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The *Official* AOTC Media Review Discussion Thread (NO SPOILERS ALLOWED)

Discussion in 'Revenge of the Sith (Non-Spoilers)' started by brendawg83, May 8, 2002.

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  1. lono

    lono Jedi Youngling star 1

    Apr 2, 2002
    Discussion/review of AOTC
    Transcript of Howard Stern Show 5-8-02 made by Lono

    H = Howard Stern
    R = Robin Quivers
    F = Fred Noris
    A = Artie Lang

    H: ....So we see the Star Wars movie and what did you think?

    R: I liked it!

    H: You know... it's a weird thing. It started out horrible.

    R: Oh no, I were talking to the kid (Howard was yelling at some rude people at the start). . it was beautiful.

    H: The first 15 minutes were ruined for me.

    F: The first 20 minutes were slow, slow, slow.

    H: Yeah

    R: Well wait a minute that first roll up when.. that was great.

    H: The effects and everything are great. Fred didn't like the movie, and he said to me that the bad thing is that it's so cinematically beautiful everyone will want to go see it and it will make tons of money. You hated it right?

    F: I didn't like it.

    R: I hated the last one so much thats why I think that this one was better.

    F: See I think that's why they had jar jar binks in the last one to distract you from the..

    H: Well jar jar binks is in this one and for the two seconds he's there, cuz george lucas put him in there like "F-you you're not going to tell me what to do" but it's not so bad because they only have very little of him. but when he's on screen it's horrible.

    R: It's a nightmare. it's a trainwreck.

    H: I'll tell you what. the movie... has seen its better days, Star Wars.

    R: You know what I said to myself as the thing's going.. Why doesn't he get someone to help him write a story? He's got the whole other thing down.

    H: I know! He knows how to make the movie...

    F: It looked great there's this thing he does when he's (snip) I've never seen anything like that before in my life! It was amazing.

    R: Right

    H: It's great.

    R: All the effects are just incredible

    H: The effect are great. Look...

    R: Visually the movie is beautiful..

    H: Yeah, it's uh, I enjoyed it..

    R: I enjoyed it. I know there are problems with the story, and there's a lot of redundant.. and he tells you the same thing over and over and over again..

    H: I know! And you know what it is, it's like your waiting to find out.. this is the story of Anakin Skywalker who is Darth Vader and you find out more about him as a man growing up, but I mean, I don't know, it seems like I'm not..

    R: I hate to tell you what you spend a whole movie finding out. (Laughs)

    H: You find out nothing. I mean you really find out nothing. It's like everything's a buildup.. Its.. I can't explain it.. It's somewhat disappointing.

    R: They're not doing anything. You're cutting to each of these..different senarios and nothing's happening.

    H: Nothing ever happens.

    R: Yeah, but it's beautiful.

    H: It's beautiful to look at, I enjoyed myself

    R: And when they do start to have the battles and everything

    H: That's great, the (snip) great.

    A: I really liked it becuase I dig that whole story about finding out how Darth Vader became

    H: But they can make it better.

    A: Yeah they really, I mean. You know what though I can't wait for the next one now though just to see what happens.

    H: Well, yeah they suckered me in

    R: They've got plenty to do.

    H: Yeah cuz they didn't do anything this time!

    R: (laughs)

    A: It sucks that it's not a mini series, it's not a week I'm waiting.. two and half years..

    H: Yeah, that's the problem. You know what we're learning? The universe is boring.

    A: Yeah, exactly.

    R: I wanted to ask you this, there was a lot of laughter..

    H: Ah, yes.

    F: It was pretty embarassing.

    R: Was it supposed to be?

    H: No, there was some very embarassing scenes. Natlie Portman, who I think is beautiful.. but beautiful like a daughter though, you know what I mean? You don't look at her as sexy,

    R: She's a little girl.

    H: She's a little girl. but very beautiful. but there are some laughable scenes what comes to mind is she (snipped)

    H: There's a couple of moments where you groan, and there's a couple of love dialogue between anakin skywalker and natalie portman that is
  2. augusto

    augusto Jedi Padawan star 4

    Aug 6, 2001
    Ah, going from Ebert's reviews to Howard Stern's movie reviews.

    Are we so desperate to kill time before opening day ? :)
  3. Jedi knight Pozzi

    Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Apr 2, 2000
    Oh well. At least it looks good. Best clean my specs.
  4. lono

    lono Jedi Youngling star 1

    Apr 2, 2002
    Ebert often goes on Stern's show to discuss movies. One person's opinion is as good as the next, isn't it?

