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Thread: Star Wars Episode III: REVENGE OF THE SITH

  1. #46
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    response to cinemabon

    I was forced to go see Episode III before I wanted to, my wife insisted, and so I had to wait 35 minutes in line (something that doesn't happen that often where I'm from):

    cinemabon "One can clearly see the high moral ground in Revenge of the Sith, and the anthropologist at work. In Anakin, we see the slow undoing of how performing one’s duty can lead to acts of evil. From the earliest days of man through the Nazi’s and even in Iraq, “only following orders” can lead to disastrous consequences. So Anakin, following the orders of his Emperor, and trying to save the Republic from the evil forces trying to tear it apart, commits unspeakable acts of brutality, and in the end, comes to typify how a good soldier can easily become one of the most despicable character."

    tabuno: I didn't pick up so much as following orders and Nazi and Iraq as turning good into evil as part of an insidious process of wanting something so bad (wife's life) and one would make a deal with the devil like Faust. Even in a telesivion series as Charmed, about three young female witches, it's pretty common knowledge that one cannot cast spells for one's own benefit. I didn't really get any heavy dose of sociological and cultural transformation with the direct interaction of Anakin and the Emperor even though the attributes of cultural changes surrounded the events big time.

    cinemabon "The lightsaber duels (there are two simultaneously) at the end are so well choreographed that they rival some of the best swordplay in any film."

    tabuno: I wasn't too impressed by the lightsaber duels, in fact when I watched Elecktra and the making of the movie on the DVD, the actual physical duels were more impressive, especially without the use of the stunt doubles. In Episode III, were are more tintillated by light and long shots that avoid giving much in the way of close up fighting. Too much special effects.

  2. #47
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    Response to Johann

    Johann: "It was Star Wars- we saw the screen crawl! We heard the Williams theme!
    But it wasn't Star Wars. It was something else.
    It didn't have the feel of the original films.
    Our cinematic memories were more robust than this.
    Star Wars was more entertaining than this.
    Star Wars was of a time and of a spirit.
    Lucas made that film because he felt he had to make it.
    Did he feel he had to make the new trilogy? I don't think so."

    Tab Uno: I would imagine that it would immensely difficult to create an epic space opera over the decades that would capture the original magic, even the people who first saw it have grown up from being children to adults and the children now are more sophisticated. I can only limply justify what Lucas has done by pointing out that the lead up, the first three episodes is about a different generation of characters where the empire has become something of a Isaac Amimov's "Foundation" concrete world (this is what went through my mind when I saw the gigantic cityscapes), while the last three episodes is more about the rebellion and freedom, another generation. Thus from stuffy, stilted to bold and daring, this space opera epic spans decades of change and sociological differences.

  3. #48
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    Response to anduril

    anduril: "Lucas's reinvented Star Wars universe is too busy, too absurd, too campy, too superficial, too devoid of accessible characters to truly enjoy."

    tabuno: I can't agree with anduril's overall total assessment of Episode III as the "worst collapse in creative talent" yet I can understand anduril's observation of this reinvented universe. What Episode III seems to do is separate itself into two quit different movies, the first half of the movie is what anduril describes as too busy, too aburd, too campy...Lucas has tried but unsuccessful to recapture the original Star Wars universe and turned it into an imitation of itself with many of the small plot scenes and dialogue just tidbits of the original Star Wars but without heart.

    anduril: "So, having witnessed the implosion of Star Wars, I recently came to a new perspective on the movies. Could it be that the prequel trilogy is a reflection of our contemporary culture while the original trilogy is reflection of our positive potential? Moreover, though I doubt it was Lucas' intent, perhaps everything that is "wrong" about the prequels in comparison to the originals are not so much examples of Lucas's creative implosion but rather symptomatic of the collapse of the Republic and its reinvention as the Galatic Empire while everything that is "right" about the originals is symptomatic of the values and worldview that precipitates renewal."

    tabuno: I want to grasp at this explanation of the Star Wars saga in this positive light than to believe that this immense undertaking has led all of us down the path of darkness.

