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PT Is Ian's portrayal of Sidious a bit over the top after killing Windu?

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Slowpokeking, May 15, 2013.

  1. rumsmuggler

    rumsmuggler Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Aug 31, 2000
    depends on who is doing the interpretation..
  2. SithStarSlayer

    SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 23, 2003
    I feel like we have been down this road, many times... but in Palaptine's defense, mask or no mask, no other character was subjected to the same duration and intensity of lightning that was looped through his body. We watched his face transform under the strain, there is no need for more on film... that is what the books and comics are for. To stop and explain his face would needlessly slow the film and at that point, the story does not require it, nothing hinges upon that revelation. It doesn't stop people from dying, won't help move the story forward... great for a book to dive into, but a total waste of time on film.
  3. Darth Xalfrea

    Darth Xalfrea Jedi Master star 4

    Jan 2, 2013
    But alas, rule number one of the Internet: Nitpick a movie until there's nothing to nitpick about.

    People aren't just as imaginative when it comes to movies anymore. I agree that to explain every single tiny detail slows the film down, but for some people they use that stuff to discredit the film.
  4. Placeholder

    Placeholder Jedi Knight star 4

    Jan 30, 2013
    And I say it's just a hacky way for a writer who had written himself into a corner to get where he needed to get. It's just clumsy moviemaking. Everything about the character before and after works for me, but that's just a mess.

    And we see Luke get literally tortured so the " we never saw it like this before" thing really doesn't cut it. Vader has to step in before Luke dies.
  5. Placeholder

    Placeholder Jedi Knight star 4

    Jan 30, 2013

    This isn't about imagination, I can imagine a hundred different explanations. This is about bad movie making. It's a hacky, clumsy way, to get where he needed to go with the character
  6. rumsmuggler

    rumsmuggler Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Aug 31, 2000
    I've been down many of these roads too many times. It starts to get repetitive after a while going over the same topics.
  7. Darth Dominikkus

    Darth Dominikkus Jedi Knight star 3

    Apr 5, 2013
    I agree with you. I feel like it was on purpose because it had a purpose.
    The Hellhammer and rumsmuggler like this.
  8. SithStarSlayer

    SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 23, 2003
    No movie can cover everything. Stopping Revenge of the Sith to tell everyone that Palpatine used the force to unnaturally conceal his true identity would be extraneous. And, this is coming from someone who actually enjoyed the novelization, more than the film. ;)

    Luke got hit with short bursts, until the last volley... but Palpatine unleashed "unlimited power" at Mace and had it looped back through his body. I don't discount the impact of Luke's mechanical hand either, because the metal could have influenced how his body reacted to the current. Palpatine, Mace and AOTC-Anakin are the three characters that were mechno-free when they were hit by lightning. Anakin was knocked out by a charged force toss, Mace was killed by lightning and Palpatine's face was blistered by it.

    As for poor writing, I'd rather nitpick the altered turn, or losing the will to live...

    but those are for another time and place.
    Valairy Scot and rumsmuggler like this.
  9. Son of a Bith

    Son of a Bith Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 28, 2013
    In the few months since I've returned to these boards, I've seen this come up a few times, but I'm happy to throw my 2 cents in.

    When I first saw ROTS in '05, I definately chuckled a little bit at the "No... no... no... YOU WILL DIE!!!!" But now that I've had some time to get over the different tone of the PT (and accept most of it's flaws as campy good fun as opposed to the death of my childhood), I actually love the scene where Palpatine cuts loose.

    As Darth Xalfrea (and others) have said, he'd been wearing the mask of goodness in public for so long, when the chance to murder the frig out of Mace came he was giddy with rage.

    Regarding the realism of the burns themselves - some have mentioned that we haven't seen Force lightning inflict those kinds of burns - I have this to say: I'm in the camp that believes Sidious threw the fight. So, with that presupposition, I really do believe that he burned the crap out of his own face on purpose. It was his intention. The whole duel and that pivotal moment was all part of the ploy to get Anakin to turn away from the Jedi Order.

