CT Favorite lightsaber duel in the OT?

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by Feelicks, Mar 4, 2013.

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Favorite OT duel?

Darth Vader v.s. Obi-Wan (ANH) 7 vote(s) 5.2%
Luke v.s. Darth Vader (TESB) 68 vote(s) 50.7%
Luke v.s. Darth Vader (ROTJ) 68 vote(s) 50.7%
Multiple votes are allowed.
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  1. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Lucas may not know his science- but Lucasfilm has hired people who know it better, to write such books. Even the latest novelizations- like the RoTS novel- have switched to describing the lightsaber beam as plasma.

    It may not be hard sci-fi- but where's the harm in trying to make it a bit more so?
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  2. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    I don't know if there's harm, but it doesn't really offer any benefit, either. Especially because we're talking about something that's way outside the domain of the films themselves, though at that point it's opening up the same old boring debate of novelizations and EU and their place in canon.

    Important thing is-- going by the films themselves, the lightsabers aren't really all that plausible or realistic, and expecting combat with them to be completely plausible or realistic is a fool's errand. Or at least just a good way to ruin a good time.
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  3. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    I said that two lightsabers act the same way towards each other as two metal blade ie they don't cut through the other blade and they cut the person. I assume you weren't aware of that either?
  4. Bazinga'd SWC/PT/ Spinoff Manager -Destroyer of Spam

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Nov 1, 2012
    star 5
    Vader vs Obi Wan. Its the best because its the first lightsaber duel I (and anyone else) ever saw.
    eDisc likes this.
  5. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    Do they also cauterize flesh wounds at the same time as they cut, or burn through heavy metal blast doors or anything that isn't also energy-based, like they are? Lightsabers aren't real, and as such there's no need to expect they limit their combatants to fighting styles as simply and conservatively as broadswords. And anyway, plenty of other commentators have shown real-sword based fights that are just as elaborately choregraphed and bat**** crazy as the PT's duels, if not moreso.
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  6. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    Dude, I said they behave towards each other in the same manner as two metal blades behave towards each other. A battle between two lightsaber wielders and two metal sword wielders should thus look very similar, since the blades don't cut through each other. And I have yet to see a sword fight in any medium as wack as the PT duels are.
    Last edited by Chainmail_Jedi, Mar 8, 2013
  7. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    Then why bring up how they react to flesh? Let's also remember that a blade is essentially a two-dimensional weapon. The sharp edge, the pointy end-- that's what can do damage to the opponent. The lightsaber, on the other hand, is a much more three-dimensional weapon. It doesn't have a flat side to it. The barest touch of the beam can be fatal, or at the very least incapacitating (those light grazes Dooku uses on Obi-Wan, for example-- you couldn't scratch someone with a blade that superficially and take them out of the fight). Also, we don't really know from the films, but would the lightsaber beam have any kind of weight to it, the way a blade would?

    Lightsaber beams don't cut through each other, like swords most of the time (with enough force, they can be broken, something that probably is far more likely to happen in real life than in movies). But that doesn't mean a lightsaber is just a sword that glows in the dark. And as such, there's no reason it has to be limited to the more conservative sword fighting techniques.
    SlashMan and Jarren_Lee-Saber like this.
  8. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    Ok, they even react towards flesh similarly, and before we had the PTs and the SEs they didn't cauterize. In the OOT, we never saw a good look of where Luke's hand was severed, we couldn't tell with Vader's hand, and the dude in the cantina bleed like a pig. Even with cauterizing, they still behave basically similar. They don't cut through the other blade, and they damage the person.

    As for swords cutting through each other, that rarely happened with dueling blades. Look up foil fencing, Sabre fencing, and Kendo duels. Kendo is what you're thinking where they break, and I assure you it was not a common occurrence.

    And I brung flesh up because the basic behavior is the same, minus bleeding/plus cauterizing. They won't cut through the other blade, and they will cut through/damage the person.
    Based on those characteristics, a lightsaber duel should look extremely similar to a sword duel.