  5. augusto

    augusto Jedi Padawan star 4

    Aug 6, 2001
    > One person's opinion is as good as the next, isn't it?

    Not really.
  6. Darth_Xero

    Darth_Xero Jedi Youngling star 1

    Nov 13, 2001
    I just saw the Ebert and Roper show and I must admit Roper did an awesome job of defending AotC and with good cause because, quite frankly, Ebert's complaints were idiotic. Ebert complained about the quality of the film saying that it was too fuzzy but Roper countered by saying that the movie looked great and that he actually ranks it higher than all 3 of the original trilogy visually and special FX wise. Another one of Ebert's complaints was that the dialogue was weak and that there wasn't any good memorable quotes in the movie. Roper disagreed. He said the dialogue was good for a Star Wars movie and that Anakin and obi-wan had some pretty entertaining exchanges. Ebert complained that the digital Yoda was not as good as the puppet and that Yoda's actions where out of charcater when it came to his action scene's. Roper said that when Yoda appearse on screen the Star Wars fans are gonna loved it! :D

    As a person that doesn't always agree with Roper I found myself amazed to be on his side. His arguments were by far more open minded and understanding of Star Wars than Ebert's.

    Btw, don't quote me on Ebert's and Roper's commments, I wrote them down from memeory so there not 100% correct. ;)
  7. DarthUterus

    DarthUterus Jedi Youngling

    May 8, 2002
    It seems that the fan reviews are positive to glowing overall, where the *official* (read "paid") film critics want to rip the movie apart. I was shocked by Ebert's response, but he's lately elevated his standards giving Spider-Man a 2-1/2 star review (I saw the film and was blown away. Excellent.), so nothing he says makes much of an impact.

    I think so many were either so burned by the failure of Menace, or came into the series with a pre-disposed loathing that they just want to be the first ones to topple Clones before it gets out the gate.

    I could care less how much money it makes, judging by the overwhelming response of previously jaded fans, I know it's going to be great!

  8. Jorus_Kando

    Jorus_Kando Jedi Padawan star 4

    Nov 9, 2001
    Jorus: I've seen all the movies in the theaters in their original release. I'm as big a Star Wars fan as anybody else... (big enough a geek to know all the flubs in the original trilogy... heheh ).

    Should I top that? I bought a laserdisc player and grossly overpaid some ebay seller to get the pre-SE trilogy on LD. I've since burned it onto DVD :D

    Thing is... I used to write an entertainment column for a college newspaper. In the context of such columns, I never state "this is my opinion" because that should be obvious that what I say is not fact. Anyone who reads a movie review and assumes it's not an opinion, well...

    So, are passive-aggressive comments gonna be the norm? ;)

    I had one woman blast me for making the "gross" mistake that Sinead O'Connor had three albums out, not two... Oh my god, and that somehow invalidated my opinion of her third work, despite the fact that I knew she had three albums but just happened to forget?

    Well, I'm not one to "blast" a critic for small factual errors, but when they meld scenes together, and forget character/actor names, I tend to wonder just how much attention they were paying to the movie. (not speaking of Ebert necessarily)

    I hope people have better things to do than take potshots at everyone who has a criticism or two about Star Wars.

    I do, too. I also hope that people with legitimate complaints about a review will speak their minds and not shrug their shoulders and say "well, it's his opinion." Ebert's review seemed more a rant against digital cinema than anything else.

    Perhaps I don't overtly preach Star Wars here with all the wonderfully favorable things I have to say about it because:

    1. My comment was in response to Ebert's review which I do think holds a grain of truth.

    Maybe. But neither of us will know for sure until we actually SEE the movie, and even then our judgements may differ.

    2. I'm entitled to my opinion... even about a group to which I actually belong and would be categorized as a "lifetime member".

    Am I not entitled to a rebuttal? ;)

    3. I'd be preaching to the choir if all I did was say how wonderful and dazzling Star Wars is... when the truth is, no film is perfect.

    I don't recall debating that ;)

    In all honesty, the more people hype a thing... the less the general public likes it. There's a sort of diminishing marginal return on hype... it reaches a point of critical mass where people get tired of cereal boxes and fanboys.

    They don't know what they're missing ;)

    I try to keep a relatively even keel when discussing Star Wars instead of lunging headlong at people with everything I like about it... simply because I want other non-fans to see what it's about and decide for themselves. I don't want to scare them away.

