Welcome to the third entry in this six-week long array of different authors. Despite the fact I am not a very good critic, my love of Star Wars has led me to choose this topic. I hope you enjoy my post!
For that one guy out there who doesn’t know, the Star Wars prequels are typically held at a much lower standard than the original trilogy, due to many things such as “an overabundant use of CGI”, slow and boring politics, and everyone’s favourite character Jar-Jar Binks. In this post, I will give you my personal opinions on the prequels and share with you a fact or two you might not have known.
To start it off, I’ll tell you about my favourite things. Now at the top of the list is definitely Ewan McGregor, who played the role of Obi-Wan Kenobi. If anything is to redeem the prequels it would have to be his acting. He managed to turn Obi-Wan into an exciting and dare I say badass character. Something else unique to the prequels that appealed to me was the gritty nature of Episode III. Perhaps I stand with a minority but I adore a darker story every once in a while. Obviously, everyone that watched the original trilogy prior knew that the Jedi had to die, but the amazing music by John Williams and the wonderful cinematography form a beautiful combo that I thoroughly enjoy every time. My last major point for the positives is simply all of the lore that this spawned. Despite the fact that I am not talking about the original films themselves, you wouldn’t have “The Clone Wars” TV series or all of the literature that is now categorized as “legends” without the movies. This probably goes without saying but it is like the movies are a gateway to this amazing story.
Now I could go all day about how much I love “The Clone Wars” TV series so I’ll summarize it into one paragraph. In this show, there are many different story arcs jumbled around and not necessarily in order. They follow everyone from Anakin (who I like much more in the TV show by the way) and his apprentice Ahsoka Tano to squads of clone troopers. Before I watched this, I never thought I would feel for a clone trooper but I was very surprised. It brings back Darth Maul as well as introducing countless new characters. It shows the effects the Clone Wars has on everyone and touches on the darker sides of characters such as Anakin and Grand Moff Tarkin. It also sheds some more light on the Mandalorians, which as some may know, is Boba Fett’s race and therefore the whole clone army’s as well. One of the greatest things about this series is that even though it is a cartoon, it doesn’t feel like it’s meant for little kids. I think any Star Wars fan at any age could enjoy it. Now like I said, I could talk all day about this so I’ll stop right here. I do however highly recommend that if you like Star Wars to give this show a try and stick with it for a while because you can trust me when I say it gets really good!
Ok, back to the movies themselves and some of the things they didn’t get right. Top of the list is Jar-Jar Binks. Now to be fair, when I was younger, I really didn’t mind him that much. HOWEVER, watching any scene with him now is somewhat painful. I have no idea what George Lucas was thinking. Jar-Jar tries too hard to be funny and it has become somewhat cringe worthy. Moving on, coincidentally again from Episode I, is young Anakin Skywalker. He just comes off as a whiney little kid and is simply annoying. I’m also not too sure what the age gap is between him and Padme, but it seems a little awkward in the first movie when you realize they will be married later. Something that is constant throughout the movies is the politics. Treaty this, trade blockade that, “Oh my they’ve given the Chancellor more power!” It’s not as if I don’t like politics or anything; it just doesn’t belong in these movies. They slow the movie down, much like that scene where Qui-Gon Jinn explained the science of the force (which I don’t think is AS bad as the reputation it has). This list of cons would not be complete without listing the performance of Hayden Christensen. Some say it was the script he was given, some say he’s merely a bad actor. Either way, Anakin was just a very dry and dull character who didn’t change much at all. Not to bash on him too much, but I found it very challenging to like his character.
I find it hard to not quote Obi-Wan here due to the fact I’m such a nerd: “Your eyes can deceive you, don’t trust them.” In this case, I am referring to the “overabundance of CGI” in the prequels. To my surprise, many of the things I had thought to be CGI were actually models or practical effects. What this says to me is that if people are calling models bad CGI, and are constantly confusing the two; how is the CGI so bad? Don’t get me wrong there are a couple of scenes, mostly in Episode I, which stand out, such as things like the planet of Coruscant in the background of some shots. However, I think it’s unfair to treat it with such negativity as they made massive improvements on it in Episode II and III when technology allowed them to. In fact, I admire the planet of Coruscant in the later movies so much that I drool (not literally) at the possibility of a video game with today’s modern graphics taking place on that planet (Star Wars 1313 come back please). Anyways, I will leave a link below relating to the CGI and practical effects that I recommend you check out if you’re interested. Credit actually goes to the owner of this blog for sending me that link about half a year ago.
I hope you liked this week’s post and listening to me ramble on about Star Wars. I really did enjoy listening to Star Wars music and writing this. If you didn’t like it, come back next week for a new author!