The man with the hat is back. And this time, he's bringing his dad.
Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is a 1989 action adventure film directed by Steven Spielberg, written by Jeffrey Boam, produced by Lucasfilm Ltd., and distributed by Paramount Pictures. The film stars Harrison Ford and Sean Connery. It was nominated for and won Best Sound Editing while also being nominated for Best Sound and Best Original Score. This is the third film in the Indiana Jones franchise. It was preceded by Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and followed by Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
"Only the penitent man shall pass." - Dr. Henry Jones Sr.
When his father goes missing while searching for the Holy Grail, Indiana Jones embarks on another adventure against the Nazis to find his dad and the prevent Hitler from retrieving the cup that Christ drank from.
My Favorite Part of Last Crusade
Easily the best part of this film is the dynamic between Sean Connery and Harrison Ford. Who better to cast as the father of Indiana Jones than James Bond himself? This film is really elevated by the father-son relationship that has not been present in either Raiders or Temple of Doom. It rounds out Indiana Jones as a character. It makes you understand more about him. We've never really gotten a full backstory for Indy, but there are tons of things that are hinted at between him and his father in this film that give you an idea of his upbringing. It adds a layer to the film that elevates it. Alongside that extra layer, Ford and Connery have fantastic chemistry. They riff off of each other so well and make this movie so entertaining.
My Least Favorite Part of Last Crusade
I think, at times, the adventure aspect of the film feels familiar. We've already done this dance twice. The first time was fresh and new. The second time was darker and more disturbing. The third time, Indiana Jones's dad comes along, but the adventure itself is very reminiscent of Raiders. There's booby traps. They are chasing a biblical artifact. The Nazis are also chasing said biblical artifact. Of course, any sequel is going to feel slightly derivative of the original, but the best sequels are the ones that can stand completely alone from the original or improve on what the original nearly perfected.
Why Last Crusade Is Great
Sure, Last Crusade can feel derivative of Raiders of the Lost Ark, but being similar to a great film isn't the worst thing in the world. Last Crusade is different enough with the father-son dynamic and a more overtly comedic tone that it still feels like a truly awesome and great Indiana Jones adventure. I am having trouble deciding which I like better between this and Raiders, which is a good thing for Last Crusade, because that shows how great it actually is.
Final Thoughts and Score
Indiana Jones and his dad bring their A-game in a fun, funny continuation of the classic adventure saga.
I will go Savory here. Age range is 7+.
SWEET N' SOUR SCALE
Sweet (Great) Savory (Good) Sour (Bad) Moldy (Terrible)
"Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade"
Fun Factor: 8.5/10
Directed by Steven Spielberg
Rated PG-13 for moderate violence and action, frightening themes and images, suggestive material, language, thematic elements
Released on May 24, 1989
2 hours and 8 minutes
Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones
Sean Connery as Dr. Henry Jones Sr.
Denholm Elliott as Marcus Brody
Allison Doody as Elsa Schneider
John Rhys-Davis as Sallah
Julian Glover as Walter Donovan
River Phoenix as Young Indiana Jones