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PT Why do RLM Fan's Mock Rick McCallum

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by DrunkenJedi92, Jun 19, 2015.


Are these memes funny

  1. Hilarious

    3 vote(s)
  2. Not funny

    5 vote(s)
  3. All the posts are so dense

    6 vote(s)
  4. Annoying

    11 vote(s)
  5. Occasionally funny

    4 vote(s)
  6. I don't get them?

    3 vote(s)
  1. DrunkenJedi92

    DrunkenJedi92 Jedi Youngling

    Apr 18, 2015
    The "So dense" meme makes no freaking sense. Do people not like George's idea to make Croissant and Mos Eisley an overcrowded cesspool like most modder cities are?

    The meme might as well originated from a YTP it's so overused.

    Bonus topic: The whole "It's like poetry" thing. How does that quote hurt Lucas's integrity? I just don't get it?
  2. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 28, 2001
    They don't like McCallum because they see him as a "Yes man", who never told Lucas that his ideas suck. They believe this because they don't like the PT, but also because Gary Kurtz comes across as if he was the one who was the brains of the outfit, and ignore that he wasn't.

    JEDI-RISING Chosen One star 6

    Apr 15, 2005
    i'm not even aware of the meme's
    Gamiel likes this.
  4. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 28, 2001
    Neither am I.
  5. Qui-Riv-Brid

    Qui-Riv-Brid Force Ghost star 5

    Apr 18, 2013
    If they would do any actual research they would find out McCallum was an "OH NO!" man.

    He often thought everything was going along fine then George would change things up and he would go "Oh no! That is gonna cost millions!"

    I exaggerate of course but anyone who thinks McCallum was a yes man doesn't understand what a producer is supposed to do. Something that quite honestly Gary Kurtz failed to do on both ANH and TESB.

    Best thing to do is to read The Making of Star Wars Revenge of the Sith by J.W. Rinzler to get an idea of the relationship.

    Lucas should have never brought him back after ANH where George had to take on a lot of duties that Kurtz should have done. He brought him back out of loyalty and it didn't pay off so Kurtz was removed from TESB production but Lucas still let him keep sole producer credit which he didn't really deserve but then Lucas also gave Leigh Brackett credit she didn't deserve and gave Kasdan more credit than he should have got on TESB's script.

    That the the kind of person Lucas is. It would have been so easy for him to roast Kurtz at the time and years later but he just kept being quiet and Kurtz acquired a reputation that while not entirely undeserved is certainly exaggerated beyond what he actually accomplished.
  6. Cushing's Admirer

    Cushing's Admirer Force Ghost star 7

    Jun 8, 2006
    GL had a team, guys. That's more than one creative.
    Saga Explorer and Cryogenic like this.
  7. Django Fett

    Django Fett Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2012
    McCallum seemed to be the one holding the purse, would the PT been more extravagant had Howard Kasanjian stayed beyond RotJ?
  8. thejeditraitor

    thejeditraitor Chosen One star 6

    Aug 19, 2003
    what's a modder city?
  9. DrunkenJedi92

    DrunkenJedi92 Jedi Youngling

    Apr 18, 2015
    A type on my part. I have dyslexia and sometimes mess up a lot of my words. Autocorrect helps but it also screws it up a lot too.

    The word I meant was "modern city"
    thejeditraitor and mes520 like this.
  10. Lulu Mars

    Lulu Mars Force Ghost star 4

    Mar 10, 2005
    The only problem I have with George saying it's like poetry is his inclusion of the word "like".
  11. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    I think it is less to do with "place" per se.

