PS. Expect a long-ass post about the recent Samuel L. Jackson movie that came out.
Well, here it is. (Some of my bitching & moaning is just general to the prequals…)
1) Superior special effects.
I hated the first two prequals' special effects. In ep1, the Gungans (fully CGI species) were an overly ambitious catastrophe of appearance alone (forget the annoyance of character). The use of leather clothing and CGI droid armies (flat metal surface) seemed like a big cheat to avoid complications with tecture, flesh, etc. When the CGI met miniatures (space ships, sets, etc.) it was a disaster.
In ep2, the problems were more stylistic---WTF was going on in that final series of battles? Did a five-year-old do the story boards? The whole movie looked matted and (as Trevor agreed) the CGI Yoda looked unconvincing---those polar bears in the Christmas Coke commercials looked better.
Well, anyhow, the effects in ep3 were by far the best of the lot. Yoda looked good. The different planets were beautiful. A sign of the success of the effects was my forgetting the effects. Maybe only Return of the King had better.
2) I've been waiting to see how a normal looking Senator Palpatine was going to end up a pasty, fucking gnarled emperor with yellow eyes. I sorta thought he'd come into power and be, like, "Tah-dah! This is my true evil appearance!" Indeed, the hooded Sidious in the first two movies---with tricks of holographic light, maybe---looked gnarled in the shadows. But I watched ep1 again about a month ago and noticed that the shadowed, hooded Sidious was definitely NOT gnarled (especially in the scene in person with Darth Maul when he's, like, "At last we will get our revenge!").
3) Light saber battles were great. It was awesome to see Obi-wan lob off fucking THREE of Anakin's limbs in one swing. My fear coming into this movie was that Obi-wan would win the lava duel on accident or something. Like, oops!, Anakin just got hit by a chance tidal wave of lava! Obi-wan's character has been totally squandered in the previous films (why not make him the badly needed Han Solo wise-ass swashbuckling element sorely missing in these films? It'd make total sense that he'd turn all conservative and grumpy from the Republic falling apart before his eyes.); it was nice to see at least this final duel done right (well, save for the dialogue, of course).
4) General Grievous (as usual, though, he coulda used at least a fucking HINT of a background story).
1) Why all the cameo appearances in these prequals? Do I really need to see Jabba, Bib Fortuna, Sand People, Jawas, Chewbacca, Greedo, and so on. How ‘bout some new good shit? Between 1983 and 1999, all Lucas came up with was evil Mandarin Capitalists, Gungans, and battle-droids that look like Gungans.
2) Linking original trilogy characters together just for the fuck of it. Anakin built C3PO? Yoda and Chewbacca are bff’s? Obi-wan fought with Boba Fett’s Dad? Jabba’s Mom used to own Darth Vader AND his Mom?
3) Idiocy of the Jedi. The Chosen One will bring balance to the force? How do you suppose that balance will swing in a galaxy of a few thousand Jedi and maybe, like, two Sith? Expecting him to recruit more Jedi, increase their powers? Of course, if the Chosen One were to bring balance to the force, it should probably mean that users of the force would use both Light and Dark Side. The Jedi are ineffectual fools and need some Dark Side passions to temper their aloofness.
4) Bad dialogue. I’ve written better love stories by heaving buckets of chum at brick walls. You should read them sometime.
5) Yoda constantly speaking with inverted syntax. Watch The Empire Strikes Back and notice his syntax is normal at least half the time. To quote the New Yorker, “Break me a fucking give.”
6) Frankenstein-like anger scene when Darth Vader finds out he killed Padme and bends machines with his mind.
7) Overall, this episode has a shit load of loose ends to fix from the previous two. Thus, it had, like, a 45 minute long ending. Had to happen. I’m pretty convinced that this movie was as good as it possibly could have been given the director, writer, and actors. Still, its overall success makes me more depressed that the previous ones were so fucking bad, and that, indeed, the original trilogy is made retroactively much shittier itself. Fuck you George Lucas!
I have to apologize to Trevor and Ivan for telling them Revenge of the Sith was better than Return of the Jedi before they saw the former. I was still feeling the effects of the two whiskey flasks Miguel, Andrew, and I finished off during the movie. I knew there’d be hell to pay…
How did Vader's ghost learn to come back from the dead if only Yoda, Qai Gon, and Obi Wan knew the lost art, anyway?