Did Lucas betray Padme?

Discussion in 'Revenge of the Sith' started by Jumpman, Nov 14, 2005.

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  1. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    One of the biggest reactions/issues that has come out of the release of Episode III is the character of Padme.

    My question to you is what are some of your thoughts on her protrayal in this film? Did Lucas focus too much on Padme's personal side and not enough on her political side? Was the character's protrayal in the film what it needed to be? Should he have made her more stronger by opposing Palpatine more? Did he ultimately destroy her character in the eyes of the fans?

    Which side do many of you side on with how she is protrayed in the film?
  2. sithrules70 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 28, 2005
    star 4
    thats why 50% of the dleted scenes are about her.
    and no,he didnt destroy the character in my eyes,still one of my favorites.

  3. Master_Shaitan Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 31, 2004
    star 5
    I thought the character was a bit of a let down. She doesnt really stand up vs Leia.
  4. Darth_Sideous Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2004
    star 4
    Her political side is mostly unimportant. We know where she stands. She feels Palpatine has too much power and he's breaking the Senate apart (figuratively now, literally later). She says "So this is how democracy dies - with thunderous applause". That line alone sums up her political views in the movie.

    Lucas focused on the most important part of Padme for this movie - her role as Luke and Leia's mother. There are two tie ins to the OT concerning Padme - she is the twins' mother, and she had a life in politics, as Leia does. That, and how Anakin and she met, are really all we needed to know about her. A good example is all of Padme's deleted scenes in TPM. They were all about her personal life, and that's somewhere we just did not need to go, although it is interesting to me.

    She doesnt really stand up vs Leia.

    Oh, I wanted to mention something about this, too (hence the edit). I've read where people have compared Leia's nature to Anakin, and LUKE'S nature to Padme. I think that's true. Luke has more of a tender side to him, and Leia is much more stronger than Padme was. I think it's a good comparison. You're right, as a character, to me at least, Padme doe NOT come off as well as Leia did.
  5. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    In this discussion, I want to talk about the writing and editing of her character and does it go against what she was in Episodes I and II. Was Lucas' hands tied when it comes to too much story in Episode III? Is this how he wanted Padme to be once he looked at the story he was trying to tell? Is this Padme more appropriate for the story in Episode III?

    I want to have a level headed discussion about the character and what Lucas was doing with the character in this film but what he ultimately said about her when you look at her throughout the Prequels....
  6. Lelila_ Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 17, 2005
    star 1
    Well, I guess actual fans are already aware of Padme's political importance. I like the parallel of Padme and Luke... Leia is much stronger than Luke is in a lot of ways, and not as easily manipulated. Luke is far more trusting, like Padme. Showing Padme as so dependent also highlights some interesting theories over in another thread on Padme and Anakin's symbiotic relationship.

    I don't know if I'm even making sense at this point. So tired... [face_coffee] I-)
  7. JMN77 Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 19, 2005
    star 3
    Ah, but no one seems to notice that, unfortunatly, Leia's role as a leader of the rebellion also diminishes as the OT progresses. By the time of the DS briefing in ROTJ she seems like nothing more than just another rebel soilder, for lack of a better term.
  8. Force-Keeper Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2004
    star 5
    Her character was handled just fine, IMO. The first two films of the PT focused on her political side, showing that she's a strong leader and a very wise politician. RotS was the only movie that dealt solely on her personal side and that?s what needed to be done because it's the side of her that's going to be affected the most in the movie. GL needed to show Padmè?s personal side so that we, the audience, could really understand how Anakin?s betrayal really affected her. I really don't feel that George "betrayed" the Padmè character at all.
  9. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    " Ah, but no one seems to notice that, unfortunatly, Leia's role as a leader of the rebellion also diminishes as the OT progresses. By the time of the DS briefing in ROTJ she seems like nothing more than just another rebel soilder, for lack of a better term."

    So totally true. Her story ends once they save Han from the clutches of Jabba. Padme's political role dimishes as the story goes on but her personal story becomes larger as the story goes on and it is greatly connected to Anakin's plot...

    ...and the comparisons between Padme and Luke are accurate. They are closer in terms of personality and faults than Padme and Leia.

    Some would see what I'm about to describe as a regression. But I see it as progress from an overall storytelling standpoint.

    Episode I-The political leader. No personal side whatsoever except for a few scenes with Anakin.
    Epiosde II-The balance portrayal of her. Highly regarded in the Senate and throughout the Republic but her personal side emerges in this story.
    Episode III-The personal Padme. We only get hints at her political side.

    The warning sign was when we saw her so young in Episode I and she was the ruler of a entire system. It was clear from that moment that she had no childhood.

    Good post, Force-Keeper.
  10. Jedi_Momma Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2005
    star 2
    As a woman and the mother of two daughters I have to admit myself rather disappointed w/ the Padme character.

