"Anti-Indian" Indiana Jones

I don't think that every famous and admired story writer or director has only good/brilliant movies to their credit. I'm sure each one of them has one or more movies which they are ashamed of writing or directing. The ones who provoked me to write this post are still living in the illusion that its another wonderful and different creation of their remarkable skills. They advertise the "work of art" using sentences like "The movie which broke all the rules and changed the film industry"!!! Maybe they think that any art they dish up would be lapped up by the public without any criticism and from the hype about the movie I gather they have managed to pull it off. I'm talking about the crap called "Indiana Jones and Temple of Doom". (Maybe I'm not the first one to write such a strong criticism against the movie as I have not yet researched into the reviews that movie had received and also I believe some sane people are still out there in the industry).

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I think Mr.George Lucas (yeah the guy behind Star Wars) the story writer and Mr.Steven Spielberg (yeah yeah the Jurassic Park guy) the director, should hide this movie in question in their biographies and their later real works of art are a compensation to the torture they inflicted on the audience with this Indiana Jones sequel. After hearing so many people rave about the famous movie I decided to download and watch all three. I liked the first one "Indiana Jones and Raiders of Lost Ark". Infact I think its the source of inspiration for most of the action sequences and damsel in distress scenes of Bollywood, Tollywood et al. It was an enjoyable movie with every imaginable twist in action sequence and drama. Then I started the 2nd sequel. It turned out the movie's story is set in India and had our own Amrish Puri and Roshan Seth starring in it. (How did Amrish Puri agree to act such a role? Just for Hollywood fame?) I wont describe the plot and lengthen my post. An Indian village was shown where people spoke god knows which language and of course few spoke English!!!!!! The most disgusting scene of the movie and which made me scream out of indignation"Is THIS a Spielberg creation? What was he thinking? Shame Mr.Spielberg" was a dinner scene at the Pankot palace of Bhanpur. In this scene, 1st dish to be served was "snake surprise". A huge boa was served and when its stomach was cut lots of little snakes crawled out and people aka Indians ate that. Then next on menu were beetles whose shells Indians cracked and slurped the insides with the heroine (Kate Capshaw) gaping at them and ready to puke. Are you too feeling gross? Wait, there's more. Then the heroin asked for soup seeing such food and she was served soup with eyeballs in it. The dessert was a monkey's head on a cup with head split and Indians eating its brain with spoon just like icecream. I'm ready to puke now!

Maybe if we really ate that stuff, George Bush wouldn't have blamed us for price rise. Then maybe SPCA and PETA would have targeted us!!

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More absurd and demeaning scenes of a cult of "Thugees" (whatever that means!) who were Kali worshipers were shown. (I think its the practice of sacrifice to Ma Kali that fascinates Western people and inspires them to cook up gory stories). People were made to drink human blood and were thus hypnotized to follow the cult leader, Amrish Puri. He was shown to punish by digging his fingers right into the offender's bare chest and grab his heart out!!!! By the love of god, that was the height of preposterousness.

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Well maybe I'm being too harsh. The mine chase sequence was definitely nicely wrote and shot. But that doesn't make up for the image portrayed of Indians and their diet. No wonder Western people have strange ideas about India, Indians and their cultural and religious practices, India's mysticism (e.g. snake charmer found in most cartoons where the snake stands up and is used as a rope to climb or an ascetic on bed of nails or flying carpet). A person like Lucas or Spielberg who are making sci-fi movies should have at least done little bit of research into India before showing such ridiculous and offensive stuff. Neither it can be enjoyed for the sake of fun nor can it be included under artistic license or cinematic license. Any true blue Indian will be enraged at such depiction. I was.

14 comments:

Shoaib said...

I m sure i would hv totally augmented your "indiana jones" bashing if i had seen the movie .. but u hv given me reason enough now .After all , who wouldn't mind giving bolly flicks a miss and tearing apart a "firangi picture" instead ..

Spin said...

I'm mildly surprised Spielberg didn't throw a snake-charmer in there. You'll be interested to know that the Indian government refused to let Spielberg film there becuase they were so offended by the script.

Reema said...

thx spin for the info

Swathi said...

oh my god..i havent seen any of these movies..but after whatever u have said, its really disgusting to know, how cud spielberg depict Indians in such a way ..thanks to you, am never gonna see that movie!

Vaibhav said...

I m watching Indian Jones today at the cinemas.
I ll let u know my views soon
Hahaha
Cheers!

Reema said...

@vaibhav u may like the 4th part..infact i enjoyed the 1st and 3rd part..its 2nd part i have ranted about.

amit said...

Eeeeks!!! Now I am having second thoughts about watching the movie. And the movie has a 87% tomato reading, but the way you are describing it, it should not have even 10%. And the movie was a hit I guess, but can't understand why Spielberg had to show Indians as savage animals.
p.s. Your blog does not allow me to put comments using my wordpress ID. You might have turned off an option. Please check. :)

Reema said...

yes most of the people have enjoyed the movie...

Check out the reviews on these blogs
davekristen.blogspot.com/2008/05/temple-of-doom-live-blog.html

flickeringscreen.wordpress.com/2008/05/16/a-retrospective-indiana-jones-and-the-temple-of-doom/

bigmikesmovieblog.blogspot.com/2008/05/my-body-is-temple-of-doom.html

Morons!!Racists!! Weirdos!

Reema said...

and I have removed the restriction in commenting

lallopallo said...

Well, I havent seen this movie from Indiana Jones series, but Iam not surprised.
David Lean ( of Lawrence of Arabia fame) was even greater director than Speilberg, I think, and when he portrayed Indians in his famous movie, " Passage to India", most of them were hardly beyond stereotypes.
I was disappointed because I didnt expect Lean to go easy on characterization especially when movie was India centric.
I think it's never easy to not stereotype for outsiders..it requires hell lot of research, involvement of local talent & open mind to go beyond stereotyping in depicting characters outside of your own culture.
Most of the filmmakers, including big ones, dont have time for that, I suspect.

Reema said...

@Lallopallo..welcome to my blog.I have heard about the movie but didnt see it and I think I wont now. Big shots think they have the artistic license to portray anything in any way they feel or think.Only few do their homework before making any movie.

| Balu | said...

eeks that sounds gross! Most of the stuff mentioned in the movie are out of directors imagination no scientific base at all (at least that what I heard.. I havent seen any in the series)

Reema said...

@Balu yes its ofcourse Spielberg's over fertile imagination. One would think atleast a director of his calibre would do lil bit of research n would show facts in his movie.

Cher said...

Thanks for writing this.