Indiana Jones Movie and Karen Allen

Since it's a holiday weekend, let's go off politics for a bit. Has anyone seen the new Indiana Jones movie? I'll see it, but only because Karen Allen is in it. Here's what she's been up to in real life these past years.

It has been 27 years since Ms. Allen, 56, played Harrison Ford’s rugged romantic interest in “Raiders of the Lost Ark.” Following breakthrough roles in “Animal House,” “Manhattan” and “Starman,” and more recent work in “The Perfect Storm” and “In the Bedroom,” she moved with her son, Nick Browne, to Great Barrington, Mass.

Today, she owns a knitting shop there and teaches acting at Bard College at Simon’s Rock — but a call from Steven Spielberg, inviting her to join the newest Indiana Jones movie, thrust her back into the spotlight.

The Times article leaves out omits my of two favorite films with her: "The Wanderers" and "A Small Circle of Friends."

Everyone's probably seen The Wanderers, about a Bronx "gang" in 1963, but I'd bet virtually no one remembers Small Circle of Friends. I do, because it came out when I was very pregnant and I ended up naming the TL kid Nic after one of the characters. Turns out Ms. Allen named her son Nick. Probably a coincidence, since her son is now 17, but...[More..]

a piece of advice: Don't name your kid after a movie role if you can't show him the movie when he's old enough to ask how he got his name.

The TL kid was pretty insulted that I named him after a movie character he never heard of. For years, I tried but couldn't get a copy of the movie and it never replayed on TV.

About five years ago, I was at a Lexis Nexis board meeting when one of the execs told me he's a huge film buff and if it was possible, he'd get me the movie, along with one other I couldn't find.

About 6 months later, a VHS tape arrived in the mail -- it was "Small Circle of Friends." The next time the TL kid returned to Denver we watched it.

It's a film about college kids in the late '60's with a Weatherman subplot. Karen Allen was great in it and the character Nick was pre-med, starts out as very prim and proper and changes as the film progresses. It was directed by Arthur Penn.

Brad Davis Karen Allen and Jameson Parker star as three college students transformed by the turbulent 60s in this endearing illuminating and haunting film that delivers a convincing evocative portrait of an unforgettable era. A bright future appears in store for Harvard freshmen Leo (Davis) Jessica (Allen) and Nick (Parker). The dynamic Leo loses no time in wooing Jessica and making a name for himself on the campus paper. But romance and political idealism clash with reality when Jessica takes up with Nick and Leo s draft number comes up. As their small circle becomes an unorthodox love triangle each must face up to events that will change their lives forever.

The TL kid thought it was very dated (of course it was in 2003 and still is) but liked the Nick character and hasn't complained since about how I picked his name.

Now the film now is readily available on DVD. Also, if you haven't seen The Wanderers, I highly recommend it.

Two of the most powerful moments are original to the film, and they set the film's time period perfectly: Perry (Tony Ganios) watches in shock as the coverage of J.F.K.'s assassination plays on a TV in a department-store window, and Richie (Ken Wahl), in a coffeehouse, sees a skinny guy with curly hair and a reedy voice singing "The Times They Are A-Changin'." With his "Wanderers" jacket and oily pompadour, Richie is laughably conspicuous among the self-conscious folkies, and he knows it, but he cannot know that his world will be a thing of the past in a year or two.

Now, if I could only find a copy of a 1973 tv movie "Third Girl From the Left" with Kim Novak and Michael Brandon -- it's a "Maggie Mae" type story where she plays an aging chorus girl and he is the grocery delivery boy and they fall in love. It was the second movie I asked the Lexis Nexis exec to find me and he was very chagrined to tell me he failed, even after asking over a hundred of his fellow movie buff friends. (At the link you can click "vote to make it available on DVD.)

