Saga Hidden meaning in Star Wars

Discussion in 'Star Wars Saga In-Depth' started by HevyDevy, Apr 28, 2014.

  1. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Some examples of things in Star Wars that can be interpreted quite different to the literal meaning presented.
    Feel free to dispute any of these or add your own.

    Mace and the Posse vs Palpatine -
    The 4 Jedi Masters ignite their sabers in exact reverse order to how Palpatine kills them. You could say he is taking out the weaker Jedi first according to rank. Mace of course lights his saber first, and doesn't die until Anakin has arrived.

    Contrasting midichlorian references in TPM in ROTS can be seen as a metaphor on how the Jedi and the Sith view the force. Qui-Gon (the Jedi Master who starts Anakin on his Jedi path) teaches Anakin about symbiosis with the midis (working together for mutual advantage) where Sidious (the Sith Master who starts Anakin on his Sith path) teaches Anakin about imposing your will on the midis to manipulate them.
    Two moments that can relate to this are:
    - Anakin destroying the droid-control ship in TPM - arguably the force leads him inside and guides him to do this accidentally, the force using Anakin to do this without any selfishness from Anakin and hence saving the day for the good guys.
    - Anakin killing the Seperatist leaders in ROTS - This is Anakin at his most selfish imposing his will on the force for his own ends, and ironically shutting down the droids once again (Sidious: "All droid units must shut down immediately"). While it saves the day in TPM ("Peace!"), this action helps doom the galaxy to an oppressive dictatorship that Sidious will present as a state of peace.
    It kind of makes Anakin fulfilling the force's prophecy (in doing what the galaxy needs of him once more) at the end of ROTJ more satisfying in a way.

    This one may be far-fetched, but hear me out. In AOTC Anakin never kills anything with the green saber he aquires at the Geonosis arena. What I mean is, when he is using blue he kills the poisonous slugs, the entire Tusken tribe, and a number of those flying Geonosian guys. Once he loses his saber, and is thrown a green one in the arena, he only destroys droids. Perhaps a nod to Luke more passively using green at ROTJ's climax? Also, later when Obi-Wan is defeated by Dooku, he throws Anakin the blue saber Obi-Wan was using, Anakin fights with both for a bit before the green is destroyed, and Anakin losing his arm fighting with the same saber Obi-Wan had used when Dooku beat him. Besides the fact they both lose to Dooku with the same sword, I noticed something curious... Luke and Anakin are both dismembered using a saber Obi-Wan gave them. And with Luke it is actually the saber Anakin used in ROTS.

    Further on saber colours...
    Luke using green in ROTJ can symbolise the Jedi's return, which actually really happens when he throws his saber away and refuses to turn. Anakin contrastingly uses red and blue to kill Dooku and symbolically replace him as next Sith apprentice.
    You also have the first "blue on blue" fight at the end of ROTS, symbolising brother vs brother, and how well the combatants know each other.

    Suns and moons -
    There are three references to the famous ANH binary sunset in ROTS.
    First, after Order66, we get a scene on Kashyyyk at night (the "all these Wookies are dead" scene) with two moons in the background. Perhaps indicating that night has fallen on the Republic.
    Second, Vader on Mustafar looking at a Solar eclipse. What could be more contrasting to Luke's moment with the setting suns than this. With Luke it represented destiny, yearning and hope. With Anakin the light is being literally blocked out, a nice metaphor for the dark of "Vader" smothering the light of Anakin's soul.
    Third, perhaps most obviously, another binary sunset at the end of the film. A nice sign-off to the saga, or in chronological order a hint that there is still hope for the future despite the bleak events that have just unfolded.

    Double meaning dialogue -
    There is a lot of this, but a few off the top of my head...

    Qui-Gon to Anakin: "Remember Annie. Your focus determines your reality. Stay close to me, and you'll be safe."
    I really like the scene at face value, but it also sounds to me like a reference to the fact that Anakin and the other Jedi would be wise to "stay close to" Qui-Gon's path to perhaps find enlightenment.

    Anakin to Obi-Wan while discussing dreams of his mother: "I'd much rather dream about Padme." Ouch... quite ironic when you know where dreams of Padme lead him in the next film.

    ROTS -
    Obi-Wan: "Chancellor Palpatine, Sith Lords are our speciality."
    I love the irony of this line. Obi-Wan's Master was killed by Maul, leading Obi-Wan to train Anakin. Anakin then kills Dooku using skills he learnt training under Obi-Wan, but ends up replacing Dooku later in the film. So Obi-Wan, speaker of the dialogue, begun Anakin's training, training which is "completed" by Palpatine (the person he is speaking to). Obi-Wan then of course defeats Vader later, only to be killed by him in the Original film. "Our specialty" indeed.

    ANH -
    This is one from Cryogenic.
    C-3PO: "That's funny... the damage doesn't look as bad from out here."
    Can be taken metaphorically, like Vader still looking like Anakin in ROTS despite his soul corrupting, or the damage the Empire does being more internal... still appearing peaceful or orderly on the surface.

    Hmm, can't think of an ESB one, maybe one will come to me later.

    ROTJ -
    Luke: "Master Yoda, you can't die."
    Yoda: "Strong am I with the force. But not that strong."
    Holds new meaning when you see the power the Sith strive to achieve in ROTS.

    Another from this scene...
    Yoda: "Luke. Do not underestimate the powers of the Emperor, or suffer your father's fate you will."
    Anakin indeed buys Palpatine's feigned weakness in the "turn" scene in ROTS, which the future Emperor uses to snare him for 23 years.
  2. Alexrd

    Alexrd Force Ghost star 6

    Jul 7, 2009
    However, Obi-Wan bisected Maul with a green lightsaber (Qui-Gon's). But I see your point though. Great thread and nice finds.
    Andy Wylde likes this.
  3. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    *This post ended up being even longer than *I* envisioned*

    Hidden meanings? In ONE thread? Isn't half my posting history dedicated to hidden meanings, already? You mad man, HD. :p

    Well, really, this could be utterly exhausting, so I figured, "I'll just cherry-pick a handful of examples from ROTJ and TPM." However, it turns out, I couldn't even manage that. No sooner had I started talking about early scenes in TPM, than my entire post became totally dominated by this early passage of the film. So the first 15 mins of TPM became my focus. And, well, as a wise man might have once said, your focus determines your web posting.

    These are, of course, merely my personal reflections only -- a fact that should become quite apparent when you realize how random some of these witterings are...

    Okay, an early visual I like in TPM is Amidala on the viewscreen, confronting Nute Gunray. It has been noted by StampidHD280pro that Amidala's red stylings seem borrowed from nature. And that her saying "Beware, Viceroy" is a very blatant reference to nature. Which I totally agree with. I'll add that it is like she is deliberately mimicking it. A lot of TPM's visuals and happenings could be said to concern the intertwining of civilization and the primal aspects of nature. Think of Jar Jar contrasted with the taciturn Jedi, for example. Also note the gemstone that Amidala wears in this formative scene: a third eye or chakra. It is also like a charm she is using to deflect the poisoned civility of Nute and the TF. It is red to match the eyes of the Neimoidians: an exact "counter" to the "evil eye" of Nute and his feigned nicety. She is trying to deflect and ward off his mendacity. Many cultures throughout the world contain a primitive belief in the "evil eye". You can look this up on wikipedia for more. A deeper meaning is that they are both -- Nute and Amidala -- as intransigent as the other. The conflict between these two figures is basically what shapes the narrative of the first two prequel movies. And Anakin kills Nute in a revenge attack in REVENGE of the Sith.

    I also like the visual of the Jedi entering the conference room and idly pacing towards one end, traversing right to left, like "bad" guys, with strange shapes behind them (the table, chairs, and assorted wall fittings). They're poetically depicted in semi-darkness as they head towards the light. And they seem DRAWN to the light; as if broken spirits ambling toward "God". Obi-Wan seems rather anxious about the mission, but Qui-Gon is pretty blunt and dismissive. This situation is replayed in the opening of ROTS, when a "master" and "padawan" board another TF cruiser, very thinly with the intent of "negotiating", and Obi-Wan is calm and cocky, while Anakin is shown fumbling with his vehicle's harnesses and often has a serious, concerned look on his face. The young ones in Star Wars are brash, but they can also be troubled -- needing an older master to warmly show the way. Lastly, with the Jedi looking out the window, it seems they long to break away and put their minds on some other task, as if contravening Qui-Gon's instruction to Obi-Wan, a moment before, to keep his concentration on the "here and now", and also Yoda's lament to Luke, "Adventure, heh. Excitement, heh. A Jedi craves not these things." They're dour and this is an early humanizing moment for them.

    Of course, I also like the protocol droid dropping the silverware, then excusing itself when it emerges ahead of the Jedi. I think that's some classic Star Wars comedy right there. You can kinda impute a basic meaning onto this: protocol has no place now that this level of scheming and violence has shattered the fragile peace; it only gets in the way. Great that they changed things up and went for a female voice in the end, as well, I think. I really like the imagery of the Jedi moving between those pipes at the end of their action sequence, having gone up "the ventilation shaft" (as THX does to escape the underground society -- arriving at a desolate surface; versus the lush green world the Jedi sneak down to). I LOVE the hologram of Amidala on that screen, but I've already talked about that, so I won't say much more. Other than, well, I think this is one of the first visuals that really says, "This isn't your father's Star Wars!" ... "Your father?" Oh, sorry. Moving on, look for Amidala's throne being duplicated, in a dark version, on the TF ship (the weird TF controller with those eye goggles sits in it).

