CT Star Wars will lose it's relevancy in our lifetime

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by zabrak999, Aug 6, 2011.

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  1. Adali-Kiri Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 31, 2000
    star 4
    That's it. I always knew that me liking them was too good to be true. Now I hate them. And they have lost their relevance.
  2. EHT Manager: New Films

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 5
    ^ [face_laugh]

    Yup, I just love when subjective opinion is stated as objective fact. :p
  3. queeq Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 10, 1999
    star 4
    It's the way of the forums...
  4. janstett Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    May 29, 2004
    star 3
    If it's true, name some. Poor attempt at deflection lol.

    I'll say again, the only things from the prequels that have entered social consciousness relate to how bad they are.

    People don't remember Dexter Jettster and his 50's cafe, people don't remember Gloomo Oootoopoo.

    Face it, the prequels are only memorable for their awfulness and an unintentionally funny "noooooo".
  5. Dynoblaze Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 16, 2010
    star 1
    Well there are a tons of reasons why it will.....not die but go like Star Trek did and be popular with a small group.

    1. So many shows/movies are developed it's hard to get just one noticed
    2. Star Wars has become all about quantity NOT quality. The LOTF books were about trying to get a quick buck from the fans by pimping out Jacen Solo and the Clone Wars is an attempt to get new fans to spend money (It's going to be great for action figure sales but I have a feeling a few years from now the kids that are watching will be like "I can't believe THAT was cool to me"). Both reek of an attempt by a company to try and generate cash for a slowing product.
    3. The most memorable things about Star Wars (to this generation) are the "noooo" meme, Anakin whining, and the knowledge that George makes the news because he screwed something up because he's senile. Oh and the Star Wars kid.
    4. It's natural, the "classics" of the 40's - 60's are hardly heard of now (known about but not widely watched or fawned over)
    5. Take a look at the official website there's no store, no message board, and now it looks like with the update an hour ago they've left the databases to Wookiepedia. The Star Wars Insider is going to go the way of Wizard and Mad magazine eventually (I'll be online only and published every two months) Hell, the Facebook page is beaten by Twilight, Harry Potter, The Dark Knight (A SINGLE MOVIE HAS MORE FANS THAN AN ENTIRE SAGA) and Lord of the Rings (welcome in the new cultural icons).
    6. Despite what Obama and others may say there is no such thing as "too big to fail." Star Wars is not exempt.
  6. halibut Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 27, 2000
    star 8
    Not sure how I missed this thread, but I'm really struggling to see how this is a CT subject and not a "PT sucks" subject. Please keep to the CT or I'll have to lock/move it
  7. Gary_Buchenara Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2009
    star 3
    These things tend to follow patterns. First there's the massive hit with the young folk phase. A few years later there's the critical deification by the young folk who have grown up into serious appreciators of quality films phase. Then there's the historical interest only phase. The OT is probably moving into stage 3. ANH in particularly will go down in the history books as one of the all time greats, but will be continuously replaced by the latest cultural phenomena to come along in terms of mass interest and critical sycophancy.
  8. JimRaynor55 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2005
    star 3
    Unmemorable characters? Several of the primary characters in the prequels were the same characters from the original trilogy, like Palpatine, Yoda, and Obi-Wan. Anakin is memorable, even if not everyone likes Hayden's portrayal. Same with Jar Jar Binks, to a greater extent.

    No character arcs? The characters develop a LOT over the course of the prequels. Anakin is the most fleshed out character in the entire saga. They literally show him from childhood to adulthood, and write his eventual fall as stemming from traits that he had as a kid. Traits like his attachment to friends and family, and his dreams of becoming a great hero and determining his own destiny. We saw someone change a lot, yet all of the changes were really just the other side of the coin from who he started as.

    Obi-Wan starts off as a by-the-book, conservative young Padawan who puts too much stock in what authority figures tell him, and isn't exactly a people person. That's why he clashes with Qui-Gon in TPM. He didn't want to train Anakin, and only did it out of a feeling of obligation. It shows in how little he trusts Anakin in AOTC. In ROTS, his relationship softens with Anakin, but by then it's too late because Anakin had become embittered by the way he was raised, and was vulnerable to Palpatine's temptations. Obi-Wan ends ROTS admitting that he had "failed" Anakin, and he gets offscreen training from Qui-Gon's ghost. In ANH, he's a much kinder and more mellow man.

