The bad reviews of the original non-SE versions of the films

Discussion in 'Classic Trilogy' started by sdj, Apr 24, 2003.

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  1. sdj Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2002
    star 4
    I remember alot of the pro-AotC fans being upset that alot of the websites with good reviews reviews were not included on tomatoes because they weren't considered "official" sources.
  2. Grand_Duchess_Olga Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2002
    star 5
    I have a copy of the Review of Star Wars from the Chicago Tribune, from 6/8/77.

    This movie, which was written and directed by George Lucas, is this season's Big Dumb Flick. That is to say, it is not "about" anything. It doesn't make you think. It doesn't preach. It does not in any way add to the knowldge of the human heart. It's just entertainment. You walk in off the street. After a long wait in line, and for a copule of hours you are somewhere else, flying arund the galaxy, watching white hats fight black hats.

    And maybe this movie is the truest indication that we have moved into another Era of Wonderful Nonsense, as Westbrook Pegler once described the '20's
    (ok this paragraph sounds so pretentious)

    ...There is a girl played by Carries Fisher who snows soething that has put her in alot of toruble, but don't ask me why.

    ...As Science Fiction, "Star Wars" owes more to Amazing Stories than it does to Astounding Science Fiction;

    ...There are no buckets of blood and gore flying around the screen. People die in "Star Wars" the way they die in comic books. Old comic books

    The results are, well, amazing. After one week, according to Variety, "Star Wasr" had grossed $2,556,418 in 34 theaters around the country.

    ...And while Fox is happy, a number of other film companies must be thinking about the one that got away.

    ...(Alan Ladd Jr.)pushed the project, accepteed the final $10 million cost, and stayed with Lucas through all the problesm that accopmany the making of a technicall complex movie. He seserves mcuh of the credit for its success.

    "It's short and not boring," said someone in the manger's office at the Orpheum, when I called yesterday, "And that's what they want."

    Some of the writing on the film has been a little extravgant; "Star Wars" isn't the best film of a year that also has Woody Allen's "Annie Hall" in it.
    (of course, now I see a conspiracy!8-})

    ..."Star Wars" is a Big Dumb Flick, and a good one.[/i] (ok, at this point I thought he hated it. Damn, I must be too stupid to see that he really liked it) It is a perfect film for a time when no Americans are dying anywhere in a war, when no American boms are landing on anyone....If it has anything to say, it is this: For now, the American wars are over on the Earth, and now they are happening out there, in the galazies of the imagination. And that's just where they should be.

  3. DamonD Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 2002
    star 6
    Hey, love your sig, sdj.
  4. ratmankey Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Feb 15, 2002
    star 4
    Hey guys, watch what you say about critics...if all goes as planned, that's what I'm going to be doing for a living in 4 years ;)

    There really weren't too many positive reviews for any of the films on their original release. Roger Ebert was a rare exception, giving all three of them 4 stars and putting ANH on his Best of 1977 list.

    As for glowing reviews of the PT, Ebert gave TPM 3 1/2 stars, and Peter Travers (the critic for Rolling Stone) gave AOTC a pretty good review that I think hits the nail on the head.

    There's a book out called The Critics Were Wrong, which is a collection of quotes from scathing reviews for films that are now considered classics (including Citizen Kane!). There are a LOT of quotes about Star Wars in there...
  5. Grand_Duchess_Olga Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2002
    star 5
    Forgot to mention that the writer for the Chicago Tribune review is Pete Hamill, whos ays "I know the blond young guy with her is good because his name is Hamill"

    "Alec Guinness is a guru-type, despite the fact that he sounds as if he's named after an agent from the William Morris office....Guiness duels well, particularly for a guy whose legs are shot and who has to dress like a Capuchin monk."

    "...Grand Moff Tarkin, governor of the Imperaial OUtlans, who is played by Peter Cushing as if he were Lew Wasserman, head of MCA-Universal...."
  6. TK_Four_Two_One Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 17, 2002
    star 5
    Here's a thought... what if we had the same exposure to the media and so forth (eg the internet etc) in 77,80 and 83 as we do now- would the films have sold as well? I think people werent as 'brainwashed' and inundated with hype in those days as we are now. We didnt need to read reviews to decide whether to see a film- where as nowadays something new out- be it film or gadget- is EVERYWHERE and reviewed everywhere! Thus we can be brainwashed to a certain extent into whats 'best' or not.

    An example I will give is VHS and Betamax. The experts generally considered Betamax a better player but VHS won hands down and Betamax went extinct. From what I can remember there wasnt much difference in price either. BUT... if the same fight was to happen in this present day and most of the reviews were saying 'Betamax is the best' do you think it would have had the same outcome as in the 80's?

    I dont know if i have worded this well or not but how do YOU think- giving it good thought- Star Wars would have done in those days with what we have now all around us- because it DID get quite alot bad reviews. Give it some thought.

    BTW this is a good thread... first one in ages! :)
  7. Grand_Duchess_Olga Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2002
    star 5
    Well, if we exclude movies that today have "better special effects", kind of keep it as the same atmosphere of the type of movies that were out then, I think we would get the same reviews for Star Wars. Take the Lord of the Ring movies, they can be hyped by the internet and movie reviews and things work out good for the series.
  8. Spacehunter24 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 2, 2003
    star 4
    "There is a sense of discovery in scene after scene of The Phantom Menace."
    -- Roger Ebert, CHICAGO SUN-TIMES


    The funniest one since STephen Farber's. :D
  9. gezvader28 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2003
    star 4
    The worst review I ever read of Star Wars came from Alec Guiness, of all people! He said in his memoirs in the late 90's :

    "Star Wars...I shrivel inside each time it is mentioned...a fantasy world of secondhand childish banalties."

    I mean, ungrateful or what? He was on two and a quarter % was it?

    I guess he just got grumpy in his old age.
  10. sdj Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2002
    star 4
    It's definetly true that people are more bombarded and influenced by the media these days. Just look at some of the so called entertainment they are making popular right now. American Idol. Reality show after reality show. I mean it's all spoon fed.

    The example for me is how popular Spider-Man was. Sure it was an ok movie but not the life changing event that it was made out to be. I mean come on the Goblin just sucked!

  11. DamonD Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 22, 2002
    star 6
    Guiness just got very bitter at the end that a lot of people ignored his earlier work in favour of Star Wars. Kinda sad, really.
  12. svenge Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2002
    Well, it IS understandable considering that he was a GREAT actor (Bridge on the River Kwai, anyone?) and is remembered for one sci-fi movie where he dies halfway through. From a "certain point of view" he may well have been right.
  13. Grand_Duchess_Olga Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 28, 2002
    star 5
    I was looking at the Chicago Tribune for June 20, 1977, and though Gene Siskel's article was on Hamill, Fisher, and Ford, this is a little bit he has to say about the movie:

    In case you've been dead for the last trhee weeks, "Star Wars" is the fun-loving, space adventure moivie that has become a box-office gorilla. It has been predected to gross more thean $100 million in the Untied States alone.
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