Did you guys know that David Koepp’s Indy IV script is now available here? Get it while you can! I skimmed through it. Indy's father is no where to be found, probably written out before this draft.
However, I noticed some interesting changes.
* Here’s something we didn't see in the warehouse sequence: they threaten to kill Mac, which is what compels Indy to help the Russians. They throw Mac down onto the ground and put his head right up to the tire of a truck and turn the engine on. But that was short-lived because Mac's soon following Indy around like everyone else.
* There's a scene with Mac and Spalko after the warehouse sequence where she tells him, "You did well" and leaves. This moment rings false (or weak) as any good villain would've killed Mac right there.
* Koepp had the mushroom cloud look like a human skull. Seriously? Is Koepp for real? Since when was Indy that cartoonish?
* One of the complaints I had was that there was no payoff to the setup of Mutt and his switchblade. He can do tricks with it. He’ll pull it out at a moment’s notice, but he never once used it. Well, in Koepp’s script, Mutt actually used his knife on one of the graveyard guardians in Peru. Indy was also supposed to use his whip here, too, which was nice to see because I didn’t think Indy used his whip enough. In any case, Mutt stabs one of those crazy guardians in the shoulder with his switchblade, which the man pulls out and just as he's about to throw the switchblade back at Mutt, Indy uses his whip to save him. Mutt picks up his knife, feels kinda freaked about using his knife for the first time, and Indy tells him, “You did good, kid.”
* Then Indy actually explains who the guardians were - Nazca Indians. And I'll bet you all of that was removed to avoid getting complaints about killing Indians and also praising Mutt for stabbing an Indian. That the guardians were Indians and that it might’ve generated some complaints is beside the point. The entire graveyard guardian sequence should’ve been scrapped and redone because it was all too similar to the other sequence with Indians, the “Ugha Warriors,” who came out of the crevices in the caves before they reached Akator.
* The scorpion sting was another complaint of mine. It felt like a setup to a payoff that never happened. Well, in the script, the talk about the scorpion bite led to a couple of other (bad) jokes of Indy telling Mutt that the skeletons and such won't “bite” him. It’s not funny, would’ve never played well, and still technically wrong. Scorpions sting, they don’t bite, and Indy would’ve known that.
* I always thought it was a pacing misstep that Indy and Mutt should stand around and talk so much after finding the skull. Well, in Koepp's script, as soon as Indy found the skull, the floor was supposed to give way beneath them leading to I don't know what because the next couple of scenes were omitted. After that mystery sequence, they climb out of the cemetery to be greeted by the Russians.
* Before the scene with Indy & Marion & Mutt in the truck, there was an awful scene between Spalko and Mac in order to try to make Spalko scarier and fails miserably. An antagonist is scary THROUGH ACTION. It’s what the antagonist DOES that makes us scared.
- The scene with Mutt and the monkeys was actually meant to be scary. Mutt was desperate to avoid being killed by the monkeys that were probably meant to be bigger and scarier.
* During the big “tentpole” chase sequence in the rainforest, Mac reveals to Indy: "INDY, YOU STUPID SON OF A BITCH, I’M CIA! I practically shouted it at you in the ten, I said ‘Like in Berlin!’ What were we in Berlin, mate?!” And then INDY & MAC both say together: “Double agents, yeah?” Then Mac fights the Russians alongside Indy and says at one point, “You think General Ross just happened to turn up in Nevada to bail you out? I sent him, he’s my control agent!” Indy says, “Why didn't you say so before?” And Mac responds, “What do you want me to do, paint it on my ass?!” Now this dialogue would’ve put more of a question mark over who is really leaving the red-light blinking thingees for Spalko on the way to Akator. After they enter the temple, Mac pulls a gun on the gang causing Indy to say, “So you’re what? A triple agent?” Mac responds, “Nah, I just lied about being a double.” The whole thing with Mac was just beyond silly.
* In the script, four Russian soldiers enter the chamber with Spalko. In the film, only Spalko entered, which is less threatening.
BTW - do you guys remember that discussion we had about the big snake in Darabont’s draft? Some felt it was too fake, too hard to believe, etc. Check out this article: Ancient Fossil Find! This Snake Could Eat a Cow! They found the remains of a snake 42-45 feet long, reaching more than 2,500 pounds, and could “easily eat something the size of a cow. A human would just be toast immediately.”
Hehehe… (Thanks, Neil, for the link.)
Well, after years of following the rumors of Indy IV, I believe this will be my last article on the subject (unless other drafts surface, which is highly doubtful). So I’d like to close by posting links to four articles (that earned a Dardos award) from my series on Indiana Jones 4:
50 Flaws of Indy IV
50 Strengths of Darabont's Draft
The Wedding of Indiana Jones
The Long, Sordid Road to Indy IV