PT JJ Abrams opinion of the prequels?

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Luukeskywalker, Jan 26, 2013.

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  1. _Catherine_ Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2007
    star 4
    I don't mean inorganic in that it doesn't look like it's made out of plants, I mean inorganic in that it looks like footage spliced in from a video game. This is the "set" where Anakin's head phases through a door and a hydraulic press comes down directly on top of Padmé without her noticing, remember.
  2. Rogue1-and-a-half Manager Emeritus who is writing his masterpiece

    Member Since:
    Nov 2, 2000
    star 8
    I love that my use of the word "antiseptic" has now completely derailed the thread. My bad. :p
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  3. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    I can honestly say I never noticed those things, but on the whole they don't sound any worse than say some of the occasionally noticeable matte work in the OT, particularly ESB and ROTJ.
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  4. drg4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2005
    star 4
    While I sympathize with your AOTC qualms--heck, I prefer the poorly choreographed ROTJ Ewok/Stormtrooper battle to the sterile third act of Episode II--what is your appraisal of The Phantom Menace? Apart from the Gungan/Droid conflagration, I thought the film achieved a near-perfect marriage of practical and CGI effects. The Tatooine material, in particular, feels like the apotheosis of Lucas's vision. Watching all those humans, animatronics, costumed actors and pixels interact across a landscape of real sets and landscapes gives off a mesmerizing Lewis Carroll vibe. I wish Lucas had maintained this balance for the next two prequels (though ROTS thankfully veered from the worst abuses of AOTC).
  5. _Catherine_ Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Jun 16, 2007
    star 4
    I mean, it was fine I guess. I wish they'd taken a little of the time and money they spent on the cartoon podrace sequence and put it into making the Yoda puppet and the Neimoidians' animatronics better, but it was cool that they didn't just CG all the aliens and locations. Watto was pretty well done I thought, I wish he'd been the CGI sidekick instead of Jar Jar.
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  6. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    I thought the original Yoda puppet and the Neimoidians' animatronics were deliberate throwbacks to the OT effects. I rather liked them, for that.
    Andy Wylde likes this.
  7. drg4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 30, 2005
    star 4
    I'm not a Jar Jar critic by any means, but the film would have benefitted had Watto, the most fully-realized CGI Star Wars creation, been given the sidekick role.

    In fact, having just taken my first plunge into Futurama last year, I came to the realization, "Hey! Bender is like a PG-13 iteration of Watto!" (Who wouldn't love to hear Watto tell Obi-Wan, "Bite my scaly, blue --- !")
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  8. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    [
    You misunderstand, they found 14 reviews of how many? Say that there were 30 reviews made back when ANH was released. If you pick 14 of them then you have a sample of reviews, not a population.
    If you were to take the 200 reviews that TPM got and pick half of them, you can skew the results depending on which reviews you pick.
    Since we don't know how many of the total number of reviews are included in this study then the results are not very reliable. If the total number of reviews back in the day were around 50 then you have only about a third of the total number of reviews so an even smaller sample size.

    No, what RT calls "Top Critics" are mostly from established critics and reviews printed in major newspapers and magazines. The reviews this study found are also mostly from established critics and newspapers and magazines. So it is quite relevant to compare the two.
    And RT "Top Critic" gives a far lower score to all three PT films.

    [/QUOTE]

    No, unless you know that these reviews are ALL the reviews made back in the day you can't make that claim. Say this is only about a third of ALL reviews, in print or by established critics.
    If this study includes most of the negative reviews then this skews the result. Likewise if this study has most of the positive then this too skews the result.

    Bottomline, I would be careful about making to many assumptions based on this study. It is interesting but has many flaws.

    Bye for now.
    Old Stoneface
  9. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Personally I thought it was pretty hit & miss- early Heinlein was extremely leftist- and late Heinlein never really came across as authoritarian.
  10. Cryogenic Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 4
    See, folks? There is another iteration of "antiseptic". drg4 just called THE ENTIRE THIRD ACT of a Star Wars movie "sterile". Not having a go at you, drg, just using your post as an example.

    These matters are subjective: they vary from person to person. As I said before, to some people, the entire Star Wars saga is sterile entertainment: grating, simplistic codswallop designed to keep people stunted adolescents forever.

    Hey, you know what? Suddenly, J.J. Abrams doesn't seem like so bad a choice! :D :D

    Well, now, that's an interesting wish. The sardonic attitude of Watto -- a greedy, pot-bellied, "dark" hummingbird/duck/walrus, complete with stubble -- certainly gives TPM a bit more oomph in its interpersonal characterizations, I think.

    Jar Jar, however, is essential to that "The Princess And The Frog" vibe that TPM has going on. Bizarrely, a frog-like alien was the original conception Lucas had of Han Solo, and it is, indeed, in the completed trilogy, a princess that falls for this rogue smuggler. Hehehe.

    Watto would not have made for a good audience guide. Jar Jar, remember, is a sort of happy-go-lucky, epicurean ambassador for kids greedy to drink in the sights and sounds of Star Wars, yet being just as overwhelmed by the intricacies of the storytelling, and the rapidly-changing territory, as Jar Jar himself is (see his first scene -- brief as it is -- with Padme on the queen's ship).

