Daniel Cruse’s review published on Letterboxd:
This may come as a surprise but I’ve never actually seen any of the first three Indiana Jones films all the way through. I’ve seen all the iconic moments at various times throughout my life but I never sat down to actually watch the whole thing until today. I’m planning on watching all four over tonight and tomorrow. I’m curious to see how this experience will change my view of Crystal Skull as I honestly have always kinda liked that movie. I don’t think it’s awful, obviously it’s nowhere near as good as this magnificent film but for what it is (a fun action adventure with a spin on the sci-fi B movies of the time in which it is set) it’s not that bad save for a few particularly egregious moments. I’ll go more in depth about what exactly I like and dislike about that film when I rewatch it tomorrow.
Now as far as Raiders is concerned, well it’s a complete masterpiece. It’s one of the most enthralling and fun adventure films ever put to the silver screen. Spielberg and Ford are in their prime from the mid 70’s through the time that this franchise’s third film came out and this is a terrific product of their talents combining along with many others.
Spielberg, Ford, Lawrence Kasdan, Karen Allen, pretty much any name you throw out there that was involved with this production was doing amazing work. It’s a timeless film but also such a product of the time it was made as I personally don’t feel like we get these types of adventure movies anymore, National Treasure is the closest thing from my childhood and those movies are obviously not quite as iconic (though I’m hoping a third installment gets made).
There are so many amazing lines of dialogue, spectacular action set pieces, and absolutely killer special effects work as well. The film fires on all cylinders and essentially has everything you could ever want out of an action adventure film. I was a little curious to see how fresh eyes would’ve viewed this movie since I’d never seen it all the way through and I know some people personally who didn’t think classics like Star Wars had ages as well if they saw them for the first time in their adulthood as opposed to growing up with the built in nostalgia factor working in favor of the film. I can report that in my experience, this film holds up phenomenally well. I am super excited to see the second and third installments in full as well.