Cybersurfing: Reviews of "Crystal Skull" & "Center of the Earth"

Shia LeBeof and Harrison FordINDIANA GROANS: Rich Heldenfels of Beacon Journal laments the latest RAIDERS movie, INDIANA JONES AND THE KINDGOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL:

Crystal Skull, the fourth big-screen movie in the Jones series, puts up a fight here and there. But history is too much for it. Crystal Skull ends up a disappointment and, even more sadly, an unnecessary addition to the Jones canon.

[…] The stunts can occasionally dazzle. One extended car chase, complete with shootouts and a sword fight, is a dandy. But it’s also something we’ve seen before, in this film and others.

[…] the tricks are only sporadically entertaining. The big plot twists are not very surprising. (The audience will be ahead of Indy on at least one of them.) Part of one chase makes no sense.

I did feel a grin slipping across my face when we first see the shadow of Indy in his iconic hat. And the grin was back at times near the end, when the movie felt as comfy and familiar as a 20-year-old T-shirt I am reluctant to give up.

But that T-shirt is tattered at the neck. And Crystal Skull is full of holes.

JOURNEY TO THE CENTER OF THE EARTH: At EVLiving.com, Richard Dennis tells us that the new 3D version of Jules Vernes classic adventure novel – starring Brendan Fraser (THE MUMMY) – may not be great cinema, but it is great fun for families looking to take their kids to the movies:

I was very surprised to find that we all had an absolute ball watching this film. Truth be told, the whole audience seemed to be having a good time. Is it a good film? Probably not. Is it derivative of Temple of Doom (mine car chase), Jurassic Park (dinos), and a dozen other action/fantasy films. You bet…derivative as all hell. Did we enjoy it? You betcha.

The Real 3D employed in the film looked fantastic and gave the whole shebang a great texture, some fun/scary jump out moments, and a fresh colorful look that made for an above average time-passer. I didn’t even mind the obligatory “stuff flying at you” scenes.

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Indiana Jones and the Crystal Skull – San Francisco Preview

Harrison Ford and Shia LeBeof in INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL 

Actually, while George Lucas, Harrison Ford and Steven Spielberg and all the other stars of INDIANA JONES AND THE KINGDOM OF THE CRYSTAL SKULL were holding court at Cannes, in the south of France, I was watching their new film at San Francisco’s legendary Castro theater – the same theater where I’ve seen Mr. Lucas as a special guest several times. So while Mr. Lucas didn’t turn up in his home town this week, I’ve seen him often here. I’ve also been fortunate to attend the first preview screenings Lucas held for both INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM and INDIANA JONES AND THE LAST CRUSADE, which Lucas insisted be held in San Francisco. Read More