What do you think of TPM as the months (and years) go by? - Official thread

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Jedi_Learner, Mar 30, 2003.

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  1. jedi_master_ousley Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2002
    star 8
    Too bad you're too old and tired to wield it anymore. :p
  2. Strilo Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 8
    The Sword of Kings has been reforged and I now wield it. Serve me, Oakessteve, and I will hold your oath fulfilled. WHAT SAY YOU?!?!?

  3. Oakessteve Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    May 9, 1999
    star 6
    No spamming, Tim.

    [image=http://members.aol.com/seconddoordown/no.jpg]
  4. Strilo Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 8
  5. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    My family and friends are all just sitting down to a big "what we've got so far" SW marathon.

    I just showed all the Episode I trailers and TV spots and already the ones who were thinking about taking a nap through TPM got all exited. We all started talking about the year that came out and after telling them how much I thought of the film, the ones who weren't so keen on TPM said they would give it another shot just for me.

    Home Theater in the background: "The Ambassadors are Jedi Knights I believe..."

    Anyway, gotta go, I will let you know what they think later on before I start the AOTC segment.
  6. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    The other day, I sifted through my video/DVD collection looking for a film to watch. I was itchin' to see something akin to ROTK, with majesty and adventure and jaw-dropping thrills. I considered AOTC, but realized I've probably seen it too many times this year. (Best to wait a few months before re-witnessing the power and purity of Ep.II's third act!) My fingers lighted on TPM, and for a moment I caught a rush of excitement: the beginning of the STAR WARS saga! Lightsabers! Darth Maul! R2's heroic rescue of the Naboo ship! Then I remembered: Jar Jar, Jake Lloyd, the dragging Tatooine sequences. Farting pack animals. My heart sank. I couldn't even watch my own special cut--"The Vortigern Edit" (with most of the deleted scenes restored, and far less JJ and goofiness in general)--because I'd loaned it to a friend.

    I sighed and put TPM back in its box. I decided to watch Spileberg's 1941 instead, and enjoyed the living Hell out of it!

    TPM is a failed experiment enlivened by flashes of brilliance. It's beautiful to look at, and the plot and characters are fascinating to a point, but its pacing induces naps and its dialogue induces eye-rolling. Some of it hits like a blast of genius--the Duel, the podrace, the Naboo escape. Some of it lays there like a slug--dinner at the Skywalker's, the audience with Boss Nass. Some it makes you want to slap George Lucas--the Eopie fart, the two-headed announcer. Mostly, it makes you want to re-construct the whole thing into something that makes more sense, that's exciting from start to finsih. I've come to enjoy thinking and talking about TPM more than actually watching it. While that is a triumph of sorts, it's not the kind of "faster, more intense" storytelling that Lucas delivered with the original trilogy. That is a failure--and it still hurts.
  7. jedi_master_ousley Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2002
    star 8
    I still love Episode I. The only thing I would change is to make the podrace scene shorter. If I'm watching Episode I at night, I almost always fall asleep at that point.

    And you think the Tatooine sequence drug on a bit? Haven't you seen the Tatooine sequence in ANH? The pacing of it isn't really much quicker.
  8. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    I just don't understand how anyone could consider TPM a "failed experiment". I think one of it's strongest points is the pacing.

    One of my favorite parts is the dinner table scene. The part where Qui-Gon grabs Jar-Jar's tounge, the part where Qui-Gon wished Jedi could not be killed, the part where Anakin convinces his mother to let him race by recalling her own words about how nobody helps each other anymore, the genuine chairity of Anakin, the reserved suspicions in Qui-Gon's facial expressions, there is just so much cool stuff here, I can't imagine trimming it at all.

    The whole City of Untah Gungah was all weird in that Alice in Wonderland kind of way. The whole sequence with Boss Nass was fundamental to the underlying theme of symbiotic relationships that come into play at the end of the film when Amidala reveals her true self to Boss Nass in the sacred place. On top of that, I can't get enough of Brian Blessed as Boss Nass. The actor really shone through his CG appliances.

    I don't see any reason to "slap" George Lucas, but then again, I didn't have any qualms about the fart joke or the two headed pod race announcer. It certainly didn't cause me to think the whole thing "didn't make any sense" or that it needed to be "re constructed" in any way, and I found the movie to be exiting from start to finish.

