>> Sunday, February 19, 2012
As I've stated previously on Booze Movies, Raiders of the Lost Ark is the most enjoyable action adventure film ever produced. While owing an enormous debt to the serials of the 1930's, such as Zorro's Fighting Legion (1939), and previous adventure classics like Gunga Din (1939), Raiders synthesized it's antecedents into an unmatched entertainment.
Of course, as a soused cinema enthusiast, I feel that the success of the first Indiana Jones film is due in no small part to Karen Allen's supporting performance as the alcohol-obsessed Marion Ravenwood. Karen Allen had better chemistry with Harrison Ford than any of the actresses with whom he was subsequently paired, and the character of Marion was more interesting than Indy's later love interests. Marion is beautiful, witty, and can put away booze like a champ. She may the perfect woman.
I thought I was a huge fan of Raiders, but my love of the film pales beside Jamie Benning's obsession. Jamie has spent 8 months assembling the ultimate "making of" documentary on the film, culled from behind-the-scenes footage, cast and crew interviews old and new, excerpts from the script (including all of the scenes that were eventually cut), concept art, and more. The completed work, Raiding the Lost Ark: A Filmumentary runs 2 hours and 23 minutes; and it is more thorough and engaging than any of the officially released DVD extras.
Jamie's "filmumentary" can currently be streamed through the Vimeo embed at the top of this post. Vimeo is also available on Roku boxes and other electronics that include streaming services, so you may have the technology to view the HD stream directly on your TV.
If you are an Indiana Jones fan, you owe it to yourself to check out Jamie's labor of love. You should also keep an eye on Jamie's blog for future "filmumentary" projects.