Adventure Movies

15 Movies to Watch If You Love Indiana Jones

July 12, 202310 Mins Read

There’s been a lot of talk about Indiana Jones recently, with the recent release of Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny, the fifth installment in the mega-successful action-adventure franchise, and the news that this will be Harrison Ford’s last-ever outing as the iconic adventurer. The first movie in the series, Raiders of the Lost Ark, was released in 1981 and changed the movie landscape forever, creating one of Hollywood’s most beloved and recognizable heroes in the process. Since then, Ford has gone on to don the fedora and whip a further three times as Indiana Jones in 1984’s The Temple of Doom, 1989’s The Last Crusade, and the 2008 legacy sequel The Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.

Update July 12, 2023: This article has been updated by Valerie Parker with more movies fans of the Indiana Jones franchise might enjoy.

One of the most successful movie franchises of all time, Indiana Jones is known for its soaring scores, outrageous action set-pieces, memorable villains, comedic quips and sight gags, and, of course, Dr. Jones’ fascinating ability to solve the most mind-boggling ancient puzzles, clues, and codes as he hunts down ancient artifacts. For fans of the Indiana Jones franchise, here is a list of 15 films they might also enjoy.

15 Uncharted (2022)

Tom Holland in Uncharted shining a flashlight upwards, with Mark Wahlberg behind him
Sony Pictures Releasing

Uncharted is based on the mega-successful video game franchise of the same name, which follows the exploits of the globe-trotting, wise-cracking, intrepid treasure hunter Nathan Drake. The movie won over fans of the game and introduced the explorer to a whole new audience thanks to a fun and game-accurate portrayal from Tom Holland and a great supporting cast, including Mark Wahlberg and Antonio Banderas. Fans of Indiana Jones will certainly see a bit of Indy in Nathan Drake and be impressed by the movie’s huge action set pieces and beautiful locations.

14 Jumanji (1996)

TriStar Pictures

An adaptation of the picture book of the same name, Jumanji is an entry to the list that brings the action and adventure Indiana Jones fans love but on a family-friendly level. Adventure is the name of the game when a pair of children discover an old board game in the attic of their new (old) home. The stakes are higher than in any other board game in Jumanji, as the children realize when they release Alan Parrish from his jungle prison.

Together they must beat the game in order to ensure Alan’s permanent release from Jumanji, and they’ll have to fight off hunters, monkeys, and more in the meantime. Robin Williams is his usual charming and erratic self in this joyful film, which also features an early performance by Kirsten Dunst.

13 Secret of the Incas (1954)

Paramount Pictures

Even with the briefest glance at the 1954 adventure film Secret of the Incas, certain similarities to Indiana Jones can be immediately observed in that its lead, played by Charlton Heston, bares more than just a passing resemblance to Dr. Jones himself. Complete with a brown leather jacket, fedora, tan pants, and an over-the-shoulder bag, he traverses Peru in search of an ancient Incan treasure. It’s been revealed that the cast and crew of Raiders of the Lost Ark watched Secret of the Incas together, and the influence on the franchise is obvious.

12 National Treasure (2004)

A scene from National Treasure
Buena Vista Pictures

Nicolas Cage is in top form as the treasure hunter and cryptographer in a race against rival hunters for the biggest treasure haul in American history after finding a secret coded map on the back of the Declaration of Independence. Those who enjoyed seeing Indiana Jones decode ancient maps and decipher clues are in for a treat with National Treasure, as there are mysteries and puzzles aplenty. Cage, while not quite as energetic as Dr. Jones, also shares a similar sense of humor and a certain eccentricity.

11 The Dig (2018)

Carey Mulligan in the foreground and Ralph Fiennes in a field in The Dig

For fans of the Archaeological aspects of the Indiana Jones franchise who might be looking for a more serious film about the subject, there’s The Dig. Based on the true story of one of the greatest Archaeological finds in history, the Sutton Hoo burial, The Dig is based on the book of the same name, which reimagines the real events that took place around an archaeological dig on private property in pre-war Suffolk, England.

Related: Why The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles Is a Must-Watch for Fans

Carey Mulligan and Ralph Fiennes star as the pair behind the discovery of an Anglo-Saxon ship burial which may have been the resting place of a prominent monarch. The Dig explores a true life story set in the same period as the original Indiana Jones trilogy in the context of the time when archaeology was still a relatively amateur field.

10 Sahara (2005)

Paramount Pictures

Indiana Jones always had somewhat of a complicated relationship with his women companions, with multiple romances being explored over the series. Sahara, whilst still being a huge action-adventure movie, is also an enjoyable rom-com that sees the lead protagonist, played by the ever charismatic Matthew McConaughey, searching for a hidden treasure, talking on a dangerous warlord intent on releasing a deadly plague onto society, and dealing with his complicated feelings towards a beautiful WHO doctor played by Penélope Cruz.

9 Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death (1989)

Cannibal Women of the Avocado Jungle
Paramount Home Vidoe

For those who love the B-movie camp of the Indiana Jones franchise, Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death might be just up their alley. In an alternate universe California, there’s an unexplored portion of Southern California where a matriarchal society that eats its men is in charge of the jungle. Threatened by this alternative to a macho-patriarchal society, the US military is desperate to subjugate the tribe of women. They send in a radical feminist professor from a local school to investigate the tribe and attempt to bring these women under control. Featuring an early appearance by Bill Maher, Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death is as ridiculous as its title suggests and every bit as fun.