    Down on the surface of Naboo, we get some extremely painterly imagery, and the shots of the stampeding animals are wonderful, as is the shot of Qui-Gon running over that puddle. Sound design is fantastic in this part, too. It is the Jedi, in the thick of it, on the forest floor, back to nature, after stuffy parlour-room negotiation. And this is the perfect time to mark Jar Jar's arrival, as a strange, fluidic being, to counter the hard-bodied, brittle beings we've witnessed up to this point, ruling politics and commerce, or facilitating their dominance in a slave role (e.g., the battle droids). Jar Jar is strongly associated with the battle droids when, in a clever match-cut, a battle droid's head clatters into a gully, followed by Jar Jar popping back up into frame. I really enjoy all the sights and sounds of this part of the film a great deal. Anyway...

    Many lines from this early part of the film are also enjoyable for their double-meaning:

    "Tell them we wish to board at once."
    The Jedi's impatient boarding, ultimately, leads to disaster (TPM-AOTC-ROTS). Technically, a thing cannot be done "at once", since the elapse of some time is required in any physical action. A willful contradiction. The instruction is bossy and monolithic.

    "As you know, our blockade is perfectly legal..."
    It is established at the beginning that spoken language is deceptive, and hence, cannot be trusted. "As you know" is also the form of a classical logical fallacy. And the TF leaders speak English -- political dominance.

    "Be mindful of the living Force."
    More language fog. At this stage, it is an alien term. The characters are enslaved by language.

    "The negotiations will be short."
    An early reference to height differentials encoded directly into dialogue.

    "Are you brain-dead?"
    Later, Qui-Gon to Jar Jar: "Are you brainless?"

    "What is it?"
    The first words of the Emperor -- simmering hostility, he doesn't want to be bothered. Obi-Wan asks a similar question, similarly annoyed, later on. "What is it?"; "What's this?". The characters are linked in any number of ways throughout the PT.

    "This scheme of yours has failed, Lord Sidious."
    Think of Luke's remark in ROTJ: "You've failed, Your Highness." "Failed" is a word the Emperor never wants to hear.

    "I don't want this stunted slime in my sight again."
    Stunted slime. And later: "I have the Senate bogged down in procedure", "He is mired by baseless accusations of corruption." Plus, Palpatine fails to acknowledge the Gungans -- swamp-dwellers -- for their part in the Battle of Naboo at the end of the film.

    "This turn of events is unfortunate."
    Events, and even characters, have a habit of "turning" in Star Wars.

    "We must accelerate our plans."
    More haste after Qui-Gon's pushy instruction to board "at once"; and an extension of the metaphor of podracing (acceleration). And here is the first of many examples of the Emperor pretending that "we" means a team effort, rather than denoting the fact that he is two people in one.

    "My Lord, is that legal?"
    As in ANH, the bad guys are still concerned about the legal ramifications of their efforts.

    "I will make it legal."
    Very boastful and ominous line. Totally foreshadows the Empire and is a whopping clue about who Sidious really, or also, is.

    "And the Jedi?"
    Can't forget about those. It's always X or Y happening "and the Jedi".

    A late addition to filming -- originally, Qui-Gon just remarks, "Gas!" -- even this word (or morpheme: "di") accentuates a major motif, later to be spoken explicitly by Nute himself: "This is getting out of hand, now there are TWO of them!" Even "Hello, Dex!" has a darker meaning in light of this. Dioxis > Dex. Language is simplifying. The latter is like a brand name. And where else do we see clouds and vapours in this film and the other five?

    "They must be dead by now."
    Repeating the errant presumption of Tarkin in ANH. And wait as one holographic figure becomes two (Gunray here; Gunray and Haako when communicating with the battle droid on the surface). Evil spirits of the Jedi? Very Shakespearean.

    "Check it out, Corporal. We'll cover you."
    No-one wants to be on the front line. But Jar Jar later leads the Gungans -- put there by fiat of Boss Nass -- into what might be a suicidal stand against an entire droid army.

    "Uh-oh. Blast them."
    I like the visual of the Jedi in the smoke -- or just their laser swords. Colours in conflict with other colours.

    "What is going on down there?"
    Down in the subconscious? No idea.

    Force Push.
    I like how Obi-Wan pushes those droids and they all pancake into a circular pattern on the floor. It foreshadows the younglings strewn about in that circular pattern on the floor of the Jedi Temple in ROTS. "Who could have done this?" says Obi-Wan. Also, here, the film transitions from that image of downed droids to Nute and Rune stood next to their flickering, circular display screen. Very cool transition. Circles are crazy-everywhere in TPM.

    "Have you ever encountered a Jedi knight before, sir?"
    This question is also being put to the audience. And the answer? No, we haven't -- even if we think we have (OT). And I really like the imagery of the Jedi heroically and effortlessly chopping down one battle droid after another. Not all that heroic, actually. They strike impressive poses as they go about their murderous business. It is exhilarating to watch, though.

    "Well, no, but I don't -- Seal off the bridge!"
    This line is actually one of the best, because it displays two modes of speech, side-by-side, and might sum up the entire "phantom menace". Nute first stumbles for a response, highlighting the emptiness of speech, then cuts himself off and barks a clear order. He equivocates, then switches to a more pragmatic mode. But sealing off is also ominous. It's what the Jedi do. It's what Anakin does in ROTS. The midi-chlorians will later be explained as a foil to this exclusionary, and illusory, form of self-protection.

    "We will not survive this."
    An eerie prognostication. Nute and Rune do not survive the machinations that they have set in motion here. Everyone is changed as a result of what the TF starts here.

    "Close the blast doors!"
    Another line that is repeated, then inverted, in ANH ("Open the blast doors, open the blast doors!"). The blast doors provide an effective counter-measure to Qui-Gon's attempted violent entry (yes, it's a bit like a "rape" -- the original meaning of the word is simply "violence"), and there are THREE doors in total. There is a staggering assortment of "threes" in this film. Also, watch out for the battle droid in the bottom-right of the screen when the blast doors close. First, when he original door is closed, he peers intently at his monitor, but when the film cuts back to the bridge and the second and third (blast) doors are closed, he now does the opposite and slowly backs away from his display screen. I can imagine him saying to himself, "Alright, that's enough! I didn't sign up for this!"

    The crescent scar.
    Not a line of dialogue, but like the Force Push, I thought I'd give this special inclusion. This shape appears at numerous times in all six movies. Sometimes, though, it's very subtle (the glinting sunlight off the back of Yoda's Jedi Temple chair, for example).

    Stop whining!
    Yep, Arnie reference. I'm making it because the subtitles describe the sound that the last falling battle droid makes, as Obi-Wan stabs it in the thorax, as "whining". I also like how Obi-Wan is standing guard of Qui-Gon in this whole sequence. Kinda sad because they get separated in the duel to come and Obi-Wan is unable to stop Qui-Gon being mortally struck down.

    "That will hold them."
    Short-sighted statement is short-sighted.

    "This is impossible."
    Neimoidians are the only thing that could have made "300" better.

    "Master! Destroyers!"
    "They have shield generators!"
    The Jedi are battling themselves. And they have rationalizations for everything.

    "They've gone up the ventilation shaft."
    Similarly, Yoda escapes through what appears to be some sort of ventilation or maintenance shaft after his duel with Sidious. As mentioned above, THX also goes up a "VAC Shaft" and eludes capture in George Lucas' first feature film. Directionality is also established in dialogue here: up/down, left/right, backwards/forwards. And habitation is another motif: inside/outside.

    "Battle droids."
    "It's an invasion army."
    Kinda seems the Jedi were familiar with the layout of the ship and surprised to see battle droids amassing in this hangar. Also, I'm mentioning this, primarily, to point out the shot of Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan hiding behind those crates, with the audience at their backs, is a neat rhyme with one of the first shots of the Jedi, from inside the Republic ship. The neat linking element is the white bar of light at the top of the screen.

    "Again you come before us, Your Highness."
    No doubt, since people keep watching the movies, and Amidala keeps appearing in this cosmic cycle.

    "We will see."
    A blatant reference to vision / perception.
    And perhaps Amidala is subtly prepared to see what the Emperor is not.
    Reprise: "I don't want this stunted slime in my sight again".

    "I don't know, but we must move quickly to disrupt all communications down there."
    "I don't know" is spoken several times in this film and the PT generally. Moving quickly -- again, a running motif (pardon the pun) spelling disaster. "Communication", sounds more like "com-moon-ication". Moons are tied to the communicative assemblage of visuals (the film's symbolism).

    "How could that be true?"
    What's true and what isn't? Palpatine also sounds like Richard Dawkins here. A little bit unctuous, but both are pretty great intellects. This probably just reflects the fact that I read and watch Dawkins' material a lot. Trivia note: "Richard" is also Dawkins' second name, as it is mine. Fans have tried to come up with names for Palpatine. I think "Frank Dantius Hugo Palpatine" fits nicely. (I won't explain the others for now, but "Frank" comes from, "I must be frank, Your Majesty"; which might qualify as the single-most outrageously funny (intellectually funny) line in Star Wars).