  4. #49
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    response II to cinemabon

    cinemabon: "Many of the criticisms I've read on this site are a bit puerile. For all he had to accomplish, Lucas' work has paid off, and quite handsomely. He is commercially successful... he has us all dancing on a string, lining up to see his films (whether we agree on their content or not). Arguing over how it would have been better is pedantic. There it is. You know what kind of film (very commercial) is showing before you buy the ticket. Go see your French film and leave Lucas to those of us with simple minds content to brandish lightsabers with our next door neighbors (he has a weak left side)."

    tabuno: The boxoffice argument for creative success and quality movie film-making much like Jaws and Titanic and Shrek 2 and Spider-Man 2. As with Anakin, one must be carefully of being sucked into the dark side.

  5. #50
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    response III to cinemabon

    cinemabon "This is popcorn, pure self indulgent whiz bang ride on the roller coaster stuff. There is no art other than painting with CGI, is there? I do enjoy seeing what I consider to be state of the art special effects, but your criticisms that there should be something more is wasted on this fluff. No one is expecting Lucas to actually write something profound for "Star Wars," are they? I'm curious. I know that both of you are scholarly (Anduril and Oscar) but you weren't expecting to be overwhelmed by the acting or the great dialogue, were you? "

    tabuno: Oops. I now know from where you speak. Never mind.

  6. #51
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    response IV to cinemabon

    cinemabon: "Personally, I love the CGI in Star Wars. It's as beautiful to look at as a James Gurney painting of Dinotopia."

    tabuno: Ridley Scott would have wanted to have had such sets for his movie Bladerunner, I imagine. And as I've mentioned previously, the most famous of all science fiction novels yet to be filmed the "Foundation" series by Isaac Asmiov could be well served by the vision that George Lucas has brought to the big screen and the awesome background cityscapes that capture the megalithic enormity of an empire writ large.

  7. #52
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    response II to anduril

    anduril: I'm surprised by everybody's love for the visuals. I don't find them impressive at all because they simply do nothing... rather, in many cases, they detract from the presentation and make it look more ridiculous. LOTR impressed me; The Matrix impressed me; the original Star Wars trilogy impressed me. The prequel trilogy does not impress me.

    tabuno: Episode III visuals have to be taken in the context from which they contribute or detract from the movie. I have had a fondness for complexity and future cityscapes and ever since Ridley Scott's inability to shoot his original cityscapes the way he wanted, I found Episode three and the empire's cityscapes to have the same power, epic magnitude that I have been seeing in my mind for many years. To finally get to see an actual special effects brought to life in the way it fits with the concept of huge, bigness like our mega-cities of today, I find it fascinating. I do believe that the cityscapes have a direct relationship to what is going on in the movie, the whole concept of vastness hugeness, impersonal relationships, power, the conflict between democracy on a huge scale and the need for centralized power to keep it altogether.

  8. #53
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    Response I to Raoul

    Raoul: "The story on its own isn't even enough to imortalize it. Episode III was timely. There is a disturbing sense of fear and loathing everywhere a long time ago in that galaxy far far away, much like right here at home. The good guys are falling in to the classic traps. The disturbances in the force are becoming so frequent that they barely get noticed anymore. The power of the Dark Side is strong."

    tabuno: I would have to say that it was the "story" in the last half of Episode III that saved the movie for me. Up until that point, the movie was just a mis-mash, splattering of quaint original Star Wars shots that seemed out of place in this pre-Star Wars universe. But the overall transition into darkness was a potent emotional experience as I would gather it would have had a similar impact on many people who experienced it also. The twisting, turning, blackness that fell over the Star Wars legacy must be quite a turn about. The only way out is to go rent the original Star Wars series in order to see the light.

