years in the movie Summer Buddy
Les Saucers: directors Lise Akoka and Romane Gueret question the ethics of social realist films while making their own
The Eternal Daughter: Gothic ghost story about the dependent relationship between mother and daughter, both played by Tilda Swinton
Maggie Moore(s): a confusing combination of crime mystery, romantic comedy and buddy movie, with a beautiful lead role from Jon Hamm
a matter of trust: Danish mosaic film fails to connect the stories convincingly

James Mangold.  Image WireImage

James Mangold.Image WireImage

James Mangold

Since American filmmaker James Mangold (1963) debuted in 1995 with the short drama Heavy he has become a rock solid value in Hollywood. A director who rarely makes big mistakes and moves between different genres with apparent ease. Horror (Identityy), romantic comedy (Kate & Leopold), Action (knight and day), biographical film (walk the line, about Johnny Cash). what he fails Indiana Jones and the Dial of Fatehe was quite successful with logan (2017), by far the best film about Men Xcharacter Wolverine, in which Mangold dares to take that character to the fullest.