    "I have assurances from the Chancellor, his ambassadors did arrive."
    Palpatine omits the qualifying statements -- an arrival, by default, is merely that. This is how he routinely turns language to his advantage. And his hologram begins to distort here. Like the film has "had enough" of his deception.

    "Negotiate... ambassadors..."
    I like the weird way Palpatine's voice goes here. The reptilian depth of it suggests the bowels of Sidious. Palpatine's voice will undergo a second distortion like this in ROTS after he kills Mace Windu and finally ensnares Anakin.

    "A communications disruption can mean only one thing: invasion."
    "Always two there are", Mr. Bibble? Well, anyway, his remark seems accurate to the film's main theme of communications constantly being interrupted, faked, confused, maligned, and misunderstood, and not made at all.

    "The Federation would not dare go that far."
    Amidala is framed from a distance in this shot. Her voice even SOUNDS distant on this line.

    "The Senate would revoke their trade franchise and they'd be finished."
    Rhymes with "This blockade is finished."And this whole scene hints at the stultified imperial ideology that ALREADY engulfs these characters.

    "Use caution, these Jedi are not to be underestimated."
    No, indeed, not. These Jedi are Qui-Gon Jinn and Obi-Wan Kenobi.

    "The ability to speak does not make you intelligent."
    Classic line. Read IMDb, or a political screed, and discover how true these words are.

    "I spake."
    Thus Sprach Zarathrustra. Spake, speck. I, eye. The Bible. Eden. Virgin birth. Jesus. "You hypocrite, first take the plank out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye."

    "Now, get out of here."
    One cannot banish the jarring and the child-like so easily. Jar Jar is part of the system -- for good or ill. It is like telling RAM sticks to leave the inside of your computer. Speaking / spaking of which...

    "What's this?"
    Can be reworked as, "What's 'this'?" Meaning, what is the meaning of, "this"? "We will not survive this." Again, what's "this"? We're being asked to search for definitions and question even the concept of borders / barriers. There are also many barriers visually depicted in this film: some can be transgressed, others can't (or not so easily).

    Just thought I'd mention that Jar Jar actually raises his arm in this part to try and get the Jedi's attention.

    "A city?"
    Cities have a primary importance in Star Wars and the minds of its characters. Witness Luke practically having an orgasm as he tells Yoda that he saw "a city in the clouds". The Bible also places emphasis on the magnificence of cities at different points. Jar Jar has a way of reassuring people in different ways. Here, he easily persuades Qui-Gon, and later, Amidala.

    "My forgotten."
    Memory. And repression. Huge themes in the saga generally. Suffering a similar torment to Jar Jar, Vader will "forget" his earlier life as Anakin Skywalker and his son will then tell him that he has "only forgotten" what he once was. Many of the saga's most powerful and intriguing figures are vagrants and loners. Technically, all the major characters are displaced and scattered into new experiences. "They will never get me on one of those dreadful starships." Sure.

    "That is the sound of a thousand terrible things heading this way."
    I dunno, but this is kind of like a line you might find in a Kurosawa film or an old war movie or something. It seems a bit antiquated in its prosody and hyperbole. I really dig it. Plus, "thousand" -- a number that keeps cropping up in the Star Wars movies.

    "If they find us, they will crush us, grind us into tiny pieces, and blast us into oblivion!"
    Obi-Wan is fond of saying "blast" in the PT. And an early metaphysical allusion ("oblivion"). Also a sort of abstract reference to analysis. If we think we've "found" these characters, we tend to atomize them, as if crushing, grinding, and blasting them away and, ultimately, negating them. A hint that we have to let them slip through our grip and not be so eager to interpret them (or the movies) a particular way, perhaps.

    "Oh. Yousa point is well seen."
    Might just be me, but Jar Jar kinda sounds like Nelson Mandela when he says, "Oh." Anyway, this line is echoed later on by a remark of Chancellor Valorum's: "The point is conceded." The highest and the lowest are always yoked together in Star Wars.

    Creatures Chittering, Hooting.
    That's the subtitle for the sound accompanying the shot of Jar Jar and the Jedi approaching the edge of the lake. Chittering, hooting. My dictionary doesn't even believe that "chittering" is actually a word.

    "How much further"?
    Qui-Gon The Impatient Jinn. And "A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away." Probably quite far, then.

    "Wesa goen underwater, okeyday?"
    Welcome to the realm of the subconscious, the land of the strange. Jar Jar swims beautifully in this sequence, while the Jedi must use breathers and, due to their physiology and robes, encounter significant drag. Also, I like the way Jar Jar holds his arms aloft, then executes an Olympic dive, leaving only a small wake. Plus, he disappears for a pregnant beat. Maybe he penetrated quite deep into the water, maybe he also forgot himself for an instant and got caught up in the moment. Another detail: Obi-Wan's reaction to Jar Jar sending himself airborne. Pretty amusing double-take. I like Jar Jar's battle-dive yell (Yoda vs. Dooku?) and I especially appreciate how the music is synced to the sound of Jar Jar splatting into the water. The sound there is hilarious. Lastly, if I were a kid and a Jedi at this point, I'd probably have **** my pants. It's one thing to be lead around by a happy-go-lucky frog-man in a dense forest, away from killer robots, and quite another to suddenly be told I'd be plunging underwater, and for God know's how long. I used to hate going underwater. Mind you, the sight of Otoh Gunga is worth it, and certainly beats retrieving a dumb rubber brick.

    "Yousa follow me now, okeyday?"
    Yes, Jar Jar, I shall follow you -- to the ends of the Earth. My Gungan, my captain, my king.

    And now that Jar Jar has symbolically taken us under water, I will stop here.

    Maybe I'll look further into TPM and do the other films later.
  4. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Nice work Cryo, that's a massive amount of unique observations. I don't know what I could add without dilluting your ideas, but I will quote some of my faves and see if I have anything useful to say....

    First, just let me respond to Alexrd.

    Thanx for the feedback. Yeah, I'm aware about the green saber use in some of the other episodes, I was only really applying it to AOTC, if at all. It could be a really big coincidence, but it isn't that far-fetched that the green saber took on a symbolic meaning retrospectively after making Return of the Jedi. Who knows. I actually don't find Maul's death that much of contradiction to the theory to be honest, Obi-Wan uses his Master's saber and symbolically becomes his own Master, much like Luke will by throwing away his saber in defiance of the Emperor in ROTJ. It's kind of a grey area though... where do you draw the line between killing a Sith apprentice and becoming a Jedi (Obi-Wan) or killing a Sith and replacing him (Anakin).

    Nice. Some things I like about the similarity in ROTS here...
    - Obi-Wan is one of both pairs of Jedi, going from Padawan of the pair to Master of the two.
    - Obi-Wan states "I have a bad feeling about this" on arrival at our two feature ships.
    - The TF leaders who own the ship are described as "cowards" by Qui-Gon, a description Mace uses on Seperatist leader Grievous, figurehead of the ship this takes place on in ROTS.
    - TPM/ROTS/ROTJ all involve an intimidating faction "blockading" ships. In TPM the TF blockade Naboo. In ROTS the Republic, soon to be an Empire, blocks the Seperatists from fleeing Coruscant with Palpatine. In ROTJ the Empire of course leads the Rebels into a trap, which features similar ships to ROTS "blockading" (for lack of a better word). Something interesting is the fact that in the era of TPM, the feigned civility means the Jedi come invited. In ROTS the Jedi meet harsh resistance, the hangar doors even ominously slam shut as they destroy the shield generator and arrive on the Invisible Hand. There is some irony in the fact Palpatine practically invites the Rebel attack in ROTJ by allowing them to obtain the Deathstar II plans. Also there is this... TPM: "Shields up!" *boom* / ROTS: "Well have you noticed the shields are still up?" / ROTJ: "The shield is still up!"

    Yes, I find those moments genuinely funny. Sets a nice Star Wars tone for the early scenes.

    That's pretty cool.

    I hadn't thought of that. It seems fitting in the context you put it, Palpatine/Sidious' dual approach superceding any notion of genuine teamwork.

    Yes. I find it quite ironic that Vader even still bothers in ANH after we see what he is capable of, but it fits with the arc of the films.

    Fun line as well :D

    TPM/ANH parallels are always cool. There seem to be a lot more of them then the casual viewer would pick up on, even many fans. I'm not sure I follow on your "evil spirits of the Jedi" comment. Care to elaborate?


    I love that about this line. Maybe it was already obvious to some, but the weight of the line really hit me after watching ROTS.

    It's a good dialogue mirror. I'm curious about the "threes". You mean like duel of fates for example?


    "R2. We need to be going up, not down!" ;)

    Hadn't noticed that.

    The implication that these parties have interacted previously kind of mirrors ANH - "Don't act so surprised your highness, you weren't on any mercy mission this time."


    Yeah it's also interesting that his distorted voice through the transmitter when he appears as Sidious in this film foreshadows what his real voice will end up like in ROTS.

    Interesting, as always.

    Nice. Coruscant also represents false solitude, the first we glimse of it is Sidious and Maul's scene together, and the Jedi are wiped out in their own Temple after aligning themselves with a corrupt Republic.

    Well put.

    I wish my mind worked like yours :p


    That sequence takes me back to '99. It was a much better time for me, personally.

