Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

Critics Consensus

Though the plot elements are certainly familiar, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull still delivers the thrills and Harrison Ford's return in the title role is more than welcome.



Total Count: 270


Audience Score

User Ratings: 1,320,288
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Movie Info

After being forced to leave Marshall College under dubious circumstances, Indy joins forces with rebellious, young Mutt, who believes he knows the whereabouts of one of the most spectacular archeological finds in history--the Crystal Skull of Akator, a legendary object of fascination, superstition and fear. But, as Indy and Mutt set out for the most remote corners of Peru--a land of ancient tombs, forgotten explorers and a rumored city of gold--they quickly realize they are not alone in their search. Soviet agents are also hot on the trail of the Crystal Skull. Chief among them is icy cold, devastatingly beautiful Irina Spalko, whose elite military unit is scouring the globe for the eerie Crystal Skull, which they believe can help the Soviets dominate the world--if they can unlock its secrets. Indy and Mutt must find a way to evade the ruthless Soviets, follow an impenetrable trail of mystery, grapple with enemies and friends of questionable motives, and, above all, stop the powerful Crystal Skull from falling into the deadliest of hands.

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Harrison Ford
as Indiana Jones
Shia LaBeouf
as Mutt Williams
Cate Blanchett
as Col. Irina Spalko
Karen Allen
as Marion Ravenwood
John Hurt
as Prof. Oxley
Ray Winstone
as George 'Mac' McHale
Jim Broadbent
as Dean Charles Stanforth
Igor Jijikine
as Col. Dovchenko
Dimitri Diatchenko
as Russian Suit
Ilia Volok
as Russian Suit
Emmanuel Todorov
as Russian Soldier
Pavel Lychnikoff
as Russian Soldier
Andrew Divoff
as Russian Soldier
Venya Manzyuk
as Russian Soldier
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Critic Reviews for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

All Critics (270) | Top Critics (54)

  • The energy on display is impressive, even if Spielberg's suggestion that a fifth Indie adventure is a distinct possibility is more a cause for concern than celebration.

    Jun 7, 2008 | Rating: 2.5/5 | Full Review…
  • Crystal Skull isn't bad -- there are a few dazzling sequences, and a couple of good performances -- but the unprecedented blend of comedy and action that made the movies so much more fun than any other adventure series is mostly gone.

    May 27, 2008 | Full Review…

    David Denby

    New Yorker
    Top Critic
  • There's nothing but entertainment value here.

    May 27, 2008
  • The action is the movie's raison d'être, of course, but the setups are wittier than the payoffs.

    May 27, 2008
  • Crystal Skull is a fun ride, but if we have to wait 19 years for the next one, that's OK by me.

    May 23, 2008 | Rating: B | Full Review…
  • Indy isn't boning up on Babylonian texts; he's leafing through the Weekly World News.

    May 23, 2008 | Rating: C+ | Full Review…

Audience Reviews for Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

  • Jun 20, 2016
    Resurrecting a legendary franchise should be no difficult task with its original director, star, and screenplay by the guy that wrote Jurassic Park, Mission: Impossible, Spider-Man, and Carlito's Way, right? Well, unfortunately Koepp's screenplay is waaaaay off the mark here and Spielberg, Ford, and George Lucas, despite laughing all the way to the bank, heard it from die hard fans. Now in the 1950s, Indy is trying to stop the Soviets from getting their hands on the mysterious and powerful Crystal Skull. Fans would have been okay with resurrecting Indy if they would have left Shia LaBeouf's James Dean like character way out of the picture. If that character and the ending sequence absolutely had to be left in, I'm sure everyone would've been okay with Indy staying on the shelves for a little longer until something better came along in terms of a script.
    Patrick W Super Reviewer
  • May 06, 2013
    Many will definitely argue this addition to the 'Indiana Jones' saga was unnecessary and somewhat confusing. But as another film, you can't deny Spielberg's crisp direction and Harrison Ford's slick leading performance. Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is visually a blockbuster success, though potholes could be avoided in its story and plot, it's still stable nonetheless. 4/5
    Eugene B Super Reviewer
  • May 04, 2013
    Call me a deranged loonatic, but this is definently not the worse Indy flick despite all it's madness. It's just a bit schizophrenic on it's approach but it's definently a superb adventure flick. Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is shamelessly old-fashioned on the best ways possible. It's an Indiana Jones flick that could've easily been made right after The Last Crusade that it would blend seamlessly 20 years ago. The plot is very similiar to the previous flicks, with tons of exposition as expected but it's a blast from start to finnish and Ford seems to be having tons of fun with it's hat and whip back. Not just that, but this time the secondary cast is pretty good, with Cate Blanchett being such an old-fashioned villain it's hilarious to watch her, almost straight out of a 30s flick. Bringing back Karen Allen as Marion was immensily enjoyable and her dynamic with Ford was untouched, giving room for some of the best moments on the flick even if they're so little and everyone wanted a bit more of interaction between these two. Shia is not bad either on an adequate role for him. Problem is, the first three Indys were an ingenious mix of pratical effects and live settings that were palpable and believable at every turn. KOTCS has an avalanche of bad CGI, where most of it was completly unnecessary. Come on! Some of the best moments in the first three flicks were the usage of real animals to create those unforgetable moments in the lost temples. CGI scorpions, ants, monkeys and prairie dogs (?) are fake as hell and completly loose the impact it should've had! Not just that, but the jungle chase sequence despite being super imaginative and fun for the most part is just badly done. The first chase in the movie involving a bike, cars and some REAL settings was stunning and was much less elaborate than this one. Hell, take Mad Max II and it's climatic chase sequence that was much better realized with stunts, explosions, real cars and real settings, turning it into an amazing unforgetable experience that actually beats this one right of the water, despite being made over 20 years ago. Add some outrageous moments like surviving a nuclear blast and you start to question some decisions but they're not as bad as some people make it to be, since this is an Indiana Jones flick after all, that has excesses at every turn. It's a shame that these elements were included because they're distracting for the worse reasons. Still, KOTCS is a very fun ride from start to finnish and a worthy addition to the saga.
    Francisco G Super Reviewer
  • Apr 13, 2013
    If "doom" has a temple, it's this movie. Stupid and forced. Barely more than a B movie.
    Christian C Super Reviewer

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