THE PLOT THUS FAR
Archeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the US government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.
WHAT WE THOUGHT
“Raiders of the Lost Ark” opens up in a South American jungle, as Indiana Jones leads an expedition to a lost temple. Despite his deceitful help, Indiana Jones manages to make it to the Golden Idol that he’s trying to recover. After triggering a booby trap, we get to watch as Indiana Jones and his guide Satipo have to escape the temple’s triggered traps. Indiana manages to escape, while he leaves Satipo’s corpse behind. After a brief encounter with his rival Belloq and a group of local Indians, Indiana escapes to his nearby charter plane to live another day. Back on his home turf, Dr. Jones teaches archaeology to the horniest college coeds 1936 had to offer. Marcus Brody intrudes upon Dr. Jones to let him know that the FBI wants to talk to him in the school’s auditorium.
The FBI lets Dr. Jones know that the Nazis are feverishly scouring the globe for supernatural artifacts to bring back to Hitler. Specifically, the Nazis want to use the Ark of the Covenant. According to Judeo-Christian myth, whoever possesses the Ark of the Covenant can use their God’s might to crush opposing armies. The FBI worried that some sort of mythic superweapon could tip the scales for the Nazi party, enlists Indiana Jones to help his country out. Indiana knows that he has to make one stop before he heads to the Middle East to find the Ark of Covenant. Indiana has to go to a bar in Nepal. Marion Ravenwood is one of the many notches on Indiana Jones’s bullwhip. This man has been chasing tail everywhere that his magical “red map line” takes him. After a brief scene of Marion Ravenwood’s severe alcoholism we’re treated to a reunion of Marion and Jones. After the duo fight for a bit, Indiana asks for a medallion that belonged to his mentor. Since Indy’s mentor was Marion’s father, she’s a little reluctant to give it up. Disappointed, Indiana leaves. But, that’s when my favorite Nazi arrives.
Toht is one of the cinema’s greatest creepy weirdos. He’s Peter Lorre by way of Mengele. Toht attempts to take the medallion away from Marion, but Marion isn’t going to give up so easily. But, that’s when the giant Sherpas show up. Lucky for Marion, she’s got Indiana Jones in her corner. What follows is one of the greatest barfights in cinematic history. All of that happens in the first half hour. This flick is packed. Spielberg has said in later interviews that he intended for the film to play as six serial episodes packed into one giant Republic Pictures serial epic. While I feel that the pacing might’ve been off a degree to achieve that, Spielberg and company have made something for the ages. Raiders of the Lost Ark is another one of the essentials…so, you all know what this is getting.
The Blu-Ray comes with a ton of trailers. The A/V Quality is very strong with a clean DTS-HD 5.1 master audio track and 1080p transfer. It’s the same transfer from last year’s mass release set. That being said, some people only prefer Raiders. I don’t know who those people are, but I’m glad that Paramount has taken the time to break up the set. There are so many studios out there who won’t even do that. In the end, I’d recommend a purchase.
RELEASE DATE: 12/17/2013