Saga Moments in the films that were retroactively improved by their successors

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Han Burgundy, Dec 14, 2013.

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  1. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    I've been thinking about this a fair amount lately. What moments in the films were given more meaning, more emotion, or just generally improved by existence of the films that came after?

    A big one for me is when Leia senses Luke is in danger in ESB. It's always been a powerful moment, with that beautifully shot close up of Leia and the desperateness of Luke's situation, but the first time I watched the saga front-to-back I almost teared up. Moreso than ROTJ, this is the moment where they realize they're siblings, even if it isn't conscious knowledge yet. Seeing that long-awaited connection happen at such a crucial point and in such a poignant manner is fantastic. Not to mention, I think it forms a great parallel with the "ruminations" scene in ROTS.
    Last edited by Han Burgundy, Dec 14, 2013
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  2. Sarge Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Oct 4, 1998
    star 4
    "He'll never be a farmer, Owen. There's too much of his father in him."
    "That's what I'm afraid of."
  3. Cryogenic Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 4
    Good thread. Just a few:

    Threepio's silver leg -- Random before, but now it really seems to point to one or more (mis)adventures that we don't see, occurring some time between when we last see Threepio in ROTS, all gleaming gold, and when we first lay eyes upon him in ANH, bashed up and with his aforementioned un-matching leg-piece.

    "Bounty hunters. We don't need their scum" -- Except, of course, that a bounty hunter seeded the clone army which gave rise to the Empire.

    The green lightsaber -- It means so much more, now, I think, to see Luke with a green saber for the first time in ROTJ, after having witnessed masterful Jedi like Qui-Gon and Yoda using one to defend the weak (specifically, Anakin: in parts of TPM and AOTC, anyway), and also, it must be said, to KILL, KILL, KILL, in the PT films.

    Artoo -- Keeper of the flame. In establishing a key contrast between Artoo and Threepio in their final scene in the PT (one gets their mind wiped, one doesn't), the point is made all the more clearly that Artoo knows more than he lets on; unless he just has really bad memory circuits, of course. The poor droid even went to the saga equivalent of hell in ROTS and lived on to (not) tell the tale.

    Naboo, the Gungans, and Jar Jar -- Or, more markedly, their noted absence in the OT, along with Coruscant, until the closing minutes of ROTJ, anyway. And it's not clear that Jar Jar is even alive by the time of that montage. These things seem to belong to another era, another past, even when they're superficially summoned at the close of the OT.

    Palpatine with rosy cheeks in TPM -- Yes, even this guy was (relatively) young once. A shocking contrast with his decrepit form in ROTJ. (I suppose I should have written this the other way around, but you get my meaning).

    Yoda with the little flashlight -- Not only a flashback (flashBACK -- heh) to his time as a Jedi, when he still had a bit of flair and youthful vitality to give, but also a measure of how much his life force has waned since. That flashlight now only gives a little light. His time is almost over. I don't know if anyone else gets this impression from the PT, but it's like the "survivors" of that story -- Yoda, Obi-Wan, and yes, Anakin, or what's left of him -- all symbolically cheat death, to use pivotal language wielded by Palpatine earlier in the story, and are very nearly spent by the time we see them again in the OT. They're clinging on because they're still attached and desperate to see their earlier beliefs vindicated, but they must ultimately stop resisting and give way to a new generation and a new way of thinking.

    "That is why you fail" -- Luke is very nearly the last hope for the Jedi, and Yoda's sombre disappointment registers all the more starkly, now, in light of the brutal annihilation of the Jedi Order in ROTS and Anakin's own systemic failures of faith and reasoning. Luke is who these remaining Jedi, one decaying flesh, one a beam of light, have invested almost all of their emotions in, and he's on the cusp of leading the galaxy to permanent ruin. TESB is an even-darker film in light of the PT, in my estimation. I wish people would consider that when they hoist up TESB and disparage the PT in the same breath.

    Luke maiming the wampa -- An aspiring Jedi being out of his element is foreshadowed by actual rank-and-file Jedi being out of their element in the "planet core" sequence in TPM. In both, other large-scale, living beings suffer through their own wanderings and clumsiness. This is one of many poignant man/nature motifs running between the SW films that I love.

