Journal

Revenge of the Sith

I was reading Dardy’s blog, in which he mentioned that he saw the last two Star Wars movies on opening day at midnight. “Wait a second,” I thought to myself, “I saw Attack of the Clones with him on opening day, but it wasn’t the midnight showing!” Dardy was quite insistent that we saw it at that time, so I looked back in my photo archives. Sure enough, we stood in line for six hours! My memories of the line were at dusk, so I figured we saw it on opening day in the evening! My bad, Dardy!

This year, I’m not doing the same for Revenge of the Sith; we’ll be seeing it on the Friday matinee at a digital theater in San Jose. Unlike the previous two movies, I’m going into ROTS fully aware of the story, script, images, everything. Everything, you say? EVERYTHING! I thought that the first two movies were good after the first viewing. After subsequent viewings, however, I admit that the first two prequel episodes were really pretty bad. The story and ideas put forth in the movie were fine; it’s the execution that I have problems with. With ROTS, I wasn’t going to take any chances, so I spoiled myself silly. I figure knowing what’s going to happen will help me through any confusing segments or horribly acted moments.

I do have hope that ROTS will be a worthy film. The reviews from the critics have been surprisingly positive, and I know of several friends who have seen it and given their thumbs up. I keep telling Rae to believe the hype! She prefers to have low expectations of the film. That way, there’s only one way, up!

Update 5/24/2005
So, I saw the movie last Friday. It was certainly the best of the prequels, but it wasn’t as good as ANH or ESB. I would probably rank it equally with ROTJ.

  1. The Empire Strikes Back
  2. A New Hope
  3. Return of the Jedi/Revenge of the Sith
  4. Attack of the Clones
  5. The Phantom Menace

Having read all the spoilers, excerpts from the book and illustrated screenplay, I left the theater wanting more. Certain scenes in the movie felt rushed, and I attribute that to the fact that the editors wanted to get the film under a certain running time. In this case, it’s often the expository scenes which are the first to go.

For instance, Anakin’s pivotal turn in the Chancellor’s office was way too quick. In the book it was handled and paced much better. Anakin didn’t just go from “What have I done?” to “I’ll do whatever you ask!” in the span of a heartbeat. He and Palpatine went back and forth before Anakin realized there was no turning back from what he had done.

Another example was at the end of the Galactic Empire speech scene in the Senate. Originally, Bail Organa was to stand up and protest the formation of the Empire. Padme stops him, suggesting that now was not the time. They cut all of the Delegation of 2000/Rebellion scenes, but they could have at least kept this one in.

Finally, the whole Qui-Gon ghost/reflection/voice scene at the end was cut as well (if it was ever filmed), making Yoda and Obi-Wan’s last conversation seem a bit out of place. It’s scenes like these which would have rounded out and made the film stronger and more believable. Did we really need to see minutes wasted on the buzz droids attacking Obi-Wan’s fighter?

Oh well, such is life. Maybe I’ll get to see these in the DVD release later this year. Despite my quibbles, I enjoyed the movie. Now my Star Wars journey is complete!

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