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Which factors combine to make the climax of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom exciting?

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Introduction

Media Study Which factors combine to make the climax of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom exciting? Steven Spielberg directed "Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom" in 1984. It is an action/adventure movie and is set in the year 1935. The main character that plays a big part in the movie is Indiana Jones (played by Harrison Ford) who is an archaeologist with a difference. Indiana's sidekicks through out the film are Willie Scott (played by Kate Capshaw) who is a glamorous dancer in a nightclub and Short Round (played by Ke Huy Quan) who is an adopted partner of Indiana's. Willie gets caught up in Indiana's mishaps and charms when he gets into trouble in a nightclub she is dancing at. They escape with the help of Short Round, Indiana's "sidekick" but end up on a plane to India. There, they find a dead, lifeless village with few inhabitants. They say they have had a "life stone" stolen from them along with their children. Indiana, being the kind-hearted hero he is, takes on the challenge to get them their possessions back. Indiana, along with his two accomplices, travels to the city where the young Maharajah of India lives; they stay the night. ...read more.

Middle

This scene is cleverly done with alternate camera shots at Indiana and Short Round. The action becomes unbearable, as the battles get more and more tense until Short Round is able to knock the doll out of the Maharajah's hands and help Indiana "crush" the bad guy. After the gang escape the mines and the following priest of Khali, they end up in a mine cart going along a very unsteady rail, which is again to emphasize the extreme danger. The tunnel stretches a long way through the mines over a bubbling inferno of lava. The followers of Khali (but not the priest) trail behind them in a cart of their own. This adds tension to the plot, as we do not know what will happen if and when the followers reach the gang. The tunnel they are going through varies as they get further and further into the mines. It is also very curvy and compact and much of the track is damaged leaving the carts to "fly" from rail to rail. The soundtrack makes the beat in the track noticeable, which again adds to the tension. All these factors help emphasize the danger and tension towards the end of the film. Short Round is nearly killed by the followers of Khali when they pull him out of the cart and he is left dangling over the flaming pit of lava. ...read more.

Conclusion

We follow Indiana as he comes to a long bridge, which dangles over a huge gorge, which is cleverly shown again with extreme long camera shots. The bridge is unsafe, damaged and so old it could just break at any moment. This was no coincidence as this makes the viewer think ahead at what might happen, making it exciting. Indiana starts to cross the bridge carefully to start the search for his lost companions Willie and Short Round. The priest of Khali shows up and so do his followers surrounding Indiana in the middle of the bridge. Clever camera shots are used here to show Indiana's vulnerability with extreme long shots of the entire bridge. Indiana, looking for a way to escape, cuts the rope holding the bridge and it collapses into the gorge below filled with crocodiles. At this point the familiar soundtrack cuts in and we know Indiana is all right again just because of the music. That is a very powerful tool that the filmmakers use well. The priest is thrown to the crocodiles and Indiana is reunited with Willie and Short Round once again. They go back to the village and return the most wanted life stone and all ends happily. So, in conclusion the soundtrack, dialogue, setting, lighting, tension, humour, action, camera shots and the characters themselves help combine to make the ending of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom exciting. Sam Mulholland 06/07/03 ...read more.

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