The Saga's Individual Titles

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by Obi-Shawn-Kenobi, Oct 7, 2004.

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  1. Obi-Shawn-Kenobi Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Sep 13, 2004
    star 2
    My first thread attempt, so be kind, or not too harsh at the very least.

    Earlier tonight I was watching ESB, and I got to thinking about the individual titles in the SW Saga. And then I thought about new fans in the future, probably because my 2 year old daughter wandered into the room and sat down and watched a little bit of it.

    It got me thinking. When I was a child, and I went to the video store or browsed the movies my parents had in their entertainment center, often times a title would stick out and I would watch that movie (i.e. Star Wars, The Terminator, Nightmare on Elm Street, etc.) while ignoring other titles.

    Even though the Saga is about the rise, fall, and redemption of Anakin Skywalker, the titles for the most part are dark and foreboding, with the exceptions of A New Hope and Return of the Jedi. Even the title for Episode 3 (Revenge of the Sith) fits in with The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, and the aforementioned Empire. So basically that's 2 optimistic titles in a Saga of 6 films.

    So do you think that this may in some way hamper younger children or even adults from viewing the films if they just judge a film by the title, and they think the whole saga is, for the most part, a real downer?
  2. NZPoe Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 21, 2001
    star 4
    I think the movie is very much a depressing story filled with a lot of darkness, especially for the younger audiences. The saga is, after all, the fall of a man into darkness and his redemption. Star Wars has about as much tragedy as Shakespeare's darkest works.

    But, personally, I think this is what makes it such good viewing for younger minds. Children love to be scared, they love to see psychological conflict and they love to know that the world can be a dark and scary place, but that it also has good guys and heroes who will rise up against it.

    As Lucas himself has said on the commentaries, the power of the hero is measured up against the evilness of the villain. The scarier the villain, the more courageous the hero. And kids love and need heroes.

    Often the best children's movies are wrought with darkness, monsters and fear - "The Dark Crystal", "Labyrinth", "Harry Potter", "Lord of the Rings" (note how they're all fantasies like SW?) etc...
  3. TheForgottenJedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2004
    star 4
    This is how I see it if someone watched them in order 1-6

    The Phantom Menace- Evil,good outcome, who exactly the title refers to the audience cant be certain, unless they come to a site like this one ;)

    Attack of the Clones- Sounds evil till you watch it,good outcome, you see that the clones are on the good guys sides and the good guys come out on top.

    Revenge of the Sith- Plain evil,bad outcome, the darkest moment of the darkest hour is in this film.


    A New Hope- Good,good outcome, thats right folks theres still hope for the fallen hero.

    Empire Strikes Back- Evil,not great outcome, can Luke succeed after learning the truth? Man he didnt come out on top in this one.

    Return of the Jedi- Good, best outcome, Luke has matured and has beaten evil. Even better he has succeed in bringing Anakin back to the light side! :)
  4. Anakenobi Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2004
    star 1
    Well, we can come up with opinions and theories....or consider what George Lucas has said about the films:

    "They're children stories"

    Mark Hamill wanted RotJ to be darker but Lucas told him that the films were basically children stories. He said that back then (1981-82) and NOW he still says that (in recent interviews).

    Like most SW fans grew up, but the films didn't. That's why Jar-Jar got bashed by the older fans so much. They weren't the target audience anymore. Kids were.

    Many fans wished that the saga was dark, but the truth is it really isn't. Look at New Hope and even George described it as a "Disney movie".

    Empire was darker but it really was as dark as some Disney flicks (The Lion King (the death of Simba's father), Sleeping Beauty (the final battle against the witch-dragon), etc.)

    And Jedi was a mix of dark (Emperor) and wimsy (Ewoks).

    Star Wars can be thought of as a modern fairy tale.

    Even George created Yoda based on characters from such a genre: "I wanted Yoda to be the traditional kind of character you find in fairy tales..."

    And there's more:

    "I set out to make a film for a generation growing up without fairy tales"--George Lucas

    Go figure...
  5. BauconBatista Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2004
    star 4
    Exactly. To me, Star Wars is a space fairy tale, not simple science fiction.
  6. DarthyMarkyMark Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2003
    star 4
    I think Attack of the Clones is intended to be a positive title - I read an interview with GL somewhere where he said that the titles of the episodes in each trilogy are meant to parallel each other, but one is negative and one is positive:

    The Phantom Menace and A New Hope
    Both describe the general feel of the movie - TPM is a negative title, while ANH is a positive title.

