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PT Disconnect between TPM and AOTC/ROTS?

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Lord Megatron, Feb 13, 2014.

  1. Lord Megatron

    Lord Megatron Jedi Youngling

    Jan 28, 2014
    Is it just me, or does the PT really feel like a standalone film and a duology? TPM and AOTC/ROTS just seem like radically different movies, and they really don't feel like one trilogy, IMO. The core cast completely changes, with the leads going from Qui-Gon, young Obi-Wan, 14-year-old Padme, and Jar-Jar to older Obi-Wan, Padme (who is 10 years older and has a completely different role in government than the previous film), and an all-new Anakin Skywalker. The antagonist shifts from Maul to Dooku, and the tone itself goes from the very bright tone of TPM (overall, it has some dark moments) to the dark tone of the latter films. Am I just weird?

    (Side note: this isn't a bash on the PT. I love the PT as films. I just am noting that they seem to be two separate experiences)
    Jarren_Lee-Saber, Pearlsaber and TKT like this.
  2. CommanderDrenn

    CommanderDrenn Jedi Knight star 4

    Oct 19, 2013
    Hmm...In that respect, it is like a prequel prequel. It is quintessential to the plot, but it does lend an air of unjointedness. Wait, unjointedness isn't a word. Oh well, for my purposes, it works. Anyway, I agree with the points you have made, and I also think it would have benefitted from being less disjointed.
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  3. sharkymcshark

    sharkymcshark Jedi Knight star 3

    Dec 12, 2013
    I don't think quintessential means what you think it means either.
  4. Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn

    Lt.Cmdr.Thrawn Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Sep 23, 1999
    I agree. There are two more aspects that contribute to this, as well, I think:

    1. All of the prequel films have a large amount of model and miniature work in them, but The Phantom Menace seems to have noticeably less obvious CGI (for example in the space battle scenes) and also just less visual overload. Also, the compositions of the shots seem a bit less simplistic for the characters and less over-the-top for the action, too (possibly related to being slightly more tied to physical objects?).

    2. The Phantom Menace went through multiple drafts, and based several elements on a general backstory that was in place even in the time when Empire Strikes Back was first being contemplated (even though some of them were changed - this seems to have happened piecemeal, in the interest of other parts of the story. The point is that those things were things that GL had been thinking about and considering for a very long time). AOTC seems to have had a very rushed development, with the final script arriving extremely late (but seemingly without as many drafts and revisions), and significant sequences of the movie being reshot or added in postproduction (the droid factory). ROTS also included the rest of the elements from the old backstory, though again seemingly without as many revisions and considered refinements as TPM. Plus, it too seems to have been relatively rushed - if not as much as AOTC - and it too had significant changes to the story and pacing made in postproduction (the timing and circumstances of Anakin's turn to the dark side). It might be because I know those things, but I think the rushed effect kind of comes across in the films themselves.
  5. Tornado Wrangler

    Tornado Wrangler Jedi Padawan star 1

    Apr 22, 2013
    It is the disconnect in time that also makes TPM tend to stand alone. Only twice as many years separate the two trilogies as separate TPM and AOTC.

    Also, the title! AOTC and ROTS are both pretty straight forward. Compare that to the intentional vagueness of "The Phantom Menace"
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  6. TheChosenSolo

    TheChosenSolo Jedi Master star 4

    Dec 9, 2011
    I wouldn't have noticed if it hadn't been brought up, but now that I hear (see?) it mentioned, I can see what you mean. In universe, the OT spans 4 years in three movies, the PT 13 in three movies. That's bound to create a disconnect where the greater gap is in the PT.
  7. Vthuil

    Vthuil Force Ghost star 5

    Jan 3, 2013
    I always kind of thought this, but I never really saw it as just a PT thing - although when it's spelled out in detail like this, it does seem like it happened more strongly with the PT than with the OT.
  8. Samnz

    Samnz Jedi Master star 3

    Sep 4, 2012
    I don't really see them as disconnect.
    I can certainly see why some would see it: Qui-Gon is gone, Anakin is played by a different actors.

    But I see, apart from that, a lot more familiar elements in AOTC that enable a smooth transition to ROTS:
    Padmé and Obi-Wan are still leads. Characters like Jar Jar, Watto and Shmi are still there (even though with smaller roles). TPM's core planets, Naboo and Taooine, are still featured to a rather large extent. The tone is a bit different, but it's a pretty gradual shift. TPM is quite lighthearted with a dark undertone, AOTC is rather moody and melancholic and ROTS is dark.
    So I would say there is a certain disconnent on first view - but not further.

