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Old 12-05-2016, 12:16 AM   #26
Attila the Professor
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Originally Posted by dr.jones1986
My bad on misunderstanding what you meant to say.

It's cool; I likely could have been clearer.

Interesting that they have that line, and Dietrich's concerns about the Jewish ritual, but cut the "donated by the finest Jewish families in Germany" [or whatever that line originally was] in Last Crusade. It's not as though they pulled their punches on book burning. Perhaps it was thought to be too close to joking about the Holocaust.
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Old 12-05-2016, 01:26 AM   #27
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Originally Posted by Raiders112390
Katanga is actually a very good character. He's not a crude stereotype as are a lot of minority characters in films like these. Look at the prison warden in 1999's The Mummy - he's portrayed as a stereotypical "dirty" Arab figure, lecherous, crude, smelly and unintelligent. Look at the grubby, dirty, greedy Hungarian Beni in that film, who is the secondary antagonist. The Indy trilogy may not be the most "PC" series ever, but it was filmed not long after the Iran hostage crisis and gas shortage and yet his best friend is an Egyptian (in your average Joe's eyes, an Arab). I'd say that's pretty big for the time period. Sallah isn't the brightest light, but he's also not a stereotype. Marion is a pretty strong female character, especially when you compare her to Willie Scott, who is more akin to the 1930s Damsel in Distress, or even Elsa, who is a pretty stock 1940s femme fatale.

These are great examples, and I'd say they're indicative of a quite a bit of political correctness in the Indy series, actually, from the very beginning. Another reason why I'm not worried about the direction of the fifth film in this regard.
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Old 12-05-2016, 09:49 AM   #28
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Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
It's cool; I likely could have been clearer.

Interesting that they have that line, and Dietrich's concerns about the Jewish ritual, but cut the "donated by the finest Jewish families in Germany" [or whatever that line originally was] in Last Crusade. It's not as though they pulled their punches on book burning. Perhaps it was thought to be too close to joking about the Holocaust.

Is that true that originally it was mentioned that they were Jewish families donating the treasure for the Sultan in Last Crusade? Do you know what source says this? I never knew that, I always kind of felt they were implying it with the line donated from the "finest families in Germany." Too me it seemed implied that the treasure may have been confiscated loot, possibly from Jews or other people targeted by the Nazis.
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Old 12-05-2016, 03:59 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by dr.jones1986
Is that true that originally it was mentioned that they were Jewish families donating the treasure for the Sultan in Last Crusade? Do you know what source says this? I never knew that, I always kind of felt they were implying it with the line donated from the "finest families in Germany." Too me it seemed implied that the treasure may have been confiscated loot, possibly from Jews or other people targeted by the Nazis.

I guess it's not a sure thing, but it's a piece of information that's been floating around forever, aided by the fact that there's a substantial pause in Donovan's line between "finest" and "families," during which Col. Vogel walks in front of him, obscuring his mouth from view.

In any event, if the families were Jewish, "donated" is surely a euphemism for "stolen."
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Old 12-06-2016, 03:47 PM   #30
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I hope they leave political correctness far away from Indy. I'm tired of everything having to be so watered down and sensitive that we can't say or do anything without someone throwing a fit. Just give us a bloody, rough and tumble adventure!
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Old 12-06-2016, 03:56 PM   #31
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The film opens with Harrison Ford and a couple of children in a sunny forest.

Harrison begins to sing "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" from "Song of the South".

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Old 12-07-2016, 02:51 PM   #32
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Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
I guess it's not a sure thing, but it's a piece of information that's been floating around forever, aided by the fact that there's a substantial pause in Donovan's line between "finest" and "families," during which Col. Vogel walks in front of him, obscuring his mouth from view.

In any event, if the families were Jewish, "donated" is surely a euphemism for "stolen."

Didn't the Nazis confiscate the gold, jewels and other precious items from the Jews around this time period - before the Holocaust and War, but after the political oppression? It would make sense to me. In Jones' version of the world, it was already obvious that Hitler was planning to take over the world in 1936, and an elderly professor in 1938 knew enough them to call them "the slime of humanity." They were obviously wretched, but I don't know how much Americans knew about what was going on inside Germany in 1936 or 1938. So I have no doubt the "finest families" bit was a euphemism for "Jews"...But that leads the film to a darker place than was intended.
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Old 12-07-2016, 02:52 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by WilliamBoyd8
The film opens with Harrison Ford and a couple of children in a sunny forest.

Harrison begins to sing "Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah" from "Song of the South".


