AOTC Chapter 25: Nightmare DISCUSSION

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Moleman1138, Dec 16, 2004.

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  1. Moleman1138 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 18, 2004
    star 6
    Until the release of ROTS on 5/19/05, I would like to discuss AOTC chapter by chapter on the DVD. There are 47 chapters to discuss over the next eight months, excluding Chapter 1: Opening Logos, Chapter 2: Attack of the Clones and Chapter 50: End Credits.

    Each discussion will last 5 days. At the end of 5 days, the following chapter will be posted.

    Chapter 25: Nightmare
    DISCUSSION: December 17, 2004 - December 21, 2004
    DVD TIME INDEX: 58:54 - 60:42

    Anakin is lying in bed having a nightmare of his mother. Startled, he suddenly wakes up. The next morning, Anakin meditates on a veranda at the Lake Retreat. Padme enters onto the veranda, but turns around and begins to head back inside. Anakin asks that she stop. The senator says that she doesn't want to disrupt him. Anakin says that her being there puts his mind at ease. Padme says she knows the her protector had a nightmare the previous night. Anakin responds by saying that Jedi don't have nightmares. Padme refuses to let it go. Finally giving in, Anakin says that he had a vision of her mother suffering and that he needs to help her immediately. Padme agrees to go with him to Tatooine. Anakin apologizes that he has no choice. END OF CHAPTER

    When I saw this is theaters, this like Forbidden Love didn't seem right. This can't be Star Wars. It feels like something else. What once was a very confusing scene is finally start to grow on me after almost three years.

    The fact of seeing a sleeping sequence was new. I'm still mixed on the actual nightmare. Anakin's talking in his sleep and just wakes up. It just doesn't have a right feel to it. Then the shot in the sky with the soft, peaceful music. I was like what the heck is this? The editing is just horrendous throughout.

    Seeing Anakin meditating on the veranda is the perfect parallel to Vader looking out into space in ESB. The conversation between Anakin and Padme wasn't bad, but Hayden really didn't help with the monotonic whining. Natalie did seem gorgeous in nightrobe and gown. Since this is a more personal film, we're able to see these characters in a different light through their clothes.

    Really it's a 50/50 chapter. I think that it could have been executed much better, but for what we got it's not bad. I guess it served its purpose and that's the extent of the credit that it shall get.
  2. openmind Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2003
    star 4
    I really thought it was a great moment. Fancy that Yoda telling, "multiply our adversaries will", its Anakin on bed (Considering Anakin will be doing damage to the Jedi in future).

    Exactly what seen in the nightmare, is not known, except that it definitely his mother in it and it is really spooks him terrifyingly.

    Anakin lying on a bed that has blue sheets and blankets with a wavey design (reminsicent of an ocean, IMO anyway), reminded me of where Obi Wan was at the moment (land of rain and oceans), while this dream was in progress.

    Anakin realizing it is a dream, wakes up a bit embarressed. Atleast he looks to be when he check the side of him (possibly the door, that separates his room and Padme's). I think he hopes she didn't hear! But we know in the next scene she actually did.

    When Anakin tells Padme that Jedi's don't have nightmares, she confidentally knows that's just simply denial., she did hear him.

    I believe this is where Padme's attraction to him has taken another level. She's beginning to analyze him, and affection for him is increasing, at the same time, as the older of the two, putting things into perspective, that beyond the Jedi exterior, he's still human after all.

    There?s more but I'll let others also have a shot.

  3. Master_Gallia Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 29, 2004
    star 2
    I have somewhat of a different take. Look at it from Padme's point of view. Anakin earlier confessed that he has feelings for her and had been holding them back. She felt something as well but would not let herself explore those emotions. TPM well established Padme's compassion for suffering people.

    Now we come to this chapter. Anakin's first reaction is to keep up his Jedi image. "Jedi dont have nightmares." But the moment Padme gives him an opening, he lets himself go. Padme, unlike the other Jedi, was there to see Anakin with his mother. She, being already sensitive, opens herself to Anakin's pain and wants to help him release it by helping him help his mother.

    For me this is also the X factor in the relationship of Anakin and Padme. It's not inconceivable that two people can fall in love after an intense adventure. Think about the movie Romancing the Stone.
  4. SLAVE2 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2000
    star 5
    I think the bit where Anakin is having his nightmare could have been shot better o_O
  5. RebelScum77 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 2003
    star 6
    I love this scene. My favorite shot in the entire movie is Anakin looking over the balcony with this arms behind his back. It's a parallel to Vader, and it couldn't have been done more poignantly.

