Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull I give it 4 stars

Harrison Ford is an old man. The new Indiana Jones movie works with this fact, rather than against it, and thereby succeeds. Indy has always been a little world-weary; his advancing age now lets him be suitably cranky. His students are no longer swooning over him, but at the same time his attachment to academe seems deeper than ever before. He’s reached that age when professors look around, see that their senior colleagues have all died or retired, and realize that they’re next. It gives the proceedings this time around an elegiac, slightly mournful tone, intermingled with the usual B-movie fun.

The script is generally smart (though the Ray Winstone character could easily have been written out entirely). The villains this time around are the Soviets, but there are also digs at Red Scare paranoia. The action set pieces are enjoyable without going on too long; the suspense set pieces are properly creepy. Karen Allen makes a good return appearance; Shia LaBeouf does not annoy. John Williams’s score is top-notch, and, no, that famous theme doesn’t wear out its welcome. All the Indiana Jones movies use it this much.