Raiders of the Lost Ark
Directed by Steven Spielberg. US. 1981. 8+. 115 minutes. Paramount. Digital.
Sponsored by The Great American Pub & Hotel
Sat., March 19, 2016
“From the first moments, when the star-circled mountain in the Paramount Pictures logo fades into a similarly shaped, fog-shrouded Andean peak, where who knows what awful things are about to happen, “Raiders of the Lost Ark” is off and running at a breakneck pace that simply won’t stop until the final shot, an ironic epilogue that recalls nothing less than “Citizen Kane.” That, however, is the only high-toned reference in a movie that otherwise devotes itself exclusively to the glorious days of the B-picture. To get to the point immediately, “Raiders” is one of the most deliriously funny, ingenious and stylish American adventure movies ever made. It is an homage to old-time movie serials and back-lot cheapies that transcends its inspirations to become, in effect, the movie we saw in our imaginations as we watched, say, Buster Crabbe in “Flash Gordon’s Trip to Mars” or in Sam Katzman’s Jungle Jim movies.” (Vincent Canby, The New York Times)