    I don't think anyone expects a SW zombie who'll unconditionally praises it.

    I do stand by my observation though that, in what is obviously my opinion, most people don't respond well to true Sci-Fi or fantasy films. You can't get the average filmgoer to appreciate Lord of the Rings in the way you or I might.

    I don't know... I had a couple succesful "conversions." Most people who don't care for sci fi or fantasy have rarely actually experienced them.

    That doesn't make them part of a "stupid" majority... that just makes them them. It also doesn't make us part of a "retarded" minority... Everyone has their idiosyncrasies (well, ok, except maybe Captain Cant-acta, the man with less charisma than styrofoam).

    I don't think I've said anything to the contrary.

    Let me recap: I chose to refute YOUR post in particular, because you opened it by stating that Ebert was right, without actually having seen the picture yourself. Why e so quick to lend credence to a review by a critic who's notorious for his hate of digital cinema?

    I love Star Wars... but I don't subscribe blind devotion to everything about it... and Lucas... who, while he has brought us many technological advances, seems to be f
  9. Count_Draku

    Count_Draku Jedi Youngling star 1

    Apr 2, 2002
    I just saw Ebert and Roeper. It was pretty funny. I don't know who I'm going to agree with. They had a big fight about the look of Yoda, with Roeper saying how the old Yoda looked like a sock puppet and Ebert saying how much he liked the old yoda better. The clips of Yoda they showed definitely made him look like a cartoon, but the yoda in the OT definitely looks like a puppet. Ebert said he thought the visuals looked bad, which may or may not be true. There are definitely some scenes that they showed, like Obi-wan and Anakin in the speeder, where it looked like they were superimposed over the background. Ebert hated the dialogue. He felt it was banal and unmemorable. They showed a clip of Anakin and Padme on a picnic which kind of illustrated that the dialogue wasn't fantastic, but I think the actors pulled it off pretty well. Based on some of the visuals and dialogue I've seen, I can see how Ebert has a point. But at the same time, if you don't fixate on it, the trailers and commercials seem pretty good.

    In any event, Roeper really enjoyed it and didn't take it too seriously. Ebert, on the other hand, clearly is upset that it was shot all digitally and wouldn't shut up about it. My guess is that I'll probably side with Roeper because I'm a Star Wars fan and much more forgiving than your average moviegoer.

    The only thing I can use to get a context from this is that Ebert didn't like "Road Trip", which I believe is a pretty funny movie.
  10. DeltaJedi

    DeltaJedi Jedi Youngling star 1

    Apr 24, 2002
    Well, score one for the good guys. The New York Post (the best of the "Big Apple" papers, IMO) has reviewed Episode II: AotC and given it 3 and 1/2 out of 4 stars.

    The reviewer says that it's a "quitessential popcorn movie" and praises the lavish effects and great action sequences. He does acknowledge that the acting isn't spectacular and that the dialogue isn't perfect, but he rightly points out that this has never been a strong point of the Star Wars movies.

    Overall, it's a very positive review for the movie, and especially welcome, as good news has been hard to come by from official, credible, widely-read sources.

  11. QuiGonJinn

    QuiGonJinn Jedi Youngling star 2

    Aug 1, 1998
    I almost always disagree with Ebert when it comes to comedy. He liked THE KLUMPS fercryinoutloud!

    If want absolute proof that Ebert can be wrong about what is or is not a good/fun summer movie look no further than The Phantom. Possibly the worst action/adventure movie ever made and Ebert gives it 3 stars and a thumbs up.

    EDIT- THREE AND A HALF STARS! If you've seen The Phantom, you now know Ebert's very capable of being dead wrong.
  12. augusto

    augusto Jedi Padawan star 4

    Aug 6, 2001
    The Phantom ? Oh God, so according to him, the Phantom is better than Spider-Man. LOL.

    I just have one thing to say about *all* these "professional" reviewers;

    "GO TO HELL".

    I'm sick of stupid reviews talking about Star Wars toys, Lucas' wealth and other non-sense having nothing to do with the movie at hand.

    And no, we don't expect a purely scientific rating method. But for God's sake get a bit consistent !
  13. Darth_Xero

    Darth_Xero Jedi Youngling star 1

    Nov 13, 2001
    Augusto: "I'm sick of stupid reviews talking about Star Wars toys, Lucas' wealth and other non-sense having nothing to do with the movie at hand."