Wouldn't be worse than the opening to Star Trek V. Spock, Bones, and Kirk camping in Yosemite, eating marshmallows, and singing Row, Row, Row Your Boat in front of a fire.*


*I do love Star Trek V and feel it was underrated, but it was definitely a poor opening.
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Old 12-08-2016, 10:23 AM   #34
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Originally Posted by Raiders112390
So I have no doubt the "finest families" bit was a euphemism for "Jews"...But that leads the film to a darker place than was intended.

I think, even if I don't know the precise source for the idea that the theatrical release included the word "Jewish" in the line, there's some pretty compelling circumstantial evidence.

A) There's a temporal gap in the line at a moment when Donovan's speech happens to be covered by the Sultan (not Vogel, as I previously misstated) walking in front of him.

B) The Boam script has a different version of this scene without the chest, but the script published after the fact renders the line this way, with a telling pair of quotation marks:

Quote:
DONOVAN
Precious valuables, Your Highness,
"donated" by some of the finest
families in all of Germany.

C) The possible alternate interpretation, that some wealthy Nazi party supporters donated their gold and silver for some presumably unstated purpose (you've got to assume the grail hunt was secret), is a touch odd. More likely stolen from a group who, in the Nazi cultural imaginary, were hoarding gold and silver they didn't deserve. (The published script, by the way, says no more than "gold and silver objects of every description." We - or I, anyway - can't see enough of the chest's contents, even on the blu-ray, to say whether there's a menorah or any other object of Jewish significance in the chest.)

D) Spielberg first heard of Schindler's List around 1983, and the project was in some stage of development or another for the subsequent 10 years (often with him trying to hand off a difficult project to somebody else). That is to say, Spielberg's consciousness of the Shoah was developing in these years, and should be quite strong by 1988, when the script revisions occurred. The Stoppard revisions, or else an Amblin revision after the Boam and preceding the Stoppard, are responsible not only for the "finest [Jewish] families" moment but for strengthening the moment between Hitler and Indy, which, in Boam's version, was merely a bit of eye contact. (I think it's an open question whether post-Boam revisions ever contained the Leni Riefenstahl bit of humor, with Hitler stepping back when told to step forward.)

So, assuming the story about the cut word is true, it was a means of tip-toeing away from a clear reference to the Shoah, in favor of either A) a more oblique reference to it or B) a basically contentless/toothless notion of fine Aryan folk giving up their pretty things - in lieu of money - for some unstated purpose. We can call the change weak, but it's hard to obscure what's actually going on in the story.

I leave it to those with interest in the subject to determine whether the change was caused by "political correctness."
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Old 12-08-2016, 01:33 PM   #35
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I think Spielberg was always trying to walk a tricky balance with tone where the Nazis are concerned. The audience knows what atrocities the Nazi's committed before and during WWII, but Spielberg probably didn't want to overly emphasize that in what was ultimately a popcorn franchise - a franchise with sometimes cartoonish tendencies where depicting the villains is concerned. And as we all know, after Schindler's List Spielberg claims he's completely incapable of walking that line with the Nazis ever again.

In that light, evidence that he was already a bit sensitive on the subject by Last Crusade makes a degree of sense. I can see Spielberg watching that scene in the editing room and deciding the "Jewish families" line pushed the tone a little too far into territory he wasn't interesting in taking the movie.

It's interesting to examine the methods Spielberg has employed to try to lighten up these movies. I know a lot of people think he was so put off by the darkness of Temple of Doom that he "overcorrected" with slapstick humor (like the mallet falling on the guys head with a cartoon sound effect), creating a kind of tonal whiplash. I always thought he handled that balance pretty successfully though. The slapstick tendencies were established in Raiders of the Lost Ark, after all.

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Old 12-08-2016, 03:54 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Attila the Professor
I think, even if I don't know the precise source for the idea that the theatrical release included the word "Jewish" in the line, there's some pretty compelling circumstantial evidence.

A) There's a temporal gap in the line at a moment when Donovan's speech happens to be covered by the Sultan (not Vogel, as I previously misstated) walking in front of him.

B) The Boam script has a different version of this scene without the chest, but the script published after the fact renders the line this way, with a telling pair of quotation marks:



C) The possible alternate interpretation, that some wealthy Nazi party supporters donated their gold and silver for some presumably unstated purpose (you've got to assume the grail hunt was secret), is a touch odd. More likely stolen from a group who, in the Nazi cultural imaginary, were hoarding gold and silver they didn't deserve. (The published script, by the way, says no more than "gold and silver objects of every description." We - or I, anyway - can't see enough of the chest's contents, even on the blu-ray, to say whether there's a menorah or any other object of Jewish significance in the chest.)

