Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Adventure, Excitement, a Jedi Craves Not These Things

So, like any geek worth his weight (and trust me, that's a lot) I've been concentrating on Star Wars for most of the last week. I am excited to see the new film, but I won't be going on opening day. Like Lefty before me, I was unsure of where to start me re-watching of the previous "Episodes". I started with Episode I, but that was a mistake, The series works better out of order, watching it sequentially raises too many unanswered questions. To prove I'm a geek, here are a few:

A New Hope- Ben doesn't recall R2 or 3PO?, somewhat confusing, but Owen does say he's a crazy old man, and it has been awhile since he'd seen them...and they are droids, not people. Nevermind, that was a dumb question, I retract it.

Empire- Ben says that Yoda trained him? Only possible answer is that Yoda trained him as a young padawan, like he was training the kids in Episode II, BUT! on Dagobah Ben again mentions Yoda training him and how angry and hard-headed he was. Is it possible Ben forgot Qui-Gonn altogether? I dunno.

Empire-The Emperor says that he feels this new "young rebel" is the son of skywalker. Vader says "How is that possible?" This one's a toughie. Maybe Anakin never knows about the pregnancy? Doubt it. Many possible answers tho, Vader hides his knowledge of the pregnancy from just about everyone, basically blocking it out and keeping it from the Emperor. Makes the most sense I think. Tied into this is the fact that he probably knew about the birth, and of at least Luke, but not Leia, because he never reacts to her presence in A New Hope. Why was Luke sent to Tatooine? My guess, out of the reach of the Empire, as Qui-Gonn says in Episode I, the Hutts are on their own, out of the reach of the Trade Federation, so, less influence from the Empire in the long run, which also adds to the "Vader knew, hid it from the Emperor" school of thought. This whole scenario brings up far too many questions, I think, and i hope the new movie brings some answers.

Jedi-Leia says she remebers her mother, that she died when she was young...okay, well everything I've read (I have avoided real spoilers like novelizations/adaptions/games) leads me to believe Amidala dies and Leia is adopted by the Organas and raised as their own, if so the Leia cannot remember Amidala. It would make sense if she dies, because it would be the final push to the Dark Side for Anakin. again, a lot of questions, too many guesses to nail anything down.

I think Lucas has laid some clues in there to lead you in the right direction, but ultimately there's just too many things he hasn't laid the foundation for.

I will say this, the OG Trilogy looks fantastic on DVD, even on my piddly ass TV, and sounds terrific. The scene where Han shoots first has been re-re-edited so that they shoot at practically at the same time, it's less jumpy and works okay, I'd still rather have it the way it was. The scene in A New Hope with Han and Jabba LOOKS better, and the goofiness has been toned down, but in the end it's a useless scene that just reiterates what Greedo and Han already discussed, plus Jabba is like Jaws, the less seen the better.

In Empire everything is great, it still holds up as a fantastic sci-fi film, a love letter to old movie serials. Great movie, glad to see it looking so damn good and holding up so well. Most fans were irate about the "replacing" of Anakin at the end of Jedi but didn't cause a fuss over Empire's two replacements, Fett's dialogue was re-recorded so that it is Temuera Morrison doing it instead of the original actor. I think it adds more to the film continuity, the original actor still gets the credit and it sounds fantastic. By this logic I assume all the storm troopers aren't clones, since their dialogue wasn't re-recoded to make it closer to the new episodes. Ian McDiarmid was edited over the old Emperor to add even more to the continuity, seeing as how he played the part in every other film, again the original actor gets credit, it looks flawless and Lucas even re-recoded Vader's dialogue and added to it. So, yeah, it looks great, sounds great, no big deal.

Jedi is probably overall the weakest of the three, but I think it has the best opening, the scenes at Jabba's are still my favorite series of events in all the movies. But, as ADD noted, it's all Ewoks from then on (by whicxh
I mean crappy). I think Christensen looks great edited into the film and though I originally had a problem with it I actually like it better this way now.

Overall the series looks amazing, Lucas and Co. went to great lengths to improve the quality of the special effects, and for the most part they succeed. You have to give the man credit for constantly breathing life into the series and getting fans to keep coming back. There are only two scenes I think should be restored (the two in A New Hope), but if I want to see it in original form, I always have my VHS copies!

Now, I plan to rewatch Episodes I&II again after finishing off the OG Trilogy, just so they're fresh in my mind before I see Eps. III, so I guess I'll post on them and the Clone Wars DVD later.


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