    The bone of contention seems to reside in the fact that Lucas saturated the films in effects (especially digital effects) -- with several implications or unspoken assumptions arising:

    i) That the saturation itself is distracting, detracting, obscene, or obnoxious; or at the very least, ineffective. This sentiment is premised on the idea that a busy visual field is inappropriate or simply doesn't work as well as a sparser, leaner picture space. It doesn't seem to allow for the idea that a dense visual field can be interesting or nourishing on its own terms; let alone meaningfully contribute to the artistic dimension of the film-going/film-watching experience.

    ii) That the saturation -- the obsession, you might say, with making the films visually "dense" -- means that too much effort was spent making the films look visually impressive (with, per the former observation, the opposite effect ensuing), rather than focusing on elements that, to these individuals' reckoning, should have been given an equal or greater weight: acting, scripting, direction, and story-telling. This objection therefore conceals a broader criticism of Lucas' methods and the subjective quality and weighting of those connecting elements.

    iii) That, following these points, there is a comedic disjunct sought to be suggested between Rick McCallum's perceived boast and blitheness and the overall coherence or quality of the finished films. In other words, the embedded hostility to Lucas and McCallum in this circulating meme is an attempt to paint the men as colluding and deluded idiots, with an extra layer of contempt implicitly meted out to McCallum for being a proud or lazy sycophantic mouthpiece. Last but not least, I sense there is also a play on the word "dense", which colloquially means "stupid"; so there is the further suggestion of unconscious stupidity on Lucas and McCallum's parts.

    Now, do I agree with those sentiments?

    Of course, I don't. The short-hand of the meme, however, functions as a convenient means of pinning one's colours to the mast, so to speak, by signalling an entire web of criticisms and articulated preferences, under the guise of sarcastic disdain, compacted into sound-bite snark: a geek shibboleth. With the rise of social media and an image-driven mass-media consumer culture, extreme, comic-book-like declamations and brevity have begun to be increasingly common means of expressing opinions, with reasoned and nuanced dialogue in a state of decay.

    In essence, if you consciously promulgate this meme, it means you're aligning with all that it implies and espousing a particular conception of Star Wars, and concomitantly of blockbuster cinema (maybe even cinema generally), and are one of the "cool kids" who doesn't see or feel a need to justify their positions and automatically knows what "proper" film-making is all about -- even though you're probably a) not a film-maker (let alone a successful one), and b) being terribly conformist in doing so.

    Again, there is the suggestion of ego and arrogance and unconscious stupidity on Lucas' part, as if he determined early on to justify hackneyed film-making and story choices with glib rationalizations and peppy, meaningless sound-bites and comically cheery epigrams, befitting the personality of a fraudster, a dimwit, or an oaf.

    And again, that's not my view -- not even close. But it's a view that is definitely out there thanks to the rise of the Internet (from house-hold fascination to global social commons and vast information highway) in parallel with the virginal release of the prequel movies at the threshold of the modern broadband communications era.

    Some fans may also possess a cordial dislike of rhyming structures within the Star Wars saga generally; or at least the expanding rhyming structure put in place with the advent and completion of the prequel trilogy. Though, personally, I think it's hard to divorce this from a broader rancour on some fans' part toward Lucas himself -- that he made these movies, and that he made them a particular way, with particular aesthetic imperatives and goals in mind, and because the finished product upset them, some fans resorted to mockery as a therapeutic device, seizing on isolated remarks by Lucas and McCallum (and lines of dialogue in the movies themselves) to suggest incompetence and obtuseness as a sneak move for explaining away their discomfit and discontent.

    What's also interesting is the scant criticism -- indeed, the total vacuum of criticism -- toward film-makers like Christopher Nolan and Peter Jackson, whose own wives have served as producers on various of their films (including the LOTR and Batman movies). One might imagine that being a long-term spouse could just erode one's desire, when serving as producer to one's husband, to be a "no-man"/"no-woman", well... just a teensy bit. But where is the blowback to those director-producer arrangements; where is the questioning of those people's competence or integrity? It's true, however, that in the case of both LOTR and Batman, there were multiple producers; though all three Batman movies list Nolan's wife, Emma Thomas, first, in the end credits.

