Overall Impression – A great and exciting action adventure movie that blew me away when I saw it for the first time in the 80’s, and it holds up even today.


Who’s your main character? – Indiana Jones

What’s he trying to accomplish? – Professional: Find the Ark of the Covenant before the Germans do. Personal: Fix his relationship with Marion. Private: He doesn’t believe in ancient curses or superstitions…and this belief will be challenged at the very end of  the story.

Who’s trying to stop him? – Belloq and the German Soldiers.

What happens if he fails? — If Indy fails, the Ark will be in hands of Hitler which could give him and his army of German soldiers a great power and make them the strongest force on the planet (according to the biblical stories), also, a great artifact (the Ark) that belongs in a museum would be lost, and Marion, the woman he loves, would be harmed or killed.


Orphan — Indy had a relationship with Marion in the past but broke up with her in a way that apparently wasn’t very gentle, something that is made clear when they meet again after many years. Marion is still angry with him and her first reaction when she sees him is whacking him in the face.

Wanderer — Indy is searching for the headpiece to the Staff of Ra, whose crystal will allow him to determine the exact location of the Ark. He flies to Nepal, goes to Egypt, and eventually discovers where the ark is buried.  

Warrior — Indy digs for the ark, right under the noses of the Germans soldiers and Belloq.  He finds the Ark, and then gets locked up in this same room by Belloq who takes the Ark from him. Indy escapes and has to get the Ark back from Belloq and his fellow Germans soldiers, who have also now taken Marion.

Martyr — Indy risks his own life and seems willing to blow up the Ark of the Covenant to save Marion.  


The wanderer and Warrior stages in this movie are easily to spot. It’s a different story with the Orphan and Martyr. How is he an orphan? He is an archaeologist, a teacher and has friends and as far I can see he’s not emotional very scrutinized. He is not being disrespected, living in a place he is not welcome, all typical Orphan stages. So how is he an orphan? It’s there though. I discovered it when I realized that he had a relation with Marion in the past and that it ended badly.

The Martyr stage is in my opinion the moment he wants to sacrifice the Ark to save Marion. But I still have the feeling that there is a martyr moment in the last scene as well where he tells Marion to close her eyes while the Ark is being opened and everybody around them is being killed by the power of God. It is a Martyr moment in that he must give up seeing the most amazing archeological event of all time in order to finally believe what he never dared believe before…that the ancient wisdom had truth and power behind it.  

–  André van Haren

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