    Which in the PT, they don't.
    Last edited by Chainmail_Jedi, Mar 8, 2013
  9. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    Yes. The rules of how a lightsaber works, like many other things in "Star Wars", were made up as they went along. In addition, I'm shocked to discover that there's gambling going on at Rick's Cafe.

    Not common, but it happens. It's a possibility. But the range of different kinds of sword fighting you bring up illustrates a larger point-- there's no one type of swordplay that lightsaber dueling has to mimic, and indeed it's probably for the best when the filmmakers try to treat the idea of the weapon as its own thing, and not just imitate the real world to a T. And besides, there's plenty of other styles of fencing not being brought up here, including plenty of purely cinematic styles like wu xia that the PT definitely takes some inspiration from. It would be boring as hell if a lightsaber duel simply looked like a real-world sword fight with a rotoscoped blade.

    It's a bunch of damn movies, anyway. We might as well be arguing about gun fights in movies where shooters clearly should be running out of bullets left and right, or keep missing targets they ought to hit right away for dramatic purposes.
  10. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    The swordplay in the PT mimics no known form of sword fighting though, it doesn't even resemble a combination of sword styles. They don't have to imitate real world to a T, but when the choreography just looks unbelievable, such as targets missing their opponents on purpose (as the video I posted on page 1 shows) then it crosses into the realm of totally unbelievable, even in universe.
    If someone fought with a lightsaber using a traditional sword style, a combination of a few or whatever, they would be the best lightsaber duelist in the GFFA.

    At least until they started fighting a bit more realistically, in the classic trilogy era.
    Last edited by Chainmail_Jedi, Mar 8, 2013
  11. StarWarsVerses Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 14, 2013
    star 1
    Look, we're talking about mystic/mythic energy battles between telekinetic supermonks with precognitive abilities who are looking into the constantly-shifting future to predict what their opponent is about to do next. Lightsaber duels are only partially happening in physical world, the rest is a supernatural unconscious conflict that we can only glimpse through specific behaviors of the participants.

    What's the point of bringing that down to sea-level? It's not what Star Wars is offering. If you want to see realistic swordfighting go watch the woodcutter segment of Rashomon.
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  12. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    IF they really had precognitive abilities it would make the fights look even more realistic. Nobody would miss their targets on purpose (as demonstrated in the video on page one) or strike more than 20 inches off target (demonstrated on page 1), striking for the opponents saber on purpose.

    Truth is, the PT Choreography does not resemble realistically how people who are fighting to win would fight with lightsabers. It shows how people would fight to entertain a crowd, as if they are on stage, rather than dueling each other.
    Last edited by Chainmail_Jedi, Mar 8, 2013
  13. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    Again, you can nitpick any fight sequence with any weapons, sword, gun or just bare fists, and pick it apart like this. The OT shootouts are classic examples of fights that are staged to look impressive and action-packed but don't really make a lick of sense. Stormtroopers can't seem to hit anything at point blank range. Characters stand out in the open while gunfire is blazing all around them without bothering to find any cover. Luke in ANH is the most obvious example, but think of the rebel soldiers on the blockade runner-- wouldn't it make more sense to try and erect some barricades, or take positions behind corners rather than just standing right in the open hallway.

    Yeah, this. I'm reminded a little bit of all of the increasingly hyper fighting from Dragon Ball Z as well, in the sense that we're watching battles between characters so insanely powerful that we're only seeing snatches of their fast moves, and that every blow is layered through anticipation, readings, etc. None of those fights really make sense either on the surface, and nitpicking them to death is just a waste of time.

    Your mention of Kurosawa and the difference he shows there between "movie fighting" and "real fighting" and how pathetic the former looks reminds me, by extention, of the long, slow burn and split-second hair trigger gunfights from Sergio Leone's movies. Are they fun to watch? You better believe it. Do I buy them as plausible for a second? Of course not, but that isn't the point. One of his movies is called Once Upon a Time in the West, George Lucas' little series could very well be called something like that. Never sweat things that begin by announcing themselves as a goddamn fairy tale.
  14. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    No. Just no. Mainly because I am only speaking about the lightsaber duels. Nobody purposefully misses their targets with the lightsaber duels in the OT, and you can't really compare that to Stormtroopers because tell if the Stormtroopers miss on purpose b/c they do it with such frequency that it's safe to assume they don't know how to shoot, at all. On top of that, from what we see on screen it would seem the helmets impair somebody's vision. Everyone else strikes true. Han Solo doesn't purposefully miss. Neither does Chewie, Leia, or any of the guys who seem to know what they are doing.