    Attack of the Clones and The Empire Strikes Back
    Both describe the military campaigns in the movies - AotC is positive, as the clones fight for the Republic at this point - ESB is most definitely negative.

    Revenge of the Sith and Return of the Jedi
    Describe the rise of a new order for the galaxy - RotS is negative, RotJ is positive.
  7. Spike_Spiegel Former FF Administrator Former Saga Mod

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    To me, the parallels in the saga's titles is a bit more complex. I'm gonna repost some thoughts I posted in my FanForces forum before the EIII title was announced.

    " Both trilogies seem to follow an interesting parallels concerning the titles. Follow me on this one, puleaze:

    A New Hope

    The Phantom Menace

    In both movies there is an established order in the Galaxy, in EIV we have the Empire, in EI we have the Republic. What both titles seem to suggest is that there is a threat to the established system. We have the Rebellion threatening the dominance of the Empire and the Sith (who then created the Separatists) threatening the existence of the Republic. What is interesting is that the established order swapped around in both movies.

    The second installments also have a parallel relationships:

    The Empire Strikes Back
    The Attack of the Clones

    In both titles we have the established order stricking back (pardon the redundance) to the threat to the system. The Empire strikes at the Rebels at Hoth, the Republic uses the Clones against the Separatist movement. Both titles gramatically suggest action, unlike the first pair who are simply descriptive.

    If GL follows this pattern. . .or if GL is even aware of this, he should follow a parallel with Return of the Jedi. This title seems to suggest a return to order, but not to the established system, but a fall of that order and the victory of the threat of to that order referenced to in the last two titles.

    Which brings us to an interesting point in which to base title speculation for EIII.

    Revenge of the Sith would follow the pattern, yet it is waaaay too silly.

    Circle of the Force doesn't seem to follow this pattern at all.

    Rise of an Empire, in my opinion, sounds cool and seems to follow the parallels."

    Guess you now know my thoughts about RotS.
  8. Anakenobi Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 24, 2004
    star 1
    Many science fiction fanatics don't even consider Star Wars films as part of that genre.

    And that's because there really isn't anything scientific about the stuff you see in the films (The Force, crystals for lightsabers, etc.)

    So SW is a fairy tale. A clue is there to prove it: (Along time ago...).

    And what I already said before on this tread.
  9. DarthyMarkyMark Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2003
    star 4
    I agree - I've never really liked science fiction, but I love SW, because to me, it's not sci fi at all. "A long time ago ..." is just like "Once upon a time ..." - it's a fantasy and a fairy tale, and I think that's why it's got much wider appeal than just a normal sci fi movie.
  10. Smuggler-of-Mos-Espa Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jan 23, 2002
    star 6
    I really don't think the actual titles would be much of a problem for adults, but it might be for kids.
  11. Pellaeon-Firke Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 2, 2004
    star 5
    I find it interesting that the 6 titles all make sense after you've seen the movie, but they don't make it obvious what will happen. That's why I always assumed that Rise/Birth of an Empire wouldn't be the title, because it gives too much away in the plot line.

    The first titles of each trilogy are cryptic: the viewer, after seeing them, can't be sure if TPM is Anakin, Palpatine, or Sidious, while it's unsure whether Han or Luke is the New Hope.

    The second titles refer to an obvious event in the movie: the destruction of Echo Base and the Battle of Geonosis.

    The third titles seem to subtly underline the differences between the "winners" of each trilogy, besides referring to an event. When the Jedi defeat the Sith, they merely "return", but when the Sith defeat the Jedi, they get their "revenge."

    My 2 cents, anyways.
  12. DarthyMarkyMark Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2003
    star 4
    That title of ANH is also quite ambiguous in a strange way - in the ESB commentary, George Lucas talks about Vader's plans for Luke, now he knows Luke is his son, and that Luke is "Vader's hope" for killing the Emperor - Luke is "a new hope" not only for the rebellion and for the Jedi, but also for Darth Vader.
  13. b-wingmasterburnz Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 27, 2004
    star 3
    I totally agree with there being parallels in the movie titles.


    Try explaining this conversation to some purist who still calls ANH "Star Wars"
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