    I realize there is a strong ongoing debate about this (see: The Chosen Post: The Prophecy's Importance, Palpatine's Plan To Escape It, & Why Mace Lost the Duel, Did Mace Windu really defeat Palpatine? most recently).


    Take it or leave it.
  10. The Hellhammer

    The Hellhammer Manager Emeritus star 5 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Nov 4, 2012
    Ugh...that one is just... ugh.
    rumsmuggler and SithStarSlayer like this.
  11. The Supreme Chancellor

    The Supreme Chancellor Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 4, 2012
  12. rumsmuggler

    rumsmuggler Jedi Grand Master star 7

    Aug 31, 2000
    More like where, and that is several different literature sources(that I know of anyways).
  13. Slowpokeking

    Slowpokeking Jedi Master star 5

    Sep 21, 2012
    Sidious did say he was deformed in the Senate.
  14. SithStarSlayer

    SithStarSlayer Manager Emeritus star 6 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Oct 23, 2003
    "And the Jedi rebellion has been foiled....
    The attempt on my life has left me scarred and deformed. But, I assure you, my resolve has never been stronger!"
    Dredalus likes this.
  15. Son of a Bith

    Son of a Bith Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 28, 2013
    "And now I must travel to the Vaseline system."
  16. Jedi Gunny

    Jedi Gunny Yahtzee Host star 9 VIP - Game Host

    May 20, 2008
    Sidious has been waiting a long time for this, so it's no surprise that he would get a little giddy after finally securing his excuse to take over supreme power.
  17. Rachel_In_Red

    Rachel_In_Red Jedi Knight star 3

    May 12, 2013
    From the time Windu and Co. confront Sidious until Anakin turns and is ordered to attack the Jedi Temple is probably the worst of the saga for me.
  18. SlashMan

    SlashMan Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 5, 2012
    In the script, it seems to infer that Palpatine's inner evil had manifested itself and caused his transformation, but when I watched the film as a kid, I always thought the lightning had melted his face. Either way, the point is clear: he is now evil on the inside and out.

    For me, I noticed his character really began to change once Windu cornered him. Admittedly, some moments weren't really evil, they were just kind of bizarre... like "No, YOU have lost!" "I'm too weak" and "UNLIMITED POWER!" But immediately after, the character was absolutely frightening. The sound mixing really brought a demonic quality to his voice that hasn't been heard before.

    After that, he was fairly consistant as the Emperor. There were a few blatant villain moments, like shots of him cackling, but it was all good. This was Ian McDiarmid's most animated role, and you can tell he immersed himself in the character. So if giving a damn memorable performance is "over the top," then yes... he was over the top.
  19. Palpatine2016

    Palpatine2016 Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 12, 2012
    Yeah, it's over the top. But it's supposed to be. I think the point has been made here. He's been waiting for that moment for years and years, and when it finally comes, he just lets loose. I think it's great, and it's one of my favorite parts of the movie. I think Ian had fun with those scenes, and some of it could come off as slightly humorous, but I think it's the point of those scenes to really show that Palpatine is mad.
  20. Pensivia

    Pensivia Host of "The International Exchange" star 5

    Apr 24, 2013
    One thing you can say for Palpatine--he's a guy who really enjoys his work...


    In general, I agree with a number of earlier posters: 1) yes, it's over the top and 2) that's not a problem (for me) and in fact even made the character more enjoyable (especially over repeated viewings!).

    The only thing I don't like is a few of the sound effects added in when he's standing over Anakin (the low sort of growls and even an effect that I can only describe as an evil-sounding "burp"). I like the "growling" effect when he's actually talking, but there are a few seconds there where he's not saying anything but you still hear these little noises and I think that's a bit too far over the top for my taste.

    LOL...couldn't agree more, Bith!
  21. SweetZombieJesus

    SweetZombieJesus Jedi Padawan star 2

    Apr 12, 2013
    I would have much preferred that it was Palpatine's true appearance (whether he was ancient or the Dark Side corrupts physical appearance) and he dropped the charade. Another wasted opportunity and collateral damage of the prequels' bad storytelling.
  22. Darth Nerdling

    Darth Nerdling Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 20, 2013
    I really enjoy Ian's performance. What I love about it is that it's goes from composed to evil and back again multiple times in the scene. I'll quote the dialogue and then comment on it.

