RT Podcast

"Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong" About... Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull

With a Tomatometer and Audience Score divide wide enough to swing a monkey through, Indy 4 has become a franchise punching bag. But is that fair? Join the debate in the latest episode of our new podcast.

by | October 1, 2020 | Comments

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
(Photo by ©Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection)

When Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, the fourth film in Steven Spielberg’s Indiana Jones series, premiered at the Cannes Film Festival in 2008, it was met with rapturous applause – and pretty stellar reviews. While some took issue with the overuse of CGI, and a not-quite-as-sharp-as-its-predecessors script, most critics gave it the Fresh thumbs up. Here, after all, was the first Indiana Jones movie the world had been gifted in almost 30 years, and it tickled the nostalgia bone right into Certified Fresh status.

Fans of the franchise, though…. well, they weren’t exactly whipped up to that level of enthusiasm by Indy 4, which 12 years later is largely considered the worst film in the series and – for some – a major blight on it. (See the Audience Score of 54%). There was that CGI, for starters, and that Russian accent (sorry Cate), and those aliens. While many acknowledge it has its moments – most of those thanks to tipped fedoras and John Williams – the sense has been that this decent action movie was a terrible Indiana Jones movie.


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Is that Certified Fresh Tomatometer score of 78% “wrong”? Or is the audience being far too harsh on Indy, Mutt, and Spalko? And what the hell were they thinking with those swinging monkeys? In the third episode of new podcast Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong (A Podcast From Rotten Tomatoes), our hosts Jacqueline Coley and Mark Ellis are joined by critic, pop-culture expert – and most recently, YouTube host – Scott Mantz, to break down Indy 4, diving deep into its pros, cons, and journey from blockbuster smash to That Indiana Jones Movie We Don’t Mention In Polite Company.



Be sure to check in every Thursday for a new episode of Rotten Tomatoes Is Wrong (A Podcast From Rotten Tomatoes). Each week, hosts Jacqueline and Mark and guests go deep and settle the score on some of the most beloved – and despised – movies and TV shows ever made, directly taking on the statement we hear from so many fans: “Rotten Tomatoes is wrong.”

If you have a suggestion for a movie or show you think we should do an episode on, let us know in the comments, or email us at rtiswrong@rottentomatoes.com.


Meet the hosts

Jacqueline Coley is an editor at Rotten Tomatoes, with a focus on awards and indie coverage but with a passion for everything, from the MCU to musicals and period pieces. Coley is a regular moderator at conventions and other events, can be seen on Access Hollywood and other shows, and will not stand Constantine slander of any kind. Follow Jacqueline on Twitter: @THATjacqueline.

Mark Ellis is a comedian and contributing editor for Rotten Tomatoes. He currently hosts the Rotten Tomatoes series Versus, among others, and can be seen co-hosting the sports entertainment phenomenon Movie Trivia Schmoedown. His favorite Star Wars movie is Jedi (guess which one!), his favorite person is actually a dog (his beloved stepdaughter Mollie), and – thanks to this podcast – he’s about to watch Burlesque for the first time in his life. Follow Mark on Twitter: @markellislive.


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