Study Guide

Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom Man and the Natural World

Man and the Natural World

You can consider yourself an armchair archeologist if you spend a lot of time on Google Earth or seeing how deep you can dig in Minecraft. But you can't consider yourself a true explorer unless you get out there and get your hands dirty.

Temple of Doom has all the Earth's natural elements covered. Earth: the mines. Wind: dropping through the air on an inflatable raft. Fire: molten lava. Water: blasting through the mines after Mola Ram breaks a water tank. And sequins: Willie's gorgeous red dress.

All of these elements are something that an archeologist needs to be familiar with. And throughout Temple of Doom, Indy uses them to his advantage, but sometimes has them turned against him.

Questions About Man and the Natural World

  1. When do natural elements become an obstacle for Indy? When do they help him rather than hinder him?
  2. The great outdoors (and underground) aren't the only natural elements in play. How are animals and insects used at different points in the movie?
  3. What emotional effects do scenes with animals and insects achieve?
  4. Why does Willie react differently to insects or nature than Short Round does? Does she change during the course of the movie?

Chew on This

For all the hate that Willie gets, face it: you would act the same way if you were in her sparkly high-heeled shoes.

Mola Ram uses both fire and water as weapons against Indy, but Indy manages to turn the tables and use both elements against him as well, burning him and making him fall into a river full of alligators. Nature becomes Mola Ram's demise.

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