October 11, 2006

Critique of Star Wars

Without getting into too much background, John Scalzi recently offered his views on the value (or lack thereof) of the Star Wars movies as entertainment. SFSignal has much more here.

What I want to highlight is this excellent comment by Avdi (in Scalzi's post), who elegantly summarizes my own feelings about the effect of the prequel trilogy on the original trilogy:

What baffles me is that I, II, and III seem almost expressly designed to destroy any mythic sensibility that IV, V, and VI might have created. Everything in them conspires to scale down the "epic" feel of the originals. Characters and locales from the sequels are improbably reused (pre-used?) so much that the Star Wars universe starts to feel cramped in comparison to the diverse galaxy that we caught a glimpse of in the the original trilogy. It goes from a million worlds to a few dozen, populated with the same rotating cast. Anakin Skywalker goes from the legendary star pilot of Obiwan's remembrances, to a whiny kid piloting the interstellar equivalent of a Honda civic with a really big spoiler on the back. The Clone Wars turn out not to be some cataclysmic confrontation with a galactic menace, but petty insurrection headed by villains so laughable (Dooku and the unbelievably pathetic Gen. Grievous) that the whole thing is hard to take seriously. The Jedi Council, "Guradians of Peace for a Thousand Generations", turns out to be a tiny cult of halfwit ditherers. And perhaps worst of all, Yoda, that venerable font of inscrutable wisdom, discards all semblance of dignity to become a yelping inneffectual hop-frog.

I couldn't agree more. The more that George Lucas explained, the less I loved the grand and mysterious Star Wars universe I once dreamed of exploring as a 10-year-old boy.

Posted by JohnL at October 11, 2006 09:23 PM | TrackBack

Interesting, since Suzi got angry at me after I posted the "What if George Lucas made the Lord of the Rings?" video a few days ago.

My 5 year old godson thought parts of the original Star Wars trilogy were "too scary." He loved Episode I. Nuff said.

Posted by: owlish at October 12, 2006 11:04 AM

don't get me started!

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