    But that's also where I again dissent from the "yes-man" theory (if it can be so dignified with that term). If you look at the aforementioned LOTR and Batman movies, you'll see various producers -- various cooks making and potentially spoiling the broth. Having more producers, more egos, more interests, more sources of conflict, isn't necessarily a good thing. Diversity is welcomed, and films are a collaborative process, but more of something isn't necessarily better (though, to return to the beginning, concerning the "dense" field complaint, it isn't necessarily worse, either), and if a film-maker feels he or she can achieve more with less (all else being equal), who is anyone to object? To presume that a single producer with a strong working relationship with a bloody-minded director is just "yes-sir-ing" all the time, or failing to do the job, or go beyond it, by not questioning or resisting at every opportunity, has a tinge of ignorance and even hysteria to it, in my opinion.

    And then, as alluded to above, there is the inconvenient fact that Rick McCallum did question his boss on some things, like the live-wire persona of Jar Jar in TPM, or the Artoo comedy at the start of ROTS. The ROTS DVD commentary also has Rick saying, at a later part, that he would have preferred the whole of ROTS to be dark, and not just (in relative terms) the second half. A personal theme, then, was that Rick, like some of the fans, apparently, wanted more overtly dark films. As for more fine-grained criticisms, like, "Why are you putting the camera there? Why is that character wearing a moustache? Do you need to have that character stood at a window?" (etc.), it's patently clear that few directors would put up with that sort of nonsense. The producer's main role is to produce and to give the director what they need; to create the most favourable environment for everyone. Not an easy job. Arguably, it requires a touch of genius, in fact, to capably co-ordinate such a bewildering array of elements, and to do so in a timely and cost-effective manner; while also having some sensitivity, beyond the spoken word, for what the director wants (and needs), and to understand something of what it is that they're going for.

    Indeed, if you conceive of it in that manner, then Rick McCallum's skills are, to quote a prequel character, "off the charts". These films were executed with unprecedented brilliance and dedication -- that is, if you first grant that there are intriguing and striking things about them, and are also willing to concede that the technological envelope was pushed in numerous ways, along with tight shooting schedules, on a not-massive (comparatively lean) budget. And then, further to all that, you find yourself, as a producer, being markedly cheery and enthusiastic about it all, after vocal and not-altogether-civil dissatisfaction from an animated fan-base. I'm forced to ultimately ask, even if purely rhetorically, who else could have produced these things, if not Rick McCallum?
  12. darth-sinister

    darth-sinister Manager Emeritus star 10 VIP - Former Mod/RSA

    Jun 28, 2001

    Kazanjian and McCallum were both hired to keep control of the budget, which Kurtz failed to do on both ANH and TESB, as well as the films that he did in the 80's. Twice, Lucas had to come in and either bail him out, or play peacekeeper. The thing is that between 78 and 84, Lucas was trying to fund two films, while building the ranch and building up his other holdings. By the time he got to the PT, Lucas had built up enough personal funds that he could finance each film over a period of years. The budgets were divided because cast and crew working on set, and then the rest on merchandising deals and ILM. That's why as each film progressed, Lucas added more merchandise in order to help keep the machine going. Something that a lot of fans miss out on when complaining about the merchandising machine, as well as Kurtz who blatantly ignores Lucas's own plans from when they worked together. As well as his own feelings regarding the studio system.

    Kazanjian did his job well on both "Raiders Of The Lost Ark" and ROTJ. McCallum did his part on "The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles" which is why Lucas hired him to handle the PT. They had already had a good working relationship up to that point.

    This was one of the issues on the fourth, "Highlander" film. There were three main producers and about four or five executive producers. They were all arguing over the length of the film's run time, as well as the studio having little faith that they went in and filmed new footage for the trailer that was never intended for the film at all. The end result was too many cooks in the kitchen and a film that looked it, theatrically. The franchise's main producers wound up having control over the region one VHS and DVD version of the film, where they went back and restored twelve minutes of footage and cut all the excess footage from the trailers for the home release. The film still has flaws, but is far better than what was put out originally. And that's just that film. Other films had as much and nearly as bad.

