Poll Results: Best Harrison Ford Film

In a career full of iconic films, Harrison Ford’s best is quite clear for most:

Raiders of the Lost Ark

– Raiders of the Lost Ark: 21 votes
– Blade Runner: 16 votes
– The Empire Strikes Back: 8 votes
– Star Wars: 5 votes
– Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom: 3 votes
– Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade: 3 votes
– The Fugitive: 3 votes
– Air Force One: 1 vote
– The Mosquito Coast: 1 vote
– Patriot Games: 1 vote
– Presumed Innocent: 1 vote
– Witness: 1 vote

While Raiders of the Lost Ark is clearly a juggernaut that can’t be stopped, that was a hell of a job by the Blade Runner fans to make this a close contest. I’m honestly surprised that the Star Wars films didn’t get more votes — Raiders of the Lost Ark received nearly twice as many votes as the Star Wars trilogy combined!

This Week’s Poll: Changing gears this week. Tom Cruise’s sci-fi film, Oblivion, won out at the box office over the weekend, and we have already covered his career before. Let’s discuss video games instead — what is your favorite era for gaming? Are you an old-school NES fan who wishes for the early days of Mario, Contra and Castlevania? Do you prefer the SNES/Genesis era and their impressive selection of RPGs? Or perhaps you are enjoying the latest generations? Let’s hear your thoughts.

Have a great week, folks!

Movie Project #31: Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade [1989]

Due to the surprising success of my initial Movies Project, I decided to do a part two for 2012. This time around I put a greater emphasis on directors I am not familiar with, but I also tried to compile a mix of different genres and eras. This will be an ongoing project with the finish date being sometime this year.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade [1989]
Director: Steven Spielberg
Genre: Action/Adventure
Starring: Harrison Ford, Sean Connery and Alison Doody
Runtime: 127 minutes

I’m not sure what took me so long to finally see Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade. I had watched Raiders of the Lost Ark and Temple of Doom pretty much back-to-back, but over a year has passed since then. Perhaps my general disdain for Temple of Doom had something to do with it — after that subpar effort, I was skeptical that the third entry could achieve the greatness of the original. Little did I know that I would enjoy the hell out of the finale, which in some way even surpasses its legendary beginning.

Set in 1938, Indiana Jones (Harrison Ford), now teaching at Barnett College, is informed that his father, Henry Jones, Sr. (Sean Connery), has gone missing while searching for the Holy Grail. Knowing that his father must be in trouble, Indy travels to Venice, Italy to meet with a colleague, Dr. Elsa Schneider (Alison Doody). After a thrilling trip through rat-infested catacombs, the duo learn that Mr. Jones was abducted by the Nazis and is now held in a castle near the Austrian-German border. This soon becomes a globe-trotting endeavor in which Indy races to find both his father and the Holy Grail, all while fending off those evil Nazi bastards.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade [1989]

At this point, it’s Indiana Jones 101, but the Last Crusade is most enjoyable thanks to its near-perfect casting. Harrison Ford and Sean Connery have terrific chemistry, and they are a lot of fun to watch together. Although Connery is only twelve years older than Ford, he looks much older in the film, and he does a great job adding comic relief to the non-stop adventures on screen. I’ll take him over Short Round or Willie any day. Old favorites Marcus Brody (Denholm Elliott) and Sallah (John Rhys-Davies) make welcome returns, and the new love interest Elsa is enjoyable as the icy cool blonde.

The Last Crusade has a number of memorable moments as expected. Two obvious highlights are the aforementioned trip through the catacombs, and the epic tank chase en route to the Holy Grail. Also, who can forget the absolutely ridiculous (and awesome) cameo from Adolf Hitler? This is a film that revels in its over-the-top adventures and has a good time doing so.

Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade [1989]

I feel I would need to revisit Raiders of the Lost Ark to determine which I liked more, but to say I enjoyed the Last Crusade would be an understatement. This film blew away my (admittedly reserved) expectations, and it’s one that I feel I may enjoy even more on subsequent viewings. Now, the question is, dare I risk tainting these memories by watching the fourth movie?