    Please do. When you get around to it at least, that was already a hell of a lot for just fifteen minutes of film. :)
    Eternal_Jedi likes this.
  5. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    LOL, thanks.

    I have the habit of going crazy now and again.
    The saber stuff is very interesting and deserves its own thread. I do absolutely love your observations about how Anakin's green saber use contrasts with blue saber use in AOTC. And I've know you've made 'em before, but it's nice to get a reprise.

    Lots to feast on there. Great set of links.

    A general observation concerning ROTJ that I wished to make... (separate to discussing the opening sequences per se)

    Luke actually surrenders THREE TIMES in ROTJ:
    - At Jabba's Palace
    - To the Ewoks on Endor
    - To Vader on Endor -> to the Emperor on the Death Star

    In TPM, Jar Jar also surrenders immediately to the battle droids that march up to him and Tarpals. This is kinda played for laughs, but there is a serious point being made. Similarly, Padme and her entourage place their weapons down and give themselves up to the droids that surround them, in order to gain entry to the throne room. Victory follows.

    In ANH, Obi-Wan surrenders to Vader's blade, after warning that he will "become more powerful" than Vader can "possibly imagine" (I just realized: Obi-Wan also says "possibly" in a rather contentious fashion to Anakin in AOTC; later repeated by Jango to Obi-Wan in the same movie -- in alternate (light and dark) apartments).

    In TESB, Threepio states to Han and Leia that surrender is a perfectly acceptable course of action when they're hiding from the Empire, but Leia immediately switches him off in disgust.

    In ROTJ, Yoda, following Obi-Wan, surrenders to old age and peacefully passes away. Later, Anakin makes himself whole again by surrendering to his heart / the Force in saving Luke and overthrowing his old master.

    I can't help noticing (*SPOILERS*) that this is also Khan's trick -- "I surrender" -- in "Star Trek: Into Darkness"; and Kirk surrenders to Admiral Marcus, buying the Enterprise valuable seconds as Scotty, ubeknownst to them, commits an act of sabotage on Marcus' ship. J.J. Abrams, of course, is directing Episode VI.

    Kinda illustrates, as well, how droids sometimes ESCAPE violence, like Artoo and Threepio in the opening scenes of ANH. They're that low on the food chain that they're simply not bothered with all the time.

    I like this one. Here, the Sith are really the heroes, not the Jedi. Imagine Lucas folding after the first, say, fifty hurdles when making the original movie. We wouldn't be here today.


    "Together, we shall bring peace and prosperity to the Republic."

    Might is inferior to legality, which is inferior to the Force.

    There's a hierarchy.

    Kinda rhymes with "Your focus determines your reality".

    Many parallels, indeed. Evil spirits = "The Phantom Menace". It's like the Jedi are engaged in an elaborate game of hide-and-seek with themselves. They are split. "Always two there are". They can't see their own evilness. You'll notice, in the second hologram scene I mentioned, the front of Nute's garment, towards the base of the holographic image, superficially resembles a pair of Jedi boots, with a paler bit above standing in for where the Jedis' lighter undergarments would be.

    That's it, exactly. I may have unconsciously borrowed that observation from you.

    I mean, like... everywhere! LOL.

    Here are some examples:

    - Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace. A title with three meaningful sub-components. And "The Phantom Menace" is further comprised of three words.
    - There are three paragraphs of scrolling text.
    - A ship with three circular engines speeds past camera.
    - Three Neimoidians are convened when initially contacting Sidious.
    - The Jedi are locked in a room with one other sentient occupant: Obi-Wan + Qui-Gon + TC-14 = 3
    - Queen Amidala is adorned with three red dots when confronting Nute and Rune (cheek drops plus red gemstone on forehead), while she, Nute, and Rune, including their own red eyes, make another set of threes.
    - Three ploughing troop transports mow down forest on Naboo. The middle one nearly crushes Qui-Gon and Jar Jar.
    - Qui-Gon, Jar Jar, and Obi-Wan spend time as a sneaking trio until they rescue the queen.
    - Qui-Gon Jinn, Jar Jar Binks, and Obi-Wan Kenobi: names in three parts. Though, "Qui" and "Gon" are implicitly linked by a hyphen, as is "Obi" and "Wan", and "Jar" repeats. Anakin also has three syllables to his first name, and even his nickname, "Ani", is comprised of three letters.
    - Jar Jar explains his banning as occurring in three stages: "yud-say boom da gassar, den crashin der boss's heyblibber, den banished". Incidentally, this explanation also works as a crude parody of the Jedi's fate: they react to an explosion and they're gassed, they "crash" inside a Trade Federation (main "boss" / baddie of this movie's narrative) transport, and before they know it, they're either killed (Qui-Gon; end of this first part) or in exile (Obi-Wan; end of the trilogy).
    - In the same explanation, other hinting at twos and threes abounds. For instance, Jar Jar characterizes his mishaps as "one, two-y lettle bitty axadentes", and the subtitles (my PAL DVD version at least) break this up into three segments (the "axadentes" line, "da gassar", and "heyblibber / banished").
    - Three sea monsters in the planet core sequence.
    - Artoo joins three remaining droids attempting to restore power to the deflector shield on the queen's ship as it runs the blockade. One is blown away as Artoo moves into position and Artoo briefly makes a second triplet grouping with the remaining two.
    - Anakin says he's been on Tatooine since he was very little: "three", he thinks.
    - Anakin has built a protocol droid called C-3PO.
    - Anakin physically crafts three things on Tatooine (all designed, mentioned, or presented to impress Padme): a droid, a podracer, and a wooden carving.
    - Threepio describes Jar Jar as "a little odd", then -- after telling Artoo, "you're quite right" -- "very odd, indeed".
    - Darth Maul sends out three probe droids to look for the Jedi on Tatooine.
    - There are three circuits in the Boonta Eve Classic (another three-word name of a hyper-kinetic crowd-wowing spectacle -> THE phantom menace?).
    - The classic podracer design structure is two engines and one pod (though there are variants).
    - Anakin faces resistance from three speaking Jedi Council members on Coruscant.
    - Three battle droids approach Jar Jar and Tarpals and persuade Jar Jar to surrender.
    - Yes, three duelists for Duel of the Fates.
    - The comedy duo of Artoo and Threepio is joined by a jarring/non-jarring outsider; and the names of the performers form a trinity, or triune comedy god, in the credits.
    - There are also visuals and situations that suggest "three's a crowd": e.g., the Jedi becoming rattled when Qui-Gon says he'll train Anakin, as they quickly object on the grounds he already has an apprentice and cannot add a second. Think also of Anakin saying goodbye to his mother (Qui-Gon maintains a shadow-y profile), Anakin on the ship (Sio Bibble and Jar Jar present potential distractions before Padme comforts him), and the end scene where Anakin and Padme exchange glances, while Obi-Wan gives them a circumspect look.
    - There are three planets in the film; and these have primary importance to the prequel trilogy (a three-part structure) as a whole.
    - Two very big companies with monumental importance to Star Wars / TPM: "THX" and "ILM".
    - There is a gob-smacking collection of circles and allusions to circles in TPM. Even the narrative makes a kind of circle. And circles are endowed with a unique ratio: a non-repeating ("irrational" / "transcendental") number (pi) whose first digit is 3.

    And that's a mere smattering of all the threes in the film. Now, you could say my list is a bit wacky, which I think it is. You could also say that some of what I've pulled out is mere convention; and perhaps trifling convention at that (the way the subtitles break Jar Jar's speech up into three parts when he's talking about his banishment for example). Still, convention itself has to come from somewhere. I feel that TPM is, in some ways, the most "cosmic" of the existing Star Wars movies, because the number three -- and other design features -- are a little too difficult for me to ignore. But whether you want to get mystical about it or not, these things can simply be beautiful on their own terms. Then again, "your focus determines your reality". Maybe my list isn't all that compelling to begin with and I've merely cherry-picked what I have unconsciously chosen to focus on. But then, that's every post I've ever made, isn't it?

    Yes! That line also flashed into my head as I was writing the above.

    It's more of a subtle detail -- nicely rings the opening action sequence.

    Yes. Especially when you add in Amidala's line: "The Federation has gone too far this time."

    There are so many in this film ..... blockades, bubbles, laser gates, lots of sliding doors, and areas, generally (closed doors are one way they're represented) which cannot be transgressed.

    Great qualification. Cities aren't all they're cracked up to be. There is much that can fall into, well, the cracks.

    You'll notice as well that the podrace has imagery that sort of intertwines or foreshadows the magnificent skyscraper stalagmites of Coruscant.

    Anakin must "learn" the terrain.

    Thanks. It's one of many themes I catch sight of that make me be glad to be watching "Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace".

    Ah, old observation. Too clever for my own good.

    The subtitles are oddly descriptive in places. On the new DVD, there is also an audio commentary track -- "Descriptive Audio" -- for the sight-impaired. The film comes alive in a new way if you watch with either of these switched on.

    Sorry to hear. It was a simpler time for me, my body was in better condition -- I had all my hair -- but I wouldn't really trade then for now.

    LOL. It's time I concentrated on a book. :p

    Yeah, right!
  6. Seagoat

    Seagoat PT and Music Section Dictator star 6 Staff Member Manager

    Jan 25, 2013
    Oh how I LOVE these threads. It's this type of thread that gave me a newfound respect for SW. So what if it wasn't an intentional subliminal message? The point is, it can be interpreted. It's this board really, and SW itself that made me realize that there's a more poetic, analytical way to appreciate cinematic art. I will enjoy seeing this thread blossom :3
  7. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    I wasn't sure how to respond to this earlier but I'll say a few things. Also wanted to request that you continue your analysis at some stage if you like.

