Dedications: My four late friends Rory, Stan, Bryan, Jeff - shine on you crazy diamonds, they would have blogged too. Then theres Garry from Brisbane, Franco in Milan, Mike now in S.F. / my '60s-'80s gang: Ned & Joseph in Ireland; in England: Frank, Des, Guy, Clive, Joe & Joe, Ian, Ivan, Nick, David, Les, Stewart, the 3 Michaels / Catriona, Sally, Monica, Jean, Ella, Anne, Candie / and now: Daryl in N.Y., Jerry, John, Colin, Martin and Donal.

Sunday, 21 July 2013

Summer fun: Indiana and the secret of the Incas

Perfect Saturday evening fare: a re-run of RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK shown uncut and in the correct ratio on primetime BBC tv - the other Indianas will run on coming Saturdays .... perfect summer fare then for kids of all ages. Not only Ford at his best (left: Indiana doll) but also Denholm Elliot, Paul Freeman, Ronald Lacey etc. That whole pre-credit sequence still sizzles and I just love those 1930s seaplanes.The ending is a doozy too, with its nod to CITIZEN KANE ...
Apple for teacher !
Lots of amusing little touches too, that I had forgot - like the (male) student with an apple for teacher! Like Kasdan's BODY HEAT, RAIDERS is another timeless classic from 1981 - incidentally if BODY HEAT is not a Heatwave Movie I don't know what is (see 1981 label) ....
Now lets go back to 1954 and that Sunday matinee staple: SECRET OF THE INCAS, which surprisingly they did seem to film in South America, at Cuzco at least, if not actually at Machu Picchu. Here we have Charlton Heston as Harry Steele, an adventurer on the search of lost Inca treasure. 
Both Spielberg and Lucas have admitted that Harry Steele here is their prototype for Indiana Jones - Indiana is even kitted out like Heston with that leather jacket and hat. It is a spirited adventure, directed by Jerry Hopper, with old reliables like Thomas Mitchell and Robert Young, as well as Nicole Maurey, and Yma Sumac who warbles a few choice Inca numbers. There is even the scene - later used in RAIDERS - where Harry places the Inca object in the cave so that it catches the light and points the way to the real gold ...
Like Heston's THE NAKED JUNGLE, also 1954, there is much to enjoy in SECRET OF THE INCAS: the wide vistas of Machu Picchu, the OTT performances of Yma Sumac, Heston's granite jawed arrogance and a whole host of excellent character actors, make this a jungle trip well worth taking.

1 comment:

  1. As well as SECRET OF THE INCAS, the Indiana Jones series also references a few other Charlton Heston classics, like THE NAKED JUNGLE, THE TEN COMMANDMENTS and THE GREATEST SHOW ON EARTH.