The end of Act II reminds me of the end of season two of Twin Peaks: a sadistic-looking protagonist stares at the audience through heavy contrast. In this case, Indiana Jones writhes in pain then succumbs to hypnotic effects of drinking tainted blood. What a lightweight.
Context of the other characters? Sure, I guess. Willie and Short Round have been captured– Willie is probably on the receiving-end of whatever cult members do to lone women they capture and Short Round is forced to work in the mines. Mola Ram has just performed a heart-pulling ceremony and is likely taking a breather. The British captain is presumably still investigating Pankot Palace.
Why is Willie being sacrificed even though Indy and his squad just saw a sacrifice to Kali?
She is a hungry god. Up until Willie gets captured, Kali has had to subsist on malnourished Thuggee. Mola Ram isn’t going to pass up the chance to feed Kali well-fed American stock.
Why didn’t Mola Ram snatch Willie’s heart before dumping her into hellfire?
He thought it would be funnier to watch her heart break inside her chest when Indy clasps the last shackle.
Why does fire take Indy out of the hypnotic nightmare?
Fire is a well-known for it’s cleansing effects. See: Office Space
What’s that jewel-encrusted kid doing with that doll?
That’s the Maharajah of Pankot Palace and you’d better address him as such. He’s got a voodoo doll of sorts designed to inflict pain on Indiana Jones. He used it in Act II to get Indy to drink the tainted blood, the little weirdo.
Why does Indy reach for a holster that’s been empty the entire movie?
It’s called fan-service. See: Raiders of the Lost Ark
The look he gives the camera tells us this is a routine Indiana has down, as Temple of Doom is supposed to take place before Raiders of the Lost Ark.
Seriously, how does that village elder know English?
He doesn’t. He was just copying Steven Spielberg.
Did Willie say she’s going home to Missouri?
Yep. Then she gets sprayed by elephant snot and the whole village cheers her make-out sesh with Indy. Happy endings for everyone!
If you have any other questions about Act III of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, please feel free to ask below!