    Visually it's spot on (yes, yes they could have blocked the nightmare scene a bit better). Turn the sound off and you know exactly what's happening. I do think the dialog in the original script is better than the actual cut though.

    This scene makes me wonder what happened after they last parted (the fireplace). Padme has obviously reconciled her feelings, it's almost as if she came out there to tell him. And when she then sees that he's in pain she immediately wants to help him, no matter the cost. Many people have wondered how she "heard" Anakin was having a nightmare in the first place. It's just tantalizingly open to speculation, which was brilliant on GL's part.
  6. Tyranus_the_Hutt Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 2004
    star 4
    This is a terrific scene. It helps to redeem the more stilted, meandering scenes on Kamino which preceed it. Some people have actually complained that it is unconvincing that Anakin wants to go and save his mother after only "one particularly bad night of sleep". Lucas knows what he's doing, though, and took care to set this up earlier in the film ("Dreams pass in time"). The implication that Anakin is being bothered by these dreams (even before the timeline of this specific film, as is indicated by Obi-Wan's knowledge of Anakin's visions about his mother) helps add depth to the level of his suffering. I have no problems with the shot of shirtless Anakin in bed, his body bathed in the gentle hues of twilight, as his thoughts torment him. This is a different sort of shot, deliberately employed to introduce the second 'wave' of the film - everything from here on in is downhill. I may be mistaken, but I think that the transitional dissolve between Anakin in bed and the sky in fact marks the only dissolve used (thus far) in a "Star Wars" film. I agree with RebelScum77, the shot of Anakin on the balcony is beautiful. Again, I have no problem with any of the dialogue or acting in this scene. In fact, Hayden is actually excellent here in conveying the depth of his character's internal struggle; Portman is good also, and we are able to sense the degree to which the two characters have an emotional connection to one another. This is all good stuff - the aesthetic transition between the subtle build-up which comprises the first part of the picture, and the darker, moodier, 'operatic' tone which is exemplified in the film's second half, is just slightly jarring, yet I think that Lucas once again pulls it off brilliantly.
  7. RebelScum77 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 3, 2003
    star 6
    The difference in costumes from this scene to the previous are key to the visual storytelling element.

    They both trade their binding, dark clothes, for lighter airier ones. Padme is beginning to realize and accept that she feels more for Anakin than she should. The black leather dress implied that she was trying to be seductive, but that she still felt "bound" by her circumstances. The change into a silvery satin gown helped to show that she is softening, accepting her role with Anakin. She has dropped all pretense, often shown with her through clothing, and just become Padme.

    Anakin's change is also significant. In his dark Jedi robes he bared his soul to Padme. The complete removal of his clothing when having the nightmare shows how "naked" he made himself to her. And without his "Jedi protection" the dreams of his mother overcome him. In the morning he wears a light see-through shirt. Padme (and us) can literally through his Jedi exterior into his "real" self. He is just a man, and finally Padme can see that.
  8. Tyranus_the_Hutt Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 2004
    star 4
    Beautifully articulated, RebelScum77. Very well done indeed.
  9. Obi-Wan2001 Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Sep 6, 2001
    star 4
    Like SLAVE2 said, Anakin's nightmare could have, indeed, been shot better. But I like that Anakin just wakes up, instead of springing up in bed like almost every other film. How many of you almost launch out of bed when waking from a bad dream? More than likely, you just wake up. Also, I think he becomes very aware that Padme has woke up to his nightmare, outside of his room. You can tell when he stops thinking about the dream, and when he quickly becomes self-conscious, quiets down, and does a double take towards his door. His eyes then remain fixated in that direction for the rest of the shot as it dissolves. And I like the shot in the sky with the soft, peaceful music.