    I think the structure and pacing of the prequels is on par with or even beter than some of the pacing of the classic trilogy.

    But isn't that always the way? If you don't like a movie, it has bad pacing and goes on for far too long, if you really like the movie, it's too short and could have used even more time to develop it's themes.

    Any way you slice it though, TPM is in no way any kind of "failure" for George Lucas, It sold better than Lucas himself estimated at the box office, and it has sold extremely well on DVD and VHS. It's only a "failure" for the people who don't like it that much. I feel bad about that, but there is really nothing that can be done about it. It is the way with all movies. None of them are universally adored.
  9. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    Haven't you seen the Tatooine sequence in ANH? The pacing of it isn't really much quicker.

    Ousley, the droids' adventures and Luke's homelife on Tatooine are simply more compelling than the long dull stretch about Anakin and his mother. Pacing doesn't just mean the speed at which things happen, it means the level of audience interest in what's hapening!

    It's interesting that you find the podrace boring. I find it the most well-crafted sequence in the entire film, especially with the deleted material edited back in. It works as a short film in its own right. Very little else in TPM lives up to its thrill factor!
  10. JohnWilliams00 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 29, 2002
    star 4
    How is your SW marathon going Go-Mer? Is TPM finished? What did some of your friends and relatives think of it?

    (and btw, even if some of them didn't like it, I'm not going to jump and shout "See I told you so") ;)
  11. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    Mom needed a break so we paused it after the pod race to eat some lunch.

    So far they seem to be enjoying it.

    Nobody made any audible groans so far. My cousin said he liked the longer cut of the pod race, as he hadn't seen the DVD version.
  12. rpeugh Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2002
    star 4
    I think its cool that your family would sit through a SW marathon. I dont think mine would do that. I am also inteyrested to hear what they think about the movie. I think my dad didnt like it the first time, but I think the second time he liked it better. And I agree with every little thing you said about the dinner scene. Interstingly, it WAS chopped down. It was originally 10 minutes long and cut down to about 4 minutes or so.
  13. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    We'll see how far everyone gets, I am sure some of my family will be coming and going, but so far, everyone has been watching.

    Gramma thinks Jake Lloyd's Anakin is the best thing about the film, saying he reminded her of my brother when he was younger. Come to think of it, my mom used to have her cut our hair, and she always did like the bowl cut. Of course back then, my brother and I didn't care what our hair looked like.

    My cousin said the ending with the duel and the multiple battles was great, and that overall, he wouldn't call it a bad movie. He still doesn't like Jar-Jar that much, but he said he didn't think he was as bad this time around. Maybe it was because he had time to get used to him or something, but he remembered Binks bothering him a whole lot more when he saw it in the theaters.

    We were all able to agree that while we may not all think it was the best SW episode of the bunch, it certainly was fun to watch.

    After we have some coffe and cookies, we are going to start Attack of the Clones.
  14. rpeugh Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 10, 2002
    star 4
    I just think the prequels are terrific. Even the flaws are great, because they are flaws you should expect from a SW film. For example, the thing about characters not having their names used is something you should have expected. GL has always had a bad habit of that. It may not happen as much in the OT, but that is because you didnt have stoic Jedi like you do in the PT.
  15. winter_chili Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Nov 6, 2002
    star 5
    In my opinon, it is the PT's flaws that make it good. I am a huge LOTR fan, both of the books and movies, but i find that the acting is so, well, good that it becomes soul-less,

    its a very hard thing to describe
  16. Jedi_Learner Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 10, 2002
    star 5
    People are welcome to their opinions Go-Mer-Tonic. Never forget that. :)
  17. BobaFrank Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Jul 17, 2001
    star 5
    I just watched it the other night. I love it and have since I saw it openning night in 99'. I have seen it about 40 times and love it more and more.

    The interior lighting(escpecially inside Theed Palace) is phenomenal.

    DOTF is so far the best lightsaber battle.

    The podrace is so cool.

    I love the underlying political corruption theme.

    Liam, Ewan, Natalie, Sam, Frank OZ, Ian, Pernilla, and Jake all did a fantastic job.

    I think TPM is beautiful to look at. It's clean and vibrant and after 4 years it still holds its beauty.
  18. Strilo Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 8
    I think Go-Mer is doing a fine job of respecting others' opinions.