    Sometimes the producer will come up with ideas that have to be integrated that affect the film, despite the director's protests. Case in point was Jon Peters wanting the cathedral in "Batman". The script called for the final confrontation between Batman and the Joker to take place on the street. But for reasons that don't make sense, Peters wanted a chase up a cathedral which made into the film, but also had logistic holes such as how could the Joker's goons know that he was going to make the ascent. Much less beat him up there. Why would they be up there at all? Visually it is appealing and accompanied by a great score piece by Danny Elfman. But it's full of holes. That's why Burton was glad when Peters moved to the position of Executive Producer for "Batman Returns", as he didn't have to deal with him as often as had before.
  13. Ingram_I

    Ingram_I Force Ghost star 5

    Sep 7, 2012
    In short, anti-intellectualism. Anytime an artist puts it out there, so to speak -- puts a lofty conceptual motivation out on Front Street -- it becomes an easy target for those offended by the notion that something they don't like just might require, not a smarter brain, necessarily, but a deeper sensitivity to the art in question. It's an inferiority response, free from the accountability of having to provide actual opposing insight.

    One thing that is crucial to understand: mockery is the antithesis to an argument. Why argue something when you can just cut it down to a soundbite and then meme or catchphrase it across the internet?
    L110, Andy Wylde, Mr. Forest and 10 others like this.
  14. thejeditraitor

    thejeditraitor Chosen One star 6

    Aug 19, 2003
    rick mccallum may not have been the greatest guy but he got stuff done. that's a producer's job.
    Qui-Riv-Brid and JEDI-RISING like this.
  15. TX-20

    TX-20 Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 21, 2013
    So dense and whatnot is definitely an easy joke to make. But it is unfair to blame Rick McCallum for anything. George Lucas had 100% control on these films. All praise/criticism are for him. And him alone.

    Everyone else were just doing their jobs.
  16. Crystalia

    Crystalia Jedi Master star 4

    Feb 24, 2013
    the only thing I've found funny is when McCallum stated

    "In ROTS we find out exactly why Boba hates the Skywalkers"

    which, Boba not even being in the film aside, make no sense what-so-ever, where has it ever been implicated that Fett hates Skywalker?

    in any event I wouldn't make a meme out of it though.
    Andy Wylde likes this.
  17. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005

    This does -- more or less -- sum it up, in my opinion.

    Well said.
  18. Django Fett

    Django Fett Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Nov 7, 2012
    How much influence did McCallum have in story discussions? In ROTJ Kasanjian really added little, merely clarifying ideas rather than throwing in ideas. Wasn't Kurz the driving force behind much of the mysticism in the early drafts with Lucas trying to evolve political and religious aspects?
  19. SW Saga Fan

    SW Saga Fan Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Apr 19, 2015

    You're perfectly right when you said that all the mockery towards George Lucas's ideas is anti-intellectualism. People prefer to mock something rather than using enlightened argument because, well... people are silly by nature. That's how we, humans, are.

    RedLetterMedia's Mr Plinkett was also mocking Lucas's idea when he said, during the making of the Phantom Menace: "Instead of destroying the Death Star [like Luke], [Anakin] destroys the ship that controls the robots. It’s like poetry. Every stanza kind of rhymes with the last one." Mr Plinkett's response to that was simply: "That’s the stupidest thing I’ve ever heard." Because... I guess that he hasn't anything else to say in order to prove that Lucas's ideas are bad?

    But what fascinates me is that, while Plinkett simply mocks Lucas's ideas and each words he uses in his reviews instead of providing some sort of enlightened or intellectual arguments, in an other review for Titanic he said: "Most people are dumb, and don't like to be challenged intellectually or emotionally. They like the familiar and gravitate towards things that feel safe and non-confrontational."