    Even Padme has an arc. In TPM, she's a naive young girl trapped in her roles and duties as queen. She yearns to see the outside universe, but she also takes her role very seriously. Which is why she was shown feeling so much pressure, and fighting so hard for her people. Only the Republic Senate, which she saw in person for the first time, completely let her down. She is forced to take the situation into her own hands. By AOTC, she's a much stronger, more independent woman. She distrusts others' ability to help her, and repeatedly makes a point of asserting her independence by making her own decisions. But she's also lonely, which is why she falls for Anakin's advances (leading her to her tragic end).
  9. zombie Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 1999
    star 4
    Gary_Bucharena is on the right track, films have predictable patterns. Star Wars will lose relevancy in our lifetimes and then gain it back and then lose it again. It's just the way things go. Every film fades away, and classic films become something largely for film buffs, niche groups and (some) adults. A film series like Star Wars will be revived again though, and then the cycle will repeat, only without the longevity of its current and past cycles because Lucas won't be around and there won't be the peculiar circumstances that led to its revival from 1992-1997.

    Star Wars has stayed relevant, but its kind of fluky because of a situation that is not likely to repeat itself any time soon, and you really had to experience the Star Wars renaissance of the early 90s to understand why.

    When I was growing up in the late 80s, the series was dead and buried, there was no toys or anything, no real media awareness. But by 1995, the films were almost as popular as they were fifteen years earlier at the height of their fame! None of my friends were even born when the films were in theatres, they were never exposed to the hype or anything, yet they were all independently buying the VHS releases and the new toys and books they were making, as though it was a contemporary series. We grew up watching the films as kids and talked about them in the schoolyard. I think Galoob made $150 million that year just off Star Wars licensing. The series didn't need the prequels or a Special Edition to do that, it just did it on it's own.

    The reason it accomplished this was that there still wasn't any good space-adventure or fantasy movies at that time--Independence Day hadn't come out yet, Star Trek was basically over and was seen as uncool, people were already forgetting about Stargate, and anime hadn't been discovered yet. The last really good, really impressive movie about space was Star Trek VI, but that was half a decade earlier and ST:Generations tanked, and ST mainly appealed to baby boomers in the first place, not kids. If you wanted to watch a science-fiction or fantasy film, most people were still watching the ones from the late 70s and 80s, or even the 50s and 60s. I don't know how many kids grow up watching Jason and the Argonauts, Godzilla: King of the Monsters, Superman, Star Trek II and Predator as their main source of Hollywood entertainment like me and my generation did, but probably not many these days. And that's how we discovered the OT. Those old films like Godzilla and Star Wars were our modern blockbusters even though they were made fifteen years earlier and more.

    In many ways, that late-80s-early-90s period was unique because you had a new generation of kids who didn't have contemporary fantasies of their own, but VHS had come out just in time so they instead started watching the fantasies of the past. Today kids have Harry Potter films, LOTR, Star Trek Reboot (the first time Star Trek has been cool to youngsters since at least TOS and possibly ever), Chronicles of Narnia, Transformers, Spiderman, Iron Man, all kinds of things. If those films had been around in the early 1990s Star Wars would have never been re-discovered because we wouldn't have needed it. It would have just stayed a classic film series that kids heard about from their parents but didn't see or get into that much. Star Wars also looked more advanced than new films in the early 1990s, so there wasn't any gap to speak of. It was as if it was made the day before. Movies at the time were still using puppets and models and optical compositing so the OT was on equal ground to new films. If Lucas put the films in theatres in early 1997 without adding any computer effects it would have done the same business because the reason everyone went was to see it on the big screen, the extra changes and CG were pretty incidental, really (and even then a lot of people didn't even like the changes).

    The prequels and new material have kept the torch burning, but eventually it will die down. The franchise has survived as something relevant to kids because of the prequel s
  10. JimRaynor55 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2005
    star 3
    ^Zombie, that's probably the best write-up on the subject of film relevancy that I've seen in a long time.
  11. Gary_Buchenara Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2009
    star 3
    I guess we're talking about the difference between relevant and topical. A film which is very good and / or pushes the envelope in some significant way will always be relevant from a film making point of view. The degree to which it is discussed generally will come and go.

    That's an interesting point that Zombie makes about that time period in the late 80's / early 90's coinciding with the rise of vhs. I agree that it's unlikely that there will be such a vacuum in future, such is the mass of different media that kids can latch onto these days as the hot, new thing.
  12. sonofcoruscant Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 14, 2006
    star 2
    I don't forsee a time when the OT is not relevant to many many people. Apart from that Star Wars as a mythos will continue to develop and produce material for fans both diehard and casual to connect with. The Live Action series, if well recieved, could mean original material for many years to come. As for the PT, I think it will always appeal to Star Wars fans on some level, and will continue to find an audience even if it less iconic than the OT in a cultural sense.

