Temple of Suck

To hell with completeness’ sake; I should just institute a rule that I’m never watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom ever again, for any reason. Every time I watch the thing, it gets worse — and it’s not like it was good to start with.

0 Responses to “Temple of Suck”

  1. milbrcrsan

    No, it’s not that good to begin with. :p I avoid it whenever I can get the chance to watch Indiana Jones. Ugh.

  2. copperwise

    I was just forced to watch it for a retrospective review of the full set and extras on DVD. I’d have preferred to just rub my nipples with sandpaper and stick forks in my eyes. It would have been less painful.

  3. kmousie

    Gosh, you’re so right. And I think it does get worse with repeated viewing!

  4. squishymeister

    I remember watching it as a kid and being TERRIFIED. To this day I re-watching it will give me nightmares.

    But I suppose you are talking about it being bad in other ways 😉

  5. matociquala

    That’s a good rule. I approve this message.

  6. mrissa

    I watched it last weekend. Umm. It was certainly…a movie. Yes.

    We ended up having a family discussion when the British troops arrived at the end about whether this was a movie in which Muslims were portrayed as good guys. With their turbans and what I know of Anglo-Indian history, my contention was that Sikhs were the ones coming to the rescue at the end. said that probably made Muslims the good guys because they were off minding their own business somewhere, which was more than could be said for the other large Indian religious groups as portrayed in the movie.

    • Marie Brennan

      See, I had a distinct memory that it portrayed racial and religious issues badly, but I figured I could kinda sorta let go of that for the brief span of the film. What I didn’t remember — because I didn’t think about these things the last time I watched it, years ago — was that the chick was not just annoying but pervasively useless, to the point where the film’s subliminal message is that a male of any age, no matter how young, will always be more competent than a woman.

      That was this round’s contribution to “worse every time I watch it.”

      • mrissa

        I find this effect still worse if I’ve just watched “Raiders of the Lost Ark,” wherein Marian is a pretty tough broad, within context and limitations of setting and so on. In the dinner scene where Willie is having conniptions about the bugs and monkey brains and so on, I said, “Yeah, because she’s been living in Shanghai, where nothing they eat is foreign to the Western palate.”

        • Marie Brennan

          It isn’t just Willie, either. I swear to God, Indy loses all of his “charming scoundrel” qualities and goes straight to “insensitive asshole.” Which I could almost go along with, if his behavior was clearly a reaction to having to drag this screaming, self-centered woman along on one of his adventures, but then they expect me to believe he’s attracted to her.


    • Anonymous


      Sikhs aren’t Muslims, or am I misreading what you’re saying?

      • mrissa

        Re: sikhs

        You are indeed: someone said that a particular group was probably Muslim, and I said no, it was probably Sikh.

  7. scottakennedy

    While there are numerous good reasons to hate that movie, the one that always stuck in my craw the most was replacing Karen Allen’s Marion replaced with Kate Capshaw’s Willie. Oh Indy, we hardly knew ye.

    • Marie Brennan

      Yeah, that’s the thing that I noticed more and worse this time. Willie gets dragged along (she doesn’t choose to go), she spends most of her time bitching and complaining (instead of contributing), she’s utterly incapable of saving herself or help anyone else . . . as I said in my comment to Mris, the movie’s message is that a male of any age will always be more competent and useful than a woman.

      One step forward (Marion), seven steps back (Willie).

    • ckd

      It’s like Microsoft Bob; the main effect of the movie was that Spielberg met Kate Capshaw, just as the project manager for Bob was a woman named Melinda French.

  8. d_c_m

    Oh honey, why did you do that to yourself? It is an unbelievably sexist piece of crap that turned me off the Indiana Jones genre for good.

    There, there, go watch some Whedon. You’ll feel better.

    • Marie Brennan

      Because I do actually like Raiders and Crusade, and with the new one coming out, I wanted to re-watch the old ones.

      Hence the statement that “completeness’ sake” can officially go to hell.

