Saga Prequel Trilogy vs Original Trilogy

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by kenobifan1999, Sep 4, 2012.

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Prequel Trilogy vs Original Trilogy

Prequel Trilogy 10 vote(s) 45.5%
Original Trilogy 12 vote(s) 54.5%
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  1. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    Which isn't terribly accurate either since Julius Caesar lived over 200 years earlier.
    That is like saying that the movie Casablanca is in "the time of Abraham Lincoln".

    Also Gladiator was praised for both acting and writing and won/was nominated for many such awards from several groups, not just the Oscars.

    Bye for now.
    Old Stoneface
  2. obi-rob-kenobi4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2007
    star 4
    Im not exactly saying that all the acting in SW is intended to be corny. What I mean is that it is intended to be stylized in a pulpy kind of way. People tend to miss or reject this about episodes 1,2, an 3 and the Saga overall.

    We are talking about something that was based on buck rogers and flash gordon and was always heavily influenced by things like sergio leone spaghetti westerns and old samurai films and 1930's comic strips. We are talking about something that is, in essence, a "space opera". And yet then people want to get mad when the acting is similar to that of a soap opera. All im trying to say is basically "hey...thats what its supposed to be".

    Too many people in this modern day "geek culture" (or whatever you wish to call it) don't understand this. They want so badly to emulate this "geek chic" culture yet they only ever adopt this tired stereotype of the pretentious elitist basher who demands traditional oscar winning acting from his sci-fy and comic book movies. o_O Instead they should own the so called "cheesyness" or so called "corny" acting or what have you. At least when it comes to SW anyways. You will find that the SW fans who are the happiest are the ones who "own it" and like/appreciate the cornyness/cheesyness whatever word you wish to use.

    For example Im not afraid to say loud and proud that Hayden Christensen's acting is EXCELLENT and spot on for what it was that George Lucas wanted him to do. It all gos back to that famous Lucas quote when he said "I want the house to be painted blue and these young people on the internet are mad because they think it should be painted red and im saying well thats all fine but I want my house to be painted blue" or something to that effect. Well maybe if people just stopped trying so hard to discredit the color blue and started trying to understand that blue is a cool color in its own right. If anything painting it blue when everyone else thinks the so called "proper" way to paint a house (a film) is to go with red is what made Star Wars so famous in the first place and still does to this day.

    Im not afraid to say that I think the "fireplace scene" in AOTC is one of the BEST scenes in the Saga. Why? Because in that scene they are finally acting like they are in a space opera the way SW is supposed to be acted. Like luke and leia talking about padme in ROTJ. When I see Padme and Anakin in that scene it finally feels like Star Wars again. Like a Space opera. Look at things from the OT and as specially ROTJ in the scene when Luke tells Leia he is her brother. They like to call it "bad acting" but in reality thats what the acting is supposed to be. Overly dramatic and operatic and pulpy like a soap opera. When I see padme and anakin in that scene in their costumes I truly feel like im seeing the mother and father of luke and leia.

    The fire in the fireplace is symbolic of the fire (passion) that consumes anakin both figuratively and in the next film literally. The costume Padme is wearing with the choker that looks like a black glove is symbolic of anakins "grip" on her both figuratively and (again) in the next film literally.

    I think this is all awesome and Star Wars at its absolute best. I only wish more people would at least try to understand it and see it this way (the way George Lucas wants it to be understood).@};-
    Last edited by obi-rob-kenobi4, Sep 6, 2012
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  3. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 3
    I dont say it should, but they definitely influence each other which makes it difficult to evaluate them separately.
    I'd say for example that TESB benefits immensely from ANH, because ANH sets up the conflict and the characters which allowed TESB to focus on a few things and pretty much ignore the overall events (since TESB on it's own has a very thin story). I don't think TESB works all that well on it's own but very well as a successor to ANH which makes it almost impossible to say TESB is "better" than ANH because TESB relies so much on ANH.
    With ROTJ and TESB is kind of the other way around, because ROTJ doesn't quite capture the "spirit" of is predecessor and suffers therefore.
    So they all influence each other and our view on them and that makes it justifiable to say: I can't simply say this one is better than the other, because they are designed to work as a whole and not as independent movies (except ANH perhaps).
    Last edited by Samnz, Sep 6, 2012
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  4. Drewton Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 8, 2009
    star 4
    Well that's fine, but no one has to like the house.