  19. Ekenobi Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Apr 4, 2002
    star 4
    Yeah Go-Mer has not said anything about others opinions. He has just been giving his like we all are here. No need to get on him for something he did not do.

    And this does not seem like the same Jedi_Lerner from before. Too make a complete 180 like this makes me suspicious.

    And I love the TPM and how the whole PT is going so far. Just can not wait for EPIII.
  20. Vortigern99 Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Nov 12, 2000
    star 5
    Go-Mer-Tonic, I appreciate that you love the film so much, and I can even understand why you do. I'll tell you a secret: I love it too! As goofy as it is and as dull as it sometimes is, I perceive its underlying genius and I follow its themes and subplots. Heck, I've seen the darn thing almost 40 times, and I've made my own edited version of it--how could I possibly claim to not love it or be inspired by TPM?

    AT the same time, it is flawed with regard to its execution. For example, the acting in the dinner scene makes an otherwise reasonably interesting piece somewhat of a disaster, in my opinion. Portman especially is dry and obviously unconvinced that any of this is really happening. Her verssimilitude in THE PROFESSIONAL is not even touched on in TPM (or AOTC, though she's better in the sequel). Jake Lloyd is still worse: he looks and sounds like he's acting. Say what you will about 1930s performance styles and formal language, the fact is that the OT had naturalistic perfromances, and the PT doesn't!
  21. jedi_master_ousley Manager Emeritus

    Member Since:
    Jun 14, 2002
    star 8
    Hey Go-Mer, how far did you make it in the marathon?
  22. Go-Mer-Tonic Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Aug 22, 1999
    star 6
    jedi_master_ousely,

    We made it through ROTJ most of us (except gramma who was out somwhere during the middle of ESB). Only my brother and cousin made it past ROTJ and through the Holiday Special. My cousin couldn't believe how bad the Holiday Special was. He had heard about how bad it was, but it was way worse than he had ever imagined. It's almost perfectly bad, as if someone set out to make the worst holiday special ever created.


    Vortigern99,

    The dinner scene seems just fine to me. Portman does her role a great service, and I don't understand why so many people confuse her regality with "wooden acting".

    The OT had similarly stylized dialogue, and aside from the formality of the prequels, I can see no dicernable difference in overal acting quality. They aren't all oscar worthy, but they all do at the very least, a servicable job. I think the classic trilogy appears to have more "normal" dialogue because we have become so familliar with it. Give the prequels some time and I am sure the same thing will happen.

    Questioning SW dialogue is like questioning Shakespeare's dialogue. You just can't do it. As long as it serves it's purpose and makes logical sense that the viewer can follow, then it's good.

    Lucas is much more concerned with the dialogue's functionality and pacing than he is with it's poetic beauty. From where I sit, this is more like real life, where people don't always talk in well thought out verse, and at the same time, it gets us through the neccesary exposition quickly.

    I understand a lot of you have decided that this is a bunch of crap and the performances in the prequels simply "suck". That's legitimate, but from where I sit, such a wasted opportunity for a SW fan.
  23. JohnWilliams00 Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 29, 2002
    star 4
    The dinner scene seems just fine to me. Portman does her role a great service, and I don't understand why so many people confuse her regality with "wooden acting".

    But Liam said the acting was a bit wooden, Ewan said TPM was a bit "flat" (not sure what parts), and Natalie said she was not happy with her performance in TPM because she was unhappy with things in her personal life (away from home), etc...

    So it appears we critics are not alone in our disatisfaction with the performances. A few of the actors agree as well.
  24. SkottASkywalker Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jan 3, 2002
    star 4
    Not surprising actors/actresses can be hard on their own performances. STAR WARS actors/actresses are not the only ones to do this. Oscar winners have done the same thing.
  25. anidanami124 Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Aug 24, 2002
    star 6
    But Liam said the acting was a bit wooden, Ewan said TPM was a bit "flat" (not sure what parts), and Natalie said she was not happy with her performance in TPM because she was unhappy with things in her personal life (away from home), etc...

    So does that mean those, that liked the acting have to agree it bad because they say it is? No we don't Go-Mer feels Natalie did a good job. If he feels she did a good job she did a good job.


    Take like this just because Triple HHH says he put on a good match does not make it so for the people watching. That's what he may feel. But then there are other who will feel different. There are others who will feel he did not put on a good match.

    I try last mondays match. Real bad match. In fact all of his good matchs were before he got hurt.
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