    It's also worth remembering that the OT is heavily influenced by past stories that Lucas conncted with. Part of the enduring appeal of Star Wars is how it mixes well known themes from mythology with space adventure. I don't see it going anywhere, and I know it has offered a lot to me outside of entertainment.
  13. SueB Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2002
    star 1
    I work in a library, and I had a kid - he was probably about 8 - tell me he loved Star Wars but preferred the TV series to the movies. He said this after dumping a pile of Star Wars chapter books into the drop box (we have tons of Star Wars chapter books, youth graphic novels, etc. all based on Clone Wars). Our youth Star Wars material is very popular and gets checked out all the time.

    So, there you go! The kids are still digging it, even if it's more Clone Wars than CT these days.
  14. jc1138 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 16, 2004
    star 1
    Great post, Zombie!!! (although I don't agree with every single point you make).

    Star Wars means a lot to a lot of people, who then actively encourage their children's interest in both new and older Star Wars projects and products, which acts as a renewing agent. Star Wars's reputation/place in cinema history is certain to change because new material (I think we will get more theatrical non-animated Star Wars films) and film studies and criticism will be released. The reputation of every film is equally up to change because of new films and fads in criticism. At the least, in 50 or more years when film-like entertainment is a different, likely more immersive experience (even if that just means much better 3D), Star Wars will be something people will return to, like The Wizard of Oz, which may not have up to date effects and visuals but is still seen and enjoyed by most children, even 70 years after it's release. I don't see why older viewers will stop watching Star Wars in the future, as I (32 years old) and many others still love old black and white films (certainly out of date but hardly irrelevant, as many films considered the best of all time and many of my favorites are in B and W) and even some silent films.
  15. Boom_Pow Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 2, 2009
    The reason you here Star Wars references in pop culture being mostly from the OT is because the kids who grew up watching the OT are now the ones running the show at the studios. Give it some time and when the kids who grew up watching the prequels take over, you'll then start to hear the those references. I love all things Star Wars, but I do prefer the OT over the PT. But I have cousins who were kids when the PT was coming out and they much prefer those to the OT.
  16. Chiss_Insight Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 2, 2006
    star 1
    I teach high school English in a suburb in southern California. I always end the year with a unit on The Hero's Journey during which I always sneak in a viewing of the SE version of ANH.

    Last year, after finishing the film, one of my seniors, a girl, said, "That looks so old. Why don't they remake that?" She was not an unintelligent person, and many of the other students did not seem shocked by her question.

    For many, that would be like when rumors were floating around back in the day that Ben Affleck and Jennifer Lopez wanted to make a shot-for-shot remake of Casablanca.

    The point is that the relevancy of SW is all subjective. I have many SW posters in my classroom and my students quickly become aware I am a rabid fan. Many of my students indicate that they too are fans. The majority of the ones that do don't indicate a great disparity between trilogies; they just evaluate all six as movies. They like some more than others. I find it funny that TPM seemed to be regarded as a huge failure and that critically, at the time, AOTC was regarded as a "return to form" by many critics and fans.

    As a child of the 80's, ROTJ was the only OT film I was old enough to see in the theater. For years, it alone stood out as the one I had been old enough to experience as it was released; ROTJ was always my favorite OT movie. I didn't discover it was "terrible", or "not a real SW movie" until I read it years later on the Internet.

    Which brings us to a point I see over and over again: If the PT sucks, and ROTJ sucks, and ANH "suffers from many the same problems that plague the PT", then ESB is the only SW film that ever got it right. Don't get me wrong; ESB is an amazing movie. I just don't know how well it stands on its own as a single film.

    What I observed for the release of each PT film was unique as far as the contemporary movie-going experience: lines of people camped out from 7 to 8 in the morning to be the first into a midnight première. I experienced the unique progression from teaser to full trailer to release with all three of those movies. I have never seen that for any other franchise, not at that level. When the films come out in 3D, it will happen again, because if you are a SW fan, when that energy comes around, you grab on to it. Are the six movies perfect? No way. Do I wish that Lucas had let Lawrence Kasdan do a pass on all three PT scripts? Absolutely. However, SW is SW and there is nothing like it.

    Tell me what film phenomenon has come along and taken its place. The Matrix? Sorry, the last one was lazy, and not an eighth of the film that ROTJ is. LOTR? Sorry, too long for the average person's attention span. Harry Potter? The books are a cultural event; the movies are not. Twilight? Please.

