Originally Posted by Litmus Configuration
For the record, Spielberg's criticisms of TEMPLE OF DOOM came long after the fact and smack of revisionism. He originally defended DOOM's dark mean streak with his oft-cited quote, "It's called INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF DOOM, not INDIANA JONES AND THE TEMPLE OF ROSES. The warning is clearly marked on the box!"
It wasn't until his NBC Today Show advance sneak peek interview of LAST CRUSADE that he started changing his tune: "I don't think any of us were that inspired by the second picture." I honestly believe he only went there because popular opinion of DOOM was leaning slightly negative back then.
If you watch Frank Marshall's Making Of documentary on DOOM, I think it's clear that they were inspired and having fun.
How so? The Indiana Jones films are like Bond films. They're mostly one-offs. I think making DOOM a prequel was merely to get around the Marion Ravenwood factor but it also shows that these films are singular adventures. They only started getting bogged down when they gave its lead mercenary graverobber a (shudder) family.
I was thinking more of his "Everybody screaming" characterization issues (to be fair this was a hallmark of his at the time, even in the Amblin movies).
It must be said, that at the time there was NOTHING like this movie in the cinemas at the time. Now we get them every other month. Never had a problem with the dark streak as it was kind of Kiddy Gross-Out level stuff anyway. I don't think I really took Indy-Goes-Evil seriously. I did feel gypped with the lame crocodile business at the end. Mola Ram needed a Jaws-Level chomping...though I did appreciate the head-to-rock high velocity kissy kissy.
God bless Frank Marshall, but I watched Congo the other day. I think everything is awesome and inspiring to him. Great cheerleader, not so great a player. (I don't hate Congo, because of it's spirit and fan-service casting, but it ain't a well thought out movie)
Indy movies are like Bond from Temple onwards ("Anything Goes" really declares a change in direction, in retrospect). I don't know what Raiders is, but I wish there was more of them.
I think there are just moments where, as with say Aliens, you start thinking "Hey, wait. Am I being insulted?". Those moments increase as the series goes on.