The Suffering of Naboo citizens.

Discussion in 'The Phantom Menace' started by Jedi_Learner, Jan 17, 2003.

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  1. Jedi_Learner Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2002
    star 5
    "Now, now your highness, in time the suffering of your people will pursade you to see our point of view."

    Would Episode I of been better if we had seen what the Trade Federation was doing to the people of Naboo in the Prison camps? Are such things best left to our imaginations?
  2. Spike_Spiegel Former FF Administrator Former Saga Mod

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 6
    There are many things that are best left unsaid (or unshown in the movie, in this case), that being one of them.
  3. stone_jedi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 17, 2001
    star 4
    I disagree. Showing the suffering would have given us a sense of why Amidala so suddenly changes from being a pacifist to a warrior.
  4. -_-_-_-_-_- Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Apr 28, 2002
    star 6
    Personally I think the Gimp in Pulp Fiction should have been cast for Episode I in order to create these scenes. I think we all know what happens next....
  5. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    Why have the TF Viceroy mention it and then not show it?

    I don't mean graphically, just show some of the hardships.
    And don't say to show the skepticism of the Republic whether to beleive the Queen or not.

    We know, and that just makes the Senate look stupid. Kinda like the Jedi in Clones. [face_plain]
  6. Quixotic-Sith Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2001
    star 6
    Not seeing actual hardship was one of the biggest barriers I encountered to empathizing (and thus caring about) the protagonists. I think if we saw suffering (and no, I'm not talking about sadism or wanton cruelty (at least nothing worse than we got in TESB)), I wouldn't have felt so detached from the characters - their plight wasn't compelling. In a visual medium, I believe that the rule is show, don't tell.
  7. Jedi_Learner Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2002
    star 5
    Thanks for the responses everyone. :)

  8. hoth-nudist Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Dec 5, 2000
    star 3
    Quixotic Sith hit the nail right on the head.
  9. Emperor_Billy_Bob Chosen One

    Member Since:
    Aug 9, 2000
    star 7
    We should have seen some of it, I think.
  10. DarthBoba Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2000
    star 9
    Perhaps we should have. But then, we get the question: Just what do you show? Droids knocking down Naboo resident's doors and herding them off to camps? Naboo political leaders being shot? Mass graves?

    None of the above belong in an SW movie (IMO anyways) and I'd say not showing the Naboo people's suffering was a good decision. Just accept it on face value that they are suffering. No reason to show it-we never actually see Imperial troops occupying Cloud City in TESB, we merely accept that they are. Why? Because Lando says they are.
  11. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    "Just what do you show? Droids knocking down Naboo resident's doors and herding them off to camps? Naboo political leaders being shot? Mass graves?"

    Nonsense. It doesn't have to have any of that. Maybe just show people herded into camps, then show a scene later where we see them performing labor of some kind.

    Maybe the TF put them to work mining resources or something?

    EDIT: Gunray asks Bibble when the Naboo will give up their hunger strike. This is something we could have seen, some sort of protest.

    Instead, TPM gives us way too many meetings.

    The Jedi go to meet the Viceroy, go to meet Amidala, meet the Council, the Queen meets with Palpy, meets with the Senate, etc.

    Too many meetings and not enough action.
  12. Quixotic-Sith Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 22, 2001
    star 6
    Perhaps we should have. But then, we get the question: Just what do you show? Droids knocking down Naboo resident's doors and herding them off to camps? Naboo political leaders being shot? Mass graves?

    None of the above belong in an SW movie (IMO anyways) and I'd say not showing the Naboo people's suffering was a good decision. Just accept it on face value that they are suffering. No reason to show it-we never actually see Imperial troops occupying Cloud City in TESB, we merely accept that they are. Why? Because Lando says they are.


    But we do see Imperial troops in Cloud City. We also see 3PO destroyed. We also see Chewie being tortured with high-frequency sound. We see Han being lowered on to some form of hot panel. We see him frozen, cut off from those he loves. All in a Star Wars film - and it made us feel their plight more, because the threat was real. The only thing we imagined was what *else* was done to them.

    IMHO, it was a bad decision simply to leave their "suffering" to the imagination, and to say we should feel bad for them because someone says they are. Given how idyllic Naboo society is, for all we know they were held without biscuits for their afternoon tea. Oh, the horror! Oh, the humanity!
  13. SomeRandomNerd Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    I don't think the Naboo citizens really suffered.

    The only evidence we're given to think they did is a faked message from Sio Bibble.
  14. NiktosRule Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 8, 2001
    star 4
    I don't think we should have seen because we don't know if Bibble's message was true or not. Like Qui-Gon said it might just be bait to get the connection trace. Plus what to show would have been another question. I think it was best left unshown.
  15. Darth Geist Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 1999
    star 5
    Why not have Gunray's dialogue with Bibble take place in a labor camp, rather than the palace? Gunray could stroll nonchalantly past laboring prisoners, while Bibble does his best to stand up for them. Not too graphic, and it would've driven the point home.

    To leave the whole issue off-camera is akin to cutting Han's carbon-freezing scene and replacing it with a scene where Lando tells Leia, "Han's been frozen in carbonite, I think."

    Quixotic is right; one of film's primary maxims is "Show, don't tell."
  16. Jedi_Waster Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jun 1, 2002
    star 2
    Yup, and as GL has stated he's a VISUAL director, then perhaps he should show some more.