D) Spielberg first heard of Schindler's List around 1983, and the project was in some stage of development or another for the subsequent 10 years (often with him trying to hand off a difficult project to somebody else). That is to say, Spielberg's consciousness of the Shoah was developing in these years, and should be quite strong by 1988, when the script revisions occurred. The Stoppard revisions, or else an Amblin revision after the Boam and preceding the Stoppard, are responsible not only for the "finest [Jewish] families" moment but for strengthening the moment between Hitler and Indy, which, in Boam's version, was merely a bit of eye contact. (I think it's an open question whether post-Boam revisions ever contained the Leni Riefenstahl bit of humor, with Hitler stepping back when told to step forward.)

So, assuming the story about the cut word is true, it was a means of tip-toeing away from a clear reference to the Shoah, in favor of either A) a more oblique reference to it or B) a basically contentless/toothless notion of fine Aryan folk giving up their pretty things - in lieu of money - for some unstated purpose. We can call the change weak, but it's hard to obscure what's actually going on in the story.

I leave it to those with interest in the subject to determine whether the change was caused by "political correctness."

To be honest, even without the script sort of confirming it, I always had a feeling - from the time I knew about the Holocaust - that the "precious valuables" donated from those "finest families" were goods stolen from the Jews living in Germany. Now, I don't think the line was cut for reasons of political correctness, so much as to keep a hint of darkness away from Indy...LC was supposed to be a light hearted romp. At least for myself, if it was explicitly stated to have been stolen from Jewish families, my mind clicks to the horrors of 1930s Germany and the Holocaust...The scene is supposed to be played for laughs (With how goofy the Sultan is portrayed, and the "Tanks"/"Thanks" gag)...Having what would be in essence a reference to the Holocaust or at least Jewish repression, one of the darkest periods in modern history, really changes the intended atmosphere of the scene.

That said, I think the intent is implicit. It's Donovan, who is already shown to be slime, saying it; the way the valuables are handled by Vogel and the Germans, almost if they're "dirty"...I always viewed it long before this thread as being a veiled reference to the thefts from the Jews. Some things are better conveyed by not being expressly stated.
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Old 03-21-2017, 09:39 PM   #37
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Originally Posted by Raiders112390
Having seen the way Disney introduced elements of both political correctness,a and also subtle identity politics in the Star Wars universe**, I am worried that the executives at Disney will force Lucas and/or Koepp to shoehorn in politically correct elements into the series...
Worried? It's 100% guaranteed.

Nice to know that you've grown up since 2012-2013. (See: Disney acquires Lucasfilm)

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Originally Posted by curmudgeon
When Temple of Doom came out, was anyone complaining about Indy having a "token" Asian sidekick?
No, because Asian characters in western cinema weren't "tokens" at the time.
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Old 03-22-2017, 05:06 PM   #38
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No, because Asian characters in western cinema weren't "tokens" at the time.

Maybe it's my fault that I keep expecting people to catch my points without my having to spell them out.

The point is, if Asian characters weren't then, why would they be now?

The concept of this thread seems to be saying that it wouldn't be okay for a hero to have any diverse friends and allies in the new film because they would just be "forced tokens," despite past films having already depicted him as having diverse friends and allies.

That doesn't make any sense to me.

I get that some of the modern political correctness and inclusion movements have been annoying to people, but the series was already (at least a little bit) inclusive. Why can't it still be what it was without people getting up in arms?
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Old 03-24-2017, 11:33 AM   #39
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I had a film class in college about Latinos in cinema. The author of the textbook argued that the beginning of Raiders was inappropriate because it featured....wait for it...South Americans as the villains at the beginning. Did he expect a few guys from Brooklyn to be leading Indy through the Peruvian jungle? This is the same author who also had a beef with Aliens because he felt it implied that first world parenting was more effective than third world parenting. Thankfully my teacher didn't use the book for much.

The point is that some people will look for any reason to be offended or to get on some soapbox about how people should cater to their feelings. I have no doubt someone somewhere is petitioning to have the older films scrubbed of any Nazi references. As long as the allies and villains make sense within the context of the story then I'm all for whoever they use.
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Old 03-28-2017, 04:21 PM   #40
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Perhaps Harrison shouldn't even return at all then and we should have Leslie Jones as Indy to reflect 2019 attitudes.

Is your real name Milo Yiannopoulos?
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Old 03-28-2017, 05:14 PM   #41
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Is your real name Milo Yiannopoulos?