    Well, he, himself, is no exception. He's like the regular or average people who, when they don't understand something, simply mocks it and ridicule it. But it also shows that he's contradicting himself and his reviews by saying something that seems rational, and then doing the complete opposite on the other side.

    But I want to be clear, I agree that each person has his own opinion and we should respect it. If people don't like Lucas's ideas or the prequels, it's their own preference and there is nothing wrong with it. But, what really bugs me is that, when people keeps telling me that I should watch the RLM, making videos reviewing or bashing the prequels, and when I listen to what those people have to say in order to prove me wrong, I have yet to find some sort of informed opinion in order to take them seriously...
  20. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005
    Excellent catch.

    Slamming something as "stupid", a priori, without even attempting to offer any compelling evidence that you have once -- just once -- attempted to see things from the artist's point-of-view (the person being trashed in that instance), is pretty mindless, and certainly suggests hypocrisy on Plinkett's/Stoklasa's part.

    You could otherwise let the guy off the hook. Sort of. But the popularity of those videos (well, they were semi-popular, at one time, anyway) does do something to lead to one to the conclusion that people enjoy snide evisceration over reasoned argumentation.

    And that's sad. But we seem to be faced with a culture of anti-intellectualism. Anti-intellectualism, I think, is very entrenched in American and Western society, fostered, in large part, by very powerful corporate interests and elites that use various tactics to dupe a consumerist, serf population, placing profits above lives and the general well-being of the entire planet.

    This article is a little "hot" for the thread, perhaps, but broadly outlines the case, in my opinion, for how toxic and wide-reaching anti-intellectualism has become:
  21. Chancellor Yoda

    Chancellor Yoda Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Jul 25, 2014
    Never even heard of this meme before.

    I never really had much hate towards McKallum anyways, seemed like a nice enough guy.
    Cryogenic likes this.
  22. Cryogenic

    Cryogenic Force Ghost star 5

    Jul 20, 2005

    There's that, too.

    Rick McCallum seems like a very pleasant, cool, and down-to-Earth person.

    So naturally, he gets an army of haters and disdainers.
  23. Alienware

    Alienware Jedi Master star 3

    Apr 19, 2013
    One of the better posts on the subject I've seen so far.

    But that's just the way internet communication is like these days. You can't take it too seriously most of the time. The poetry thing is kinda like "still a better love story than Twilight." I'm sure that a vast majority of the people who write this line didn't even watch Twilight and haven't formed their own opinion about it, they just know that it will bring them internet points by saying it.
  24. CommanderDrenn

    CommanderDrenn Jedi Knight star 4

    Oct 19, 2013
    I thought it was funny because of how it was worded and used out of context in the RLM reviews. It casts light on the fact of how much is going on but how many people didn't care. This contrasts the OT quite a bit in that (the original releases, anyway) had very little going on but succeeded much more in making an immersive and human environment that enhanced the characters.
  25. Andy Wylde

    Andy Wylde Jedi Master star 4

    Jun 26, 2014
    RLMorons fans are just, morons! Just go on any of the comment sections of their PT reviews and see how many times these dolts just write "its so dense" and all the other comments made by Lucas and Mccullam during the PT. Once someone posts a comment with one of these quotes, all the other morons follow and just write every other quote that has been said by plinkett in his reviews.

    That seems to be all these people that think his reviews are "intelligent" and "insightful" are able to do. Just post comments of quotes made by plinkett on his own videos. Like, "it's like poetry, it rhymes", "What is it with rick's?", "what's wrong with your faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaace!" This is pretty much the mentality of the people that follow RLMoron religiously seem to have. Pretty sad on many levels. But the proof is out there for all to see. Like I said before, just look at the comments on his reviews and count how many times they post these quotes on just one video. I have even seen them posted on other forums that may not have anything to do with SW! Yes, it is that bad.
    mes520 likes this.