    I don't believe the acting in the prequels is intentionally bad, or even that it's usually over dramatic and pulpy. I blame it on the some flat writing and not great acting direction by Lucas - not trying to bash him, but they're faults he's admitted to have and things the cast of the OT have said about him.
  5. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    To the first point, if the acting in all of SW is intended to be stylized in a pulpy way then that type of acting was present in the OT as well. So if one likes the acting in the OT but not the acting in the PT then the problem isn't due to this. Then the problem would be that the stylization does work or comes off the wrong way. Or one can feel that the stylized acting is simply poor.
    So it is not an objection over a certain style but rather that what ever the style was, it was done poorly.

    For me I accept almost any style as long as it works in the movie. But where I notice is if the acting isn't beliveable. That is far more important to me, I can swallow any amount of techobabble or cheesy lines if I get the sense that the characters sound like they mean them. In Star Trek and X-men Patrik Stewart has had to say all kinds of odd dialogue but often he sounds beliveable.
    And this is my problem with some of the acting in the PT, to me the actors don't sound like they mean what they say, they don't believe what they are saying. When that happens, I no longer see the character, instead I seen an actor doing line readings. And that pulls me out of the movie. So had the acting worked in the PT then I would have no complaints, but to me it didn't.

    As for SW being based in Buck Rogers and the like. Take Pulp Fiction or Inglorious Basterds, they are based on very pulpy stories and yet those films got lots of praise for their writing and acting.

    Bye for now
    Blackboard Monitor
  6. DRush76 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2008
    star 4
    I found the acting in both the OT and the PT rather cheesy. I believe that someone named Lard Biscuit called it the "Velveeta Cheese of acting". Surprisingly, I have found this kind of acting in the LORD OF THE RINGS movies, as well. Both trilogies have their fill of good and bad cheesy acting. My least favorite line came out of the mouth of Harrison Ford in ANH. If there are some who found the cheesy acting of the OT easier to swallow, well . . . I'm happy for them. Basically, I had no problems with both trilogies . . . except for a few lines or scenes from them. I did notice that the lines and acting from the PT were more formal and I suspect this was due to the trilogy's setting as the last years of the Republic . . . before everything went to pot.
    Last edited by DRush76, Sep 6, 2012
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  7. obi-rob-kenobi4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2007
    star 4
    Again I am not saying it is "intentionally bad" I said it always was and is intentionally pulpy and stylized to fit the dramatic "space opera" that Star Wars in essence is. And some people are quick to dismiss it as "bad" because with all the modern day EU and fan trends they forget fundamental things like that.

    Lucas's unorthodox directing and writing stile is what makes him the unique artist that he is. The "flat acting/writing" soundbites frame it as a weakness but lets not also forget that Lucas's unorthodox stile is what makes him an amazing director in the editing room where he has always said he really directs from. It is part of what made SW (as well as THX 1138) the masterpiece that it is and it is every bit as apparent in the latter episodes as it has ever been. The comments that the cast of the OT made are because they weren't aware of his "editing room directing stile" among many other things. They only saw a glimpse of what it was they were helping out with and that is why they all say things like "and there was a guy in a monkey suite and it was all crazy and weird and nobody could take it seriously and i just tried to do it sincerely" - and so on. We have to remember that A LOT of the OT cast admits to basically living/remembering the whole thing as a blur and only ever even watching the films once, maybe twice thanks to the 97 re-release they attended. At the very least we can remember to take the comments they make with a grain of salt. As MUCH as I love Carrie Fisher (I think she is the smartest, classiest woman in Hollywood) what does she ever talk about? Is it the artistic merit of SW or is it "and I had to go to a fat farm" and "we played a joke on someone on the set to kill time" and "Even John Belushi told me to stop doing so much coke" and so forth. ;)