  9. #54
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    Poor tabuno...
    "So I'm a heel, so what of it?"
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  10. #55
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    Response I to Johann

    Johann: "The way the camera darts around, diving and soaring, it shows why Anakin is "the best starpilot in the galaxy".
    And so does the awesome sequence where he pilots that "half-ship", aiming to land on the tarstrip: coming in "hot". It's pulse-pounding, exciting."

    tabuno: I had the opposite reaction when I saw this opening sequence. I found it over the top, not believable. I couldn't suspend my disbelief in Anakin's abilities this time. There just seemed to be something artificial and forced throughout the whole battle scene even as gorgeous as it was. It just didn't ring true to me and thus the special effects couldn't safe the scene for me. The movie went downhill from there for about the first hour or so.

    Johann: "- the lightsabre duel between Obi-Wan and Grievous. Grievous has four (4!) lightsabres in his "collection" and he wields them like a machine posessed- especially when he goes into to full rotation mode on all four mecha-arms. The sabres' ripping up the floor was wicked shit! Yet Obi-Wan manages to defeat the General somehow... That buzzsaw, circular vehicle Grievous escapes in is one of the best contraptions I've ever seen in any movie. What the hell is that thing?! "

    tabuno: Again I found this light saber duel to be just the usual more and bigger the better. I didn't see any Obi-Wan abilities to actually outduel Grievous, it seemed as if somehow fate allowed him to get away from four saber that were apparently not well used - there were no scenes of these four light sabers attempting to be used in different angles, lines of attack that any body with any smarts would have done. Again, this wasn't interesting for me. I preferred realism over special effects in this instance.

    Johann: "Yoda demonstrating why he is a true Jedi master. I'm so glad Lucas has made Yoda more than just a green old puppet that walks with a cane. At the least with these new films we get some more background/depth on Yoda and other lore."

    tabuno: It was nice to see more of Yoda but eventually he is reduced to this small green darting puff-ball in the last light saber duel that seems awkwardly overmatched in scale and size. I found this scene distracting because I couldn't sense any real Yoda force rather special effects for special effects sake without any real finesse.

    Johann: "the scene where the glass breaks at Grievous' station and he's sucked out into space. Grievous releases a grappling hook and swings back to the hull- that brief shot was amazing: his metal feet slam on the outer hull with great sound effects. And the angle of the shot was perfect. More shots like that please!"

    tabuno: I'm reminded of Alien in the ending scene with the alien being sucked out into space. Somehow I was both impressed and yet resigned to the breaking the glass (they still use such stuff) scene that has been used more times than I care to count. To bad it couldn't have been more original. I imagine everybody should have been killed instantly (at least in 60 seconds and sucked out to explode).

  11. #56
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    Response I and a half to Johann

    Johann: "Overall I agree with all the pre-hype. This is the best installment of all six films. I am more impressed and sympathetic with Lucas than I have been in a long, long time ago, in a mindset far, far away."

    tabuno: I may change my mind later, but my intially feeling is that this last film was the best of the six films. As not a fan of space operas, I found this last episode a dramatic opera in the traditional fashion. The themes of good and evil, of torment and loss, betrayal, and granduer are all on display here.

    One of the biggest criticisms of this movie that I have is how it had to so neatly tie up the loose ends for Episode IV. I don't think that the audience had to have such a carefully scripted birth scene at the end...not allowing new audiences the pleasure of discovering what was originally a nice twist in later episodes (er earlier episodes - how confusing).

  12. #57
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    Nerdism - take the plunge.

    Originally posted by HorseradishTree


    In response to your bonus, I don't think Darth ever had a scene with the droids in the original trilogy.

    However, for Obi-Wan, after seeing young Anakin construct C-3PO and referring to R2 by name and utilizing his abilities in the third film, I just can't buy it.
    In "The Empire Strikes Back", 3po spends the later half of the film on Chewbaka's back - including the part when Darth Vader is overseeing the prisoner exchange. They are on screen together.
    Having said that, there are other protocall droids that look just like 3po (and other R2 units, for that matter). If Darth did recognize his old toy, it's not likely that he would say anything about it, especially not in that set and setting. It was a relic from his past life.
    Re: Obi Wan. I'm pretty sure he just wasn't letting on. Also, C3PO didn't have the fancy metal cover in ep. 1, and there's no telling just how many droids Obi Wan had seen come in and out of his daily operations as a General for the Republic.

