Biblical Archaeology Review 42:5, September/October 2016

Strata: Indiana Jones—Back Again

Is the fifth time the charm?

After watching Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull (2008)—the fourth installment of the Indiana Jones franchise starring Harrison Ford—many thought it was time to stop. In fact, many die-hard fans refuse even to associate the fourth film with the original three because they dislike it so much.

While the original trilogy certainly stretched reality, the fourth seemed to obliterate it completely. In one scene, Indiana Jones managed to survive an atomic bomb by climbing into a lead-lined refrigerator. Even though the refrigerator was launched far into the air before crashing back to the earth, Indie walked away virtually unscathed—really???

In March 2016, Walt Disney Studios announced that there would be a fifth Indiana Jones movie starring Harrison Ford, now age 74. Details are slim, but we know that it is set to hit theaters on July 19, 2019, and that Steven Spielberg will once again be the director. It appears that George Lucas will not be involved with this project.

The reception of this announcement has been mixed. While some fans are eager for the franchise to redeem itself, others are tired and wish that it had ended on a high note—with Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989). Only time will tell whether the fifth time’s the charm, or if Indie should have retired his whip for good.—M.S.

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