    A nice bit that morning is that shot that sort of cranes up as Anakin walks away from Padme and he lets out a big Vader-like exhale and he says, "She is in pain." Beautiful shot of Padme they cut to there, too.
  10. GRAND_MOFF_KEVIN Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 4, 2004
    star 5
    I like it. It sets up for one of the key events in Anakin's life
  11. Chaotic_Serenity Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Oct 10, 2004
    star 4
    I like this scene okay. The latter part is one of my favorite "quiet" Padme/Anakin moments in the movie. We see that while Anakin certainly takes advantage of the compassion and understanding Padme provides, he doesn't manipulate it. He is treating her like a perfect lady now that she has made things clear between them. He may not be happy about it, but he seems to have resigned himself to Padme being a lost cause. He takes comfort in her presence, though, reminding the audience that while the feelings may now be politely pushed behind a door, they are still there. Which is understandable, given that he has someone equally meaningful to him at the forefront of his thoughts, he's willing to look past it. I have no idea why you call it "whining," though. Whining is him going on about how Obi Wan is holding him back earlier in the movie. This is a young man who is in clear distress over somebody he cares deeply for. That's alot more serious than what I'd call "whining."

    I think this is a strong scene for Padme, too. We see that despite her reservations regarding her feelings for Anakin, we see her strength of character as she reaches out and supports Anakin - even goes as far as risking her safety for him. It's not only a moment that reveals how compassionate an individual she is, but also hints that she, too, has more than simply lingering feelings for Anakin. If nothing else, the fact that she feels comfortable in her nightclothes with him lends an intimacy to her interaction with him. Even if they can't proceed as they wish with their feelings, they still enjoy and feel comfortable in each other's presence.

    I do have a few issues with it. I think Anakin's physical reactions to his nightmare could have been a little more violent, showing us how horrible the visions are, rather than just a little twitching. As it is, I agree that it doesn't express the intensity and seriousness of Anakin's emotions. And I also felt it could have been better connected to the story had they included the nightmare he had on the transport to Naboo, especially since it gives Padme a history with Anakin's nightmares, showing her that it's a recurring problem. As such, we might understand why she's so gun-ho about letting going off with him.

    Mind you, it survives well enough without it. People argue that Anakin waits too long to follow through with his concerns for his mother, but I think he simply hasn't had the chance. Obi Wan obviously doesn't think Anakin's nightmares are anything serious enough to follow up on, merely illusions of Anakin's fears that he needs to overcome and detach from. So while under the scrutiny of the Council and Obi Wan, there's no way he could follow through on his visions. However, with Padme, alone on Naboo with her encouragement, it's the first chance he gets to pursue his dreams, and does so at the drop of a hat. (I also like the buildup. It's obvious from the strain in Anakin's voice that he's been putting this off for a very long time and simply cannot hold himself back from going to his mother any longer.)

    I should also add that I really like the setting in this scene. The leftover puddles from the rainstorm give a clean, brisk feel to the scene, while also providing a murky depth to it. Anakin's dreams and the storm having passed during it remind us that there are far more serious events lingering on the horizon. Despite the dawn, the traditional sign of new beginnings, a shadow lingers over everything. Additionally, I also dug the Vader-ish nuances in Anakin here and there. His poise/stance being the most obvious, but the monotone is also reflective of Vader, as well as the cold determination his words reflect. He *will* go after his mother, no matter if Padme agrees or not, even as it might hurt him to leave her. Much like Vader's obsessive quest to find Luke Skywalker, Anakin's question to find his mother is not something he will be swayed from.

    On a final note, I get annoyed when people accuse this scene of being too blatantly "wanton" regarding Anakin's shirtle
  12. MissPadme Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Jul 9, 1998
    star 4
    ::High fives Chaotic Serenity::. Fair is fair :).

    Seriously, some have nitpicked Anakin's nightmare but had it really been done in a hackish way, Anakin would have bolted upright, stared straight into a camera, and his mouth would have been open in an "O." Lucas didn't do that. In any case, Lard Biscuit's great essay on AOTC noted that Anakin's nightmares return with a new intensity only after Padmé rejects his advances. Without Padmé, his thoughts return to the only other woman he's loved, his mother. Not surprisingly he feels her torment so clearly he can no longer put off going to Tatooine.

    The morning scene on the balcony...ahhhh. Great shot of Anakin standing Vader-style meditating in front of a bank of clouds. The gauzy shirt doesn't hurt the eyes either ;). As others have said, there's greater intimacy between Anakin and Padmé (she wasn't wearing that Victorian nightgown anymore) even if Padmé puts the kibosh on actually pursuing a relationship for the time being. She's the only one he can confide in about his nightmares and obviously she cares for him enough to go to Tatooine with him. Watch her eyes carefully during this scene too. She's checking him out!