    Hah. Your take on the films really broadens the scope of them for me (obviously). It would be amazing if the average fan took as much from (or brought as much to) the Star Wars films as you do.

    Thanx, I wish I had confirmation on if it was even remotely intentional.:p
    I just feel like when Anakin's first saber is destroyed fighting Dooku that I am the only one seeing his hopes of ever becoming a true Jedi going with it. Intended or not, it just seems so ominous... fighting with green and blue on their first encounter and ending up with just blue (before losing his arm), then killing him with blue and red in the next film, keeping the blue and passing it on to Luke who will lose his arm fighting with the same ROTS saber.

    Interesting, I wonder if Palpatine's surrenders in ROTS have any relevance to this. He surrenders on the Invisible Hand (or to Grievous before the movie begins), to Anakin when he reveals himself as a Sith, and to Mace in his office, putting himself at the Jedi's mercy while Anakin watches on. I'm sure you are aware these two characters (last Sith/last Jedi) are the catalysts for Anakin's fall and redemption.

    I'm clueless on Star Trek, but nice observations.

    Yes. Also apparent later in ANH; "All this excitement has overrun the circuits in my counterpart here. I'd like to take him down to maintenance." Lol at the incompetence of the stormtroopers oblivious to the fact the droids are carrying the Deathstar plans.

    Well put. I can't really add to this, but I am reminded of Anakin and Padme's banter about a "diplomatic solution" vs "aggressive negotiations". There is perhaps a similarity in the Sith encouraging aggression where Anakin and Obi-Wan have apparently used aggressive tactics (noted by Anakin in AOTC).
    And of course the Imperial discussion on the Deathstar in ANH kind of implies that the might of the Deathstar will trump any issues with disolving the Senate, to which Vader states that the force is so much more significant. But that was probably implied by your comment anyway ;)

    How so? Although I do see Qui-Gon and Sidious as good and evil archetypes and these quotes really sum up how they are presented to us in TPM.

    Great list [face_hypnotized]
    You are incredibly observant for noticing even half of that stuff.

    Don't sell yourself short, even if it is just your subconscious, the examples seems too numerous to label completely imagined on your part.

    Nice catch. Love the way things are turned on their head if you watch ANH after TPM. The Republic being bullied by the "Rebels" of the PT, this time the bad guys, which will be inverted by the end of the trilogy, nicely setting the stage for the real villains of the saga.

    Plus, as you basically pointed out, the circuIar nature of the six films make them great to watch in any order really.


    Interesting again. It does work as a nice metaphor. Reminds me of the kind of man-made canyon you can see out the window during the ROTS "ruminations" scene. I always loved that image.

    Jar Jar's "forgotten" status does seem an intentional mirror to how Anakin (or perhaps all Jedi) windup. Nice catch again.
    On TPM generally, it does feel the most "Star Wars" of the prequels IMO.

    Good observation, all the same.

    I'll have to try that.

    Lol. Just out of curiosity, do you write this extensively on a lot of topics, or does Star Wars just bring it out of you for some reason? You certainly seem to be eloquent and driven enough to be a real author IMO.

    You don't have to respond directly to my comments here if we would just be going in circles... like I said I would love to hear more of you riffing on the movies without my interference :)
    Eternal_Jedi likes this.
  8. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Some stuff on lineage -

    There are 3 main Jedi apprentices and 3 main Sith apprentices in the saga.
    Obi-Wan --> Anakin --> Luke
    Maul --> Dooku --> Vader
    Anakin (as the chosen one) is in both groups, and Luke would have continued the Sith line if he had turned in ROTJ. Maul and Dooku also serve as placeholders for Vader and contain elements of what Vader will one day be - Maul represents the powerful ideal apprentice for Sidious, the loyal assassin that Vader was supposed to turn out to be. Dooku represents Anakin's idealistic political views being corrupted and led astray. Dooku also represents what Vader becomes when he is put in the suit... a less than ideal apprentice that the Emperor will one day want to replace with a stronger younger apprentice.

    When Anakin kills Dooku in ROTS it is an omen that he will soon replace him as the new Sith apprentice. Less obvious though; he is actually killing his Master's Master's Master...
    Dooku -> Qui-Gon -> Obi-Wan -> Anakin
    That's gotta be a bad sign :p
    The deaths of these characters also play a significant role in Anakin's life. Dooku takes some of Anakin's innocence when he dismembers Anakin, and Anakin will later kill him in cold blood as revenge, bringing him closer to the darkside. Qui-Gon's death is arguably a major catalyst for the birth of Vader, without Qui-Gon's guidance Anakin was more likely to turn.
    Qui-Gon's death puts Anakin under Obi-Wan's tutelage... Obi-Wan loses Anakin to Sidious... cripples Vader on Mustafar... then is killed by Vader (partially helping start Luke on his Jedi path)... which ironically ends up redeeming Anakin. (Also as a side note - Anakin is the only of this group to unluckily not be partially trained by Yoda).

    Six main character deaths bring about the birth of Darth Vader:
    Qui-Gon, Shmi, Dooku, Mace, Padme, Anakin (metaphorically).
    Six main character deaths arguably help Luke become a fully-realised Jedi Knight:
    Owen and Beru, Obi-Wan, Yoda, Sidious, Vader (metaphorically).
    Jo Lucas likes this.
  9. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    Ah! Thank you.

    I should probably create a few separate threads for different ideas I've raised or plan to raise, but it's nice to have somewhere highly concentrated, like this one.

    A problem I've found is that very few Star Wars fans are tolerant of, let alone interested in, anything remotely esoteric when it comes to the saga. Creating threads with a different slant has always been a dispiriting experience for me.

    Very cool stuff. It's like a legacy of violence -- one which is only ended or altered when Luke loses Anakin's saber at the end of TESB. I like how motifs like saber design and saber colour tie directly into larger themes like lineage and the persistence of history.

    Nice. Palpatine also tells Luke that he is "defenceless" in the throne room after all the former surrenders, thus baiting Luke into attacking him, and tying these two Force warriors together.

    Ha. Well, I just threw that reference in at the end in order to make nice over the fact that J.J. Abrams is directing Episode VII. I must say, as a Trekkie and Warsie combined, I'm not a big fan of Abrams' Trek outings. Trek and Wars, in my opinion, don't really mix; they're like oil and water. Not in the analytical sense, nor the fantastical, but in more of an aesthetic sense; or the kind of aesthetic Abrams tried to graft onto "Star Trek", in any case. The J.J. Abrams movies, in my opinion, are a very shallow substitute for Star Trek and Star Wars. I can't pretend to like or admire them a whole lot. On the other hand, lots of people *do* seem to like them, so who am I to say differently?

    Ah, yes. The droids are the saving grace of Star Wars. I appreciate the fact that droids appear very early on at the start of both trilogies. Interestingly, the stormtroopers, of course, are like a replacement droid, having assumed the uniform mystique of their clonetrooper forebears and the bumbling nature of the battle droids.

    Not directly; but putatively, yes. Nice illumination of my koan.

    I'm not sure where I was going with that, but I might have been trying to say that Sidious' promise, "I will make it legal", is a good encapsulation or subtle adjustment of Qui-Gon's maxim: Sidious is focused, so he will do it. In this way, Yoda's classic line, "Do or do not, there is no try," is anticipated. The Sith are the heroes of the PT. And the Sith are also the Jedi.

    LOL! Thank you. I've simply watched TPM (and bits of it) a lot. Especially in the last two years.

    My insight is also a synthesis of what I read and encounter -- sometimes of a "Star Wars" nature (an essay here, a comment there), sometimes something else entirely (all things are ultimately connected).

    But also, in the spirit of Qui-Gon's maxim, just try watching TPM, or any of the films, really, with a certain idea or pattern in mind. To a large extent, we see what we want to see.

    It's a cliche at this point, but I might as well cite it (the perfect "hidden" -- or elusive-obvious -- meaning):

    "What's in there?"
    "Only what you take with you."

    Maybe. And that was certainly my aim in presenting such a weighty -- airy? -- list.

    It started, I think, when someone (maybe a few someones; the effect becoming cumulative) mentioned TPM having three planets, and those three planets making a sort of circle (the plot, anyway). It was probably Lard Biscuit.

    That, and the podrace, being also a spectacle in three parts, and circuitous, made me realize that TPM might be saturated in threes and circles, as it appears to be. And then you have the wider saga being circular, and the imagery and themes very much rooted in the idea that history is cyclical. In this view, it seems appropriate, to me, that TPM, as the "founding" installment, should demonstrate a preponderance of threes and circles, which it certainly appears to.

    With circles, one also thinks of wheels -- a design element that, interestingly, the starships and podracers, and land vehicles, all lack. Though we do get a wheeled transport in ROTS; and some earlier, cruder form of wheeled assault vehicle in AOTC (Battle of Geonosis). That is, in ROTS, a transport with wheels (e.g., Order 66 sequence: Kashyyyk), as well as Grievous' "wheel" bike. And wheels have metaphysical connotations. There is also the salient reality of the wagon wheel and its role in the settling and colonization of the North American continent (leading to the "western" myth which Star Wars is powerfully seated in); as well as George Lucas' early and lasting obsession with cars and drag racing.

