Monday, May 30, 2005

Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith

This sucks ass on a deep philosophical level.

Disclaimer: I was never a fan of the original Star Wars movies. To me, it was fantasy in science fiction drag. (Or as a friend put it, mental masturbation.) Lucas created an unholy marriage of cheapjack SF movie serials and John. W. Campbell’s mythology. Granted enough THC, it was occasionally entertaining. But bad movies crowd out good movies. Lucas’ splashy, ripped-off adolescent crap sucked the oxygen out of the room for intelligent SF on film for years.

So, not a Star Wars original trilogy fan. No.

But it had its moments. 

The new trilogy is much, much worse. 

The Force is a result of, uh, mitochlorians in the blood stream? Yeah, explain the mystery. That’s always good.

The Jedi have to be celibate. OK. Sure, there’s nothing like a complication to budding romance that makes no freaking sense whatsoever.

Jar-Jar Binks?

Anakin built R-2 in his basement?

A ripoff of The Searchers. Again?

A ripoff of the chariot scene in Ben Hur? Lovingly rendered in video game CGI with no hint of blood, sweat, dust and reality?

A complicated plot nobody gives a shit about concerning a conflict with Count Dookie and the Trade Federation which reads like a badly written summary of the 30 Years War?

I suspended judgment and disbelief for the first two installments. They had their moments, too.

But, as I said, the third sucks ass on a deep philosophical level.

The dialogue is so bad I want to hit myself in the head with a brick like one of the Gumby brothers on the old Monty Python show.

Anakin turns to the dark side. His motive is never really explained.

EMPEROR: Turn to the dark side.
ANAKIN: Yeah, all right.

If George Lucas had asked me –

Take a page from David Brin, who detects fascist/elitist tendencies in Star Wars. The Emperor informs Anakin that the Jedi are planning a coup. The Jedis think they’re superhuman – entitled to rule. The Emperor (like Julius Caesar) is a ruler of the people. Anakin doesn’t believe him. The Emperor stages a Reichstag fire – and blows up the Imperial Senate, planting evidence to implicate the Jedi. Padme is critically injured, in a coma. Anakin goes into a rage – and then betrays and destroys the Jedi.

Lucas didn’t ask me.