  13. Palpateen Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2000
    star 4

    The editing is excellent. The dissolve from the bedroom scene and him waking up to the morning light indicates the passage of time, as do all dissolves,
    notice the muted light of the morning, it's cloudy, just like the future.

    Remember...and this is important...Padme knew Shmi.
    She met her in TPM. When Anakin wants to leave to see his mother, this is someone who Padme remembers...and she remembers Shmi and Anakin together as mother and son. She appreciates Anakin's devotion. I think she wants to accompany Anakin on this journey because she has compassion. Anakin even manipulates her a bit,
    "she is suffering, she was in pain." Anakin knows how to get what he wants.
  14. DarthTunick SfC Part IV Commissioner

    Game Host
    Member Since:
    Nov 26, 2000
    star 10
    i know we never had a dream sequence in a Star Wars film before, but i've always felt that this scene would have been better if we saw his nightmare. sure we can all visualize it, but doing something new, especially to show how tormented Anakin is (by seeing the horrifying dream), would have helped, but oh well. :p Anakin meditating, standing just like Vader in ESB, was brilliant, just brilliant! Natalie looks great as she always does, plus the scenery is fantastic.
  15. HL&S Magistrate Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Oct 30, 2001
    star 7
    When Padme says "you had another nightmare" the "another" refers to the one that was cut on the Refugee ship.

    The visuals of this sequence are just great. The dialogue isn't half bad.

    Had Anakin been trained as a Jedi from baby on up, he probably wouldn't be having nightmares about his birth mother. Or dreaming of the beautiful Padme. He has connected himself to these people emotionally and the force is reflecting that. Something few Jedi ever have to deal with.

    It's also interesting to note that at this point, we don't know who is harming Shmi. Sidious? Watto? Gunray? Jango? The Hutts?
  16. lovelucas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 2004
    star 4
    palpateen - great call on recognizing the history padme also had with anakin's mother from phantom. she knows this woman who gave qui gon, jar jar and her shelter and a meal when they needed both and she witnessed the strong family connection between mother and son. i love the forboding environment in this scene, beginning with the vader stance and the overcast day which contrasts sharply with that same environment when padme was introducing anakin to the lake retreat (rainbow dress) - all sunny and bright. things have taken a sharp turn towards a different, darker direction as of this scene and it's reflected in so many clues. padme and anakin are united in their rescue mission which continues from shmi on tatooine to obiwan on geonosis- the same obiwan whose response to anakin's continued troubled dreams of his mother was certainly something less than treating them seriously - they fade away in time. but here padme believes anakin - the dreams are accurately indicating shmi is in peril.and padme never considers herself a damsel in distress, but much like her daughter to follow, she takes the initiative to say "i'm going with you"
  17. MatthewZ Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 21, 2003
    star 4
    Everyone has missed the most important part of this scene. Anakin's proclamation that he "doesn't have a choice."

    Its no mistake that this statement from Anakin comes half way through the middle film of the trilogy. The moral of Star Wars revolves around choices. Having free will our lives are a series of choices. We can choose to good or choice to do bad.

    Anakin often has the best intentions in mind, but he fails to see the negative aspects of his choice and the slope they are leading him down.

  18. Ker-Soth Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Oct 24, 2004
    star 3
    There's only one thing bugging me in the (boring but usefull) scene. He doesn't seem scared enough when he wakes up. It wasn't a nightmare, perhaps the food, but definately not a nightmare
  19. JohnWesleyDowney Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 27, 2004
    star 5
    He seemed scared to me.

    Anakin had a dream in TPM...he dreamed he became a Jedi and freed all the slaves. (his dream was about himself.)

    In AOTC, he had a dream his mother was suffering and in pain, and it motivated him to return to Tatooine to rescue her. (his dream was about his mother)

    It will be interesting to see if Anakin has another dream in Episode III. (who will he dream about?)
  20. Katana_Geldar Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2003
    star 8
    I must confess that this is one of my favourite scenes purely for the drool factor


    I remember last year there were some interesting interpretations on how padme heard him, like she was in bed next to him.

    I don't agree but they deserve a mention
  21. PadmeLeiaJaina Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 23, 2002
    star 6
    The balcony scene is one of my favorites in the whole movie, like RebelScum77 pointed out after cutting from Anakins frightened nightmare scene it pans to Anakin standing in the exact same pose as his darker self will on the bridge of the Executioner in TESB.

