Tuesday, May 24, 2005

REVIEW, STAR WARS 3 - REVENGE OF THE SITH:

:::THERE'LL BE NO SPOILERS IN THIS REVIEW:::

Well, yeah, I snuck out Monday afternoon to see this (Lucas's final Star Wars outing, hopefully) on the big screen. I thought, well at least I'll have seen all 6 of them on the big screen. Seemed silly not to. In retrospect...

There was nothing wrong with it. It tied up all the loose ends suggested by Star Wars 4 - A New Hope back in the late 70's (my favourite reference was the space ship that Leia is in when the Star Destroyer scrolled down the screen after her in the original Star Wars). Gosh, Star Wars 4 was a delicious film - as a kid there truly was no greater joy.

What about the new one, SW3? The action scenes, especially the lightsabre fighting was real exciting. The space battle scenes as competent as ever. The narrative was well polished, interesting and concise - the droid army/clone army dichotomy was well portrayed, the pre-Empire vehicular design was intriguing for the longest time, I even liked the Dooku thread for what it was worth though I didn't like the over-use of R2D2 to solve narrative problems. Yes, we finally get to know why, etc...

But it was a bit ham-fisted. Okay, looking back on SW4, that was a bit wooden too. But SW4 was one of Lucas's first films. You'd have thought he'd have learned some lessons about character and narrative presentation since then. It just looked a bit dated, a bit staid in places. It didn't have the contemporary edge of a modern cinematic experience for me. Over and over again, we are TOLD why Annakin is doing the things he's doing, being lured by the Dark Side. But we're never shown WHY he's doing it - it all seems so weak, it never gels as a motivation. pre-Darth Vader CAN'T be put across like this. It just doesn't feel right.

Maybe I'm just nostalgic but Annakin's tranformation needed something a little more convincing than the reason given.

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