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    Anyone seen her in Wait Until September? (5.00 / 1) (#46)
    by suzieg on Sun May 25, 2008 at 05:08:56 AM EST
    Probably one of my favorite movies. Set in Paris she's an american girl who gets stranded in Paris because she misses her flight and ends up in an old classmate friend apt next to married Tierry Lermite, who must have the bluest and most beautiful eyes I have ever seen, with whom she falls in love with for the summer. The scenery is beautiful and the bantering between the two about the differences with french and american cultures is quite funny. It reminded me of my years living in Paris and Montrel where I met men just like him. I recommend it,it's a good entertaining little movie

    Wait Until September (none / 0) (#47)
    by bridget on Sun May 25, 2008 at 04:59:17 PM EST
    I did see it. I like that kind of movie a lot esp. when the story is set in Paris. Very charming, very entertaining. Def. worth seeing again. Just checked Netflix and I may order it next. Thanks for reminding ;-)

    Without giving up the entire plot (none / 0) (#1)
    by cmugirl on Sat May 24, 2008 at 01:50:58 PM EST
    Does Indiana meet up with the Karen Allen character again (since there were other Indy-babes in the subsequent movies) or is this movie out of sequence in the timeline of the movie?

    Yeah, major question! (none / 0) (#5)
    by gyrfalcon on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:07:11 PM EST
    Ford really sucks at actual love scenes, but the Karen Allen character was wonderful and it'd be great to have a reunion, a la "Robin and Marian."

    Harrison Ford was good in Working Girl (none / 0) (#40)
    by bridget on Sat May 24, 2008 at 05:02:29 PM EST
    in the romance department

    He and Melanie did have chemistry and the plot and dialogues helped. I liked them both a lot in that film.

    Oh, Witness. Now that was a pretty passionate affair there, wasn't it? A great love story that really worked. One of my fav. films still.

    So if Harrision Ford wants to, he can do it ... lol


    It's in the right sequence , since he's (none / 0) (#42)
    by Rhouse on Sat May 24, 2008 at 05:34:05 PM EST
    fighting those nasty commies.  And, of course, he gives the correct answer to her question about the other women in his life.
    Slightly off topic, we also saw "Prince Caspian" (Narnia) and there was a preview for new Mummy movie  this time set in China.  Anybody interested?  

    Indiana Jones (none / 0) (#2)
    by waldenpond on Sat May 24, 2008 at 01:54:48 PM EST
    We're going in about an hour.  Watched the old ones on SciFi last weekend to prep.  It should be entertaining.  The movie could even be bad but we're taking a few 15 year old guys and taking them for pizza.. that should make up for any lack in the movie.  :)

    The Wanderers! (none / 0) (#3)
    by myiq2xu on Sat May 24, 2008 at 01:55:55 PM EST
    With the "Baldies" and that weird "Ducky-Boys" gang.


    Speaking of names (none / 0) (#4)
    by stillife on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:02:14 PM EST
    and movies, my 22-year-old son is named Nick.  We picked the name because we liked it, but also because that was the name of our favorite hangout, a semi-divey bar with a great jukebox in Chicago in the early 80's.  Ahhh, misspent youth!

    When I was pregnant with Nick, we watched the movie "The Sure Thing" and cracked up over this dialogue, where the John Cusack character and his girlfriend are arguing over baby names:

    Gib: Elliot? You're gonna name the kid Elliot? No, you can't name the kid Elliot. Elliot is a fat kid with glasses who eats paste. You're not gonna name the kid Elliot. You gotta give him a real name. Give him a name. Like Nick.

    Alison Bradbury: Nick?

    Gib: Yeah, Nick. Nick's a real name. Nick's your buddy. Nick's the kind of guy you can trust, the kind of guy you can drink a beer with, the kind of guy who doesn't mind if you puke in his car, Nick.

    Nick did in fact grow up to be that kind of guy. =)

    I'm not going to see the new Indiana Jones movie.  I'm not a big action movie fan and I had enough of that genre when Nick was a kid.  Now I go to chick flicks, indy films and documentaries with my daughter Emma.

    I love Indiana Jones movies... (none / 0) (#6)
    by kredwyn on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:10:17 PM EST
    yeah...chick flicks with Mom.

    But I really love how Indy stood on that deck and shouted "This belongs in a museum!!!" whilst getting swamped with water and bad guys.

    There was a professor who gave a lecture about how we as rhetoric scholars should go out in the field more often and be the Indiana Joneses of the rhetoric world. He argued that too often we don't trek any further than the bookshelf on the other side of the office.

    It was inspiring...I did just that.


    I saw it last night (none / 0) (#7)
    by blogtopus on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:10:45 PM EST
    I'd rank it, if I had to, over Last Crusade. Lots of fun stuff in there, and Karen Allen is a gem. It was one of the highlights of the movie.