    Palpatine (calmly): I take it that General Grievous has been defeated. I must say you're here sooner than expected.
    Mace: In the name of the galactic Senate of the Republic, you're under arrest.
    Palpatine (menacingly): Are you threatening me, Master Jedi?
    Mace: The senate will decide your fate.
    Palpatine (menacingly): I am the senate!
    Mace: Not yet.
    Palpatine (calmly): It's treason then.
    He hurls himself at them making a menacing shriek.


    Mace: You are under arrest my Lord.
    Palpatine (weakly): Anakin, I told you it would come to this. I was right the Jedi are taking over.
    Mace: The oppression of the Sith will never return. You have lost.
    Palpatine (menacingly): No, no, no! You will die!
    Palpatine fires lightning at Mace.
    A standoff ensues.
    Palpatine (weakly): I have the power to save the one you love. You must choose.
    Mace: Don't listen to him, Anakin.
    Palpatine (weakly): Don't let him kill me... I can't hold it any longer. I'm too weak. Anakin, help me. Help me.

    Palpatine stops the lightning.
    Mace: I am going to end this once and for all!
    Anakin: You can't. He must stand trial.
    Mace: He has control of senate and the courts. He's too dangerous to be left alive.

    Palpatine (weakly): I'm too weak. Ooh. Don't kill me.
    Anakin: It's not the Jedi way. He must live. I need him!
    Mace is about to swing.
    Palpatine (weakly): Please don't... Please don't...
    Anakin: No!
    Anakin cuts off Mace's hand.
    Palpatine smiles and bursts back to life.
    Palpatine (menacingly): Power! Unlimited Power!

    Finally as the scene ends...
    Palpatine (menacingly): Once more, the Sith will rule the galaxy! (calmly) ...And we shall have... peace.

    What I like about his delivery is that Palpatine is showing his two faces: the overtly evil Palpatine and the calmly manipulative Palpatine. We like to think of evil as a direct, forceful, and obvious thing, and Palpatine displays this side of evil when he speaks in his menacing tone. However, evil has a second side. It can be calm, quiet, oblique, and sometimes it even appears weak just to play on our sympathies. It is this second side of evil that has allowed Palpatine to manipulate his way to the top, and it is only at the end of the scene, that these two sides of Palpatine are united when he switches mid-line from "Once more, the Sith will rule the galaxy ...and we shall have... peace." Ian plays that scene in an incredibly smart way so that we able to see the 2 sides of Palpatine and realize that they are actually one in the same.

    By the way, I think it's much better that it is not spelled out that Palptine's Sith mask is falling away. In the first viewing of the scene, we assume that Palpatine is deforming himself, but when we watch again and look closer, we realize that we have been manipulated too. Force lightning doesn't cause manicured nails to turn into talons, it doesn't change the color of one's eyes to yellow surrounded by a halo of red, and it doesn't cover teeth in a layer of grime, and all of this happens to Palpatine. When we look closer, we realize we too have been tricked at first glance. Palpatine's lightning didn't do this to him at all. This is Palpatine's true appearance.

    It's one thing for Palpatine to fool fellow characters, but it's much more impressive that Palpatine can fool the audience at first glance as well. It shows just how clearly Palpatine is a master manipulator.

    That was a very smart move by GL in my opinion.

    FRAGWAGON Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 3, 2012
    Or you might consider "respecting the audience's intelligence" and "leaving something to the imagination". Usually considered a plus with moviemakers.

    Regarding the over-the-topness of the performance, hallelujah it was deliciously over the top. Drunken, demonic, absolute power mad evil. It was Palp's time in the ecliptic sun, let him have it! Sends a chill down my spine....
  24. The Supreme Chancellor

    The Supreme Chancellor Jedi Master star 4

    Sep 4, 2012
    how did his teeth get so decayed instantly!?
  25. Pensivia

    Pensivia Host of "The International Exchange" star 5

    Apr 24, 2013
    I like the answer to the question provided by darth ladnar in post #47 above: