John Baumgartner

Harrison Ford Spielberg


UPDATE: 12/9/11 – Youtube yanked the sample video, so I was inspired to create my own, hosted by yours truly, to take advantage of Fair Use laws, and to maybe start expanding Shot4Shot into a youtube channel.  Check out the video below and please let me know what you think.

This is just a quick but very fun post, as I’m super pressed for time this week. So I fall back on my Spielberg list – his shots never disappoint – and a Behind-The-Scenes-Pic-Of-The-Day from, a really terrific series the site has been doing for a couple years now(?). Plus, with any post, you can’t go wrong with Harrison Ford as Indiana Jones.  Love or hate the film, today’s shot is a great example of a great practical effect.

In the below Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom still from Industrial Light and Magic (which you can click to see bigger) we see a fantastic reverse angle on the famous plane-crash sequence, specifically just after Kate Capshaw screams seeing the approaching mountain top. In the photo, the craft’s landing gear kisses the jagged peak, blasting bits of snowcap for dramatic punctuation.


Pre-CGI Spielberg

I never would have suspected this was accomplished with a model (I thought it was a stunt), a true testament, in this day and age, to the use of practical effects over digital whenever appropriate. It works so beautifully in part because a real plane is almost seamlessly intercut with it (for the less dangerous moments), the camera is moving so dramatically, not to mention the fact that the models are so big and well rendered.

The second I saw this peek behind the curtain, I ran, yes, ran, to my DVD player and threw in the DVD, fast-forwarding with sweaty anticipation to see if the shot that had bamboozled me so successfully as a 12 year old still held up. Would I see the seams? There’s definitely a little seam or two, but that’s the magic of movies and practical effects – it doesn’t have to be perfect to work perfectly.

Check it out in this first ever episode of Shot4shot!


  • November 1, 2011

    I guess based on the tragic outcome of this plane flight, Dr. Jones learned how to fly a plane before the events recorded in “The Last Crusade”.

    Up until this point, this movie measures up with Raiders. It’s just everything after that’s so execrable.

      • November 1, 2011

        [pouring a 40 on the curb for my homie Frank Darabont’s unproduced script]

        But seriously, how extra-special galling is it to hear Spielberg put all the blame for *the film that shall not speak its name* on Lucas, when there was the Darabont script out there, making sense, and not being about inter-dimensional aliens?

  • December 9, 2011

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