    100 years ago...well, only about (none / 0) (#8)
    by Shainzona on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:12:02 PM EST
    25, really, I used to work out at the Sports Training Institute in NYC.  One lunch hour I found myself staring at Karen Allen...who was on an exercise machine right across from me.

    I was struck not just by her huge eyes and wonderful complexion, but also how quiet and unassuming she appeared.

    Glad to see she's back on the big screen.  Can't wait to see the movie.

    that happened (5.00 / 1) (#12)
    by Jeralyn on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:46:27 PM EST
    once to me in the 80's with Jon Bon Jovi when he still had huge hair. It was an early Sunday morning and I had gone to the gym without makeup. At one point he worked out on the machine next to me and smiled and tried to make conversation and I got completely tongue-tied and ignored him.

    The other band members walked by the workout room and waved to him. When he was done, he went up to the front desk and offered the employees free passes to their show. I wanted to go up and ask for one, but of course I couldn't since I had just ignored him. I have never gone to the gym without makeup since.

    What I remember most about him: He had huge and I mean huge thighs.


    Cheryl Ladd touched/grabbed my forearm. (none / 0) (#16)
    by Get 27 on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:55:51 PM EST
    I was 20, and it was unexpected.  I was always more of a Kate Jackson fan, but Cheryl Ladd had the softest hand I had ever felt.

    Ha! Thankfully I was coming from work... (none / 0) (#17)
    by Shainzona on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:56:15 PM EST
    so I actually had "eyes" on (mine disappear without a little, er, I mean, a lot of help).

    I hope Karen didn't find me spread out on the mats after my workout as I could never leave without 20 minutes of rest after one of those work-outs.

    Ah, the good old days.  Now I can barely work-out!


    Maybe he liked the fact you didn't have it on (none / 0) (#49)
    by splashy on Sun May 25, 2008 at 05:58:25 PM EST
    I have run across many men that don't like makeup, so are attracted to women that don't wear any. Especially men from the Midwest and rural areas. They prefer a more natural look, even if you have light eyelashes and eyebrows and think it makes you look washed out it doesn't matter to them.

    Katy: I'll write you a note. (none / 0) (#10)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:43:11 PM EST
    I'll say you're too well to attend.

    Holding Out (none / 0) (#11)
    by txpolitico67 on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:45:37 PM EST
    for Sex and the City next week.  I am 40 and have never seen any of the following, ever:

    No Indiana Jones movies
    No Star Wars movies
    No Star Trek movies

    Last movie I saw in the theater was "Dream Girls".

    Definitely rent the first (none / 0) (#22)
    by eleanora on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:18:17 PM EST
    Indiana Jones movie if you get a chance. So many movies have ripped off the style and set pieces that you'l probably recognize half of it, but you'll have a blast.

    Thanks Eleanora (none / 0) (#44)
    by txpolitico67 on Sat May 24, 2008 at 07:32:40 PM EST
    I may just do that.  I know that the movies I have never seen are great, but just not a big movie person in general.

    Here's an interesting point:  Although I have never seen ONE Star Wars movie, I can name most, if not all, the major characters from the first 3 bck in the 70s/80s.  They have just permeated our pop culture to that degree.


    She's also good in Scrooged. (none / 0) (#13)
    by Get 27 on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:48:57 PM EST
    I did have a crush on her when the first movie came out. This crush passed on to Bjork then Olivia Williams of "Rushmore" if that makes any sense.

    RE: Third Girl from the Left (none / 0) (#14)
    by chancellor on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:49:56 PM EST
    Did a little digging and found out that this was produced by Playboy Productions (Hugh Hefner was Exec. Producer, and his then-girlfriend, Barbi Benton, was also in the movie). It was an ABC Movie of the Week when it was released. If Playboy Productions still exists, you can probably get a copy of it.

    Thanks (none / 0) (#24)
    by Jeralyn on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:21:26 PM EST
    but what do you say? Can they really just send you a copy of a movie that hasn't been released for the public?