    Luke doesn't miss with his saber on purpose. Neither does Vader. Or Obi-Wan in the CT.

    That video on page one isn't 'nitpicking' - just watch it. They blatantly swing right over their opponent's head and swing to the side of them.

    A gunfight isn't comparable to a sword fight in this regard.

    Fistfights are almost never seen in Star Wars. If they were in the PTs, they would probably look like a DBZ fight.
  15. StarWarsVerses Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 14, 2013
    star 1
    As a side note, I remember hearing somewhere that Lucas kept a copy of Once Upon a Time in the West in the editing room while Empire was being cut together. There's certainly a kindred spirit there.
  16. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    According to the recent "Making of Star Wars" book, OUaTitW was a direct influence on the development of ANH, particularly when it came to the wardrobes of Obi-Wan and the Rebel commanders in those duster-looking coats. The way that the Jedi robes evolved, I think you can see more of the Leone influence in the Prequels even, where you see them taking that self conscious pause before a battle to stare each other down and take the robes off. A tumbleweed could pass by in that time. And of course there's the match-cut between extreme close-ups of eyes in ROTS, which is pretty much a screaming shout out to Leone.

    That's one hell of a rationalization with the Stormtroopers. If the Stormtroopers "don't know how to shoot, at all", when why aren't complaints about that valid? It's pure Bond film logic of the hero being a crack shot and nobody else being able to land a bullet on him. Yeah, you kind of need your hero to survive and everything, but the Stormtroopers' inability to hit anything run the risk of taking out all the danger in the action. At least in the PT you have battle droids that have enough accuracy to fire shots that would hit their targets, if only their targets weren't Jedi carrying lightsabers that just bounce them right back.

    Do Han, Chewie or Leia hit all of their marks? If not, then they're missing on purpose. Not the characters, of course, but from a production stand-point, for the same reason that Stormtroopers have to miss and duelists have to either swing wildly and hit air with their lightsabers or else have dreadfully, dreadfully boring fights. And one thing that definitely does bug me about the hero-shootings in the OT is the poor choreography of the bad guys. There's that one Stormtrooper in ESB that seems to just stand in a Cloud City hallway and wait for Chewie to turn around and blast him.

    Again. These are goddamn movies.

    Again, rewind and play back something over and over again, and anything in a movie looks artificial.

    Perhaps we'll see this in the ST. One can dream...
    Jarren_Lee-Saber likes this.
  17. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    I don't seem to recall a Battle Droid ever hitting a target. Jedi or not, I don't even recall Gungan's getting hit in the Battle of Naboo. At least the Stormtroopers did shoot Leia in the arm at one point. And I think they might have killed an Ewok or two.

    It's not just rewinding and playing it over - they show multiple scenes. Qui-Gon purposefully missing on three occasions, Maul purposefully missing on at least 2-4 occasions, and Obi-Wan missing on at least 4 occasions. Sure it rewinds it and shows it numerous times, but that doesn't mitigate the fact that combatants are purposefully missing their targets.

    Doesn't happen in the OT Duels.
  18. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    There's Naboo guardsmen who get shot in TPM. There's whole slews of Jedi who get gunned down in AOTC, and Clonetroopers who get killed by droids in ROTS. Sure, no Gungans, but you don't exactly go around killing a bunch of the kid-friendly characters in a kid-friendly movie. One of the Ewoks gets killed in ROTJ, but they're less anthropomorphized. Easier to killa teddy bear than a human-esque Gungan.