    Wheels and circles, and things that twist, turn, spin, and repeat, seem to have a powerful place in George Lucas' art, approaching transcendence. Colour wheels, plots that go in circles, racing sequences, tiers of meaning as spokes in a wheel ... these are just some of the things that seem to have been embedded in his films, and that he has consciously thought to include, which we are now the recipients of.

    It does. They seem made for the modern age (very intentionally, I might add). YouTube dissections, tumblr mashups, and even textual discussions that cut effortlessly in multiple directions simultaneously. It's a brave new world. Lucas himself has described his approach of out-of-order storytelling as "almost interactive movie-making". This he did in Rinzler's "Making Of ROTS" book, so it's a (relatively) recent comment, suggesting that Lucas is very conscious of an emergent trend toward gaming and interactivity.

    This is actually amongst my favourite observations. We see a much more naked manifestation of blocking and semi-permeable forms in TPM over anything in the original trilogy. Borders and barriers of different kinds have a major presence in all six movies, but only in TPM do we really encounter, for the first time, visible, prolonged, crackling-energy versions, and gelatinous membranes. It's a new language; or a massive expansion of the old.

    Oh, yeah? I like how Anakin turns into this ball of frustrated energy on Coruscant, once ripped from Tatooine. He is, in a sense, disembodied, and estranged from himself; and not really able to come to terms with it or channel his energy into new forms. The Sith probes tracking the landing party on Tatooine, even as Anakin prepares to race, are an excellent metaphor of this. Black globes -- Black Masses -- that suggest the head is leaving the body. A total discombobulation to come; the storm that approaches.

    If you perceive canyons on Coruscant, so much the better. I mean, that's what the surface, or mid-surface, appears to be: an endless array of valleys and grooves with gleaming edifices atop the flatter regions, like some cosmic brain with shallow grooves and deeper fissures. "Feel, don't think". Is this dangerous advice; or maybe a satirical jab at the limited (yet still precious) sphere of thought, or thinking, itself? Coruscant then, could be regarded as more than mere "home base": it is also some empty monument to thinking; a super-sized mock brain. Even the endless lanes of traffic work as some crude visual approximation of irrepresible information transfer.

    I've gone a bit weird there, but it's offered in illustration about the potential of seeing terrain as a topographic metaphor for inner travail. Nice that you cite the ruminations sequence -- I think the clever intercutting between human characters and their city environment brings this aspect out quite well. Very "Koyaanisqatsi"-esque. I really don't blame fans for citing this as comparable to the poetic majesty of the binary sunset!

    Ah, a thread has just sprung up about this. What I like about the opening fifteen minutes of TPM is how many "Star Wars-isms" there are in the dialogue and dramaturgy. It functions very broadly as a compressed parody of the entire series. "I have a bad feeling about this"; "This is impossible!"; "We will see!"; "My forgotten", etc. If you look at all the things being gone over in the first fifteen minutes, you have a cavalcade of classic Star Wars tropes: droid abuse, the fallacy of big organizations and double-speak, smoke and laser beams, the Force Theme, sliding doors and holograms, rubber-masked aliens, the starchy nature of spoken communication, expansive vistas, stealth and deception, nature making the characters look small, close-ups making the characters look big, eccentric and slightly old-fashioned humour, little quips and koans, a surging sense of mystery and adventure.

    I do think, overall, TPM is the most successful of the prequels at communicating a "Star Wars" spirit, yes. AOTC, in places, has more zest and more extreme styles, while ROTS is more surging and focused, but TPM seems to have a more classical, naive charm about it. What makes it compelling is how this same charm is constantly subverted with an underlying sense of decline and dread, giving the whole a peculiar, tortured, melancholy ache. It can't be put into a box. It's straight-forward, "family friendly" entertainment ... and something more. One could write an entire book ( ;) ) acknowledging the film's surface beauty and showmanship, without ever really capturing one iota of its true sublimity and sensual-intellectual efficacy.

    Thanks. I still think my criticism holds. :p

    Please, do!

    Funny -- several people have told me that in the last few days.

    I mostly just ruminate on Star Wars, but I do write about other matters, on and off.

    I've been urged to get a blog going and attempt to get an income by writing online.

    I'm pretty avowedly into Star Wars, so there's no problem writing on that area. I'm also a big Elvis Presley fan.

    This is also me (or *was* also me as I've pretty much stopped posting there now) -->

    (If you can't view that, it's the same name I use here, so you can easily find me via Google).

    I also post to IMDb under the same name; and I've posted at several other boards in my time.

    Doing something over and over tends to make you better at it -- in time.

    And reading, constantly reading. That's the ticket. You must absorb all the time, like a sponge.

    Writing doesn't come "naturally" to me, though. I would characterize it more like a Force phenomenon. I'm aware that I can "do" it, if I want to, but my will is not entirely my own. There is always some doubt and anxiety before setting off; it seems beyond my control as to whether I will write on a particular day or not. I simply have to trust in the Force and wait for it to permit me or not.

    Writing is not an activity. It's more ... an energy being set free.

    * * *

    It's got as much to do with gustatory processes and libido (which, by the way, more simply means (tied to a verb which means) "to be pleasing"), as it does with anything thought-out or intellectual.

    I sort of feel a slave to it. The revelation is that everyone is a slave to something. You have to find the thing you like being a slave to. I kind of understand what religious people mean when they take pride in, say, a Muslim's case, with "Islam" being "submission". Even when you make a more conscious choice, you're submitting *to* that choice. It is rather like that.

    In my experience, at least.

    Thank you very much, HD. You've been tremendously supportive -- as usual.

    And you haven't interfered; you've helped.

    I've enjoyed this extant discussion immensely.

    It has not merely allowed me, but been the direct means of enabling me, to knock a few new insights out.

    Writing and rumination are also processes of discovery.

    Could I start new threads? Sure. Right now, however, I don't really want to. You've given me all I need -- for now.

    Cheers, HD!!!
    jc1138 and Iron_lord like this.
  10. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    Bit of a "post script"...

    Naughty of me to make a second post, but the former is already so long, I can't see the harm...



    Very good, HD.

    Yes, interestingly, Qui-Gon and Yoda are more on the fringes.

    And it's a bond between these two, post-TPM, that allows the "Force ghost" thing to happen (or re-happen) in the OT!

    I never realized that particular paradigm until now. Hmmm, they are like these outsiders -- "Outlanders!" -- that bring boons back to the tribe; while never entirely assimilating with the tribe.

    When you express it like that, Anakin's life seems an ironic mess.

    The metaphor of him "accidentally" blowing up the TF ship in TPM gains deeper meaning.

    This is the kind of poetry linking the films together that I love.

    WOW -- YES!!!!

    Very impressive insight.

    * * *

    I also just wanted to go back to an earlier comment of mine...

    "What's this?"
    Can be reworked as, "What's 'this'?" Meaning, what is the meaning of, "this"? "We will not survive this." Again, what's "this"? We're being asked to search for definitions and question even the concept of borders / barriers. There are also many barriers visually depicted in this film: some can be transgressed, others can't (or not so easily).

    Now, I noticed, in re-reading my very last post, that there are four interlinked, unqualified "this" statements, beginning or ending in the word, in those first fifteen minutes of importance...

    "I have a bad feeling about this" (Obi-Wan)
    "We will not survive this" (Rune)
    "This is impossible!" (Nute)
    "What's this?" (Obi-Wan)

    (There are some other "this" statements, but not of the above type -- though, "this scheme", "this stunted slime", and "this turn of events", all occur within the same brief scene).

    Obi-Wan opens and seals the metaphor.

    Sort of the art showing some self-awareness -- Sith-awareness? -- of its own fantastical / phantasmagoric nature.


    The characters -- luminous beings -- are inside a constructed, luminously projected reality.

    What is THIS?

    Well, what is it? Who can say?

    It's... JAR JAR BINKS. The jarring nature of Star Wars itself.

    This, of course, is also the SITH .... "sith" is an anagram of "this".

    The phantom menace. The illusive threat. The thing that cannot be found.

    (But which will absolutely drive you mad trying to find it -- !!).

    The characters are trapped in a quagmire of language, which itself is subject to contradiction ("mired" in "baseless" accusations?).

    I do think Lucas likes word games and creating a kind of shocking dissonance through careful word usage.

    I mean, all that weird chatter in the THX soundtrack? The babbling persona of SEN?

    He shows a hyper-awareness of language and its ensnaring quiescence.

    Verbal language is ... insidious.

    Which is eminently proven by reading one of my posts. :p
    thejeditraitor and Iron_lord like this.
  11. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Appreciate the response Cryo. Gave me a lot to think about as always.

    I skimmed my visual links thread and found some stuff that would fit on this thread I think.

    - In Palpatine's office, when Anakin turns, he steps into shadow and becomes a symbolically black silhouette.

    - Anakin's broken bond to the Jedi in ROTS is marked by his immolation (fire) and his mask going on / Anakin's return to the Jedi in ROTJ is marked by his unmasking followed again by fire, this time cremation.

    - When Obi-Wan appears to Luke (near death) on Hoth in ESB, Han appears riding through the spot Obi's ghost stood, as if the force guided Han to find Luke.