    Everyone reacts differently to art but don't deny the very stile of the thing. Lucas and too many people to count have ALWAYS acknowledged the "space opera" aspect of SW. It is simply the nature of the beast. In many ways the SW films are homage films. Again we are talking about something that was undeniably based on buck rogers, flash gordon and was always heavily influenced by things like sergio leone spaghetti westerns and old samurai films and 1930's comic strips and so on. There is a stile and purpose to the acting Lucas demands and I dont think he would want it any other way. --and nether do I.

    Personally I love the house. I love that the house is blue and I don't think it would be the same house or the even same shade of blue if more people were allowed to help paint it.

    @};-
  8. obi-rob-kenobi4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2007
    star 4

    YES...yes...to DRush you listen...[face_alien]
  9. obi-rob-kenobi4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2007
    star 4

    Well like others have said lots of people generally always regarded the OT as having cringe worthy dialogue and "bad acting".

    And in the PT the formal, republic era dialogue makes MUCH of the "stylized acting" much easier to swallow.
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  10. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    "Lots of people"? "always"? The acting in ANH was praised quite a bit when the film came out and some of the actors were nominated for awards and not just Alec Guinness. ESB also got some praise for the acting and this time Mark won awards for his work. Mark again won recognition for RotJ.

    There are odd sounding dialogue to be sure but the difference to me is that more often than not, the OT actors manage to sell their lines but almost the reverse happens for the PT actors. To me dialogue becomes "bad" only when the actors can't say it and sound like they mean it. Of course some dialogue is easier to pull of than others.

    The acting in the OT isn't all great, but overall I find it much better in terms of being believeable. Within the reality of the OT-film universe, the acting worked and seemed natural. With the PT I sometimes got the reverse impression, the acting seemed forced and unnatural. This has nothing to do with style but rather that I did not see the characters talking, instead I saw actors saying lines.

    In the PT, to me, some of the actors could not pull off the formal dialogue so instead they sounded bored or disinterested. And sometimes the characters did not seem to talk to each other as much as making grand sounding speeches.

    Playing a formal or reserved character can be tricky, you still have to show some emotion but also try to hide it.
    Take ST and Spock as an example. Nimoy was very good at showing a calm and reserved front while showing that he still had emotions inside him. However some of the other actors that played Vulcans have overdone the calm and logical facade to the point were they come of very stiff and uncaring.
    Or take Picard early on in TNG, at first he was played very stiff and formal but they realized that this was not working so well so they allowed him more room for his emotions and the character then worked much better.

    Bye for now.
    The Guarding Dark
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  11. Samnz Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 3
    Yes, and don't forget how many times Lucas refers to the Star Wars movies as "silent movies" where the story is primarily told through visuals and music. It works perfectly that way!

    I can understand everyone who complains about acting in Star Wars movies , but if someone wants to tell me that the OT was "well acted" in terms of acting class style I'm genuinely confused.

    Prequel actors (Neeson, McGregor, also Portman and Lloyd) were also nominated for several positive awards.
    Last edited by Samnz, Sep 6, 2012
  12. obi-rob-kenobi4 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 17, 2007
    star 4
    Not a Star Trek fan, sorry.[face_plain]

    It is common knowledge Mark had some of the most cringe worthy acting and lines of ANH. He was good in most of ROTJ thats about it. All the actors in the OT with the exception of Alec Guinness (who never had one good thing to say about SW or the experience of making SW right up until his death) were pretty cheesy and had basically the same dialogue that exists throughout the 6 film Saga.

