||03-03-2012 08:36 PM
Originally Posted by BStecke
While I'm definitely not a fan of Shia's "acting", I think any new face to a 30 year old franchise will be unwelcome, unless it's someone who really has a great character to work with, or is able to bring out greatness in a weak character through their talents. Shia had neither. In retrospect, I think it would have been accepted better if they just brought in the old cast without new characters (Jim Broadbent's minor role and villains aside). Shia's absence would have removed the worst parts of the movie, conveniently enough, and then maybe Marion wouldn't have been such a Leave It To Beaver mom/ditz and resemble the character everyone wanted to see return.
This post has made me realize Mutt/Shia is the stem of all evil in KOtCS :D
I disagree. While I can't come up with another young actor who would have done better in that role, all you needed was someone who was as interesting as Harrison Ford was when he was young. Imagine a young Brad Pitt or Matt Damon in that role. They would have been far more interesting. In fact, the late River Phoenix was far more interesting in "Last Crusade". Even a young Tom Cruise would have been a good match for Indy. The idea of introducing a new character was no different than introducing Sean Connery in the third film. With a good actor, it could have worked almost as well.
Having said that, the role was written badly. In spite of the fact that the character grew up without his father, while it would have been believable that Marion would have steered him away from archeology, it's not believable to me that he would have grown up an uneducated idiot, considering that Marion's father, Indy's father and Indy were all educated men. I sincerely think they made the character an idiot so that today's young moviegoers could better relate to the character.
As far as the Marion character is concerned, while I supposed they still could have made her 'tough as nails', most people do mellow with age. Raiders took place in 1936. Skull took place in 1957. Most people change drastically in 20 years. Besides, I don't think her character was all that different - it just seemed different because she inhabited a much older body. But her smile never aged at all.
The problem with Shia is that he is incredibly uninteresting and all the characters he "plays" are exactly the same. I fail to understand how he's become such a success. Add to that the possibility in everyone's mind that there was at least a chance that the franchise might have continued with Mutt and without Indy and it was insanity to choose Shia for that role. Spielberg probably had access to any actor he wanted. And Shia was the best that he could come up with? That's pretty sad.
In fact, I'm going to take it one step further. I'll probably get hit by lightning for even suggesting this, but I think that a young Hayden Christensen would have been better. Imagine him as a high school whiz-kid who via books, thinks he knows more about archeology than Indy, which they clash over. But as an academic and with little experience in the real world, since Marion didn't want him following in Indy's or in her father's footsteps, he's a bit "prissy". During the story, he finds himself in situations that forces him to "man up". By the end, he's a lot more like Indy. IMO, that would have been far better than what we got.