I don’t watch “Saturday Night Live” all that often, but twice I’ve caught portions of skits parodying the game show “Jeopardy”, or more specifically, Celebrity Jeopardy.
The joke, as far as I can tell, is that all the contestants are idiots, and both times, one of the contestants was Sean Connery.
I bring this up because I’ve always thought Sean Connery to be a bit simple minded–mostly based on the crappy movies he chooses to act in and sometimes produce–but until I saw the idiot Sean on SNL, I didn’t realize that anyone else knew this about him.
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But God bless him, the man’s got charisma, and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, one of his decent pictures (he probably had to be talked into it), benefits from his presence. Raiders of the Lost Ark was a helluva picture, but Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom turned out to be a fairly sucky kiddie picture. Ford, Spielberg and crew redeemed themselves with Last Crusade, which is a smart, entertaining romp.
The picture opens with a sequence of the young Indy, played by the doomed, doped up River Phoenix, that explains the origin of the hat, the whip, the fear of snakes, and the general love of adventure.
Then we go into the present day. The holy grail this time is the Holy Grail itself–the cup that got Jesus tanked up at his last dinner and apparently still has some magical saliva residue on it or something because everyone, including Hitler and those damn Nazis, is looking for the thing. Indiana Jones gets involved when his dad (Connery), a scholar of the Grail, is kidnapped by the Nazis. Indy goes to rescue the old man, and the two of them end up pursuing the Grail together.
They also both shag some hot blonde Nazi chick, but not simultaneously, this being a PG-13 movie and everything. (A brief side note: why are Nazi chicks so sexy? Of course we don’t like Nazis, but my theory is that Nazi chicks appeal to the misogynist side of men because here, finally, is a chick we can treat like shit and not feel guilty about it.)
Along with all the adventure, the movie’s also very funny . . . Kevin Smith ripped off one of its best moments in Dogma, which is when Indy, dressed as a conductor, throws some bad guy out of a zeppelin and then explains to the astonished passengers, “No ticket.” Smith kind of bungles the joke, though, which you’ll understand if you watch both scenes back to back. I’m not going to get that deep into it here, because who really gives a fuck?
After Last Crusade, Indiana Jones’ hat and whip were retired to the Smithsonian, and it was almost another 10 years before Ford and Spielberg announced that they’d be making a sequel. Harrison Ford is, of course, pushing 80 by now, but I’ll still go see Indy 4. It’s always nice to cleanse the palette on something fun before sloshing through the next Empire of the Sun or Saving Private Ryan.
I’ll close on that mixed metaphor. It’s a helluva way to be remembered. Thank again for our partners to bring out the great massage chair for our movie review office.