There there, don't go assuming everyone gets the humor. Try to highbrow this place up and you will only drive our clients away. We go for the "your dumb" sort of insult along with a thrown beer bottle or two. Burn the joint down sort of thing.
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Old 03-31-2017, 03:09 AM   #42
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anti-racism should allow for black and brown villains, just as feminism should allow for female villains.
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Old 01-10-2018, 08:23 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Raiders112390
the way the valuables are handled by Vogel and the Germans, almost if they're "dirty"...I always viewed it long before this thread as being a veiled reference to the thefts from the Jews. Some things are better conveyed by not being expressly stated.
It may also be that the Standartenfüher is revolted and enraged by the Hatayans.
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Old 04-25-2018, 03:01 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by IndyBuff
I hope they leave political correctness far away from Indy. I'm tired of everything having to be so watered down and sensitive that we can't say or do anything without someone throwing a fit. Just give us a bloody, rough and tumble adventure!

QFT!

Hollywood has gone off the deep end in the last 5-8 years with SJW political correctness, and I would expect nothing less from Indy V unfortunately. Let's just hope they don't beat us over the head with it. Rather than focusing on anything political, including thinly veiled political messages or statements, just give us an action packed adventure that rights the wrongs of KOTCS and corrects the series and makes it at least nearly as good as the OT.
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Old 04-25-2018, 10:13 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by DoomsdayFAN
QFT!

Hollywood has gone off the deep end in the last 5-8 years with SJW political correctness, and I would expect nothing less from Indy V unfortunately. Let's just hope they don't beat us over the head with it. Rather than focusing on anything political, including thinly veiled political messages or statements, just give us an action packed adventure that rights the wrongs of KOTCS and corrects the series and makes it at least nearly as good as the OT.

The hopeful part of me would like to think that Disney would learn after The Last Jedi to pull the reigns in with the propaganda....but the realist in me assumes they're just going to double down. The responses to the backlash for TLJ were troubling. It seems people involved took the dismissive stance that the only people who complained were unhygienic misogynist racists and that they were quite happy their SJW agenda stepped on people's toes. Their stance was such that if someone was upset about the propaganda, to them it was a success. That's the disturbing part that makes me feel like they'll do the same with Indy 5.
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Old 04-25-2018, 05:32 PM   #46
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and makes it at least nearly as good as the OT.

It's not like the original trilogy is apolitical, though. For its time, it's actually pretty explicitly progressive, especially Raiders.

A Jewish director puts together a film about a heroic academic with literal Nazis as the bad guys, with fleshed out, diverse characters, both male and female, and from different nationalities that were commonly one-note stereotypes in the original serials that inspired it.

Look at Salah, for example. In the classic 1930s serials, a character like his, the fez-wearing "ethnic" sidekick, would be a walking punch line. But Raiders gave him real depth, a family, agency as one of the main characters who is the "best digger in Cairo." Sure, he had his comedic moments, but they did not come at the expense of a fully developed character. One of the mini-tragedies of Last Crusade, as much as I love the film, is that they reverted Salah into much more of a bumbling racist caricature, obsessed with ****ing CAMELS for God's sake.

The same could be said of Marion--she had her damsel-in-distress moments in Raiders, but mostly she was presented as fully formed and capable, every bit Indy's equal.
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Old 04-28-2018, 04:16 AM   #47
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I agree with Lambonius. It was all there in the original Indy trilogy.

And to suggest that Star Wars was never political before TLJ is insane.

All art is political. Even when it's avowedly apolitical, that very act is political.

I think some commenters are talking about political content that they don't agree with, rather than political content fullstop. And with any long-running franchise, change is inevitable. Whether it's James Bond, Star Wars or Indy, you're going to see change in this regard...
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Old 04-29-2018, 05:23 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Lambonius
It's not like the original trilogy is apolitical, though. For its time, it's actually pretty explicitly progressive, especially Raiders.

A Jewish director puts together a film about a heroic academic with literal Nazis as the bad guys, with fleshed out, diverse characters, both male and female, and from different nationalities that were commonly one-note stereotypes in the original serials that inspired it.
Hello, Lambo. Don't mean to be so contrary but I disagree with you. The original trilogy wasn't as 'explicitly progressive' as you imply.

"Doom" made a bold choice putting a Chinese kid as Indy's sidekick but it still had its (now-problematic) dinner scene and also featured a blonde bimbo for the leading lady. Back in 1984, Leonard Maltin on Entertainment Tonight called her, "a silly, outmoded, dumbbell stereotype". Here's my recording.

As for fleshing out one-note stereotypes, there are exceptions, but almost all characters in the serials are cardboard cut-outs, regardless of race, sex or status. It's not that progressive to flesh out diverse characters if the white-knight hero needs fleshing out, too, no?