    In TPM she comes off as strong and brave, then in AOTC she?s got some bright spots (e.g. firing on Dooku before running to Ani) but she really lost my respect by engaging in a clandestine marriage - one she knew would ?destroy us.? In ROTS, w/o the birth of the rebellion scenes, she comes off mainly as a cautionary tale. As I said on another thread ? if you sacrifice honor for love you?ll lose both and deserve neither. She did salvage some integrity by refusing to condone Anakin?s actions but then she dies like some Victorian heroine. (It?s deliberate that she looks like the Lady of Shalott in her funeral scene.) Sigh.

    P.S. For those who don?t know the poem, ?Tennyson's Lady of Shalott, ?perfectly embodies the Victorian image of the ideal woman: virginal, embowered, spiritual and mysterious, dedicated to her womanly tasks.? Yuck.
  11. lovelucas Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 19, 2004
    star 4
    george needed to focus on the fall of anakin to tell the story within 2 1/4 hours. but to add another take on the character of padme, via the actress who has portrayed her since 1997 - here is what natalie portman had to say:
    Question: Playing the part of a strong willed senator as well as an expectant mother, do you view Padme as a feminist role model?

    Answer: I definitely appreciate the fact that the role defines the true meaning of feminism as I interpret it. Feminism is often misconstrued as women wanting to be like men. True feminism for me is bringing (out) what is particular to women because we are different. It's not (about) going some place and behaving like a man or necessarily desiring what men want just because you can get it. It's about making decisions from your point of view as to what you are going to do with the opportunities (you are) afforded. I think Padme is an amazing example because she is a politician and she has been a leader of many people. But rather than being consumed with the thrist for power as many of the people around her are, both men and women, she stays true to her compassion and her belief in democracy and in humanity.

  12. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    lovelucas, I've always loved that quote but some say that she doesn't show her compassion for democracy because she doesn't act at the end when Palpatine declares the Empire...

    ...but, I say that given the amount of power Palpatine had and how many delegates he had in his back pocket, her and Bail were greatly outmanned to openly oppose Palpatine in the end. They were in a no win situation toward the end of the film.

    Again, many feel that if her belief in democracy and humanity was so strong, why didn't she act? And agian, I say it has to do with Palpatine's overall hold on the Senate and it's populace and her pregnancy.
  13. Jedi_Momma Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2005
    star 2

    Feminism is often misconstrued as women wanting to be like men. True feminism for me is bringing (out) what is particular to women because we are different. It's not (about) going some place and behaving like a man or necessarily desiring what men want just because you can get it.

    Ms. Portman has some growing up to do if you ask me.

    And if I want to get really snarky about it, the very essence of any woman who becomes a mother is protecting her children. A strong women doesn't "lose the will to live" and let her infant twins fend for themselves./>/>
  14. Smuggler-of-Mos-Espa Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2002
    star 6
    Dear god, a film director can't betray his own character.

    Padmé was a main character, but she served her purpose by the time of Revenge. She had no other purpose.
  15. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    "And if I want to get really snarky about it, the very essence of any woman who becomes a mother is protecting her children. A strong women don't "lose the will to live" and let their infant twins fend for themselves."

    That's the tragedy of her character. Her losing the will to live has a lot to do with what happens around her(the fall of the Republic) and what happens to her(losing Anakin). Given what she goes through in those short few hours, it doesn't surprise me. Padme is more a symbol of the ideals of a dying age than a true 3 dimensional character in Episode III.

    And Portman's idea of feminism is her opinion. She's not stating it as fact...
  16. Smuggler-of-Mos-Espa Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2002
    star 6
    There's a difference between an actor's opinions and a character's opinions.
  17. Jedi_Momma Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2005
    star 2

    Padme is more a symbol of the ideals of a dying age than a true 3 dimensional character in Episode III.
    story well but I also feel it served the character poorly. That's just the way it goes sometimes.


    And Portman's idea of feminism is her opinion. She's not stating it as fact...
    my opinion. [face_peace]
    />/>/>/>
  18. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    " I understand the symbolism and I agree that it served the story well but I also feel it served the character poorly. That's just the way it goes sometimes."

    I can agree with that totally...
  19. yankee8255 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2005
    star 6
    COuldn't agree more. To think that Leia's Mom died because she'd 'Lost the will to live'. Had Leia taken after her Mom, she'd have offed herself after seeing Alderaan blown to bits.
  20. therealpalpatine Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 3, 2005
    star 1
    I didn't find anything wrong with her in this film.

    She got just as much screentime as far as I could tell, and if anything it's George's story and he can protray her any way he wishes.
  21. RamRed Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2002
    star 4
    NO!!! Padme was in her final trimester during the story. I've seen the deleted scenes regarding the creation of the Rebel Alliance. It simply didn't mesh with the rest of Episode III. In fact, it seemed as if should belong in the upcoming SW television series.

