Indiana Jones 5: The first trailer


This week, the first trailer to Indiana Jones 5: The Dial of Destiny dropped and I have analysed trailers in the past, so why not give this a try? There are some interesting details hidden, maybe I found some that you didn’t hear about? We are in any case well aware of the franchise and might figure out something together.

Time-Travel or Flashback?

So in the trailer, we see Indy a couple of times de-aged and the rumor came up, that this time, Indiana Jones will time travel. But the director, James Mangold, told the Empire, that the opening sequence of the movie will be a flashback with a digitally de-aged Indiana Jones.

“I wanted the chance to dive into this kind of full-on George-and-Steven old picture and give the audience an adrenaline blast,” Mangold tells Empire in our world-exclusive Indiana Jones 5 issue. The solution? A setpiece that dials the clock back to 1944, set in a castle swarming with Nazis. Through the miracle of de-ageing technology, we’re going back towards Raiders-era Indy. “And then we fall out, and you find yourself in 1969,” Mangold explains of the transition to the main action of the film.

The Empire Interview

Indy’s teaching

Scene at the University | © Lucasfilm

As Jens Notroff made me aware, the scene at the university, where Indy is teaching, features a couple of interesting things. On the right side, we see the same layout of a Neolithic barrow, as in the very first movie, where Indy was obviously teaching the same. As Jens puts it: “30 years later, same curriculum”

Unfortunately, it is not quiet clear to me what the object in the centre can be. Some say it is the Dial of Destiny, but I think we see that later in the trailer. Some say it is a time-travel device, but we already ruled that out. For all we know, it might simply be a bronze pot, although a Google image search didn’t reveal anything like it.

The Dial of Destiny

Perhaps the Dial of Destiny? | © Lucasfilm

Whatever this mechanism is, it tremendously reminds us of a mixture of the Antikythera Mechanism and the Nebra Sky Disc. Well, vaguely at least. It is not quiet clear yet, what its function might be. We seen similar mechanisms in video games. In Indiana Jones 4: The Fate of Atlantis (1992), Indy used carved stone disks to unlock Atlantis. In Uncharted 3: Drakes Deception (2011), Nathan Drake used a similar device to en- and decode messages. Who knows?

The setting

So far, it seems the movie will play in 1969, the year of the moon landing. As Nazis seem to be the villain in this movie, one might speculate that the movie shows them somehow involved in the moon landing? This is hard to say. In any case, in 1969, Indiana Jones is 70 years old (still ten years younger than Harrison Ford) and this movie is surely the last Indiana Jones movie with Harrison Ford in it.

Considering Fords influence on the script of the new Star Wars movies, one might speculate that he did only agree to play Indiana Jones again, if he was able to let the character die off. It is not unlikely at least. In any case, this trailer really sparked interest and I sincerely hope, that we do not have to deal with aliens or bad slapstick humour again. Let this be a fitting end to an era.

BTW, another thought: Seeing young Indy in the trailers, it is also likely, that Disney (who owns the franchise) can and will produce more movies of Indiana Jones in the feature, with a young Indy. He can be played by another actor and thanks to AI, young Indys face will appear on screen. It might be a possibility for Disney to exploit the trademark of Indiana Jones to its fullest…



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Sebastian Hageneuer

Hi! My name is Sebastian. I am an archaeologist, a university lecturer, freelancer, guitarist, and father. You could say I am quiet busy, so I learned to manage my time and energy to build good habits and still have space for myself and my family. Sounds difficult? Read here how I do it. Every Friday.

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