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Another Portland Blog

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

 

Indiana Jones and the Cease and Desist Letter From Paramount




I've been writing this blog for going on five years and I realized something today: I've never been threatened with legal action for anything I've posted here. That's a damn shame, isn't it?

That said, here's a link to Frank Darabont's leaked script for the fourth Indiana Jones movie, a copy of which may or may not be sitting on my server right now. The screenwriter/director wrote a draft in 2002 that Stephen Spielberg supposedly loved but was rejected by George Lucas. Supposedly, everyone who has dared plop a copy on the Internet has received a cease and desist letter from Paramount.

I spent the afternoon reading Darabont's 140-page final draft of Indiana Jones and the City of Gods and I have to say that it's heads and shoulders above what was released in theaters last month. The plot is very much the same but many of the annoying elements are gone. In this version, Mutt doesn't exist, Marion is given much more screen time and the alien-related final act isn't completely goofy and unwatchable. There's a fantastic aerial dogfight about half-way in and, after getting fired and branded a communist conspirator, a bitter, drunken Indy breaks into a campus museum to steal back the idol featured at the beginning of Raiders of the Lost Ark. Sallah and Henry Jones Sr. also have cameos.

While overall better than the script Spielberg and crew eventually used, Darabont's dialog isn't so hot and the film's main villain isn't nearly as interesting as Cate Blanchett's weird physic/doctor/colonel/commie. The ending though? Kick-ass. At the very least, I'm sure it's better than whatever M. Night Shyamalan turned in.

If you're as geeky as me and have some time on your hands, I suggest having a look. Meanwhile, I'm putting my lawyer on speed dial.

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