    So, NO, Padme's character wasn't sacrificed. Padme's PERSONAL side had a lot to do with Anakin's downfall - which was what the movie was supposed to be about. Jeez!
  22. YYZ-2112 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2004
    star 4
    I'm glad all the deleted scenes were cut. The energy wasn't anywhere near as charged as the rest of the film. The Yoda scene was nice in that it shows the potential for how Lucas would have presented Dagobah had he invented it today. But it doesn't belong in the film because it takes away from Episode 5. The rest of the scenes cut that were included on the DVD would have dragged and detracted from the story. Episode 3 is perhaps the best edited film of the prequals and this is why.

    Now I agree it would have been nice to see how the rebellion began but what we see in the Jedi travesty is enough to give us a pretty good idea what solidified it even though we missed the behind the scenes political formations.

    I felt Padme was perfectly balanced in her role in the film and that her number of scenes worked well to tell the story in how she related to Anakin's fall and how she related to the fate of the children and how those who knew Padme interacted with those children later.

    On the question "Did Lucas betray Padme?": The character is his own. She is part of his own identity to the story he invented. To betray that is to betray himself and his own story. It's illogical. Now if what your really asking is "Did Lucas betray Natalie Portman?" then I'd still have to say no, because by cutting those pointless scenes (although colorful and partly fascinating) he has given the audience the best part of her storyline and acting performance. And while some might enjoy bashing Natalie simply because the prequels weren't a Darth Vader bloodfest, she simply did a great job with the tools given her for Episode 3 and really the prequels in general.

    Watch the behind the scenes stuff that goes on in a film production; particularly the Star Wars docs. It's plain to see that Lucas guides the actor's every move down to which direction a character is to trun away to after part of their line or even how much emphasis to use on a particular word. Actors don't just get in front of a camera and act natural or pretend to be in the moment and improvise (atleast not on a Star Wars set) they take the material given them and try to present it as natural as possible so that the audience will buy it. All of this while adhering to spur of the moment rewrites and on the set detailing and in front of a green screen.
  23. Greedo_forever Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 24, 2005
    star 3
    Well, I also found that many other characters' roles diminished to further the story of the main character(s) in BOTH trilogies.

    ROTS is mainly about Anakin and Obi Wan, ROTJ is mostly about Luke and Vader.

    You could almost say that Han's character weakened ALOT in ROTJ, but that is up for debate by some.

    Basically, I don't think that it was a subliminally sexist decision for her character to die the way she did.

    As to labelling her death scene as Victorian (Arthurian, Wagnerian etc...) chauvinism... well... That's a bit harsh.
  24. Jumpman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2003
    star 4
    Wonderful post, YYZ-2112. My question in the opening of this thread has nothing to do with betraying Portman. Like you, I felt she was well balanced and great in the Prequels, especially Episode III.

    The reason I asked the question from the start is because of all the reactions to Episode III, it seems that Padme's character portrayal was the strongest reaction in terms of that there wasn't enough of her to some. Also, some felt that the way Lucas edited the film, it looked as if Padme voluntarily let the Republic die without fighting.

    I struggled with understanding the negative reactions toward how she was in the film. One even came to the suggesting that in Episodes I and II, Padme clearly represented Blue State America while in Episode III she represented Red State America and said person too great offense to Padme becoming that way in today's modern age.

    So, Padme is the biggest issue I like to discuss when it comes to Episode III and the Prequels. While, not as interesting as say Anakin's overall story, I find Padme in the Prequels to be almost as interesting. I feel there is more to her than Leia but like many of you, I realized that really, Padme and Luke are more alike than Leia and Padme and that struck me.

    I want to continue this discussion with everyone's ideas on every aspect that relates to Padme in Episode III. From behind the scenes to decisions on how she would be protrayed in the film to reaction when juxtapose with her character in Episodes I and II.

    Great post, greedo.
  25. YYZ-2112 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2004
    star 4

    You assume too much.

    Just because a droid states Padme has lost the will to live doesn't make it so. She was dying for unknown reasons. Obi Wan makes a pretty good point in Episode 2 that if droids could think there wouldnt be any of us. Fact is the droids were bewildered and made the assumption that it was her own will giving up. I feel it points to something more; something connected to the force and the force empowered children. The droid was a creation of Lucas' but it doesn't absolutley define what he was trying to allude to in the nature of her end. For one thing she takes the time to name both of her children after struggling with all her energy to bring them int othe world. Then with her dying breath she takes the energy to tell Obi Wan that there is still good in Anakin.

    An example of someone who has lost the will to live is the character Christopher Reeve plays in the film 'Somewhere in Time'. He shuts down and cuts himself off from everyone and everything around him. He end up dying from complications due to lack of food and water. In the case of Padme she was perfectly healthy. In real cases of people dying of a 'broken heart' they have heart failure or stroke or some other physical body failure. This is not the case in Padme; they even say so. Her body just stops. This sounds like something of a mystery to me and likely force driven or affected./>/>
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