    Notice how all the interesting stuff happens off screen?
  17. Lurking_Around Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    May 26, 2002
    star 6
    Just what do you show? Droids knocking down Naboo resident's doors and herding them off to camps? Naboo political leaders being shot? Mass graves?

    I would love to see all those things. Alas, we cannot scare the litle kiddies. Actually, the droids knocking down doors part is good, not too graphic (so as to spare the little kiddies :p) and would work very well in illustrating the horrors faced by the Naboo.

    Naboo leadrs being shot...yeah, kinda graphic for SW, but perhaps it can be done off screen, with Bibble witnessing it while we hear the shot being fired. Hmm?

    Mass graves would be cool too, but it'll just be another excuse for CGI.

    McCallum: CGI graves, George? Alright! The crtics can just **** thmselves, 'cos we are gonna show some ****ing suffering! Oh yeah!

    [face_mischief]
  18. WMCoolmon Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 4
    "McCallum: CGI graves, George? Alright! The crtics can just **** thmselves, 'cos we are gonna show some ****ing suffering! Oh yeah! "
    [face_laugh]

  19. royalguard96 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 13, 2001
    star 5
    I agree with QS.

    I think it would have helped to see "some" sort of suffering by the Naboo. A long shot of smoking buildings (sorta like the Lars homestead after the attack) or a glimpse of crying women and children as the men were being hauled off into camps.

    This could have been accomplished with just a couple long shots or some very brief images.

    I think the reason Lucas skimmed over this was to try and keep the plot moving through the first act of the film. He had to establish the invasion, get the Jedi in touch with the Queen and get them all to Tatooine to begin the next act. He may have felt showing suffering as we've discussed would have hampered the plot.
  20. DARTH_ZELIG Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 17, 2002
    Yes, they should have shown some kind of example of the Naboo citizens suffering because I had no real reason to dislike The Trade Federation. There was no tension there, which I think really hurt the movie.

    As a kid, I thought Darth Vader and Grand Moff Tarkin were both frightening in appearance and in what they did. Their evil made you dislike them and "root" for the Rebels.

    Nute Gunray and his associates were just a couple of bumbling morons who care only for riches. "Wow, they are blockading the planet! How scary!"
  21. SomeRandomNerd Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Dec 20, 1999
    star 4
    >>>>To leave the whole issue off camera is akin to cutting Han's carbon-freezing scene and replacing it with a scene where Lando tells Leia, "Han's been frozen in carbonite, I think."

    More akin to telling the audience that many Bothans had died to bring the Rebels some information, when in fact the information was deliberately given to them, I'd say.

    The reason we aren't shown it is because we're told what the characters are told- which isn't quite what happened.

    Amidala's people weren't dying. If we were shown them not dying, then the whole Palpatine/Sidious scheme would have become too obvious, when it's clear that a first-time viewer who hasn't seen the OT isn't supposed to be able to make that connection.
  22. Darth Geist Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 23, 1999
    star 5
    "More akin to telling the audience that many Bothans had died to bring the Rebels some information, when in fact the information was deliberately given to them, I'd say."

    First off, that analogy is off base. The Bothans were tangential to the plot, while the Naboo citizens were half the macguffin (the other half being Anakin). Imagine if they'd left Anakin off camera, and the only indication that he existed was Qui-Gon telling us, "We found this boy. He might be important."

    Second, where's the real tension in a conflict where nothing seriously bad is actually happening, and what's more, it's not happening off camera? "People you'll never meet may be in trouble. Just kidding." Ooh, I'm on the edge of my seat; how about you?
  23. ShaneP Ex-Mod Officio

    Member Since:
    Mar 26, 2001
    star 6
    SRN:
    "The reason we aren't shown it is because we're told what the characters are told- which isn't quite what happened.

    Amidala's people weren't dying. If we were shown them not dying, then the whole Palpatine/Sidious scheme would have become too obvious, when it's clear that a first-time viewer who hasn't seen the OT isn't supposed to be able to make that connection."


    And we have our first "We had to have it off camera to not make Sidious' scheme not so obvious."

    He's a Sith Lord for god's sake! What's he going to do?!

    A first time viewer is going to think the TF are good guys?! That Sidious, a guy in a black cloak who tells the TF to "kill them immediately" is a nice guy?!

    We know the Jedi are good because we are told so in the opening crawl of TPM.
  24. Mertroid Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 29, 2002
    star 5
    I think it's good they didn't show the suffering. It's good for your imagination and all. :D
  25. Ternian Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    May 16, 2000
    star 4
    Would Episode I of been better if we had seen what the Trade Federation was doing to the people of Naboo in the Prison camps?

    There was NO suffering. The Sith and the Trade Federation were using this to bluff Amidala in signing the treaty.

    The treaty is the key to everything Imperial.

    ...I had no real reason to dislike The Trade Federation.

    This is a major problem of TPM. The TF aren't that bad. They are legally blockading a planet and they are being hard-done-by in the Senate (to a degree). It almost feels like propoganda.

    That Sidious, a guy in a black cloak who tells the TF to "kill them immediately" is a nice guy?!

    Yes Sidious is bad, but it feels as though he is a last resort for the TF to end the debate in the Senate - just as the Jedi are the last resort for Naboo.
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