    - Naboo, symbolic of the utopian era of the pre-war/pre-Empire Republic has waterfalls. This starkly contrasts Mustafar - possibly symbolic of hell - and it's lavafalls.

    - Padme as Queen has red royal guards, much like the contrasting ruler, the Emperor, will later have.
    Also there is an inverted identity reveal in TPM/ROTS - Padme turns out to be Queen Amidala, to Anakin's pleasant surprise. In Ep 3 Palpatine turns out to be Lord Sidious, and Anakin nearly kills him.
    Finally the two characters can be seen as a symbol of Anakin's shifting loyalties... in AOTC he states to Amidala "I will do whatever you ask" about their relationship, in ROTS he says "I will do whatever you ask" about becoming Sidious' apprentice. It really represents how far he is falling.

    - Rebel and Imperial insignias symbolically appear in ROTS...
    Imperial with the creation of Vader -

    Rebel in Padme's hairpiece, Padme being one of the founders of the Rebellion -

    - Yellow, Lucas' favourite colour, reocurrs in the films; on Anakin's podracer, the Naboo fighter Anakin pilots in TPM, the speeder in AOTC, and Anakin's Jedi-interceptor.

    - In ROTS Obi-Wan always ignites his saber before anyone else around. Seriously, check for yourself.

    - There was theory that whenever a character beheads someone they will lose their next duel. Anakin beheads Tuskens then loses to Dooku. The buzzdroid decapitates R4 and is then killed. Anakin beheads Dooku, then loses to Obi-Wan. Mace Windu is killed attempting to behead Palpatine. Yoda beheads the clones that are about to kill him, then loses to Sidious. Luke beheads the Vader "apparition" in the cave, then loses to the real Vader.

    - Padme's dress in the AOTC fireplace scene has the appearance of a black hand choking her. Seems symbolic of where the forbidden love will leave them. The fireplace also of course could represent passion and perhaps Anakin's ultimate fate on Mustafar.

    - Although Palpatine's line "The Sith and the Jedi are similar in almost every way" might come of as sheer manipulation of Anakin, there is actually a lot to the comment that is reflected in all six movies of the saga. There are a lot of examples, but a couple of them...
    - The Jedi Council meet atop a spire during the time of the Republic, The Emperor of course occupying a spire in ROTJ.
    - Mace on Anakin: "Bring him before us then." / Sidious on Luke: "He will come to you and then you will bring him before me."
    - Palpatine to Anakin: "He was too dangerous to be kept alive." / Mace to Anakin "He's too dangerous to be left alive!"

    - Say what you will about Padme losing the will to live in ROTS, but there seems to be obvious symbolism in the romantic symbiosis between Anakin and Padme in this film. As the good in Anakin fades, so does Padme's literal life-force.
  12. mes520

    mes520 Jedi Master star 4

    Nov 3, 2012
    Very nice. I had never thought or noticed how Padme's hair piece looked like the Rebellion symbol. Or the operating room looked like the Imperial symbol.
    Jo Lucas likes this.
  13. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Thanx but I can't actually take credit for those, it was someone (not sure who?) back on the 3sa forums in '05. I suggest you check out my visual links thread on the saga board if you haven't though, there is pages of interesting stuff like this.
  14. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005

    I'm also relieved, in many a way, that you didn't quote me directly.

    I think, as you hinted before, this would be cool if kept as a relatively "open" thread, where we drop in fresh observations at leisure, without worrying too much about commenting on each other's input -- unless we want to comment on it, of course.

    I'll try to add more in the coming weeks. I definitely have more to add. ;) :p
    bstnsx704 likes this.
  15. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Yeah, this is what I was thinking too. Look forward to reading more from you :)

    I've noticed a lot of inversions and mirrors between Gunray's TF ship in TPM and Grievous' ship (The Invisible Hand) in ROTS. Note that all of these occur at those two locations:

    I like that according to the opening crawls, in TPM they are sent by the Supreme Chancellor, in ROTS they are sent to "rescue" the current Chancellor (which has actually been orchestrated by Palpatine himself). Also, a contrast in the fact they are invited onto the ship in TPM (a somewhat fraudulent state of peace) but meet harsh resistance in ROTS (where the forced manners have been dropped and it is all-out war) -

    An obvious one visually, the two Jedi mentioned in the opening crawl facing droid-dekas -

    "They've gone up a ventilation shaft!" (Jedi approaching a hangar) -
    "Two Jedi have lnded in the main hangar bay. We're tracking them." (Jedi having left a hangar) -

    Moving away from camera (being tracked) and fleeing droid-dekas -
    Moving toward camera (being tracked) about to be captured by droid-dekas -

    Anakin leaving the ship, flying through a droid -
    Anakin arriving on the ship, crash-landing backwards through droids -
  16. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Attack of the Clones -
    I watched this the other day. While it is easily my least favourite of the six, there is still an underrated complexity to it that makes it worth watching for me. Also the scene where Anakin loses his mother is one of the most emotionally powerful moments in the saga. Anyway, some observations...

    - Unlike every other episode in the saga, AOTC pans up at the start. One of the many ways it turns things on their head after TPM, perhaps indicating change, and where the galaxy is heading after the relatively peaceful state we see the Republic in for the last time in Episode One.

    - There is a lot of cloud in the early scenes. Besides reminding me of Bespin, it can represent uncertainty, and the shroud of the darkside clouding the Jedi's vision.

    - Anakin makes the opposite journey from and to Tatooine in TPM and AOTC. In TPM he leaves his mother, promising to return one day and free her. He never lets go fully, and this is evident when he returns to Tatooine in AOTC against Jedi orders, returns to his mother briefly and loses her for real.

    - There is also a backwards transition from Naboo to Coursucant in TPM and from Coruscant to Naboo in AOTC.

    - Palpatine continues to gain power in the Senate in this episode.
    There is a Senate vote in each (Ep1/Ep2) that relates to this... in TPM Palpatine uses Amidala to call for a vote of no confidence (to act against the TF) in the current Supreme Chancellor (the Senate shouting "Vote now!"), which opens the door for Palpatine. In AOTC Palptine (who has been claiming to be holding off the vote this time) is given emergencey powers by the Senate, to applause from the Senate. In ROTS the Senate cheers as Palpatine makes himself Emperor, without a vote required, the irony being they are cheering as their right to vote is taken away.

    - AOTC, in my opinion, presents the theme that Obi-Wan wasn't the right Master for Anakin. Qui-Gon and Palpatine formed surrogate father figures for Anakin, where Obi-Wan is more like a brother. (I find it intriguing that Qui-Gon frees Anakin from slavery where Sidious, although offering Anakin a supposed form of liberation, will actually enlave Anakin to the darkside).
    Obi-Wan and Yoda seem to teach more like Qui-Gon (and even Palpatine) in the OT. There are dialogue links that imply this...
    Obi-Wan (in AOTC): "This weapon is your life!" is the opposite of Luke's training - Yoda: "Your weapons, you will not need them."
    Qui-Gon: "Feel, don't think. Trust your instincts." + Palpatine: "In time you will learn to trust your feelings." Obi-Wan in AOTC, however: "Patience. Use the force. Think." Then Obi-Wan in ANH is speaking like Qui-Gon: "Stretch out with your feelings!"
    Obi-Wan also states that Anakin is not ready for an assignment where Qui-Gon states "Obi-Wan is ready (for the trials)" in TPM.

    - Anakin's first Jedi mission is ironically to protect Padme, something he is trying to do when he turns. Padme states in AOTC "I don't need more security" which kind of inverts Palptine's declaration of the Empire "for a safe and secure society". It also makes me think of the irony in Anakin joining Sidious to save Padme's life when Sidious led the people most responsible for the threat on Padme. It makes it seem like when Anakin first turns he knows it is wrong, and is planning to overthrow Sidious eventually, which he keeps putting back until it is too late, and Sidious is all Anakin has left.

    - Anakin: "Then they should be made to (agree)."
    Padme: By who? Who's gonna make them? You?"
    Anakin: "Of course not me!"
    I just love the irony of Anakin saying this when of course the Vader we know from the OT is the main person to do this.

    - Luke choosing to fall to possible death rather than join Vader in ESB is possibly referenced in Anakin voluntarily leaping from a speeder and falling a great distance onto Zam's speeder. Perhaps Luke trusting in the force enough to let go like this could mirror Anakin's sheer force-ability to know when to jump. Or not, I dunno :p.
  17. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Although this will be repeats (I'm copying this from the rhymes and patterns thread) maybe it will be new for some people...

    - Anakin and Luke are 23 at the end of each trilogy respectively. I believe this number has occult significance.

    - Rots takes place exactly 13 years after Tpm. Perhaps supersticiously showing things going bad for Anakin

    - Anakin's fall and redemption - A spark in Anakin at losing his mother in the middle of one trilogy begins his fall. A spark in Vader at discovering Luke in the middle of the next trilogy begins his redemption. Keep in mind Anakin is still wholly Anakin and Vader is still wholly Vader at this stage. In the third movie of the PT, Anakin is presented with a conflict... the last Sith alive, his father-figure Palpatine is frying himself with lighting. Mace, blind to Anakin's conflict attempts to kill said father-figure, but Anakin interevenes and Mace is killed, and Anakin becomes a Sith. In the third movie of the OT, Vader is presented with the inverse conflict... the last Jedi alive, his son, is being fried by Sidious. Blind to Vader's conflict Sidious tries to kill Luke, but Vader intervenes, kills Sidious and returns as a Jedi.