    The Sarlacc -- One of many curious, clever visual linkings, the basic design of the Sarlacc, as seen from above (Luke's POV) echoes both the Galactic Senate chambers from the PT movies and also the sinkhole which Obi-Wan descends into in ROTS. Threepio says that the prey of the Sarlacc are slowly digested over a period of a thousand years, while Palpatine assures the Jedi in AOTC that he will not let the Republic, "which has stood for a thousand years", be "split in two".

    The Imperial bureaucrats in ANH -- Sitting round that big shiny conference table, they're a bit like "New World Order" Jedi. Look at them like that and the existence of the Empire is incredibly chilling. The Empire, in its cold totality, is basically the mechanized, priggish thinking of the Jedi writ large: a looming, epic punchline of their systemic failures. In other words, the Empire, at its essence, is not so much a repudiation of stagnant Jedi attitudes, but a direct continuation of and shining monument to them.

    "When you came in here, didn't you have a plan for getting out?" -- Again, if you think about all the trouble the Jedi got themselves into, this line of Leia's is metaphorically mocking their inability to extract themselves from the allegorical Death Star they ran inside of and sheltered themselves within. They didn't really have a plan. They lacked the ability to improvise correctly. They were destroyed. Only when they begin improvising again, however awkwardly, by taking a chance with Luke, do they stake a chance at redemption.
    Last edited by Cryogenic, Dec 14, 2013
  4. Vthuil Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2013
    star 4
    Amen.
  5. Han Burgundy Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 28, 2013
    star 3
    @Cryogenic , I will never be able to unsee the sarlaac pit as a visual metaphor for the senate. Thanks for that one :p
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  6. PiettsHat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 1, 2011
    star 4
    --All of Luke's scenes in the Lars garage have an air of almost tragic irony now. It's somewhat painful to watch Luke, in all his innocence, long for adventure and excitement when this is the site where his father really began losing his innocence. It underscores how ignorant Luke is of what his adventures will cost him (his family) in spite of all that he will gain.

    --Luke staring out at the two suns is another (already beautiful scene) that really gains meaning from subsequent films. There's the obvious parallel to the ending of ROTS, of course, but I often think of AOTC Anakin himself gazing out at those two suns before setting out to save his mother. And how, by the time he reaches Mustafar, the only thing left in his field of vision is the sun being eclipsed.

    --Vader torturing Han, Leia, and Chewie is now absolutely bone-chilling given what happens in AOTC. Anakin is using Luke's love for his friends against him and taking that pain to try to twist him to the Dark Side, as happened with himself. It gives a scene that was already cruel and sadistic a creepy and almost masochistic ambiance.

    --"You may dispense with the pleasantries, Commander." I can't be the only who thinks that Anakin must view himself as a naive fool to have been so easily manipulated by Palpatine's ego stroking. It's a rather nice contrast, I think, and shows how his character has evolved and been shaped by previous experiences.
  7. -Jedi Joe- Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 6, 2013
    star 1
    -Anakin's redemption at the end of RotJ: This scene is now much more emotionally gripping, seeing how Palpatine manipulated Anakin into the monster known as Darth Vader. To see him let all of it go and resign his alliance with the Emperor to save his own son is touching, and I get chills every time I watch it.

    -Vader nearly destroying Artoo in ANH: The little droid stood by Anakin's side throughout the PT, and I imagine developed a friendship with him. Now, he is blasted by the man who once was his sidekick. It could be used now to symbolize the lack of heart and compassion Vader has, that he once had as Anakin Skywalker.
  8. timmoishere Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2007
    star 6
    I thought the Sarlacc was a metaphor for George Lucas' ex-wife.
  9. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    Ouch.

    (And George & Marcia were still together when the Sarlaac was devised, anyway)
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  10. anakinfansince1983 Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Mar 4, 2011
    star 7
    I laughed.

    As far as the topic, I'm going to go with "turn to the Dark Side. It's the only way to save your friends." Given why Anakin turned, that line is creepier now.

    Also, "It's too late for me, son" has more meaning after what Anakin did to Padme and the younglings.