    IMO I believe the PT has better actors under better conditions with just as good if not better performances like the outstanding method acting of Ewan Mcgregor and Hayden Christensen. Also the amazingly good, timeless performances of Liam Neeson as well as Ian Mcdiarmid. Christopher Lee and Sam L. Jackson were very memorable and convincing as well. Natalie Portman does an amazing job in TPM as well, its probably her best SW film. I cant say that I see any of this in anyone from the OT except Alec Guinness and maybe Peter Cushing.
    Last edited by obi-rob-kenobi4, Sep 6, 2012
  13. DRush76 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 25, 2008
    star 4
    With the exception of Sir Alec Guiness, I don't recall that much praise for the rest of the cast as far as acting is concerned. And I also recall that Ian McDiarmid received a lot of praise for his performances in the PT, especially ROTS.

    When it comes down to it, I really don't care which actors received awards or praise in whatever trilogy. I love both trilogies, despite their flaws. And there is no argument in this world that is going to convince me that one trilogy is better than the other. I just don't see it that way. Many others believes that the OT is better. And there are some who believe that the PT is better. I just don't agree with them.
    Last edited by DRush76, Sep 6, 2012
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  14. Darth_ChewyCharmy1 Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    May 31, 2002
    I prefer the story and politics of the prequels. The only thing that keeps me coming back to the OT(specifically ESB) is the Cloud City sequence, which contains by far the most aesthetically and emotionally pleasing duel.
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  15. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    No prob, people like different things.

    I disagree about Mark, he wasn't all that good in ANH but much better in ESB. He had to carry all the Yoda scenes and act against basically a muppet and make it work. And he did so that shows me that he is very capable.

    Also you are wrong about Alec Guinness, I have seen an old interview with him that was made after he was done shooting but before the film had opened. And he was quite positive about the film and liked what he did in it. The main reason he became less thrilled about SW was how some of the fans treated him. People sent him letters, asking life advice from Obi-Wan and so on. He also felt that this one movie overshadowed all of his other work.
    Harrison was very good in ANH and ESB and it is no suprise that he suddenly got lots of movie offers.

    Also I disagree that the dialogue is the same in all six films.
    The PT dialogue is more wordy, more formal, more reserved. In all the PT feels more talky while the OT got the point across quicker.

    Ex. In ANH and the scene in the DS conference room. A rather short scene but it establsihes many things quite quickly. We hear about the rebels and that they are a threat to the empire, we hear about the political changes that are happening, with the senate getting dissolved.
    We get a sense that this was an unsusal move and that much rests on the DS. This scene also introduces Tarkin and how he and Vader interact. We also see the arrogance of some of the imperial officers and one of them mocks Vader. Bad move. We also see more of Vaders power, he isn't just strong but he can do other things as well. Lastly we see that Vader obeys Tarkins commands. So this rather intimidating and ruthless bad guy obey this other guy commands? This tells us that Tarkin is also someone to fear.

    Ewan was rather wasted in TPM but got better in the other films, partly because he was given more to do as a character. Hayden was far too much hit and miss in AotC. Sometimes he worked but other times he didn't. He and Natalie had several moments in AotC where they could not sell the lines they were given. So to me, I didn't buy what they were saying, it just rang false. This caused much of the plot involving them to fall flat and not work. This caused the added problem of pace once Obi-Wan and Anakin split up. The Obi-Wan side movied along quite well and was quite interesting but every time the movie cut back to Anakin, the movie just ground to a halt for me. Far too little was happening and what did happen came across as unbelievable.
    Hayden got much better in the first half of RotS, partly because to the actor but also that he stopped being unlikeable. Finally I got the sense that he and Obi-Wan actually cared about each other.

    Liam, sorry but I was never a huge fan of his performance in TPM. It isn't bad by any stretch but in parts of the films he comes of as too distant and removed. His best scenes, to me, are with Shmi, and those were one of the few scenes were I got the sense that the characters actually cared about each other. They had a warmth that I found lacking in many others, esp those that involved the other jedi.

