Monday, May 10, 2010

Okey. I take it all back. Almost.

So, after being pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed The Phantom Menace last week, the wife and I sat down to watch Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. I would love to tell you that I had changed my mind about these too, but unfortunately cannot.

Attack of the Clones is so very full of holes, I am not sure where to begin. Wait, yes I do. With those cloning assholes. They have a secret planet that is not on any maps, and you have to know how to get there to even get there (didn't they have a planetary cloaking device or something?), yet when an unknown Jedi arrives who apparently has no idea what the fuck is going on, they spill the beans. Not just "we are making a clone army" but "here is where we are making them, and how, and who we copied. Are there any other questions? Sleep with my sister perhaps?" Anybody that is that security conscious is going to have pass phrases, a secret handshake, something when it comes to divulging information. Hasn't George Lucas ever seen a mob movie? Does his dictionary only have a partial definition of "clandestine?" I won't even go into the whole Boba Fett thing. You know my feelings on Boba. If people were all into Jango Fett, that I could get behind. He practically kicked Obi-Wan Kenobi's ass... and Obi-Wan is the baddest Jedi in the three films.

The big downer, however, is Revenge of the Sith. It was so clumsy, when it had so much potential. Anakin Skywalker changed sides so easily. Too easily.

"I must turn you into the Jedi Counsel."
"I can save your baby-momma."
"Okey, where do I sign?"

There were even some great elements that could have been used. Palpatine was so subtle in his sliminess, but ultimately the script was ham-fisted. There was just so much waste in this film. The only great part for me was that it was all Obi-Wan, kicking ass and taking names. He killed more men than Cecil B. DeMille ;-), and he wore Darth Vader's ass out. Obi-Wan's rage at Anakin/Vader was the only real saving point for the story. It helps explain why Alec Guiness' Obi-Wan did not kill Darth Vader. It wasn't that he could not, but that he had to let things play out with Luke. "You were like my brother" and "you were supposed to be the chosen one" are the only lines I really remember from the film. It really is a shame that it did not turn out better.

Bottom line, I think, is that these two were more romance (in the classical sense) than fairy tale. The problem is, romance does not fill seats. Dogfights and wookie battles do. Had they taken up less time with spectacular fights, and given it over to character development it would have been a better pair of stories. I don't know that they'd be better movies, but story-wise it would have improved things greatly.


Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

I will leave Clone Wars alone for a second because that is like kicking a dead chicken.

Now you know how much I hate Hayden Christianson and his acting. The kid is stiffer than a hard wood floor. And he give it up to the dark side so quick like he says.

Don't Jedi education stress that the 'dark side is bad - avoid the dark side' till it is drilled in those kid's heads? You think he would give five mintues thought before joining the club and killing an afternoon's worth of kids.

Oh and Lucas, if THIS is your big reveal. If this is the birth of your awesomely cool bad guy for the franchise that gets you to your emotional climax at the end of Return of the Jedi, don't you think you could carry SOME backstory, SOME event, SOMETHING to show why he flipped so quick if you want him to flip so quick.

If not then have him be given the offer in movie TWO and have him brood about it for most of movie THREE. GAH. I hate you.

Darius Whiteplume said...

Yeah. Vader is so cool and collected in the "real" movies, but is a total spaz in these two. He was always pulling that third grade "it isn't fair" shit. Even Jar Jar Binks wouldn't sit with this kid at lunch time.

Again, I was worried that the hype is what killed these for me, but no. I think a lot of people hit it on the nose. These two sucked pretty hard.

kenchan13 said...

i keep meaning to post a chapter from the Revenge of the sith book. In the book the scene where the jedi come to arrest the emperor is written so dope. He incinerates one jedis mind with his own powerful mind. The other jedi he kills moving like a shadow . its written so well and evil compared to the movie where he swings his saber and instantly kills 3 jedi.I am not doing the written "scene" justice but i will copy one day and its sad the basic throw away book companinion to the movie handles important scenes better than the film is my point i guess :) long weekend lol.

Darius Whiteplume said...

I have never read the books. Star Wars was always a movie to me. Maybe I'll have to give them a try?

Is that the Matt Stover book?

kenchan13 said...

you are correct sir. The library in my town has a book sale every month. paid like $1 for most of my star wars books,btw i also picked up a book called the Force Of Star Wars that tries to liken star wars with christianity. Its the weirdest book i've ever read.

kenchan13 said...

i just scanned the pages i am sending via and see that star wars is pretty much done better in anybody elses hands except george lucas.

Nathan said...

I guess if you can find the clones' planet, they figure you're supposed to be there. After spending all that money on their fancy security system, they didn't have any left for secondary security measures.

I agree that they needed to explore what made Anakin turn evil at least a little more.

Darius Whiteplume said...

@kenchan - thanks. I'll have to give it a read.

@Nathan - I thought about that. If you know, then you know, kinda thing. It's just that my beloved Obi-Wan was so clumsy playing spy. I blame Lucas' pen. ;-)

Mr Co-Op said...

@Darius: I happened to watch Ep 4 again after seeing the prequels and was shocked to see that Vader isn't actually as cool and collected as I thought.

In fact, there is a moment in one scene where he sounds downright petulant. In most of the others, he reacts with lethal violence to the slightest problem. He is very much the immature imbecile that the Hayden Christensen Anakin was IMO.

He only really develops beyond that once the "Luke is Vader's son" plot is revealed.

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