Well, judging by the level of Internet interest in the movie, "Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull" could be the summer blockbuster to beat.
According to Paramount Pictures marketing executives, the trailer for the fourth Indiana Jones movie adventure was viewed more than 200 million times in the first week it was available.
Gerry Rich, Paramount's president of worldwide marketing, told The Associated Press that the overwhelming response shows "what technology can do when you have material that is so appealing to audiences."
And yes, I have seen it. This definitely looks like an Indiana Jones movie, though I'm still skeptical about a geriatric adventurer. Call me crazy.
By the way, you would be correct if you guessed that's a lead-in for an occasional feature of this column, one in which I review theatrical trailers, television spots and other ads for upcoming films. This time, they're mostly science-fiction, fantasy and comic book-related movies:
• IRON MAN (May 2) The only problem with these funny, thrilling ads is that they're a hard act to follow. The movie is going to have to be nearly perfect just to match our expectations now. ****
• WALL-E (June 27) The spots for the new Pixar movie accomplish a lot with very little dialogue. It looks funny and mind-blowing ... just like most, if not all, of the studio's other films. ****
• THE DARK KNIGHT (July 18) There's a certain sadness in seeing Heath Ledger in one of his final movie roles, though he looks and sounds terrific as the villainous Joker. ***
• HANCOCK (July 4) As amusing as the bit with superpowered Will Smith tossing a beached whale is, there was something similar in "My Super Ex Girlfriend." And we remember how awful that film turned out to be. ***
• HELLBOY II: THE GOLDEN ARMY (July 11) This sequel appears to have more action in it than the first one did. That's a smart move. ***
• SUPERHERO MOVIE (March 28) Given my hatred of such intellectually bankrupt parodies like "Epic Movie," I'm as surprised as anyone that the spots for this comic book adventure film spoof have a couple of funny moments in them. **
• THE CHRONICLES OF NARNIA: PRINCE CASPIAN (May 16) The problem with the current trailer is that it's so vague. We could have seen all this in less than 15 seconds. **
• SPEED RACER (May 9) When the trailer makes your movie look like a video game a headache-inducing one that's not a good thing. **
• WANTED (June 27) Having read the comic book miniseries this thriller is based on, I'm disturbed to see that they've changed so much of the story. (Are the character now assassins rather than supervillains?) **• DOOMSDAY (March 14) It's frightening to think the makers of this science-fiction/thriller can use imagery from the "Mad Max" movies and "28 Days Later" and think they can get away with it. *
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