Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom ★★★½

In true serial style, Temple of Doom swings in on a thoroughly enjoyable start, an opening musical rendition of Cole Porter’s Anything Goes setting the playful tone. It’s a shame Kate Capshaw’s character couldn’t go on singing, if only for the fact that every time she talks I feel like topping myself. Compared to the romantic lead of say — Raiders, this girl scarcely even qualifies as a character, her screeching voice only made worse by the plethora of misogynistic clichés she’s injected with. Thankfully, Spielberg makes it clear that he knows the ropes, only more so with fantastical set-pieces and elaborate torture sequences than with women. Seeing this at seven years old changed the game for me as it did for many people, because what kid doesn’t lap up monkey brains, creepy crawlies, elephant rides, rotting carcasses and other kids kicking ass?! This is pretty much on par with Raiders and Jaws in terms of pushing the boat out (hah) on the PG rating. I don’t know how you made it happen Steven, but thank you. After rewatching twice recently with adult eyes, I can safely say all the silly detours into culturally tone-deaf territory are worth it, the mine-cart chase sequence alone worth any admission price, diamond, or sacred stone.

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