    I find first movies of good trilogies are always rather isolated. ANH is also pretty independent.
  9. May_The_Force_Be_With_You

    May_The_Force_Be_With_You Jedi Knight star 1

    Jan 21, 2014
    Interesting observation. I agree with you that there does feel like a...peculiar disconnect between the PT movies (but more specifically TPM from the others). I guess it stems from both TPM and AOTC as "beginnings". TPM obviously set up the entire PT, but AOTC had to do a lot of set up since ten years went by since TPM. Whereas with ROTS, we just jump straight into it following AOTC.
  10. anakinfansince1983

    anakinfansince1983 Nightsister of Four Realms star 9 Staff Member Manager

    Mar 4, 2011
    There's definitely a disconnect, enough to leave a "What the hell happened?" feeling at the beginning of AOTC.

    The only connector I see is Palpatine becoming Chancellor at the end of TPM and in AOTC, we see him in action as Chancellor.

    It could be blamed on the ten-year time passage in the settings of the films.
  11. SithStarSlayer

    SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 23, 2003
    Forgetting my job for a second, I hope this doesn't digress into another one of those, "Oh, how I wish Anakin wasn't a ten year old in TPM" threads. The TV show validates the your point of view, TPM could have been a PT prequel, with three more movies that include the main elements from the cartoon... like Skywalker's padawan and Maul's return. Getting back to work, the danger in this type of discussion is that it can morph into a re-write thread rather quickly... so I'm glad to see this come out of the gate the right way.
  12. ezekiel22x

    ezekiel22x Force Ghost star 5

    Aug 9, 2002
    Overt plot and characterization make it feel a bit like a prologue, but in terms of theme and ideas it's definitely one of the richer episodes for me. So I wouldn't say "disconnected" is the right word given that I can't help but flash back to TPM's depictions of slavery and Jedi Order belief systems while watching the heights of Vader's reign in ESB and ROTJ.

    JEDI-RISING Force Ghost star 6

    Apr 15, 2005
    there's quite a jump ahead in time between ep. I and II. It goes to show how much ground there was to cover in the prequels.
    SithStarSlayer likes this.
  14. DRush76

    DRush76 Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 25, 2008
    This is so irrelevant to me, that I'm shaking my head in disgust. TPM established how Anakin ended up with the Jedi; and how he first met Padme, Obi-Wan and Palpatine. TPM also established how Palpatine first reached a position of power. TPM also established how the Jedi first became aware of the re-emergence of the Sith.

    There is no damn reason why the time period between TPM and AOTC had to be shorter. No one has given a good reason why the time period between the two movies had to be shorter. And this idea that since TPM and AOTC were ten years apart, there was a disconnect is just . . . you know what? I don't know if it's laughable or simply just a case of nitpicking of the worst kind. I've read historical novels in which there has been a distance of a decade or two between major chapters or sections of a story. And yet, fans are getting their undies in a twist over a ten-year period between two movies in one trilogy.

    The nitpicking has now reached proportions of the ridiculous.
    Billy_Dee_Binks and darthjj88 like this.
  15. purplerain

    purplerain Jedi Knight star 4

    Sep 14, 2013
    I had no problem with the TPM-AOTC transition, but I'd still love a tv show that takes place in between TPM and AOTC. I'd enjoy watching Anakin's training, the changes that Palpatine makes as Chancellor, Dooku's turn to the dark side, and the birth of the CIS.
  16. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 18, 2012

    What 'depiction' of slavery? I know we're told that Anakin and Schmi are slaves but...there is no depiction of that, not imo. Slavery seems almost...reasonable here. You lead a life that anybody else would, you stay with your family and have a family home...its just that you are (notionally) owned. Anakin, the 'slave' has enough free time that he has managed to build a droid and a speeder (how he hides this from his owner I'm not sure, especially as it is all stuff 'acquired' from Watto's store.
  17. Iron_lord

    Iron_lord Force Ghost star 9

    Sep 2, 2012
    And will be exploded if you decide to walk away from it.
  18. Alexrd

    Alexrd Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 7, 2009
    So, to you, slavery is just all about chains, bullwhips, and non-stop work?

    Let me help you:

    slave, noun:
    1 - a person who is the legal property of another and is forced to obey them;
    1.1 - a person who works very hard without proper remuneration or appreciation;
    1.2 - a person who is excessively dependent upon or controlled by something.

    How is all of that not depicted in TPM?
  19. Oberst Hans Landa

    Oberst Hans Landa Jedi Knight star 2

    Feb 12, 2014

    Did you mean critical, crucial, important and/or pivotal? or even essential? Because quintessential means something that is the perfect example of something else. Like: Darth Vader is the quintessential villain. ;) CommanderDrenn
  20. PiettsHat

    PiettsHat Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jan 1, 2011

    You're too hung up on the depiction of slavery in the American south. Not all slavery consisted of back-breaking work in horrible conditions. That's true for unskilled slaves, but for skilled slaves, it was not. If you look at slavery in ancient Rome, for example, there's accounts of Greek being enslaved to become teachers. In fact, teachers, accountants, and doctors could all be slaves. Wikipedia's got a bit of info on the subject if you're interested. It was also much more common to believe that well-treated slaves would be more productive in those times as a skilled slave wasn't treated as a disposable worker, compared to the American south. Slaves attached to households, for instance, might have a better life than the free urban poor in Rome. Doesn't mean they weren't slaves or that it's somehow okay to enslave them.