    Duelists swing and miss in the OT. Vader seems to be aiming less at Luke or Ben half the time and more at stuff that his saber can hit and make big sparkling explosions with, because that's what the filmmakers wanted. All the battle damage that gets done in OT duels represents purposeful missing as well, because that's what the choreography of the fight is meant to do.
    SlashMan and Jarren_Lee-Saber like this.
  19. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    'Missing' in the OT is different than what happens in the PT duels. On top of that, what you mentioned happens less than twice per fight. The intentional choreographed missing in the PT duels happens at least a half dozen of times each fight. Watch that video on page one, then watch any duel in the OT and compare them. Try to break it down the same way as that video - it doesn't work, because you can't.
    Last edited by Chainmail_Jedi, Mar 8, 2013
  20. Jarren_Lee-Saber Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 16, 2008
    star 4
    You have CLEARLY not seen the PT in a loooong time! Battle droids are constantly hitting targets, and much of the time its Jedi who have to deflect the fire to keep from dying. And there were several times gungans got killed, even more times Clone Troopers were killed, and many Jedi died in the battle of Geonosis. Judging by you arguments I am more & more assured that you haven't watched the PT in ages (or possibly never) and are basing all you (poor) arguments on RLM and other mocking youtube videos.

    And no, we are not going to take that foolish video you posted on page one with any more than a grain of salt. As Jedi_Ford_Prefect said, rewind and play back something over and over again, and anything in a movie looks artificial (and very silly).
    SlashMan and obi-rob-kenobi4 like this.
  21. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 3
    My thoughts,

    First I have done some fencing and a little of stage-fencing and the two are very different. In real fencing you want to hit your opponent before they hit you and usually you don't want to wave your blade around all the time as that is a) tirering and b) leaves you open for an attack.
    Stage-fencing is different because it is supposed to look good and also it needs to be done safely so that you don't hurt your opponent. Hence much more big swings and such.

    So a film fight has to be choreographed in order to look good and be done safely. At times a fight can be OVER-choreographed so that it looks like they are dancing or that there are far too many flashy moves. Some of the fights in the Matrix reloaded felt like that.
    The fights in Princess Bride and CTHD were much better and they are some of my favorite onscreen fights.

    As for the OT/PT duels. I favor the OT duels because they are more about character and emotion and in most cases have better build up.
    The PT have more advanced choreography and are flashier and more gimmicky, like Mauls double lightsaber or griev's four lightsabers.
    But that matter less to me than good characters and having the duel matter. Maul had no character and thus the fight with him, while nice to look at, was rather empty. Griev had a character but he was all talk and no delivery and again that made the fight him empty.
    Dooku vs Obi-Wan/Anakin in AotC was better but much to short. Dooku vs Yoda got old really fast. RotS suffered from lightsaber fatigue to me, there were too many fights. Anakin vs Obi-Wan has a good build up and lots of emotion, here I think they went slightly overboard with the enviroment and a little with all the twirling but I do like the fight.

    Bye for now.
    The Guarding Dark
  22. Chainmail_Jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 26, 2013
    star 2
    I will never watch the PTs again.

    That video should be taken with more than a grain of salt, it's not just rewinding and playing it back. It shows the characters legitimately swinging over their targets on purpose, on almost a half dozen occasions.

    Which makes the fight utterly unbelievable.
  23. Bale Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 9, 2005
    star 4
    I think you're spot on with the comparison of the OT/PT duels. ROTJ was the closest they came, IMO, to marrying the action and emotion of the duel.
  24. ObiAlKenobi Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 10, 2012
    star 2
    To me, Empire has the best of everything, including the lightsaber duel. Luke facing the powerful Vader for the first time. His friends in peril (and losing). The ultimate underdog. Action. Taunting. Revelation!

    When ROTJ came out, Lucas was quite vocal it was the last film of SW forever. We all knew going in that Luke was going to win. You cannot have a movie with Ewoks and comedy bits and expect Vader to kill his son at the end and the Empire win lol.
  25. Jarren_Lee-Saber Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 16, 2008
    star 4
    Kinda figured you were that type, by your "arguments", and now those arguments have no foot to stand on since you have an incredible lack of knowledge about what is being discussed!
    You are also in the wrong part of the internet!
    obi-rob-kenobi4 likes this.
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