      • d_c_m

        Whedon, sweetie, Whedon NOW!

        Or you can read this fun book called Doppelganger. It has lots of cool women characters and religious upheaval. It be the good. 😉 No stupid sexist stereogypes whatsoever.

  9. mastergode

    See, personally speaking, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom is subject to what I call the “Childhood Love Rule”. As dirty as that sounds, it has nothing to do with loving children.

    What I mean is that I watched and loved Temple of Doom when I was a child, so now I irrationally love it.

    If someone were to break it down and point out all the parts that are bad about it, I will agree with them, but will not stop loving that movie. <chuckles>

    Also, I have a deep-seated despair about Indy 4. =

    • Marie Brennan

      A friend of mine loves Temple almost exclusively for Short Round’s sake, I think on the grounds you describe. And I know what you mean, but I didn’t love this movie in childhood, either.

      (Probably it was my attempt to look at Short Round as a relatively bright spot that made me realize how inexcusably awful Willie is, in the social dynamic of the film.)

      The new one . . . I’m hoping, but worried. Because they’ve updated the time period, which carries certain problems, and it involves Central America, which I know more about than may be compatible with enjoyment, and one of the frames in the trailer shows something with the word “Roswell” stenciled on it. And if aliens get involved in an Indiana Jones movie, I’m getting up and walking out of the theatre on the spot.

      My hope is that the big warehouse from Raiders is actually at Roswell, and that’s why the name shows up. It would make sense, and not annoy me too much.

      • mastergode

        You’re probably going to hate me for saying this, but there are almost definitely going to be aliens in the newest Indiana Jones movie.


        The “Crystal Skull” thing is almost certainly from an alien civilization, and if you’ve seen any pictures of the skull itself, you’ll notice that it looks EXACTLY like the head of a Gray.

        • Marie Brennan

          I’m familiar with the folklore surrounding crystal skulls, and also the association of Mayan/Aztec pyramids with aliens. I can, however, hold out the hope that it doesn’t mean aliens will actually be a plot in the film, and I will continue to do so until they dash it from my hands.

          • mastergode

            Well, errr, I wouldn’t hold your breath.

            Or rather, if you’re inclined to hold your breath, perhaps this would be a good time to do so, because you won’t be holding it for very long! =D

          • strangerian

            I’m never watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom ever again

            You are wise.

            It may simply be those pytamid/alien associations you mention at work, but the mention of a Mesoamerican Indiana Jones movie and aliens instantly suggested certain Stargate SG-1 tropes, such as unearthing a long-lost alien goddess with glowing eyes, who naturally wakes up mad and wreaks havoc on the excavating archaeologists. There’s something kind of overlappingly archetypical about action flicks in general, so that it seems very easy to combine them if the flavors don’t clash too much.

  10. snickelish

    Completeness’s sake? You speak as though it were cannon…

  11. daobear

    I loved Temple of Doom when I was kid, because in my innocence, I was completely unaware of the deep racism and sexism of the film. I particularly loved the feast scene, and the sacrifice scene, where they rip the victim’s heart out and drop him in the lava. But, I saw this movie again when I was in college at the Brattle, and I was absolutely horrified. I couldn’t decide whether to be more offended by the racism, the sexism, or the portrayal of Kali’s worshippers. It’s nothing like Raiders or Last Crusade, which were actually quite good.

  12. Anonymous

    That is so terribly marvellously amazing.

    *cries laughing*

  13. Anonymous

    Ooh, very excited for A Natural History of Dragons, and especially happy that it has interior art work. The cover is one of my computer backgrounds at work and _so_ many colleagues have commented on it.

  14. Anonymous

    Happy multiple anniversaries!

  15. Anonymous

    Laptops today weigh less than half of the comparable size from four years ago. Check out the laptops. My 15″ Toshiba is my workhorse and weighs about 2 pounds, no more than the netbook I use for travel, and I really do like the tiny keyboard for hardcore typing.

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