    This may be generation-ism at work, but SW is the defining entertainment event of my childhood. The PT, however deficient, is the continuation of that into my adulthood. I feel badly for subsequent generations who don't have a defining entertainment event, but please be fueled by resentment into bashing mine In terms of relevancy, SW is here to stay.
  17. zombie Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 4, 1999
    star 4
    I would say for most young people between the ages of 13 and 21 right now, Harry Potter--the books, but now especially the movies--have taken on the role that Star Wars did in generations past. I'm not even a huge fan of HP (I like the films, but never read the books) but that's just what it seems to me.
  18. Gary_Buchenara Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2009
    star 3
    From what I've seen many people in that age group read or had the books read to them as children and then bought into the films as young adults.
  19. SueB Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2002
    star 1
    I don't think the HP films will hold up well over time. From what I understand the later films butchered the books they were based on, simply because there wasn't enough time to show everything.

    The books will stick around, although I'm not sure how many kids will read them since they can just watch the movies to see what happens and don't care how much they're missing of the story.

    I think a lot of the books' popularity was based on how it was the 'hot thing' at the time. I can't see many kids voluntarily reading a 500-page book ten years from now, when it's not hip and trendy to do so.

    I'm going to be very interested to see what happens to the Potter fandom now that there are no new books or movies coming out to sustain it. I'm pretty sure that Potter based theme park in Florida won't be open in 25 years. That's assuming Rowling doesn't change her mind and write more books after all.
  20. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    Excellent post, zombie, but God almighty, it's pretty depressing.
    Can't all of us here just keep kidding ourselves that Star Wars will never end, just like C-3PO said at the end of The Making Of Star Wars in 1977?

    In all honesty, I think eventually SW will more likely go down the road of Tolkien's tales of Middle Earth - occasionally bursting into the fore due to a new release of some kind, but never really dying at all (I don't count mere cult status as staying alive). I'd like to, anyway.

    To tell you the truth, I don't actually care all that much just how popular SW is, anyway.
  21. Jedi_Keiran_Halcyon Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Dec 17, 2000
    star 6
    Depressing? Not to me. Falling into their historical places is probably the best thing that could happen to the movies.

    As fun as the idea of getting a new space adventure movie under the SW label every few years (which could never happen now thanks to Lucas's Anakin-centric myopia anyway), I like the idea of leaving the movies alone and letting them be what they are.

    Honestly, my best SW experiences were never in the theaters anyway. I remember loving RotJ as a toddler and being too scared to make it past the wampa in TESB. I remember going to a toy store, seeing a Luke and Rancor set, and wondering why there weren't more SW toys. I remember "discovering" TESB's amazing last act several years later. I remember picking up my first EU book, my first couple of SW action figures. I remember finding the double-LP Star Wars soundtrack in the basement and bringing it upstairs for a listen.

    I remember how everything "Star Wars" up through the late 90s was a celebration of those three classic films. Getting back to something like that would be great.
  22. Darth_Nub Saga, Classic Trilogy and Film Music Manager

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Apr 26, 2009
    star 4
    I do understand exactly where you're coming from - my rediscovery of Star Wars during the 1990s was great fun - but I just don't like reducing it all to such cold-blooded reasoning, however accurate it might be.

    At that level, anyway. Since then, I've become more interested in the 'archaeology' of SW, largely thanks to zombie. There still has to be a comfortable middle ground. They're just movies, after all.
  23. Jedi_Ford_Prefect Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 9, 2003
    star 4
    While looking at the New York Times website earlier, I stumbled across an article about the current state of Russian politics from August of this year with the title, "The Phantom Menace". Cute, I thought. As a lark, I googled "The Phantom Menace Op Ed", to see what else would come up. Apparently, this is at least the third time in five years that the NYT has printed an opinion piece with that title, each time with a different subject matter and author. Furthermore, there were about a dozen other articles I could find with that title, ignoring the relinks to the same ones. I haven't checked it with the other Prequel titles, but it wouldn't surprise me to see the same thing happening with "Attack of the Clones", at least (robo-calls, maybe?). At the very least, the SW movies are still relevant to be cultural reference points in the newspaper, for whatever that's worth.
  24. Darth Dark Helmet Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Dec 27, 1999
    star 6
  25. EHT Manager: New Films

    Manager
    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2007
    star 5
    Interesting. It seems we hear general SW or OT-specific references on an almost daily basis, but it's interesting to note that the PT ones are out there too; the word "padawan" gets used from time to time in pop culture references, as another example.
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