8 The Lost City (2022)

The Lost City Channing Tatum and Sandra Bullock
Paramount Pictures

The most recent movie on the list, released in early-2022, The Lost City acts as both an homage and a parody of the iconic action-adventure movies like Indiana Jones that came before it. The premise revolves around Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum as a romance novelist and her cover model, respectively, who must escape a billionaire (Daniel Radcliffe) who wants them to find the lost ancient city described in one of her books. Unlike Dr. Jones, our stars here are completely inept when put in perilous situations. The highlight of this fish-out-of-water comedy has to be Brad Pitt’s laugh-out-loud cameo that will linger long in your mind after the end-credits roll.

7 The Mummy (1999)

The Mummy
Universal Pictures

With a well-deserved Brendan Fraser renaissance taking place after his recent Oscar win for his starring role in The Whale, and numerous other promising projects in the works, it’s a perfect time to revisit what is most probably his greatest movie to date: the fantastic The Mummy. Featuring all the action, adventure, romance, and humor we love about the Indiana Jones franchise and sprinkling in some horror elements, The Mummy has to be one of the most enjoyable movies since the original Indiana Jones trilogy in the 80s.

6 Congo (1995)

Paramount Pictures

Based on a novel by Michael Crichton, the author of Jurassic Park, and fresh off the success of that books movie adaptation, Congo was released in 1995 and stars Laura Linney, Ernie Hudson, and Tim Curry. A team of weird and wonderful characters are sent to the Congo jungle in search of a lost diamond hunting team, but end up against a whole host of unexpected dangers in this wild jungle adventure movie. Fans of some of the sillier aspects of the Indiana Jones series will be sure to find fun in this sometimes-ridiculous action romp.

5 The Gods Must Be Crazy (1980)

The Gods Must Be Crazy

The Gods Must Be Crazy is a delightful film from the 1980s that puts a remote southern African tribe at the center of the action and will surely delight those who enjoy the more humorous side of the Indiana Jones franchise. This tribe’s delightful desert life is thrown into chaos when a passing airplane drops a Coca-Cola bottle in the heart of the village. Leader Xi decides the only way to handle the infighting of his group over the bottle is to return the bottle to the “gods” in order to restore peace to his society. His amusing adventures take him from one side of the African continent to the other.

4 Lara Croft: Tomb Raider (2001)

Angelina Jolie as Lara Croft Tomb Raider
Paramount Pictures

Lara Croft: Tomb Raider is based on the most popular interactive video game series in history, Tomb Raider. What could be called a modern female lead Indiana Jones, this series hits all the right buttons for those looking for an action series with visits to exotic locales and a hint of mysterious Archaeological objects thrown in.

Related: Lara Croft: Tomb Raider – How Have We Completely Forgotten About This Movie?

Angelia Jolie stars as the titular character in this film about Lara Croft, an adventurer who crossed the globe in her bid to save the world from the Illuminati. Lara’s adventures lead start at her home in England and will eventually lead to adventures in Angkor, Cambodia (the film is credited with a huge increase in visits to the site which are causing issues for preservation), Venice, Italy, and finally Siberia, Russia.

3 Stargate (1994)

Centropolis Film Productions

At first glance, it might be difficult to comprehend what’s similar between a sci-fi space movie like Stargate and Indiana Jones. Well, aside from the shocking sci-fi elements found in the fourth Indiana Jones installment, it bares more of a resemblance than initially meets the eye. Stargate revolved around the notion that the pyramids of Egypt are not actually tombs and may have been the work of aliens or lost civilizations, which is very much in the vein of Indiana Jones. As we witness the team, led by Kurt Russell as Colonel Jonathan J. “Jack” O’Neill, try to unravel these ancient mysteries, it often feels as if we’re watching Indiana Jones in space, and that is not necessarily a bad thing at all.

2 The Adventures of Tintin (2011)

A scene from Steven Spielberg's The Adventures of Tintin
Paramount Pictures 

This action-packed animated feature, The Adventures of Tintin, made the audience feel like Spielberg tapped back into the magic that gave us Raiders of the Lost Ark and delivered a film that felt like it could have been another entry into the Indiana Jones franchise. Based on the beloved Belgian comics series of the same name by Hergé, the story follows Tintin, an intrepid reporter, his trusty dog Snowy, and Captain Haddock, the descendent of the Captain of an old ship known as The Unicorn, on their search for hidden treasure. The film is exciting, funny, and fun for the whole family.

1 Romancing the Stone (1984)

Michael Douglas and Kathleen Turner in Romancing the Stone
20th Century Fox

Released a few years after the hugely successful Raiders of the Lost Ark and just months before The Temple of Doom, Romancing the Stone was probably the closest thing you were going to get to Indiana Jones, not starring Harrison Ford. This action-adventure doubled down on the romantic and comedic elements found in Indiana Jones, and with its fantastic cast, including Michael Douglas, Kathleen Douglas, and Danny DeVito, went on to become a huge hit in its own right, grossing in excess of $100 million on a $10 million budget and spawning the hit sequel Jewel of the Nile.

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