Known Johnson

May 23, 2005

Revenge of the stiff

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tom @ 10:26 pm

Okay, I can’t get out of it – I have to post something Star Wars-related. I know, I know – everyone’s doing it, and you came here to get away from all that, but I just have to.

So George Lucas has all this money, right? All these talented people working for him constructing beautiful and amazing sights . . . and not one of them is set aside to create dialogue. I just don’t get it. He has to know by now that dialogue is just not his strong suit – and is, in fact, his weakest “talent.” I won’t jump on the bandwagon – the guy’s got a great eye for detail and . . . lots of stuff going on in his films, but when it comes to making people sound even remotely normal, he’s got a decidedly tin ear. I’m sure you’ve seen others commenting on this exchange of dialogue, but I, again, just have to make a comment myself:

“You’re so beautiful.”
“It’s only because I love you so much.”
“No, it’s only because I love you so much.”
“And that’s only because I love you so much.”
“No, that’s because I love you so much.”
“You’re beautiful because I’m beautiful, and I love that.”
“I love that you’re so beautiful, because I’m beautiful and I love that too.”
“I love that you love me being so beautiful because of your love.”
“I love that we’re so beautiful.”
“I do too.”
“I do because you do.”
“I do only because you do, too.”
“We’re beautiful.”
“Let us weep for our beauty.”

Okay, fine, maybe only the first three lines of that exchange are the real lines of dialogue, but you get the point.

What bothers me the most about Revenge of the Sith isn’t that there’s a lot wrong with it – it works, in a clunky sort of way at times, and it ties up most of the loose ends Lucas created a few years back with the first one. It’s just so fun. What really bothers me is what could have been. Lucas is at an unfortunate disadvantage because he has an obvious ending on his hands, and he also has the “future” episodes already set in stone. So he’s charted out a path to get where he wants, but it seems that he did so with such rigid tension that he couldn’t let the story breathe at all. I mean, in Ep. I, we meet Darth Maul, the baddest of the badass baddies in the universe. And he looks it – he’s all nasty-teeth, yellowy-eyes mean. And he has this reputation as such an evil dude, so super-dark of the dark side and all. And then we see him get pretty much whupped with hardly an effort at all. Dead. Gone. Next!

And so here we are at Ep. 3, where Darth Vader makes his transition from Anakin to the dark side. It’s not done with a huge, epic struggle, like I think we all thought it would . . . it’s just sort of a shrug, like an employee being asked to take on a new position that amounts to a lateral move and no pay increase. “Vader, huh? Yeah, I guess.”

It’s at this point that I question why Lucas killed off Maul in Ep. 1 – why not have him disappear into the depths of space for a couple episodes, then come to claim his rightful place by Darth Sidious’ side, where Vader takes him on in a truly magnificent battle? But no, Lucas seems to be tossing much of this stuff together as he gets to it – regardless of his many claims of having had this all mapped out long ago. It just seems like he stumbled upon many “ah ha!” moments and shoehorned them in. In the end, he makes it all work out (or so I think – I don’t live and breathe this stuff like some do, but it all worked out for me.) But . . . ah, what it could have been.



  1. DUMB ASS!


    Comment by FU — June 14, 2005 @ 4:36 pm | Reply

  2. Never even crossed my mind. If that was Lucas’ intent, then he needed to make that a lot clearer. Most of us don’t live and breathe Star Wars, F, or is it Mr. U? Some of us actually have lives, believe it or not.

    “Dumbass,” huh? Well, I’m not the one that’s leaving nasty anonymous comments on people’s sites. Seriously – lighten up, dude!

    Comment by Tom — June 14, 2005 @ 10:09 pm | Reply

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