Parents' Guide to

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

By S. Jhoanna Robledo, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 11+

Fourth Indy isn't perfect, but it's fun for series fans.

Movie PG-13 2008 122 minutes
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 11+

Based on 18 parent reviews

age 11+

Way better than everyone says

Not sure why everyone bashes this movie. It's a great adventure movie, just not quite as good as previous Indiana Jones movies (plus Marion is given almost nothing to do). It's fun to see Shia LeBeouf as a young greaser accompanying the now old Indy.
age 9+

A disappointing sequel

An okay action movie, but a not so great Indiana Jones movie. More than half of it is clearly on a green screen which takes you out of the movie. If you are an Indiana Jones fan then I would recommend it, but if you aren't then you can just sit this one out.

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (18 ):
Kids say (95 ):

Decades have come and gone since our dear Dr. Jones' not-so-last crusade, and it's good to report that his return will entertain series fans. Sure, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull's good vs. evil race to the finish is marked by twists and turns that require not just a suspension, but a complete removal, of disbelief. But that's only to be expected -- after all, the Indiana Jones mythology wasn't built on reality. It's the ride, not the details, that audiences are paying for. And what a ride: The suspense, the wisecracks, the gloomy caves to explore -- they're all there. When Indy first enters the frame, it's like seeing a dear old friend. The filmmakers didn't reinvent the wheel (so don't expect any innovations), but they didn't ruin it, either.

And the newbies? When it comes to an iconic film series like this, passing the torch can be tricky. But diehard fans can relax: LaBeouf proves himself worthy enough to carry on the Indy tradition. He's prickly and adventurous, edgy and intelligent -- much like Indy himself. Though he's no Harrison Ford, LaBeouf could believably have been cut from the same cloth. As for the women, while Karen Allen's return to the series as feisty Marion is a delight, Blanchett's Russian accent is somewhat marred by plummy, Australian inflections when she says Indy's last name, which is often. And that's not the only jarring tone: While the first two-thirds of the film is classic Indy, the last act takes a hard swing that swerves into otherworldly territory. It's like Indiana Jones meets E.T. -- which is pretty iffy. The transgression's forgivable, but only just.

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