You Chose... Poorly

©"The Last Crusade" (1989)

Stephen Spielberg's 1989 film "Indiana Jones and The Last Crusade" is nothing short of a masterpiece. Even though the film is set in 1912 and primarily in the late 1930s, it takes inspiration from medieval concepts and stories surrounding the Holy Grail.

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As noted from popular stories, Spielberg's film follows the search for the (maybe) fictional, Holy Grail. According to stories that have existed since thoughts of this famous artifact surfaced, the search for Holy Grail has been attempted by many but has never actually been discovered.

The discovery of this artifact, according to the stories entailing its existence, is that drinking from this chalice grants that person eternal life. The concept of the Holy Grail and the chance of eternal life has been popular throughout world culture, as searching for this artifact has become crucial in some societies.

©History Channel

Let's look at the film:

With further reference to popular culture, the 1989 film "The Last Crusade" touches on the desire for eternal life, when the Nazi soldiers of 1938 seek possession of this artifact by the means of increasing their power and advantages for world domination.

By 1938, major powers knew there was going to be another World War, and Nazi Germany wanted to ensure their advantage.

©Marvel Comics

The person who consumes water from the Holy Grail is only granted immortality inside the Temple of the Sun. Nazi Germany’s desire for power is unrealistic because they are not actually able to leave the temple. If we're being more specific, due to the greed of Nazi Germany and reluctance to attempt leaving the temple, their desire for immortality fails.

The web page for the 1989 film states:

“The Holy Grail was a Biblical artifact said to have supernatural powers, specifically the ability to grant immortality. A man or woman who drank water from the True Grail would be granted eternal life. However, their eternal life would last so long as they did not cross the Great Seal of the Temple. Passing the Great Seal would cause the drinker to regain his or her mortality.”

In the context of stories told within the film, the Holy Grail only grants immortality to those who drink from the artifact inside the temple. Also, the holy water would have to be from the correctly chosen chalice. If one were to drink from the wrong cup, it would result in death (which audience members witness several times).

The Modernist Son, 2020-2021.

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