    Raoul
    Out of the Geek Closet since 1999

  13. #58
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    Tabuno


    The duel between Grievous & Obi-Wan was set up with Grievous proclaiming to be taught the ways of the lightsabre by Dooku.

    I found him to have a "line of attack" that was pretty deadly.

    It seemed initially to me that Kenobi was outmatched- those 4 sabres were coming at him from 4 different directions- surely he would've gotten at least a nick? But no- the good guy wins.
    If there's any complaint about this duel then it's with how lamely Grievous bites the dust. He dies pretty ridiculously considering what we are shown in the scenes immediately prior.

    Your complaints about tying up the series are different from mine.

    The scenes you cite are pretty brief- the birth sequence was thankfully short. We didn't need any long drawn-out moments of obvious reflection or emotional contemplation. Bang: Luke and Leia are born. Bang: Jedi's go into hiding. Bang: movie over.


    This is a more mature episode, more eloquent.
    This is the first and only Star Wars DVD I'll buy.
    Last edited by Johann; 05-31-2005 at 12:27 PM.
    "Set the controls for the heart of the Sun" - Pink Floyd

  14. #59
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    The Births - Too Much of A Spoiler

    Johann: "Your complaints about tying up the series are different from mine. The scenes you cite are pretty brief- the birth sequence was thankfully short. We didn't need any long drawn-out moments of obvious reflection or emotional contemplation. Bang: Luke and Leia are born. Bang: Jedi's go into hiding. Bang: movie over."

    tabuno: I want I consider to be one of the biggest blunders in terms of the overall six film series was the Episode III birth scene which when taken in chronological sequence, a decade from now will forever destroy the storyline mystery of Luke and Leia in the fifth and sixth episodes. I feel that in terms of the unfolding of the sequence of these movies and the movie plot, revealing the relationship of Luke and Leia at this point is terrible and too much of a spoiler. It was a delight to discover in the original Star War Series the fumbling about between Luke and Leia and the uncertainty between them as well as Hans Solo, but now with one brief scene in Episode III, this whole process of uncertainty, discovery has been ripped away and replaced with certainty. I can only hope that this blunder will be discovered in time and edited in future version providing the audience only with the potential of the birth of twins and leaving the rest up for the next installment and the next generation of filmgoers who will see the Star Wars saga from one to six.

  15. #60
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    There's been more postings for Star Wars than most other films on this site, as if we were all a bunch of teens arguing over one of the greatest films of all time. I think it's funny.

    My take on R2D2 and C3PO: Obiwan uses droids, just as any person used them. But did he ever OWN one? R2D2 and C3PO were taken to Alderaan and became the property of Senator what's his name... true, Anakin did create C3PO, but would not have recognized him or even bothered to look in his direction. Droids are kind of a sub class of person. I don't regard that part of Star Wars the controversy.

    My problem is with Luke. He is raised by Uncle Owen and Aunt Veru, who seem like nice people. They are burned to death by the Empire. Luke doesn't even act angry or upset when Imperial soldiers stop them later that afternoon in Mos Eisley Spaceport (the scene "these aren't the droids you're looking for...") I mean, Obi Wan isn't even holding Luke back, seething with anger or anything. Luke doesn't look the young man motivated by his hatred for the Empire. He's more interested in the new model of speeder. ("Oh, garsh darn it! Where did I put that stupid part!" as if he were the Leave it to Beaver of outer space.) Where's the emotion? Where is the great son of Anakin, the master of over played emotion in the first three films. Luke's role in part four now looks so underplayed as to be ludicrous.

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