    Doesn't hurt to ask. (none / 0) (#27)
    by chancellor on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:29:56 PM EST
    Yes. Quite Possible. (none / 0) (#37)
    by EddieInCA on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:34:09 PM EST
    Karen Allen is one of my favorite actoresses (none / 0) (#15)
    by riddlerandy on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:53:03 PM EST
    I am also a big fan of Brad Davis.  I worked as  a projectionist when Close Circle of Friends came out, so I saw it 40 times.  A very nice movie.  Thanks for the memory.

    i was a projectionist also, (none / 0) (#19)
    by jeffinalabama on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:05:45 PM EST
    almost too many years ago to recount-- did you use the big carbon-arc projectors, or the xenon bulb ones?

    I have no recollection. (none / 0) (#25)
    by riddlerandy on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:24:54 PM EST
    It was  1981. I also Flash Gordon and Heavens Gate dozens of times. I have never quite recovered.

    Question? (none / 0) (#18)
    by samtaylor2 on Sat May 24, 2008 at 02:57:07 PM EST
    Did you have a VHS to play those movies with?  Do they still make those? :)

    Not only do I have (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Jeralyn on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:19:57 PM EST
    VCR machines, I have two that transfer VHS to DVD and record to either.  That's how I get my old music videos, like the ones from the Clinton-Gore 1993 MTV inaugural ball up on you tube.  I have hundreds of VHS tapes.

    (I had hundreds of audio cassettes too, but when I moved five years ago, I took a deep breath and threw them all out. I also gave the 1,000  record albums I had been moving around since college to one of the movers, along with my turntable.)  


    I can so relate to that, Jeralyn (none / 0) (#39)
    by bridget on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:51:13 PM EST
    I also have VCR machines and hundreds of tapes. We   are now thinking of getting one that transfers to DVD. Glad you mentioned that. Something to look into again. We never know what kind to buy, however, so this has been postponed for too long.

    Believe it or not, I still have the whole Simpson trial on tape. Fills a big box. Wish I could get at them so I could tape over w. movies, music, anything that I find interesting - but I can't use them because they are in storage w. all our furniture right now.

    I am a film fanatic and tape movies all the time. I still have to watch my Country Music Award tape from last week. Country is my fav. music :-)

    Have all my favorite dances from Dancing w. the Stars, too, (Yay Kristi! ;-)
    and hundreds of Figure skating tapes. Just about every single competition, esp. Nationals, Worlds, and Olys.

    I taped the Westminster Dog Show a couple months ago and that was so much fun, the dogs so fabulous, it will be a keeper. Yay UNO, the 15inch beagle! Best in Show for sure ;-)

    I also own a box full of old record albums. But they are so great (original Beatles and Elvis w. those famous covers) I will never give them away.

    Oh, before I forget, I have most of the Elvis films on tape. And all the Elvis concerts incl. the Comeback Special.
    I am a big Elvis fan and thanks to his wonderful 30 song gospel cd I made it thru more than one long dentist session recently.



    Karen Allen (none / 0) (#20)
    by janarchy on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:08:11 PM EST
    was also teaching yoga, I believe, at one of the colleges in the Berkshires. I remember seeing her name on a local flyer a few years ago.

    Euro fun but cheaper (none / 0) (#21)
    by Stellaaa on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:08:56 PM EST
    If you want to see how silly the rest of the world is, watch now the live Eurovision song contest, the best part is the end when the votes come in.  This year it's from Bulgaria.  The music is truly dreadful, sort of Abba on their death bed.  But, I really get a kick out of it.  

    Boo on Eurovision (none / 0) (#30)
    by janarchy on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:41:42 PM EST
    It's keeping me from seeing new Doctor Who tonight!

    it's on tv? (none / 0) (#33)
    by Stellaaa on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:48:32 PM EST
    I have to watch it on the web...it's hillarious

    It's on tv (none / 0) (#43)
    by janarchy on Sat May 24, 2008 at 06:10:28 PM EST
    on BBC. They pre-empt Dr Who every year for Eurovision so we miss a week.

    the eurovision song contest link is very much (none / 0) (#34)
    by bridget on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:16:26 PM EST
    appreciated, Stellaaa, thank you so much :-)

    It's a big deal in Europe and I watched it there more than once, incl. one time while staying overnight in a motel in Italy lol

    Love Love Love ABBA. Fabulous sound. What a group that is.
    I just recently went online again to watch several of the ABBA videos ("Fernando" etc.) and I also saw the one from the Eurovision Song contest again and had to smile at the outfits. Of course they had to win, no contest there. Thanks to HBO I taped the ABBA Australian Tour. Well for us ABBA rock big time, what else can I say ;-)


    you can tell (none / 0) (#36)
    by Stellaaa on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:25:37 PM EST
    where the immigrant groups are...by who they vote for.  