    - TPM's "up" ending inverts ROTS's "down" ending, which inverts "up" again in ROTJ. Some examples...
    -TPM contains Qui-Gon dying in his apprentices arms and being cremated, ROTS has Vader lost by Obi-Wan and immolated (alive!), ROTJ then has Anakin dying in Luke's arms after being reunited, and again a cremation.
    -Also, the masking/unmasking thing happens in reverse order:
    Anakin turns - is burned - picked up by Sidious in a shuttle - coldly masked - "dies" on hearing of Padme's death.
    Anakin returns because of Luke - warmly unmasked - taken away by Luke in a shuttle - cremated - rejoins the Jedi.
    -Thirdly a lush green planet with natives helping the good guys features in all three... TPM has the Gungans (Naboo) freed when Anakin destroys the orbiting control-ship. ROTJ also has the Ewoks (Endor) freeing the main characters on ground, which helps the orbiting deathstar 2 be destroyed. ROTS of course has Wookies (Kashyyyk) being partially wiped out, a contrast to both TPM and ROTJ.

    - Obi-Wan loses Master Qui-Gon to Maul in TPM, then metaphorically loses apprentice Anakin to Vader 13 years later.
    bstnsx704 likes this.
  18. bstnsx704

    bstnsx704 Jedi Master star 3

    Mar 11, 2013

    I love this observation, and it is the argument that I constantly use when people complain about the portrayal of Yoda in the prequels. Heavens the character should undergo development.

    In the prequels Obi-Wan and Yoda, wise and powerful as they are, are still very restrained by the rigid and increasingly more corrupt Jedi Order. Qui-Gon represents a sort of idealized Jedi. Like Dooku and Anakin he saw the flaws in the system and, rather than allowing himself to become restrained by it, he begins to pave his own path. Unlike Dooku and Anakin, however, Qui-Gon is able to act in such a way and still retain his soul; he is still very much a Jedi, despite not completely agreeing with the way the outdated Order is run. Qui-Gon becomes the same sort of idealized Jedi that Luke would go on to become in RotJ when he turns down the temptations of the Dark Side and redeems his father.

    In RotS, when the Jedi Order finally collapses and only Obi-Wan and Yoda are left, they learn that through his unique ideologies and ways of thinking Qui-Gon Jinn was able to transcend death (whereas the Sith tried to cheat it), and in the time between trilogies Qui-Gon takes Obi-Wan and Yoda under his wing and trains them. It is only through this teaching and their transcendence from the Order that they had been serving that Obi-Wan and Yoda become the true Jedi that they are when we meet them in ANH and TESB (disappearing bodies and all).
  19. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Well put.
    I agree, although I do have some problems with Yoda as written in AOTC. However, I see intentional growth in the character there, as you do, and it helps show why Luke suceeds where Anakin fails.
  20. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
  21. thejeditraitor

    thejeditraitor Chosen One star 6

    Aug 19, 2003
    "Maybe I'll look further into TPM and do the other films later."

    please do. love your interpretation.
  22. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005

    Thanks, guys.

    I love this kind of analysis -- which should be obvious by now. :p

    It's George creating a big sandbox and letting us all play in it to our heart's content.

    That's actually quite special, IMO.

    I just don't get the same thrill, or detect the same complexity, in any other interconnected film series, ever.

    I'm thankful for this artwork. It's personal, vast, and different.
    bstnsx704 likes this.
  23. HevyDevy

    HevyDevy Jedi Master star 4

    Apr 13, 2011
    Not sure which of these are repeats, but anyway...

    AOTC -
    - Palpatine claims in AOTC he will not allow the Republic to be split in two, which is a POV truth because he is going to unite it under an oppressive Empire. I also like the first we see of Palpatine in TPM is the Sidious persona talking to the TF, then in AOTC he is introduced as the Palpatine persona talking to the Jedi. A hint that he is playing both sides, and demonstration of his strategy moving more "central" as he opts to take over the Republic from within and let Dooku deal with the Seperatists for him.

    - Anakin echoes Yoda and Luke's ESB dialogue with "Anything is possible" where Luke will say to Yoda "You want the impossible" followed shortly by "That is why you fail."
    Anakin also seems to be channeling Qui-Gon when he tells Padme "Compassion... which I would define as unconditional love... central to a Jedi's life. So, you might say... we are encouraged to love."

    - C-3PO: "He is carrying a message from an Obi-Wan Kenobi." Master Anakin, does that name mean anything to you."
    This line is pretty ironic because firstly Obi-Wan will be the receiver of a message from R2 in ANH, secondly Obi-Wan changes his name to Ben and thus Luke isn't sure the message is for him, but most importantly Anakin will kill his old Master in ANH - "He is here." "Obi-Wan Kenobi?"

    - Anakin asks Jawas for directions to find Shmi, then as Vader orders Jawas killed in ANH.

    Misc. -
    - Obi-Wan's abscence at crucial points in Anakin's character arc is a reocurring theme. In AOTC, he notices Anakin's tracking signal is coming from Tatooine, and oblivious to Anakin's experience with losing his mother and slaughtering an entire village of Tuskens, remarks "What in blazes is he doing there?". In ROTS he is unconscious when Anakin kills Dooku in cold blood and doesn't know of the circumstances. Finally, in ROTS (to Palpatine's delight) Obi-Wan is sent off-world when Anakin needs him most, leaving Anakin alone with Palaptine. He never knows how Anakin turned, the first time he sees Anakin after the turn he is attacking Padme.

    - There seems to be a lot of talk of "vision" in relation to Yoda. "Hard to see the darkside is." / "Impossible to see the future is." / "Blind we are, if creation of this army we could not see." / Palpatine:"Your arrogance blinds you Master Yoda!" / Luke crash landing on Dagobah where he will meet Yoda: "All my scopes are dead, I can't see a thing!" / and finally the Emperor "You have payed the price for your lack of vision." unaware he is the one blind to Vader/Anakin's conflict.

    - Palpatine has lines he tends to speak to people he is going to dispose of.
    "Rise, my friend." to Vader in ROTJ ... "I've been waiting for this moment a long time, my little green friend." to Yoda in ROTS.
    "Together we will bring peace and prosperity to the Republic." to Padme in TPM ... "If we work together I know we can discover the secret." to Vader in ROTS ... "Only together can we turn him to the darkside of the force." to Vader again in ROTJ.
    "You have done well Viceroy. When my new apprentice, Darth Vader, arrives, he will take care of you." to Nute in ROTS ... "You have done well Lord Vader." in ROTJ.

    - Luke is upside down no less than 4 times in Empire Strikes Back.

    - Obi-Wan has the high-ground when he defeats Anakin in ROTS. He inversely had the low-ground when Maul defeated him, yet he emerges victorious both times.

    - Anakin loses his "family" in ROTS. After Obi-Wan dismembers Anakin, he leaves with Padme, R2 (who seemed to sense something had changed in Anakin earlier) and 3PO on Padme's ship, abandoning Anakin's charred form to be picked up by Sidious. Also there is a perhaps unintended irony in Vader shooting his old buddy R2 on Luke's X-wing during the Deathstar attack.

    - There is a reocurring motif with a character getting away then being killed on next encounter:
    Qui-Gon escapes Maul on Tatooine, Maul later kills him on Naboo.
    Jango ecapes Obi-Wan on Kamino, later Mace kills him on Geonosis.
    Dooku escapes the Jedi sfter dismembering Anakin on Geonosis, Anakin kills him in the next movie.
    Grievous ecapes Anakin and Obi-Wan on the Invisble Hand, Obi-Wan kills him on Mustafar.
    Obi-Wan gets away after defeating Vader on Mustafar, Vader kills him in ANH.
    Boba Fett escapes with Han in carbonite on Bespin, is killed in ROTJ.
    And Luke escapes Vader on Bespin, but breaking the tradition in the next movie - is saved by Anakin after defeating him and sparing his life.

    - Jedi seem to keep their promises, Sith however don't.
    TPM - "I will come back and free you mom, I promise." He technically frees here from the Tuskens (alas too late) in AOTC.
    "Anakin will be a Jedi, I promise you." "You will be a Jedi. I promise."
    AOTC - We will find out who is trying to kill you Padme, I promise you."
    In ROTS Anakin tries to promise he will not fail in saving Padme, but on turning indirectly causes her death (this also continues on from his promise in AOTC "I promise, I won't fail again).
    ESB -"And I will return. I promise."
    Sidious states in a ROTS deleted scene "I promise a complete return to democracy." which is obviously bs.
  24. darklordoftech

    darklordoftech Force Ghost star 6

    Sep 30, 2012
    - "Always two, there are" and "An apprentice, you already have."

    I believe the spires symbolize isolation from the people of the galaxy. In the prequels, the Jedi (and the Republic) are out of touch with the people of the galaxy and Palpatine reaches out to people. In the OT, Palpatine is out of touch with the people of the galaxy and Luke (and the Rebellion) reach out to people.
  25. thejeditraitor

    thejeditraitor Chosen One star 6

    Aug 19, 2003
    i really love how the rotj death star spire turned into the jedi temple spire.



    also the emperor's medical center.

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