    Obi-Wan finding the holo of Leia in ANH and the expression on his face afterwards; he almost seems to be thinking about how much she's grown up. And there's the shocked look on his face when Luke told him that R2 was looking for "Obi-Wan Kenobi." There seemed to be an "oh ****" expression there.
  11. Darkslayer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2013
    star 4
    I thought The Clone Wars TV series made Episodes 2 and 3 that much better. Also, the Plagueis novel did the same for Episode 1, and to a lesser extent 2 and 3.
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  12. Cryogenic Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jul 20, 2005
    star 4
    Consumption, consumption, consumption. Even the main "STAR WARS" logo is made of yellow lines enclosing, or consuming, a void.

    "Around the survivors a perimeter create!"
  13. Barbecue17 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 11, 2013
    star 2
    There are so many little looks and glances by Owen and Beru that while always seeming mysterious now just seem so much more pregnant with meaning after watching the PT. During the first time I watched the Saga 1-6 I was just floored at the new level of weight and emotion the Tatooine scenes took on.
  14. Darth Raiden Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2013
    star 3
    Vader force choking the admirals in episode 4 and 5, I mean he used this technique that essentially "killed" his wife. By the end of ROTS, you see that he regrets (in a way) what he has done. So what do we see, using the same technique that killed Padme, and using it on people who make snide remarks or fail to deliver their assignments, and it seems to me its all fun and games for Vader. I don't know bout anyone else, but I find that a bit horrific and it takes on a new level of sadism that Vader has.
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  15. Force Smuggler Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 2, 2012
    star 6
    Seeing Anakin becoming Vader in ROTS in appearance and name after watching 4-6 and then 1-3
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  16. Heero_Yuy Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Nov 28, 2000
    star 4
    ESB in general makes Star Wars (1977) a retroactively better movie.
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  17. Ord-Mantell70 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 9, 2009
    star 3
    Yoda's line in ESB when chating with Luke : "Your father...Powerful Jedi was he...Powerful Jedi".
    ROTJ and subsequent revelations on Anakin's past gives it a really different tone. The tragic arc of that line is far enhanced.

    Obi-Wan's brief embarassed and upset expression when Luke asks him how his father died in ANH. Takes on a completely different meaning with the following movies.
    Classic retcon.
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  18. Ananta Chetan Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2013
    star 4
    LEIA
    Luke, don't talk that way. You have a power
    I--I don't understand and could never have.

    LUKE
    You're wrong, Leia. You have that power too.
    In time you'll learn to use it as I have. The
    Force is strong in my family. My father has
    it...I have it...and...my sister has it.

    *Leia stares into his eyes*

    LUKE
    Yes. It's you Leia.

    LEIA
    I know. Somehow...I've always known.
    Last edited by Ananta Chetan, Dec 17, 2013
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  19. Carbon1985 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2013
    star 3
    And finally 32 years later we get to see the force powers Leia has.
  20. Darth Raiden Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2013
    star 3
    Wouldn't it be 23 years?????
  21. Carbon1985 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 23, 2013
    star 3
    Sorry, I was talking about when ROTJ came out (1983) to when Episode 7 comes out (2015). In a sense, I believe THIS scene will be looked at alot different by the fans after watching the ST. I know Leia will be old, so we won't see her doing full action scenes, but you will get the jist of her force powers along with her children.
    Last edited by Carbon1985, Dec 18, 2013
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  22. Darth Raiden Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 28, 2013
    star 3
    Well, I've looked at it differently myself since the PT, I gone with the conclusion that Leia having force vision, seems to be backed up from what Yoda says in TESB about seeing old friends long gone and all that.
  23. Minez01 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2005
    star 1
    I thought the line from Vader in ROTS where he says "Obi Wan once thought as you do....You don't know the power of the dark side, I must obey my master" was more powerful given the prequels.

    Additionally,I like the visual and symbolic similarities between Dooku, when he is on his knees in EPIII with Palpatine willing Anakin to kills him and ROTJ where Luke is standing above Vader after cutting his hand off. In that moment I can picture Vader having this all-encompassing flashback to beheading Dooku and realising that, after all these years, he's simply been duped by Palpatine. And then Luke's resistance to Palpatine where he failed all those years ago.
  24. Seagoat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2013
    star 4
    One of the newer novelizations of ROTJ actually does address this, specifically mentioning the exact moment you pointed, and making references to Padme, Qui-Gon, Mace Windu, etc
  25. Legolas Skywalker Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 3, 2012
    star 6

    Good post and agree with it!
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