    Ian was good in TPM and AotC but nothing stand out but I suppose he wasn't supposed to. In RotS he got way to over the top in some of the Sidious scenes. True story, that scene is the ONLY scene in any movie that I have seen in theaters that I started to snigger at. Normally I don't do this in theaters. It can happen at home but only when I watch really bad films like Battlefield Earth and the like. I didn't intend to but it happend and I got pissed off at myself for sniggering like this. But it was my genuine reaction.

    Jackson, had very little to do in TPM and never even got a name so to me that was like "Hey look, it's Samuel L. Jackson."
    In AotC his role was bigger and his acting was ok but nothing special. In RotS some scenes were good, other less so.
    And the character is written to be a bit of a dick which isn't the actors fault but I found nothing that I liked about him.
    In AotC I think it might have been better if Mace had showed up to fight Dooku and not Yoda. The movie did start to build up an eventual confrontation between them but nothing came of it. And Dooku being Yoda's Padawan had little to no impact.

    Many of the minor jedi characters and villains came across as uninteresting. Maul had hardly any character so he was uninteresting as a villain. Gen Griev had a character but one that I found annoying and the character spent most of the movie making empty threats and running away so he wasn't very intimidating. Overall a waste of time.

    Lee is good in AotC but his character has far too little screen time and gets bumped of too soon in RotS. So a bit of a waste of a good actor in my opinion.

    In closing, to me, the OT has some of the best acting of all six films while the PT has some of the least good.
    So on average I rate the OT higher and the OT has higher highs while the PT has lower lows.

    Bye
    Blackboard Monitor.
  16. Samuel Vimes Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 4, 2012
    star 4
    [
    I do think the OT does have some very good acting but what exactly do you mean by acting class style?
    Alec Guinness gives a very good performance and he has to carry much of the info about the Force and the Jedi and a lot of the backstory.
    About Luke's father and all that. He also gives a very warm performance so his death is has an impact.
    For ex I found Qui-Gons death in TPM far less effective and this was the main character.

    And as for SW being silent movies. The PT is rather more wordy and dialogue heavy than the OT to me. Also in the OT it was show, don't tell. In the PT sometimes the opposite happened, telling and not showing.


    [/QUOTE]

    Which I have never denied. But the argument seemed to be that the accepted thruth was that all the OT had crap acting and this is was what most people thought. I disagree, the OT does have some good acting and many people have recognized this.

    Bye for now.
    Old Stoneface
    Last edited by Samuel Vimes, Sep 6, 2012
  17. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    I'm so glad to see I'm not the only one. I'd add that Liam's character was quite warm with Anakin as well, but he seemed distant and almost-cold to Obi-Wan, Padme, and Jar Jar. HIs "I foresee you becoming a great Jedi..." seemed, well, recited, rather than addressed to Obi-Wan where I think SOME warmth was called for (warmth to at least equal sincerity). In the opening of TPM he seemed rather distant, too, although that's less problematic seeing as they were on a mission - he rarely glanced at the person to whom he was conversing.

    If he'd been more distant to those to whom he'd been warm, or warmer to those to whom he'd been distant, it would have been more consistent, but the difference was noticeable. It's not like he was warmer to non-Jedi, considering he occasionally treated Padme as a lesser being who should be guided by him, the wise Jedi Master in tune with the Force. As for Jar Jar - well, no one was warm to him.
  18. PiettsHat Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jan 1, 2011
    star 4
    I often get the impression, sadly, that Hayden Christensen is disparaged as an actor because some people do not like the character of Anakin Skywalker and thus attribute that to Hayden's performance. This is interesting to me because, of the main cast, I think that Hayden is by far the least like his character. If you compare him to, say, Natalie Portman, I think this is clarified. Natalie Portman shares many qualities with Padmé, such as being very well-educated, a good speaker, highly politically active and opinionated, and (in many ways) mature beyond her years. I've observed the opposite phenomenon with Hayden Christensen (based only on interviews, granted) in that Hayden seems rather down-to-earth, relaxed, humble, exceedingly normal and (above all) "chill." Anakin on the other hand, comes across as intense and obsessively neurotic. We very rarely see him relax or take things in stride and he pursues things with a single-minded intensity (even as a child). He also seems rather arrogant concerning his abilities but personally insecure. I've never read much of this in Christensen and I find it is more difficult to map Anakin's traits onto his personality than for many of the other actors and their characters. In my opinion, then, Christensen's performance really is excellent in that he transforms himself to such a degree that many who dislike Anakin often pin the blame on his actor and the performance rather than the character's conception by Lucas.

