But the setup of everything, establishing that the galaxy was more than 2.5 planets and a death star(s), seeing Coruscant for the first time, the duel, only one to have aerial combat (No, Ep3’s “weave through the fight” flight does not count as combat), new droids, and a fairly good start-in to a larger story.
Not to say it was a great movie…it was, by all accounts, bleh. But as I said above, each of the prequels had a solid bit of movie in them. So much so that the Internet even turned it into a good movie on its own by creating “The Phantom Edit”. A fan-led pet project that basically recut the film so it didn’t suck (they uh…pretty much just removed all of JarJar )
This may be a first but I am 100% in agreement with @ryan1! With the exception that my fault with episode nine is the whole Kylo/Rey love story… Totally unnecessary. It was powerful enough with them just having a bond. It didn’t have to be romantic.
I am still undecided as to whether Rey being a Palpatine bothers me or not. I know some people felt like it would have been better had she been a true “nobody.” I think maybe I agree it would’ve been better without that connection but it doesn’t bother me
Yes, for me, it was almost exactly like when Leia kissed Luke. There was an odd kind of tension that came from being two halves of a whole (light/dark, male/female, yin/yang). It was momentarily misconstrued energy that righted itself in the end, but was definitely never meant to play out romantically, in my mind, at all.
I often wondered as it played out if we would find out in the end that they were, indeed, brother/sister.
Rey being a nobody makes for a better story I think, but frankly it wasn’t that she was a Palpatine that was a problem, it was the decision to resurrect the emperor and make it a 9 part story about the Emperor which totally underwhelms the arcs of 1-3 & 4-6 being the Rise & Fall of Darth Vader. The emperor was long dead - we didn’t need him back, we didn’t want him back and it really messed a bunch of things up to bring him back.
Episode 9 spending all it’s time undoing the interesting leaps made in Episode 8 was quite comical as well. Talk about not planning ahead on your trilogy - just a terrible way to do a multi-part story. Made even worse that the same company telling the story has mastered that in the Marvel Universe, but didn’t bother to do even a third of the planning for the Star Wars universe that they manage so deftly in the MCU…
Here’s the thing. Ep 7 and 9 were “consistent” because it was ultimately the direction JJ Abrams wanted to go. When he got pulled off Ep. 8, the new director decided to go in a new and different direction. When JJ Abrams came back for Ep 9, he needed to kind of contrive things a bit to make it flow as he originally intended.
Had JJ Abrams been left to do Ep 8, I think the flow would have been much more consistent and made sense.
The “resurrection” of Palpatine was interesting, and ties well with what was done with Darth Maul’s character, as well as even Darth Vader…the technology to keep these evil characters alive is kind of a consistent thing across all three trilogies as a result.
You presume that Abrams had any clue of what he wanted to do in 9 when he did 7 - I’ve never seen evidence of that at all. And you also presume he either didn’t bother to tell Rian Johnson what direction he wanted 8 to go in to setup 9 or that Rian ignored him. Again, I’ve seen no evidence to suggest either of those things occurred.
My impression is JJ didn’t like some of the interesting choices Rian made and undid them - possibly due to caustic SW fan response to 8. But it made for a very disjointed trilogy.
And to be honest, I found nothing interesting about Palpatine’s resurrection.
I absolutely love the original trilogy! Return of the Jedi will always have a special place in my heart as one of the very first movies I ever saw in a theatre (age 8). Objectively I agree that the other two are better films, but I love ROTJ too much to ever put any of others above it!
I really enjoyed the sequel trilogy, especially The Last Jedi (E8). I thought Luke’s arc was brilliantly done. I don’t have the same problems that a lot of people have with E9 though I think it would have been better if Abrams had just accepted what Johnson did in E8 and worked with it instead of trying to undermine that whole story. It also didn’t help that they were forced to try to write an ending to Leia’s story with only what they had already filmed before Carrie Fisher’s untimely death.
Rogue One is a fabulous piece of filmmaking with incredible acting, story and production. But it’s so freaking heartbreaking that I can’t bring myself to rewatch it.
Solo was one I looked forward to so much since Han is probably my favourite character. The casting was so amazing for it. Donald Glover was the perfect young Lando. I enjoyed it overall, but it didn’t live up to my expectations mostly because of Emilia Clarke. I don’t know what it is about her, but I have yet to like her in any movie and she brought down the entire storyline with her character. Everyone else was so good that I still liked the movie but it could have been awesome.
The prequel trilogy is a rough one for me. I mostly enjoyed E1 but felt that the directing really let down E2 and E3. So many great actors that I have loved in other films failing to have chemistry with each other. Anakin and Padme never worked for me as a couple because of that. A recent rewatch had me feeling better about this trilogy but it just doesn’t hold up for me like all of the other films. (Sorry @Jeff_AZ )
I love every Star Wars film. There is so much to love in each one. I don’t focus on the flaws, but even when I do notice them (and all 11 have flaws!), it doesn’t negate everything I love about them. To be specific:
First and foremost, the Skywalker Saga is the “music video” accompanying John Williams’s 9-part symphony, a masterpiece in every way. There are new themes in every film that alone would be Oscar worthy in any other franchise, but are dwarfed by the iconic themes established in the two original films. All else failing, I would still accept these films as definitive because they’re the ones accompanying the Maestro’s score.
The composition of the shots is astounding. I follow a few accounts on Twitter that do nothing but post shots from Star Wars, and it’s remarkable the beauty that is held in each frame, as if each shot were a painting in the Louvre. George Lucas once called Star Wars a “silent film” and I think this is what he means.
Even those who don’t like one of the films overall has got to admit that each one has its “wow” moments.
I’ll also add here that George Lucas’s passion and overlooked skill is editing (I’ve been reading the “Making of” books about the original trilogy and this is covered extensively). He was deeply involved in the editing of all three original trilogy films, and even did about 1/3rd of the editing for A New Hope on a Moviola (film editing machine) himself. The whole “Saved in the Edit” myth is a completely false and misleading narrative that I could go into more detail on, but I’ll leave it at that.
George Lucas has always been pushing the boundaries of special effects. Sometimes he bit off a little more than he could chew, but I for one applaud him for taking risks. Every major achievement in special effects in the last 40 years was driven by ILM and the vision of George Lucas.
The world building and attention to detail is unmatched. Thousands of people worked on each of the films, and they are all passionate and brought their A game. If there are failures, it was not for lack of trying. I like to honor their efforts by focusing on the positive.
Star Wars is about the hero’s journey. The primary focus is therefore a character’s arc . That could be Luke’s rise to become a jedi, Anakin’s fall to become Vader, or Rey’s acceptance of her worth. While some of the acting is uneven, the primary actors have been intensely relatable. And that extends to side characters, too. (I will have to do a favorite characters poll sometime!)
Side note: Plot has never been a huge focus and is also an ancillary consideration, though there have been some interesting plot points here and there. Plot has largely been considered by the creators to be interchangeable, but nothing can come at the expense of story.
So taking all of the above into consideration, I will watch every single Star Wars film and love them all to death. No amount of clunky dialogue or overdone CGI could negate that. I would become Vader before I allowed one to cease living.
Solo is pretty good. I think the most jarring thing is someone that’s not Harrison Ford as Han Solo. If you can get past that, you should enjoy it a fair amount. Honestly it has been a shame that because Solo disappointed at the Box Office (what a world that $392M worldwide is disappointing), that we have not gotten any more of these interesting side stories at the theater. Fortunately the Disney+ series have now filled in that gap somewhat. Although it’s not quite the same as seeing it on the big screen.