Saturday, June 14, 2008

Is Indiana Jones a fellow traveler?

James Bowman makes a devastating point about "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull":
McCarthyism, too, gets a mention, by the way. For in spite of liking Ike, Indy gets blacklisted and persecuted by FBI agents who conform to the movie stereotypes of today — being vicious and stupid — rather than those of the period for FBI agents. His nervous university dean (Jim Broadbent) tells him that he himself will have to resign as he can’t be embroiled in "that kind of controversy in this charged climate." He tells Indy that "I hardly recognize this country anymore. The Government has got us seeing communists in our soup" — which you might think an odd sort of complaint to make of the government in a movie that begins by showing a gang of non-imaginary reds taking over an American military base on American soil. Disgusted, Indy says he might go off to Leipzig to teach. Presumably it has slipped his mind that that would have made the government’s case for his being a subversive, since Leipzig was in communist East Germany at the time.


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