    Anakin and his mother are both, without a doubt, "skilled" slaves -- Anakin's not only a great mechanic but he's also the only human to be able to pod race. It's in Watto's interest not to run him into the ground.

    Also, Anakin doesn't seem completely impervious to Watto's presence...



    Also, seriously dude? Slavery seems "almost reasonable"? I'm sorry, but it would be absolutely horrible to live my day to day life knowing I had no control over it. That I was restricted in where I could go and what I could do on the whims of another person who could do anything they wanted to me with no repercussions. That the people I loved could be taken away from me and there was nothing I could do about it.
  21. Alexrd

    Alexrd Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 7, 2009
    Indeed, having 'slavery' and 'reasonable' in the same sentence is an oxymoron.
  22. only one kenobi

    only one kenobi Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 18, 2012 is exactly this romanticised (literally) notion of 'friendly' slavery that I am uncomfortable with. Slavery in Rome was brutal. Slavery is and always was brutal. As a slave you had no say in how you were used, or how you were treated. But your argument is self-contradictory; you seem to be arguing for the 'reasonableness' of certain forms of Roman slavery, but then decry that no slavery is reasonable. Roman and Greek slavery seems to get a form of 'free pass', where the abusive nature of slavery is almost overlooked (The film 300 does this best when there is that speech about 'freedom' - which completely bypasses that the Spartan economy relied upon the subjugation of fellow Greeks (helots) as slaves to work the land while the Persian King, being a follower of Zoroaster, despised slavery)

    In terms of Anakin's slavery I see a young boy who goes home to his mother, where she has time to feed him and look after him. He has his own room in which is to be found the paraphernalia of any young boy his age, including a droid he has made - in his spare time. He also has the time to make a speeder.

    Yes, the word slave is used (telling not showing) and along with that some notion of a hidden explosive device but a depiction? There is no more a depiction of slavery than there is a depiction of stone age life in the Flinstones.

    Let me put it this way. If the word slave had not been used, if the explosive device had not been spoken of...would you have thought of Schmi and Anakin as slaves? From the way they live?
  23. PiettsHat

    PiettsHat Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jan 1, 2011

    You are the one who said slavery seemed "almost reasonable" -- don't put words in my mouth.

    All I said was that not all slavery means hard labor and being whipped and chained (though much of it did). I provided historical examples of how slavery differed across history. Slavery in Rome was brutal, but not all slaves were beaten to the brink of death because some people at the time -- such as Seneca -- said that slaves that were treated better would perform better.

    It's not a romanticized notion of "friendly" slavery nor self-contradictory.

    I'm not arguing for "reasonableness" in slavery. Please show me where I stated as much. I said that the very fact that one is a slave -- no matter how well one is "cared" for or treated -- is horrible and a terrible way to live. That was what the entire last section of my post was concerned with -- that even if Anakin and his mother were not regularly beaten to within an inch of their lives, their status as slaves is still horrible.

    Watto, in TPM, is by all appearances economically successful if his gambling is taken into account. And he has skilled slaves that he keeps in good condition because it is in his best interest to keep them in good condition.

    You seem to be saying that because Anakin was not chained to his workstation and had no whip marks on his back that he doesn't "count" as a slave. Which is BS because, as I pointed out, in Rome, house slaves often lived in better conditions than the urban poor. That doesn't, though, by any means make their situation "okay" or "reasonable."

    You don't get to define what slavery is just because it doesn't fit within your preconceived framework. Someone can be abused at home even if they aren't beaten or molested. It irritates me when people try to say that someone is not really suffering from a "legitimate" crime or form of abuse because it isn't violent enough. Guess what? Not having any control over your own life, being owned by someone else, and having a bomb implanted in you constitutes slavery as far as I'm concerned.
  24. ezekiel22x

    ezekiel22x Force Ghost star 5

    Aug 9, 2002
    The depiction works fine for me. For one thing it's a PG rated movie, and for another I can accept fiction that portrays slaves living "comfortably" in terms of housing, food, etc. The depiction reminds me of a line in the latest A Song of Ice and Fire novel, where a character says something along the lines of "when I was a slave I slept on a feather bed, now that I am free I sleep on the streets." I think there's a sense of tragic poetry to Anakin going from a slave's life lived with his only family to a free life that allows him to see his mother one time, when she dies in his arms after a brutal injustice far from Jedi jurisdiction and their center of the galaxy.
    Iron_lord likes this.
  25. CommanderDrenn

    CommanderDrenn Jedi Knight star 4

    Oct 19, 2013

    I think :oops: describes my reaction pretty well. Yes, I meant essential, crucial, etc.

    :-B I usually am scrupulous about my grammar. Hats off to you. :)