Indiana Jones and the Elementals of Pixar

Indiana Jones and the Elementals of Pixar July 5, 2023

Going To The Movies With…

When I watched the trailer for Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny with a friend of mine on his computer several months ago, he said to me, “We have to see that when it comes out“. So on the last Sunday I had off from work after the film premiered in cinemas across the globe, I took my friend Dave to go see it. I’m glad I went with him to Indy 5 and just like Dr. Jones we arrived just in time in the theater; half a trailer before the actual film began.

I think the movie theater going experience is overall better with a theater packed filled with a variety of different people cheering and laughing and crying throughout the film and especially with a close friend or your loving spouse at your side.

On $5.00 Movie Tuesday about a week ago, I decided to not go solo to the latest Pixar film Elemental and asked my loving faithful beautiful wife to join me. Because of her epilepsy she can no longer do loud, dark, and noisy auditoriums with flickering images. She had to leave Jurassic World and sit out out in the nice sofas at Jordan’s Furniture when the dinos got too loud. Although there are a few exceptions to her going to the theater experience. I figured that if she could sit through Finding Dory, The Black Phone and Saving Mr. Banks, an animated Pixar would be the right fit for her.

Before we get to

Indiana Jones and Dial of Destiny

Here is a history of Indiana Jones…

As for the Dial of Destiny I found the film, O.K. O.K. is actually not really good when you want a grand and great movie experience with a good friend. Overall my big problem with the Indy films has been the main character’s incredible lack of respect for human life. Indiana Jones will kill anyone who gets in his way in any way. I overall don’t like to see people killed, even evil nasty Nazis, cause all human life has value. There are plenty of heros who won’t kill. Indiana Jones is not one of them.

The best thing about DOD is the overall time-travel plot which involves some Nazi’s lead by Mads Mikkelsen as Jürgen Voller, trying to get there hands on some device created by the ancient Greek Archimedes that will predict the opening of some time fissures. This will give them the opportunity to go back in time and win WW2.  The results of this adventure are satisfactory. This one leaves out the dreaded time-travel paradoxes that are in most time-travel films, even the best ones like Back to the Future.  However, you have to sit through an endless amount of endless long annoying chases before you get to the very satisfying climax of the film. Indy riding a horse through the ticker-tape parade of the Apollo 11 astronauts which leads to him bringing the horse down into the subway, staying away from speeding subway cars, was classic interesting goofy Indiana Jones fair and was one of the better chases.

Somehow the Nazis always know where Indy and his two sidekicks are and for some reason I found that annoying. His two sidekicks are Phoebe Waller-Bridge as Indy’s goddaughter Helena Shaw and Ethann Isidore as Helena’s annoying and uninteresting Short Round wanna-be Teddy Kumar. This young kid handcuffs a brutish thug to a grate underwater leaving him to drown making him a killer.

John Rhys-Davies as Sallah and Karen Allen as Marion Ravenwood are reduced to glorified cameos. Shia LaBeouf as Mutt Williams/Henry Jones III was killed off which explains his absence and serves as a plot device in making Dr. Jones a grumpy old professor who drinks a lot. This film would have been a good opportunity to have Ke Huy Quan back as Short Round, but alas he was stuck in an alternate universe. Perhaps Spider-Man or he Flash could have whisked him over to help Indy on one last adventure. There all multiverse travelers after all. I’ve noticed that Harrison Ford returning to his signature roles in his later years always has his action hero divorced and alienated from his spouse he was married and content with in the last film. A happy ending with Ford never stays happy if his character shows up in another movie later in the legacy sequel.

Peter T Chattaway@ptchat (July 3, 2023) #IndianaJones    gets me thinking: wouldn’t it be awesome if the next #Superman movie started with Clark Kent as a broken old man who no longer works in a newsroom with friends and colleagues but just blogs from home in a dingy apartment somewhere.

The best thing about the film was hearing the theme music throughout the film. There is more I could blab on about, but why listen to me when you can read and digest a better retrospective on Indiana Jones by Deacon Steven D. Greydanus.

If Indy’s journey through the 1980s trilogy can be mapped from polytheism to Judaism to Christianity, Kingdom of the Crystal Skull takes a turn for vague, New Agey aliens and crystals with invocations of pre-Columbian religion. Dial of Destiny opens with a feint toward the Last Crusade world of Christian Arthurian legend: There’s some short-lived misdirection about that other Arthurian New Testament relic, the Spear of Destiny (the weapon of the Roman soldier, traditionally called Longinus, who stabbed Jesus’ side on Good Friday). But we know from the title that there’s a dial, and for the first time the mysterious artifact of a Raiders sequel is tied to a purely science-fiction conceit with no religious significance. Indiana Jones movies and Raiders of the Lost Ark: Why the original still stands alone – Decent Films

To give your brains and indignations more to chew on, here is New Rockstars with some IJATDOD Easter Eggs. It actually makes the movie sound better then it was watching it.

Overall I didn’t enjoy the film. I didn’t hate it either. It was O.K. But I did enjoy going to the movies with one of my best friends I’ve known for over 30 years.


I’m glad I asked Kristin out to go see Elemental with me. The Elemental plot was reminiscent of films we have seen before where a girl dates a guy her father disapproves of and nobody asked her about her dreams and what she wants to do with her life and blah blah blah. The big difference with the familiar tropes is that it is a world where earth, wind, fire and water are personified with unique personalities in a Zootopia type of city where they all live with one another. Through a series of mishaps guided by the weaknesses of main character’s personalities, A water person guy named Wade Ripple and a fire person girl named Ember Lumen have a very sweet, enticing, touching and believable romance with one another. The film touches on themes as prejudice, acceptance of others, emotions of anger, regret, sentimentality and hope. Overall Elemental is as colorful as Spider-Verse and caused my wife to have to close her eyes though much of the film. She can’t look at flickering lights and one of the main characters was a flickering light. Oopsie.

The opening Pixar short returned to the world of Up. The old man Carl is going to go on a date and asks Dug the dog for advice while not forgetting his late beloved wife. My wife didn’t understand why a full length movie needed a short. She just wanted to dive into the story.

The best thing about Elemental is that more inventive minds will and have picked apart the film after putting it under a microscope to dissect the story. The ones who have gotten most geeky and nerdy about Elemental have done mankind a service by fitting the story into The Pixar Theory. If your not familiar with the Pixar theory, click on the video and be amazed.

There is more I could blab on about, but why listen to me when you can read and digest a well thought out analysis of Elemental and Pixar again by Deacon Steven D. Greydanus.

The golden age of Pixar lasted a decade and a half, spanning ten films from Toy Story to Up. In those days the studio routinely knocked out masterpieces, and even the occasional lesser film (A Bug’s LifeCars) was still pretty good. Pixar’s process of creative collaboration was an important part of its success, and gave the films of that era a distinctive vibe, rich in empathy, wonder, imagination, and optimism. Anthropomorphic worldbuilding was close to Pixar’s center of gravity, and a popular meme frames the premise of various Pixar films around variations on the question “What if X had feelings?” (where X = toys, fish, cars, robots, etc.), culminating in Pixar chief Pete Docter’s Inside Out: “What if feelings had feelings?”An Elemental misstep: Does Pixar still need — or benefit from — anthropomorphic fantasy? – Decent Films

Overall I enjoyed Elemental. But I enjoyed having my wife come with me more whom I’ve known for 30 years.

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