Raiders of the Lost Ark: The Adaptation (1989)

Video  |   |  Action, Adventure, Thriller  |  12 August 1989 (USA)
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A shot-for-shot remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), started by three 12-year-olds and completed over a period of six years.


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Credited cast:
Angela Rodriguez ...
Eric Zala ...
Ted Ross ...
Alan Stenum ...
William Coon ...
Kurt Zala ...
Clay LaGrone ...
Sam Cummings ...
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Michael Bales ...
German Mechanic


A shot-for-shot remake of Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981), started by three 12-year-olds and completed over a period of six years.

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Release Date:

12 August 1989 (USA)  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Originally, the boys had planned for a kitten to substitute for the traitorous spider monkey. One day, Chris suggested, what if instead, they used Chris' dog Snickers in the role? Eric thought about it, and agreed. Snickers proved to be oddly accommodating about being perched on Chris' shoulder, and it worked: what more classic image than a boy and his dog? See more »


Referenced in Fanarchy (2015) See more »

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User Reviews

Incredibly good.
10 February 2008 | by (The San Francisco Bay Area) – See all my reviews

I just got back from the Indie SF Film Festival where this film was showing, and all I can say is that a few minutes into the film (home Betamax video camera (not Betacam)) I was in tears laughing.

True to Zala's comment during the Q&A at the end of the feature, there is no better audience to watch this with than a theatre filled with San Francisco Bay Area indy film makers and enthusiasts.

There were cheers. There was applause at key moments in the film. There were the obligatory "Oooooooohs" for the kissing scenes. Home made stunts: SFX: chase scenes: you name it, this film had it.

In case you don't know, this is a video production done by a bunch of middle-school cum high-school students who wanted to do their version of Spielberg's and Lucas' "Raiders of the Lost Ark". Nearly every shot is duplicated with a home video camera, showing the raw energy, "spunk", and otherwise enthusiasm of young aspiring film makers.

Seeing this production reminded me of all the video "films" my friends and I shot during the early 80s. Though not comparable in length, they were certainly comparable in zest for the medium. I, and the rest of the audience tonight at the Victoria theatre (off 16th and Mission) were kindred with Zala and company. Everything from the "adult supervision" who was more immature than the actual cast and crew, to the truck dug out of the swamp, to the good natured destruction of personal lives for a greater glory! It goes without saying that there's a huge cheese factor in this film, but its amateur quality striving for professionalism is its absolute charm, and does not fail from opening sequence to end credits.

But, with all highs, there are some lows, and regrettably the tragic loss of Snickers was keenly felt amidst tonight's group. Salute to a K-9 actor from all of us who've used their pets in various productions.

To conclude; if you're even a small Indiana Jones fan in the slightest, then you must, nay, need to see this production in all of its 20th dupe VHS glory. A must see for all film students, teachers, and professionals alike.

Enjoy! :-)

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