It was horrible. Flat out terrible. It's not that I just didn't care for it, I actually actively hate this movie. And that takes a lot for me to say. I usually enjoy most movies, or can appreciate that others might. This was just awful on every level. Plot, dialogue, sets, camerawork. They put shitloads of money into it, and absolutely ZERO effort. Everything was cheesy, cliche, formulaic, contrived, too convenient. This was like a movie done paint-by-number style. It was like "[insert action sequence here] + [insert history lesson here]." Not just regarding the scene structure, but the individual shots, too. "[shot of feet running] + [shot of gun firing] + [reaction shot]" Nothing really mattered, they were just going through the motions.
It was funny, but every time I laughed, I felt sad. Because it felt like it was mocking. They were mocking the audience AND the characters. And this is actually probably the reason I actively hate this movie.
The action scenes were obviously choreographed with a theme park ride in mind. They were very Rube Goldberg.
Everything was so obviously soundstaged. There was always "dust" or "fog" in the background so they didn't even have to try to make look like a real location. A mountain landscape was plastered behind a suburban neighborhood like a bad photoshop job. The CG was ridiculous and just bad. You couldn't get a real prairie dog to poke its head out of a hole? Really??
That's what I kept saying: "Really?? Seriously?" The crotch thwacking scene. Seriously?
Aliens. Really?!? I'd heard there were aliens involved and had thought it was a spoiler. I'd thought they were going to try to pull a twist at the end and have the aliens come at the end to surprise us. But no, it was aliens all along. ... what? Indy is historical/mythological, he's not sci-fi.
"It was Indiana Slapstick Jones - oh, and now he can't be killed." - Alex Albrecht
It did have a lot in common, on the surface, as the first three, there was ridiculousness in both, but somewhere in the execution, it crossed the line from "oooooooo.... awesome!!" to "cartoonish". The first three earned their charm, this one did not have enough redeeming moments to justify the mocking.
The one thing that would've gone a LONG way to sucking me into the story and suspending my disbelief a bit more would've been a better opening/title sequence. It was THE worst opening title sequence I've EVER seen in the history of filmmaking. this is motherfucking Indiana Jones, and you give me the title just kinda scribbled in the corner. This is INDIANA JONES! I wanted to be blown away. A better score could've helped, too. I was never swept into the world, and it would've been so easy to make an opening title sequence that just knocks you out - with the famous music (which they teased us with once or twice, but was never really played). That could've gone a LONG way to putting me in the mood to accept the ridiculousness that followed.
This is what you waited almost twenty years for? You were waiting for the "right script" and this is what we end up with. Really?