    Amen to that! :D
  14. wedge3210

    wedge3210 Jedi Master star 5

    Jun 7, 1999
    Does anyone else get the feeling reviewers are all trying to outdo one another with the most scathing review just so they can get noticed?

    A bit like Episode One and a lot like Empire Strikes Back in it's day.

    The poor old reviewers are a bitter lot when their recommendations aren't being listened to when the 'must see' movies are released these days.
  15. The Flying Dutchman

    The Flying Dutchman Jedi Padawan star 4

    Jun 4, 2000
    another good review, this time from onone less then the NYPost 4.5 out of 5 :D

    I have to say thing are looking up brighter this time around... have critic ever been more positive then with AotC?
  16. Jedi knight Pozzi

    Jedi knight Pozzi Jedi Grand Master star 6

    Apr 2, 2000
    The LA Times appears to have bashed seven shades of hell out of it.
    Praised it for a few scenes though. :)

    Has there been a single review that has bashed everything?
  17. xaviore

    xaviore Jedi Youngling

    May 7, 2002
    Critics know that they have a wide audience. Most critics, it seems, have all always hated Star Wars. Why?

    I think it is because of jealousy. They are player haters, if you pardon the hip-hop jargon. GL started this franchise on his own terms; Hollywood has always resented him for that. He does what he wants with his own money and nobody can say crap about it. To add more salt to the wound, people love Star Wars. Some actually worship it. Star Wars is embedded deeply into the fabric of our pop culture and is loved worldwide. This inherently attracts envy and hatred. Critics (who are writers foremost) want people to read their material. As "writers" they long to tap into the conscience of people and persuade minds. Kind of like what GL?s movies have done. They simply hate the fact that what ever GL does turns to gold, literally. One might draw a parallel to Bin Laden?s hatred of the US and his use of terrorism to fetidly ?fight? back. This is a topic for a different discussion but I feel it is worth mentioning and ultimately exploring.

    This leads me back to my first statement. Since critics have an audience, their best line of defense is to bash the film to try and get folks to not see it. Unfortunately, this method is very effective. However, there are a few circumstances where this may play into AOTC favor. Let me break this down.

    Scenario 1: If a movie is GOOD and critic TRASH it ? word of mouth will spread and movie will stay around longer.

    Scenario 2: If a movie is GOOD and critics are MIXED about it ? word of mouth will spread and movie will stay around EVEN longer. I must add if the movie had A LOT of hype (take Batman, 1989), then people want to see for themselves and the movie makes a WHOLE LOT of cash. I think AOTC will fall here, thus backfiring on the evil goals of the critics.

    Scenario 3 and 4 relate to a BAD movie which I do not feel is relative to this movie so I will not include it here. AOTC is obviously better than TPM which I feel is a GOOD movie.

    Lastly, I will say this: The critics will achieve their goal of taking SOME of the opening buzz away and therefore will hurt slightly the opening weekend?s gross (which, GL, can care less about ? so why should we?). However, word of mouth, conflicting reviews, and ?It?s a STAR WARS film for crying out loud!?, will all contribute for longevity in the summer of 2002. I project 300 ? 350 million and number one by summer?s end; beating spidey by a nose.

    May the force be with you!
  18. ArtificialStupidity

    ArtificialStupidity Jedi Youngling star 3

    Apr 20, 2002
    xaviore, I perfectly agree with you. You come very close to my own thoughts regarding this matter with your intelligent, well-written reply. I have only one factor to add to your theory.

    It is easy for critics to trash Attack of the Clones because they know that The Phantom Menace was hated by most of the Star Wars -fans. They might be arrogant enough to cross a certain limit which prevents them from swallowing their own disappointments and open up to the fact that Attack of the Clones is a big improvement over TPM. They want to dig up all the negativities from the newest installment, and concentrate on them - ignoring the rest; no matter how big Lucas's effort would have been.

    It is a very easy procedure to throw oil into the fire. They know that Attack of the Clones is every Star Wars -fan's weak spot - the last chance to present an entertaining Prequel Trilogy; the last link between total enthusiasm and complete disappointment. Critics can be mean, unjustified and stupid if they want to; and most of the time I find myself disagreeing with them. As simple as that.

