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Return of ‘Indiana Jones’ is a Can’t Miss

Part of the fun of the new ‘Indiana Jones’ film will be to see if Harrison Ford can still do the stunts. Other hot offerings this week include the "Idol" finale and a new CD by Elvis Costello.
/ Source: msnbc.com contributor

Movies

Harrison Ford (left) is back as Indiana Jones, co-starring with Shia LaBeouf in \"Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.
Harrison Ford (left) is back as Indiana Jones, co-starring with Shia LaBeouf in \"Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Harrison Ford is 65, yet he still does many of his own stunts, such as hurrying down a hallway or climbing out of a jeep. But does he do Indiana Jones’ stunts? Remember, the first installment of the George Lucas-Steven Spielberg adventure series appeared in theaters in 1981, when he hadn’t hit 40 yet and could still outrun boulders. So naturally there is great interest in seeing if our hero can pull off the rigors of the new sequel, “Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.” He might get winded just pronouncing the title. Shia LaBeouf helps him out, along with Cate Blanchett and original cast member Karen Allen. This will be an adventure all right. It might also be an adventure for Harrison’s doctor. (Paramount Pictures, opens Thursday)

Television

AMERICAN IDOL:The Final 2: L-R: David Archuleta and David Cook advance to the finals of AMERICAN IDOL. CR: Michael Becker / FOX.
AMERICAN IDOL:The Final 2: L-R: David Archuleta and David Cook advance to the finals of AMERICAN IDOL. CR: Michael Becker / FOX.

The audience for “American Idol” seems to be dwindling. For last Tuesday’s Top 4 performance show, only 21.8 million viewers tuned in, the worst tally since 2003. But that’s still a lot of people. For context, consider that the National Hockey League will sacrifice an All-Star defenseman to have numbers like that. In the seventh season finale, two Davids — Archuleta and Cook — will duel for the coveted top prize of not being mocked by Simon. Apparently, Simon predicted on Larry King’s show in early April that it would be the two Davids in the final. Maybe that’s why the viewership dropped, because he took all the suspense out of it. All I can say to that is this: Please tell Simon to refrain from any NHL playoff predictions. They couldn’t survive that. (Fox, Wednesday, 8 p.m.)

Music

Elvis Costello has a new CD out called “Momofuku.” At first, when I hear a name like that, I assume he’s palling around with David Byrne, venturing into the wondrous realm of “world” music and creating songs with multi-ethnic roots. Wrong. Momofuku happens to be the guy who invented instant noodles, as in “just add water.” What does this album have to do with noodles? The common thread, or noodle as it were, is that the CD was cooked up just as instantly. Costello booked six days in an L.A. studio and crammed a lot of recording into them, enlisting Jenny Lewis of Rilo Kiley and David Hildalgo of Los Lobos, among others, for help. Some of the best cuts include “No Hiding Place” and “Flutter and Wow.” Costello’s next album will be a tribute to the inventor of instant coffee. Just kidding. (Lost Highway)

DVD

Tuesday marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of James Stewart. Many stars have come out of Hollywood, but few were as respected and as beloved as Jimmy. He was stoic, a man you could count on. And he was a man of few words, so he didn’t talk your ear off. Instead, he made movies, a lot of them, and a lot of great ones. “James Stewart: The Western Collection” is just a sampling of his most famous horse operas, but some of his finest work is contained here, including “Destry Rides Again,” “Winchester 73” and “Bend of the River.” The six-film set has little in the way of extras, other than theatrical trailers and an extended interview with Jimmy. But he wouldn’t have wanted a lot of extraneous matter on there anyway. He would let the pictures do his talking. (Universal Home Entertainment)

Books

Being Bob Dylan’s girlfriend must have been difficult. If you got in an argument with him, let’s say, then you could find yourself the focus of a song called “My Baby Won’t Wash the Dishes” or something like that. You just never knew with Dylan. Suze Rotolo might be the most famous Dylan girlfriend, primarily because she appeared clutching his arm in the iconic album cover photo for “Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan.” Rotolo has written a memoir entitled “A Freewheelin’ Time: A Memoir of Greenwich Village in the Sixties.” It isn’t a tell-all, because Bob was so enigmatic that whatever there might have been to tell was shrouded in mystery. But she offers a personal glimpse into the bohemian folk scene of the ‘60s, when music changed forever, and what it was like to witness a genius emerge. She knows because she was there, walking arm in arm with him. (Broadway)