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Old 05-04-2014, 06:55 AM   #1
sheffsteve
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Elsa's Choice

[With the usual caveats of sorry if this has been discussed before]

Something I have thought about for a while, and which I am always reminded of when watching again, but I feel Elsa's choice of Grail is ambiguous to say the least. After she hands her choice to Donovan she has a strange look on her face. Something like a half smile that belies an element of disgust. Her response after he dies is along the lines of 'of course the Grail won't be made of gold' as if she knew this all the time.

So I suppose the question is does Elsa purposefully choose the wrong Grail in LC?
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Old 05-04-2014, 11:42 AM   #2
The Drifter
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Yes, she does. She redeems herself.
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Old 05-04-2014, 11:57 AM   #3
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I have always believed that Elsa did know that the grail wouldn't be the right one as well. Like Indy she was also a scholar and would have known that the grail was not something that would be made of gold.
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:10 PM   #4
sheffsteve
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Drifter
Yes, she does. She redeems herself.

But does she actually redeem herself? Her actions after Henry Jones Sr is healed are somewhat ambiguous again. Trying to make away with the Grail and even going to her death because of it.
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Old 05-04-2014, 12:24 PM   #5
The Drifter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheffsteve
But does she actually redeem herself? Her actions after Henry Jones Sr is healed are somewhat ambiguous again. Trying to make away with the Grail and even going to her death because of it.

She didn't understand it's true power. She was trying to acquire the Grail for Indy. She wanted redeemed.
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Old 05-04-2014, 01:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sheffsteve
But does she actually redeem herself? Her actions after Henry Jones Sr is healed are somewhat ambiguous again. Trying to make away with the Grail and even going to her death because of it.

Makes me wonder how she would have behaved had she not accidentally stepped over the seal. I mean...you have all the German Soldiers still there. So I think if Indy had said something to her about the seal, I am not sure what might have happened. Honestly, I don't really know.
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Old 05-09-2014, 01:22 AM   #7
redlegato
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheFedora
Makes me wonder how she would have behaved had she not accidentally stepped over the seal. I mean...you have all the German Soldiers still there. So I think if Indy had said something to her about the seal, I am not sure what might have happened. Honestly, I don't really know.

In response to sheffsteve's original question, I think it's mostly agreed that Elsa intentionally gives Donovan the most gaudy looking (and therefore incorrect) cup on the premise that Jesus would've drank from something more humble. Plus she gives Indy that look and a small shake of her head, as if to say "nope!" Whether or not this action redeems her character is another debate.

As for "accidentally" stepping over the seal, the knight had warned Indy and Elsa that it was the boundary and "price" of immortality before they went back to Henry. Elsa either didn't process the warning or refused to believe that it had any validity. That said, I always wondered what might've happened if Elsa hadn't stepped back so slowly over the seal. She seemed to be moving in slow motion, like her boots were made of stone. Perhaps she was just so caught up in the moment of finally holding the grail. If the seal was just another trap - the final one in the sequence - then she might've had a chance to sprint for the exit and secure the grail. Of course, the religious interpretation of the scene is that the power of God would've prevented anyone from leaving with the grail regardless of their actions.

In my mind, she eliminated Donovan out of revenge for shooting Henry and also to get herself closer to obtaining the grail. As the cliche goes: Two birds with one stone!
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Old 06-01-2014, 01:38 PM   #8
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She was such a bad actor, anything could have been true.
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Old 06-01-2014, 03:01 PM   #9
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She wasn't great... The best looking of the three though
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Old 06-03-2014, 07:38 PM   #10
S. Dakota Jones
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I do believe she thought the fake grail was the real Grail. Like Henry says, "Elsa didn't really believe in the Grail, she just thought she found a prize."

Even though he wasn't a there for the grail choosing I think his assumption to be correct and her choosing of the fake one as proof of it. She wasn't looking for "the cup of a carpenter", she was looking for something that would belong to, as Donavon put it, the "King of kings". Maybe even so much as her own personal fortune and glory, ala Indy at the beginning of ToD. Kinda adds to the overall story arc of Indy's character too I think. Him going from selfish to (more) selfless(over the 3 films) to dealing with someone who very much resembled him in his past.

I think the only reason she tried to convince him to come with her after she took the Grail was because she knew she stood a better chance of succeeding with him.
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