    The "blue friend" of Qui-Gon's works better exactly where we find him: as an alien foil to Qui-Gon's human; and a sort of sticky-fingered, flying creep to Anakin's grounded cherub. This character could never have opened Amidala's heart to the possibility of unification or done such a clumsy -- yet expert -- job fending off tanks and droids on the Elysium Fields of Naboo. The harsh, greed-driven world of Tatooine is Watto's natural dwelling place, just as the open, regal, lush paradise of Naboo is Jar Jar's. The film would not have worked with Watto in Jar Jar's place.
  11. KilroyMcFadden Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Oct 31, 2012
    star 3
    I agree insofar as you almost seem to be suggesting that anyone but Jar jar would have been a benefit. I don't know if I agree that Watto specifically would have been the best choice. But getting a character a little closer to an average person rather than a total clown would have been a much better way of drawing an audience of all ages, (as opposed to the little kids that laugh at poop and fart jokes and slapstick at which Jar Jar was aimed,) into the story.
  12. FRAGWAGON Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 3, 2012
    star 4
    Regarding reviews, to me what is more relevant is the similarity in content. The things that were most harshly criticized in the bad reviews, from the late seventies up to today's postings on this forum, are nearly exactly the same.

    I've seen the critics come and go and they always say the same things.
    Andy Wylde likes this.
  13. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    How would he not have been perfect? JJ will do fine, but Whedon is better at characters, humour and wrapping up complex plots in a non-ridiculous way.
    KilroyMcFadden likes this.
  14. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    He tends to overwrite his characters and force the same voice on all of them. Not to mention he can't direct anything visually without it looking either generic or confusing. Abrams can get confusing sometimes, but he at least has visual chops when he restrains himself.
  15. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    There was nothing generic or confusing about the action in Avengers, but to each their own. JJ is very good at imitating other filmmakers, but doesn't really have a style of his own. Super 8 looked and felt like a Spielberg movie. EpVII will probably look and feel like early Lucas, which will please the prequel haters, if no one else.
  16. Lars_Muul Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 2, 2000
    star 6
    That might be exactly what EpVII needs: a classic, Lucas-esque atmosphere. It would certainly set the trilogy off in the right direction - I believe.





    - Your destiny lies upon a different path from mine.
    - I foresee you will become a great Jedi Knight.

    /LM
  17. Ingram_I Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 7, 2012
    star 2
    Confusing? No. I’ll give Whedon that (well, Whedon and his seasoned team of 2nd unit directors, FX supervisors and editors, as insurance provided by Disney, I suspect). Generic? Almost completely. Even unintentionally cartoonish in some spots. It wasn't terrible. I was entertained well enough. But it wasn’t great either, just high in volume. I might reluctantly give the edge to Abrams on this one. Reluctantly.
    Last edited by Ingram_I, Jan 31, 2013
  18. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    I really do mean it when I say generic and confusing. Oddly the parts of "Avengers" that are confusing to me are the moments where he tries to go beyond his usuan generic, flat and static framings and opt for more extreme wide angles and unusual camera placements. The problem is he then cuts back and forth to different shots without giving you enough time for your eyes to register-- he doesn't have the director's sense of how to guide your eye from shot to shot without those shots being boring as hell.

    The same is true of his television work. The better episodes of his programs were all directed by others. At least with Abrams, I can honestly say that "Lost" might've benefitted had he stuck around beyond the Pilot.
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  19. GGrievous Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2005
    star 5
    I don't want to turn this into an Avengers bashing thread, but the action and the plot was about as generic as you can get. :p

    As for JJ, I don't mind him at all and I think he'll be good, but he's more of a visual and technical director imo. SW really needs to get its storytelling back on track.
    Last edited by GGrievous, Jan 31, 2013
  20. Alexrd Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 7, 2009
    star 5
    That's not bashing, it's the truth.
  21. GGrievous Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2005
    star 5
    Yes I know, but others that like the film might see it as that.
  22. Iron_lord Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    The line between "constructive criticism" and "bashing" can be a blurry one.
  23. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    The action in Avengers wasn't groundbreaking, but it was certainly coherent and well-staged, especially compared to someone like Michael Bay who can't stage a logical action sequence to save his life. And most of the best episodes of Buffy were directed by Whedon (Hush, Once More with Feeling. etc.) He may not be as slick as other filmmakers, but he knows how to direct actors and create iconic images (such as the "I'm always angry" moment in Avengers). Not saying that JJ will do a bad job, but Whedon would have knocked it out of the park, easy. But it sounds like he's gonna go all ESB on us with Avengers 2, so it's all good.
  24. Cryogenic Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 4
    Truthfully, there's no such thing as "constructive criticism". We're not constructing anything when we criticize a movie; we're simply giving our view. Some views may be more informed than others, and better-argued and whatnot, but it's all just opinion, really.

    I know that phrase can mean a range of things, but really, there's no going "ESB" on anything. I mean, in order to go "ESB", you first have to make something as technically innovative, creative, layered, witty, raw, and savvy as "Star Wars"/ANH, and that isn't just something that happens.

    * * *

    Just my two cents, mind you.
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  25. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    By going ESB, I meant this quote from Whedon about TA2: "Don’t go bigger; go deeper. All of these people have met, so you have that out of the way. Now you can spend your time just digging in, and by digging in, I mean with a scalpel, to cause pain." Sounds pretty like Empire to me. Anyone who's watched his TV shows knows that when Whedon puts his characters through the ringer, he really puts them through the ringer. That's what the ST needs, to introduce us to likeable characters and then make them suffer. JJ hasn't shown he can go that deep emotionally yet, but he may surprise us.
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