    The scene is wonderful for several reasons.

    Role Reversal. If you pay close attention to the actors Anakin works very hard to keep his eyes off of Padme for as long as possible. When he talks to her - he calls her "Senator" - he' working very hard to abide by her decision earlier to keep their relationship strictly professional.

    Padme on the otherhand isn't practicing what she preached. In the scene where Anakin saves Padme from the bugs on Coruscant - recall what her nightgown looked like - it was cotton, long, flowy and covered her arms and nearly all of her chest. It was rather Victorian looking - giving the appearance of a chaste woman. Now the morning after she rejected Anakin, she's wearing a silky sexy nightgown that leaves little to the imagination. Sure, it's tasteful and nice- but it's the type a woman wears to tempt a man - not to be chaste in. Her hair is also completely down, something that we rarely ever see with her in the films - it's always up, restricted, and professional.

    Also her demeanor is completely at odds w/ her decision the night before. Her eyes flutter up and down enjoying the view of Anakin wearing his gauzy shirt and his nicely formed legs. She's even slightly breathy in her speech. When she says "I'll go with you" you almost get the impression that she's almost not paying attention to what he's saying and that she will willingly do whatever he wants just to be with him. As another poster IamZam pointed out long ago, in the balcony scene- Padme starts to chase Anakin - not the other way around.

    After the storm
    The morning scene is gorgeous and what is interesting is that the whole time we've seen Naboo it's always had perfect weather - up until the fireplace scene and the balcony scene. There are pools of water around, indicating that it rained the night before. The sunrise is clouded and although birds are singing - Anakin's future is definitely cloudy - as are his intentions for leaving.

    The question of choice - Anakin certainly could've ignored his dreams and obediently done what the Jedi Counci expected of him - but that would be out of his character.

    Anakin MUST do whatever his gut tells him to do. He's as much a slave to his emotions as he is to the rising darkness within. I MUST obey my Master.

    Truly Anakin is simply doing what Qui-Gon taught him from long ago which is to trust the here and now and his instincts. For weeks he'd been experiencing these horrific dreams (out of the blue) of his mother. Normal Jedi don't dream or pay attention to them, because they close themselves off to emotional attachments to other people. Anakin loved his mother deeply and to feel her in pain - calling to him - and he being helpless to do anything about it (much like his inability to free her from enslavement) has always gnawed at his conscious.

    In essence, a part of him felt that he had to follow up on his dreams and verify that his mother was alright. Had Shmi been fine, and had he accepted Padme's rejection, he might've been able to cast aside his emotional attachments, grown up and moved on.

    But of course that didn't happen. Anakin's decision on that balcony was based by a driving need in him to correct the wrongs of the universe, and ultimately by his believing that ability was within his grasp becomes the key to his undoing.

    I think Anakin's physical reactions to his nightmare could have been a little more violent, showing us how horrible the visions are, rather than just a little twitching. As it is, I agree that it doesn't express the intensity and seriousness of Anakin's emotions.

    Actually, I think it was alright if taken into the context that we know he's been having these nightmares, repeatedly, for nights on end. I too would have liked to h
  22. Lando_Plenty Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2002
    star 2
    I love the music in this scene. Especially liked hearing Anakin's theme being weaved into the background. Too bad the whole thing isn't on the soundtrack.
  23. Taivasvaeltaja Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 29, 2003
    star 2
    The scene in the veranda is one definitely one of Hayden´s greatest acting moments. That boyish innocence - which is especially perfectly seen in the very end of the chapter as the image wipes to Kamino - is what made me wonder why people bash his performance. Christensen´s an amazing kid.

    This is pivotal moment in the film, the romantic beauty of the prequels pretty much ends here and more classic Star Wars style steps forward. That is not to say the rest of the movies would be ugly, of course.
  24. Smuggler-of-Mos-Espa Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2002
    star 6
    I hate Hayden as an "actor", if you can call him that. That scene was the closest thing to a spark of actual acting, but not there yet.

    Hayden reminds me directly of Julia Roberts-- simply because she plays "Julia Roberts" in every movie she's in. [face_plain]
  25. lovelucas Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 2004
    star 4
    and just how many movies have you seen hayden in to say "he's always playing hayden"? shattered glass? life as a house? where the heck to you get that comparison to julia roberts' history????? jeez.
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