Jeff Labrecque
June 17, 2009 AT 07:06 PM EDT

Though it grossed more than $786 million worldwide, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is better remembered for “nuking the fridge” and inspiring a crudely irreverent South Park episode that depicted Steven Spielberg and George Lucas treating Indiana Jones like Jodie Foster in The Accused. So consider me less than giddy now that Shia LaBeouf has told the BBC that Spielberg had “cracked the story” for a fifth Indiana Jones adventure and that they would soon be “gearing that up.” Lucas is already on the record contemplating a fifth film that would “make Shia the lead character…and have Harrison Ford come back like Sean Connery did in [The Last Crusade].” Cripes! But a fifth film is going to happen whether we like it or not, so let’s make the best of it by offering a few suggestions:

1) Bring back the Nazis: They’re Indy’s Lex Luthor. Communists, even seductive Pinkos with leather fetishes, simply don’t compare.
2) Call Lawrence Kasdan and Frank Darabont: Kasdan penned the original Raiders of the Lost Ark, and Darabont’s discarded script for the fourth film sounded a heck of a lot more promising than the ultimate  plotline about…aliens.
3) Send Marion packing: No one was more thrilled for the Indiana-Marion reunion, but whatever chemistry they had in Nepal is long gone. Their slapstick scenes together in Crystal Skull set the wrong tone for the entire film.
4) I know it’s not going to happen (yet), but…Reboot. No Shia. No Harrison. Handpick a dashing young Indy, and show me his first adult adventure, his initial work with Abner Ravenwood, and his initial romance with Marion. Bridge the gap between The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles and Temple of Doom (which chronologically is set before Raiders).
4a) Since I’ve already committed blasphemy, let me further suggest that future films might also benefit from a different director. “It’s not the years, honey, it’s the mileage,” Indiana once said.  Spielberg can still produce, but this franchise needs a jolt. Paging Christopher Nolan.

How did you feel about Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, PopWatchers? Would more father-son bonding and UFO intrigue in a fifth film please or offend you? Would you prefer the inevitable Indiana Jones reboot now? What young actor do you envision wearing that fedora and who would you like to see direct?

More on ‘Indiana Jones’
Lisa Schwarzbaum’s B-review of ‘Crystal Skull’
‘Indiana Jones 4’ Q&A: Shia LaBeouf
Fact-checking ‘Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull’

addCredit(“David James “)

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