    It's similar to how Hayden is frequently criticized for his physical appearance ("boy band" or "not masculine enough") despite the fact that there is hardly anything he can do about that. It's what Lucas wanted, but not what some fans envisioned. Anyway, that's just my reading of the situation. It certainly doesn't apply to all (or even most) fans. Suffice it to say that Hayden is one of my favorite actors in the Saga and I agree with Ian McDiarmid saying that Hayden's performance was "greatly underrated." He was also McDiarmid's favorite actor to work with apparently, and I think this is well reflected in the great chemistry between Anakin and Palpatine during their scenes.
    anakinfansince1983 likes this.
  19. Valairy Scot Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Sep 16, 2005
    star 5
    @PiettsHat: there is a lot of truth in your post. Hayden is NOT like Anakin from what I've seen in webdocs (mainly); my complaint is that regardless of whose "fault" it is, Anakin comes across as rather one-note when we're introduced to him. I'm afraid AoTC overshadows his work in ROTS in that we saw so much of THAT Anakin (2 hours) vs the more rounded Anakin in ROTS. It probably took near to my 10th viewing of ROTS before I could start to appreciate his work as I truly thought Ewan make Hayden look bad by comparison. I came over time to see Hayden was really only overshadowed by Ewan but I'm sure that was due to my (over)immersion in ROTS with AOTC well behind me. (To reiterate again, I'm not that huge a fan of AOTC Anakin OR Obi-Wan, but at least Obi-Wan wasn't quite so one-note - he had opportunities to shine when he wasn't with Anakin.)

    I like characters a bit more rounded, not predictable: he seemed always to be "lashing out" and generally being immature (and for those who say he was a teen and teens are immature - teens go back and forth between quite mature and quite immature. IMHO. Besides, he wasn't just a teen, he was a Jedi teen.)

    From where did you get Ian saying Hayden was his "favorite actor"? Certainly in the webdocs everyone seemed to be praising whomever was the subject of the webdoc.

    PT vs OT, to get back to the thread:

    OT was simplistic, good vs bad, though perhaps ESB a bit less so. I loved ANH. ESB - frankly I haven't seen it in years, so I'm speaking when it was in theaters - I like it but I didn't love it. Han & Leia weren't near as interesting as Luke's training. Certainly it was a more complex movie. ROTJ - loved, loved, loved the swashbuckling on the barge. Closer in tone to ANH and I loved to see the Ewoks use their hunting techniques to bring down the militarily superior Forces - reminded me of the Vietnam war, or the American patriots against the British where the lesser group was able to stand against the stronger.

    PT - more spectacle, more gray areas - more stuff to THINK about while watching. The morality of breeding clones for war, peacekeepers inveigled into fighting wars, politicians...the PT has a lot more depth. This stuff is not explored but it's there to ponder, to discuss on the internet, to argue right and wrong and shades of gray. To contemplate what is the best action when no action is great and the choices are between bad and worse. Sure, there's a bit too much "kiddie" stuff for my tastes - droid hijinks in Geonosis, some of the Gungan scenes, just as there was a bit much of Ewoks in the OT.
  20. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Sorry to you all who actually invested time and thought to their posts, but vs. threads are still not allowed, particularly when they're posted by socks of banned members. Locking.
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