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Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981)

PG  |   |  Action, Adventure  |  12 June 1981 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.5/10 from 608,865 users   Metascore: 90/100
Reviews: 753 user | 225 critic | 11 from Metacritic.com

Archaeologist and adventurer Indiana Jones is hired by the US government to find the Ark of the Covenant before the Nazis.



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Top Rated Movies #36 | Won 4 Oscars. Another 28 wins & 23 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Ronald Lacey ...
Wolf Kahler ...
Barranca / Monkey Man
Don Fellows ...
Bill Reimbold ...
Fred Sorenson ...
Patrick Durkin ...


The year is 1936. An archeology professor named Indiana Jones is venturing in the jungles of South America searching for a golden statue. Unfortunately, he sets off a deadly trap but miraculously escapes. Then, Jones hears from a museum curator named Marcus Brody about a biblical artifact called The Ark of the Covenant, which can hold the key to humanly existence. Jones has to venture to vast places such as Nepal and Egypt to find this artifact. However, he will have to fight his enemy Rene Belloq and a band of Nazis in order to reach it. Written by John Wiggins

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The Return of the Great Adventure. See more »


Action | Adventure


PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





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Release Date:

12 June 1981 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Indiana Jones  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office


$18,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$1,673,731 (USA) (7 September 2012)


$242,374,454 (USA)

Company Credits

Production Co:

,  »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

(70 mm prints)| (35 mm prints)


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


Most of the body blows you hear were created by hitting a pile of leather jackets with a baseball bat. See more »


In the beginning of the film, the city of Tanis in Egypt is described as having been destroyed in a sandstorm and recently discovered by the Nazis. In reality, the city was probably abandoned when its water supply was silted in. Archaeological digs had been conducted at the site beginning in the 1800s, so the location of Tanis was well-known within the archaeology community in 1936. See more »


[first lines]
Satipo: [picking up poison dart] The Hovitos are near. The poison is still fresh, three days. They're following us.
Barranca: If they knew we were here, they would've killed us already.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The mountain in the Paramount logo dissolves into the mountain in the Peruvian jungle. See more »


Referenced in Home Alone 2: Lost in New York (1992) See more »


A British Tar
(1878) (uncredited)
From "H.M.S. Pinafore"
Music by Arthur Sullivan
Lyrics by William S. Gilbert
Sung a cappella by John Rhys-Davies
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

The Best Trilogy Made
25 December 2004 | by (Sydney, Australia) – See all my reviews

The Indiana Jones series was the best series ever made, in my opinion. It was extremely fun and enjoyable to watch and it can be watched repeatedly, with no lesser joy. Harrison Ford as Indy is extremely charismatic, like Han Solo, but the character of Indiana for me has an essence that creates a more likable character (modesty, I think) and by doing that, it creates a better trilogy for me, indeed surpassing the Original Star Wars Tilogy (don't get me wrong I love Star Wars as well).

Raiders is such a great film, containing some great action scenes (the Truck scene) and creating Indiana Jones, which is the best adventure hero ever made, partly I think due to Harrison Ford (I don't think these movies would have been as good with Tom Selleck).

85 of 147 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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