Sure, Sallah was treated with respect in "Raiders" but he was still played by a white guy like countless other Arabic roles in the past. (Come to think of it, Rhys-Davies' performance in "Crusade" could possibly be one of the last times that's ever happened. Anyone know?)

Disney received backlash for casting Johnny Depp as Tonto in 2013. Consider the reaction if a similar thing was done for Indy 5.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lambonius
Look at Salah, for example. In the classic 1930s serials, a character like his, the fez-wearing "ethnic" sidekick, would be a walking punch line.
No-o-o-o. From the 45+ serials that I've seen, comedy is exceptionally rare and ethnic sidekicks are even rarer. "Terry and the Pirates" is the only one I know of with ethnic sidekicks (two Asian guys). They get involved in scraps, often saving the day.

If humour does show up in the classics cliffhangers, it's usually confined to brief, cute scenes with animals. Otherwise, it's placed in the very last scene of the final episode so that all of the winners can stand around laughing. The only one I know of where an ethnic character is the butt of such a closing joke scene is, "Daredevils of the Red Circle", which ends with a black butler (a very, minor character) getting his head caught in a secret, sliding door. OK, admittedly, the guy's name is Snowball and he does say, "Sumbaddy git me outta heeyah!", but it's the only instance I know of...and there are other serials that end with white guys in similar, embarrassing predicaments.

Do you have any examples of walking-punch-line-ethnic-sidekicks in the serials? I'd like to know which titles. Otherwise, it must be said that you're dead wrong about this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lambonius
The same could be said of Marion--she had her damsel-in-distress moments in Raiders, but mostly she was presented as fully formed and capable, every bit Indy's equal.
Women from serials of the '30s-'50s were smart, brave & daring babes who even got to rescue the male hero once in awhile. Some stories even had a woman in the lead role and others had female lead villains commanding a bunch of men. If those dames ran into trouble, it's because they were gutsy enough to get themselves there (usually). You won't find many hapless, Fay Wray types among them.

It's easy to see why Marion could be viewed as progressive in 1981, however, the only difference between her and heroines of the '30s-'50s serials is that she had personality (and an unglamorous introduction)!
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Old 05-02-2018, 06:01 PM   #49
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Fair points, definitely. I'll concede that I'm not as familiar with the original serials as I'd like to be. I guess I was thinking more along the lines of 1930s films like the original King Kong, where you had a fairly stereotypical damsel-in-distress and blatantly racist portrayals of the Skull Island natives. If I recall correctly (or maybe I am thinking of the Peter Jackson remake?) there was also the classic "China-man" stereotype crewman, as well.

My thinking on Raiders is informed somewhat by a course I took in college about Jewish perspectives in film history, and we dissected a handful of Spielberg films, including Raiders, with a critical reading of them in that context. I can't look at Raiders with its Nazi bad guys and academic good guys, and not see echoes of Schindler's List (though obviously, very different in myriad ways.)

Also, regarding Temple of Doom (which constantly swaps places with Raiders as my favorite Indy film,) it is FAR more problematic, as you pointed out. The banquet scene in particular would offend the hell out of people if the movie came out today. With respect to cultural sensitivity, it's definitely a fair few steps backwards from Raiders.
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Old 05-03-2018, 08:47 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Lambonius
Fair points, definitely. I'll concede that I'm not as familiar with the original serials as I'd like to be. I guess I was thinking more along the lines of 1930s films like the original King Kong, where you had a fairly stereotypical damsel-in-distress and blatantly racist portrayals of the Skull Island natives. If I recall correctly (or maybe I am thinking of the Peter Jackson remake?) there was also the classic "China-man" stereotype crewman, as well.

My thinking on Raiders is informed somewhat by a course I took in college about Jewish perspectives in film history, and we dissected a handful of Spielberg films, including Raiders, with a critical reading of them in that context. I can't look at Raiders with its Nazi bad guys and academic good guys, and not see echoes of Schindler's List (though obviously, very different in myriad ways.)

Also, regarding Temple of Doom (which constantly swaps places with Raiders as my favorite Indy film,) it is FAR more problematic, as you pointed out. The banquet scene in particular would offend the hell out of people if the movie came out today. With respect to cultural sensitivity, it's definitely a fair few steps backwards from Raiders.

Unless you take into consideration that the individuals at the banquet scene were not "normal" Indians. I mean it's revealed that Lal etc were not normal - that everyone at that table with the exception of Captain Blumberg, Indy etc were posessed by an evil cult. I don't find it as such a portrayal of Indians as much as of members of an insane cult POSING as Indian royalty.

The real Indians we see in the Village are sympathetic characters, and I can easily imagine a poverty, famine and hunger-stricken Indian village in 1935 resorting to eating bugs.
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