    If I'm not mistaken, she used to be a (none / 0) (#26)
    by MarkL on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:25:21 PM EST
    frequent commenter at firedoglake.
    I hardly go there anymore---hate the new format, and there are too many posters---so I don't know if that's still the case.

    why do you think it's the same (none / 0) (#28)
    by Jeralyn on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:31:00 PM EST
    Karen Allen that posted on FDL?

    Because the Karen Allen who posted (none / 0) (#29)
    by MarkL on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:35:44 PM EST
    there was famous for some reason. It's a common name, so I'm not sure. This was back in 2004-2005.

    maybe she knows jane hamsher... (none / 0) (#32)
    by nic danger on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:45:55 PM EST
    that would make sense.

    Yes. It is. (none / 0) (#38)
    by EddieInCA on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:36:49 PM EST
    She and Jame Hamsher know each other very well.

    A lot of people don't know that Jane Hamsher, pre-Firedoglake, was a successful film producer.  Hollywood is a very small town.


    She was also in The Sandlot (none / 0) (#31)
    by JavaCityPal on Sat May 24, 2008 at 03:45:22 PM EST
    one of my very favorite family movies.

    Shoot the Moon (none / 0) (#35)
    by geordie on Sat May 24, 2008 at 04:22:42 PM EST
    Another great Karen Allen performance is in Shoot the Moon, which just recently, I think, became available on DVD (I rented it from Netflix) - wonderful wrenching movie about a marriage on the rocks, starring Albert Finney and Diane Keaton, in what is one of her very best film performances, as the married couple.  Karen Allen plays Finney's girlfriend, and doesn't have a lot of screen time, but is great when she's there.  I saw it when it was released, in the early 80's, I believe, but it's never been on TV or anything. I think it was directed by Alan Parker.

    I also loved her in Scrooged, as Bill Murray's long lost love.

    And I am going to Indy4 - how could I not?  It's an action movie escapist summer for me, starting with Iron Man which I really enjoyed, through Indy, then the Dark Knight.

    shoot the moon was such a sad movie about (none / 0) (#45)
    by suzieg on Sun May 25, 2008 at 04:56:27 AM EST
    divorce! Tanks for reminding me - I think I would want to see that again...

    Haven't seen the new Indiana Jones yet (none / 0) (#41)
    by bridget on Sat May 24, 2008 at 05:10:14 PM EST
    really looking forward to it ... and to Karen Allen. Always liked her, the way she looks, the way she appears in film.

    My favorite Karen Allen film is still "Starman." Very romantic, very exciting film. Both Karen and Jeff Bridges were absolutely amazing. Always been on my favorite movie list.

    So happy she's back! (none / 0) (#48)
    by splashy on Sun May 25, 2008 at 05:53:58 PM EST
    She was a great combo with the Indiana Jones character. I'm soooo looking forward to seeing the movie. We're going to the Imax in our area to see it. It's the only way to see these kinds of movies, IMHO, like the Spiderman movies.

    A place to find "Third Girl..." (none / 0) (#50)
    by Dadler on Mon May 26, 2008 at 06:25:53 PM EST
    Try the Museum of Television & Radio, it's probably your best bet, they have almost everything that's ever been broadcast and recorded.  If you're in Beverly Hills you can go in and watch things there, or perhaps you can make a little donation and see if they send you a copy.  

    Museum of Television & Radio
    465 N Beverly Drive
    Beverly Hills, CA 90210
    (310) 786-1000

    From their website: "You can contact one of our reference librarians to inquire about specific programs: Tuesdays to Fridays, from 4:00 to 5:45 p.m. (EST) only, call 212.621.6600, press "0" to speak to an operator, and ask for the library; OR e-mail LAreference@paleycenter.org."

    oops (none / 0) (#51)
    by Dadler on Mon May 26, 2008 at 06:27:32 PM EST
    obviously the phone number at the bottom of my post is for their New York office.  Still should work.