Archaeology Movie Night: Engaged Archaeology Project

I did my engaged archaeology project as a blog reviewing how archaeology and archaeologist are portrayed in movies. Films are a major way the public engages in almost everything and I thought it would be great if when people are searching the internet for a list of archaeology movies to watch that they have an honest understanding of the movies that so often show up on searches. If possible I also thought it was be great to find movies that a young archaeologist could enjoy. As a psych major I enjoy sitting back and watching a movie about psychology and I thought archaeology students would feel the same way. I also explored how pseudoarchealolgy is portrayed in film and how close to the theories the film maker stays.

To help me with this project I had my boyfriend pick out what movies we would be watching for two reasons. The firstly that archaeology movies would be taking over our movie nights for the next several weeks so I thought I would let him at least pick what we would watch. Importantly though, he would provide a non-archeaology student perspective on what is an “archaeology movie.” In the blog I reviewed The Mummy, Tomb Raider, Indiana Jones, and Disney’s Atlantis.

After doing this project I became even more aware that not only are archaeologist portrayed poorly in movies but people have misconceptions of what is an archaeology movie. Not all cases are that Hollywood has done a bad job, there are movies were the protagonist never claims to be an archaeologist but people seem to think if there are ancient artifacts or tombs involved in the film then it must be about archaeology. In this project I sort of felt like I was saying the same things a number of times for each movie but each movie had similar problems. I also could not delve deeply into aspects of archaeology because the movies were so far from being actually about archaeology that I had to address that they almost always did not even have an archaeological spirit to them. All in all I enjoyed doing this project and I hope that actual people on the internet find my blog post. To check it out, see the link below.