    May the Force be with you!
  19. Darth Serious

    Darth Serious Jedi Youngling

    Jun 7, 1999
    I remember on the back of the Phish newsletter (which I subscribed to at the tender age of 17), there was a strange column by this friend of the band's, and he once went on the lament the fact that people are often unable to react to what is actually before them, but are often reacting to the last thing they've seen a person do. For example, if you play a concert before an audience for the first time, the audience is not inclined to go ape, as they're still processing everything they're seeing. If, in the murky time following, it becomes general consensus that said concert was a success, they will show up to the next concert cheering and hollering, but they're really cheering for the first show. So, in effect, they're not reacting to you in the present, but are instead reacting to the last thing they saw you do.

    That's how the Ebert review strikes me. It's like his TPM review was more a reaction to the original trilogy, and the joyous fact that Lucas even attempted to make a new Star Wars movie, while his review for AOTC makes more sense as a postponed reaction to TPM.

    Just philisophisin'... don't mind me.

  20. Qui-Gon Gin and Juice

    Qui-Gon Gin and Juice Jedi Youngling star 1

    Dec 11, 1999
    I should start by saying that I've enjoyed reading everyone's thoughts and opinions on the AotC reviews in this thread.

    To add to the discussion, I would like to point out that in the world of movie critics, there's not an easy way to determine who's a good critic and who's not. There are no scores being kept per se. What makes Roger Ebert a better or worse movie critic than LisaS from EW?

    In the world of professional movie critics, being good -- often = commanding the highest salary -- is closely related to one's ability to identify movies that will win awards: Oscars, Golden Globes, etc.

    Frankly, it's very easy for the professional critic to mark down an action flik. VERY few action movies, not to mention sci-fi movies have even been nominated for the major awards (Best Picture, Screenplay, Actor, Actress, Supporting Actor/Actress, Director). Therefore, saying movies like Star Wars or Spider-Man "suck, but have good effects and action sequences," are a way of saying "it won't win any awards except for maybe special effects." They can therefore reserve their 4-star reviews for the movies that will be candidates for the major awards.

    The contrast between Ebert's reviews for TPM and AotC demonstrates what I'm talking about. His review of TPM suggests that TPM would be a serious candidate for awards for effects (sound, visual, etc). But it didn't win. This time, to cover his back, he gives a bad review, and if it actually wins anything, which given TPM's performance and the large number of hit movies coming out this year (MIB2, Scooby, Spider-Man, TTT, HP2) is probably unlikely, he can just say that the screening he saw was bad.

    Everyone knows AotC will make a load of coin anyway, so giving a bad review is very low risk in terms of reputation. Saying a movie like AotC is "the best movie of the summer!" when it won't even be nominated for best picture is only going to make a major critic look foolish.

    That all said, I find that the good critics like Ebert are pretty adept at identifying good dramas, comedic-dramas, romantic-comedies, foreign films, and those great movies made by small studios, but don't give much weight to their opinions on action movies and pure silly comedies.
  21. xaviore

    xaviore Jedi Youngling

    May 7, 2002
    Why can't the critics just tell the truth?
  22. LtKettch

    LtKettch Jedi Youngling star 2

    Sep 19, 2000
    Please don't bash The Phantom. I liked it. 8-}
  23. Darth23

    Darth23 Jedi Padawan star 4

    May 14, 1999
    Here's a fun review:

    Steve Rea of the Philaelphia Inquirer have AOTC a mixed but positive review (WITH SPOILERS](2.5 stars)

    He critizes the dialogue, but his biggest criticism seems to be that you only understand the movie if you're familiar with Phanton Menace and the others. (DUH!!!!)

    Anyway lists this as a ROTTEN (negative) review. If their cut-off line is 60% and if the guy is giving it 2.5 stars out of 4 then it should be listed as a Fresh review.

    [Sorry bout the link I guess it has too much weird code - just cut and paste:

    EDIT: Links removed; were screwing the thread up.
  24. DarthHomer

    DarthHomer Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Apr 29, 2000
    Did anyone see the latest article on about AOTC's reviews? One comment amused me:
    "Of the major U.S. critics, only Time magazine's Richard Corliss, who wrote glowingly of the movie after seeing a preview of it last month, has submitted a positive view of the film, attacking his colleagues in the process"

    Why are they persisting with this falsehood when AOTC still has a 60% approval rating according to Rotten Tomatoes' tally? TPM never reached that mark.
  25. xaviore

    xaviore Jedi Youngling

    May 7, 2002
    Here is a GREAT quote for you.

    "While the first Star Wars will always be a sentimental favorite, Attack of the Clones may well be the best in the series overall."

    -- Staci Layne Wilson, FANTASTICA DAILY

    That is a BOLD statement. This movie wust really ROCK!!!!! I can not wait...
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