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There's great dramatic potential for Indiana Jones V
Harrison Ford, Karen Allen, John Hurt, Shia LaBeouf and Ray Winstone in "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull." It was recently announced that a fifth Indiana Jones film will be released in 2019. - photo by Jim Bennett
Indiana Jones and the Dennys Senior Discount. Indiana Jones and the Afternoon Nap. Indiana Jones and the Confusing Bingo Card.

Snarky fans proposed these possible alternative titles to 2008s Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, all of which carried the not-too-subtle implication that Harrison Ford, who was 64 years old when the movie was being filmed, was too long in the tooth to continue playing everyones favorite archaeological action hero. Now Disney has announced that there will be an Indiana Jones V, with both Ford and director Steven Spielberg returning to the franchise. The movie will be released July 29, 2019, just a couple of weeks after Harrison Fords 77th birthday. I can only imagine what other titles the fans will come up with between now and then.

Actually, I dont have to imagine. The Today Show consulted Twitter and found these gems: Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost AARP, Indiana Jones and the Reason He Walked Into the Room, and Indiana Jones and the Forbidden Bingo Hall. (I prefer Confusing Bingo Card, but maybe thats just me.)

These are all good for a chuckle, I suppose, but the fact is I couldnt be more excited to see a septuagenarian Indiana Jones movie. This could be a truly compelling adventure, and maybe, just maybe, one of the best movies in the series.

Note that it can never be the best movie in the series. That will always be Raiders of the Lost Ark, which is as close to a perfect film as has ever been made. But theres real potential in Indy V. The idea of an old man being plunged into the kind of life-and-death struggles that he was barely able to escape in his youth holds all kinds of possibilities.

Audiences identify with heroes who triumph over impossible odds. Thats the reason why many people identify more with Batman than Superman, who has the power to do just about anything, whereas Batman is just a regular guy with a mask and a cape. All of Batmans victories are hard-won, which makes him a lot more interesting than some dude who can make the planet spin backward to turn back time. A heros journey requires obstacles, and age is the ultimate obstacle, one that all of us must face. If Spielberg and Ford embrace Indys advancing years rather than try to downplay them, they could mine some very rich dramatic material.

Kingdom of the Crystal Skull had the opportunity to address these kinds of themes, but other than some throwaway lines and a few offhand quips, there really wasnt much difference between the 64-year-old Indy and the guy from the first three movies. It would be far more interesting to find that our hero has truly become an old man when Indy V begins. Hes retired; he spends his days reading, napping and yelling at kids to get off of his lawn. His no-goodnik son never calls or writes which means we dont have to bring Shia LaBeouf back into the picture and he and Marion spend hours holding hands as they sit on the front porch of their white-picket-fenced house, counting the fireflies at night without a care in the world.

But then, suddenly, hes called back into action when hes the only one who can deal with the Rise of Atlantis, or the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse, or the Confusing Bingo Card of Doom!

Can you imagine how wrenching that would be for the character? And wouldnt it be cool? Indy may be old, but Fords magnificent performance in The Force Awakens shows hes still firing on all cylinders, and Spielberg has never been better. So I say grab all the bingo cards and bring on Indy V.
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