Luke Hansen’s review published on Letterboxd:
This was actually my first time watching Raiders of the Lost Ark in its entirety. I had witnessed bits and pieces as a child, but never the complete picture.
Raiders of the Lost Ark is great. It's drenched in layers and layers of magic and wonder that are rarely captured in today's cinema. I believe that's what makes it, and others like it, so adored by everyone. It's far from a perfect movie, but the pureness of the wonder it formulates overshadows any flaws that may be present. This is a movie created by people who love film making with a passion, and that is evident during every second of the film.
The simplicity regarding the characters and story is what's great about this movie, but also where it's weaknesses come in. As lovable as the characters are, there isn't really any massive depth or growth for any of the characters. It's a movie that goes for charm of it's characters rather than the intricacy that viewers crave today. I don't know that I would exactly consider this as "bad", but is certainly something to take note of. If Indiana was a female protagonist, and this exact movie released today, I guarantee that she would be bashed for being a "Mary Sue". That's not a critique against this movie, but simply an observation on certain movie goers today...
With that aside, all the characters are incredibly charming and fill their roles perfectly. Harrison Ford as Indiana is obviously perfect casting and and a great performance. Indiana is very much a fantasy character, a version of yourself you might find in a day dream. It's once again a place where this movie creates a very wonderful state of mind. Marion was a solid character, but a weak love interest. Her and Indies's relationship is the one element of the movie that has not aged well. I think this is largely due to her character's most essential part play, involves her being thrown into various sexually suggestive situations. There is definitively objectification with her character that ruins any genuine feeling of romance between her and indie. However, she isn't a complete damsel in distress, and is repeatedly shown as a competent character who could handle herself which is why I find her to be a good character in the end.
Regarding their relationship, John Williams's musical theme for them is perfect. When the music plays, it is easy to forget any problems I had with their intertwining stories.
Aside from the few critiques I mentioned earlier, this is a near perfect movie. The technical aspects have aged phenomenally and still seem impressive today. The pacing is genuinely great and the Spielberg's direction is just icing on the cake.
Overall, I really enjoyed this movie. It has some flaws but thanks to the impressive craftsmanship that went into creating such pure wonder, it is easy to overlook those issues.