Indiana Jones and the Secret of the Queens Giant (CRITIQUE REVIEW​)

Indiana Jones and the Secret of the Queens Giant is a wild fan film by some Indy fanatics who have obviously seen the Indiana Jones films more than a few times. As the film starts, we immediately recognize the attempt to recapture the iconic opening sequence of Raiders of the Lost Ark. The filmmakers clearly have a very sharp eye for details, and this homage hits all of the major points; even a spoof of the Paramount logo that fades into the mountainside where Indiana steals the golden idol. In fact, the film at first feels more like an actual remake, much along the lines of the one which was made by a group of young boys and detailed in the hit documentary Raiders! The actors in this film are much older, though, enough so to convincingly portray their character counterparts.

With a film such as this, the amateurish qualities don’t necessarily take away from it and can actually add to the enjoyment when certain elements loudly announce that this is definitely not going to be the next entry in this classic franchise. One of those moments in this film is when an excessive amount of time is spent on trying to capture the slow and suspenseful walk through the jungle of Raiders of the Lost Ark. The location for this film is no Amazonian and doesn’t inspire any particular suspense, either. When Indiana finally comes upon the mythic magic tree of life he’s been seeking-and finds it right alongside a chain link fence-it’s enough to make the viewer laugh out loud incredulously, but it also simultaneously endears itself to viewer, so long as the viewer is a huge Indiana Jones fan or amateur filmmaker with memories of pretending to be Indy while growing up.

Ultimately, this films entire appeal of course rests on just how much the viewer enjoys these films and revels at seeing them recreated in a somewhat rugged, low budget way. The most accomplished thing about the film from a standalone film perspective is it’s strong understanding of how to use the camera and assemble scenes in Spielbergs’ style. While it’s never convincing, the attention to detail and genuine love of the movies that it’s pay homage to is very palpable all of the way through this film. What it ultimately does lack, however, is the masterful tying together of a full tale, particularly one told as perfectly as Raiders of the Lost Ark, which has burned it’s scenes deeply into the memories of every child who experienced it. Indiana Jones and the Secret of the Queens giant lacks any kind of mystique or broader story beyond a couple sequences that channel the series. The film hops around erratically and ends abruptly as well, just when it seems like it’s been structured as a feature film, the plug is pulled unceremoniously at about the twenty five minute mark. This makes it’s vision of Indiana’s world more superficial than expansive. None the less, it’s highly amusing and enjoyable for fans. Unfortunately, it’s a major lawsuit waiting to happen if anyone ever attempted to distribute it, as it’s got more copyright violations than an underground temple has snakes.

Only Trailer available