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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Lightbulb The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    I've been a Star Wars fan for a long time. I remember watching the original trilogy as a child on my family's briefcase-sized video player, and loving it. I watched those video tapes over and over again and I can still quote whole sections of the movies.

    The prequel trilogy came out at about the time I went to university. I didn't love them as much as the original three, but I did enjoy them. I didn't rewatch them anywhere near as many times, but since they're a lot more recent in my memory, I still remember them pretty well.

    But when the sequel trilogy came out, I didn't go see them at all.

    Why? Honestly, I'm not sure. I did think about it, but for whatever reason, I just couldn't get all that excited about the idea. It might have been the negative reviews . . . but then again, I heard positive reviews too. It might have been that I'm so much older . . . but that hasn't stopped me from seeing all the Marvel movies. It might have been a vague feeling, gathered from lots of different sources, that the new movies just weren't very good. Still, I've been feeling for a while that I ought to at least give them a try, and with Episode 9 finally out, now seems like a good time to do it.

    On the other hand, if I just go into the new trilogy cold, I'm pretty sure that I'll end up subconsciously comparing them to my beloved memories of all the older films. And I do want to give the movies a fair shake – I don't want to be one of those stereotypical Star Wars fans who hates everything from Return of the Jedi onwards.

    So I've decided to do a comparison. I'll watch the Prequel Trilogy first, then the Disney Star Wars movies following on from that.

    The Plan

    I'll watch the following movies in order, and review each one as I go.

    The Phantom Menace (1999)
    Attack of the Clones (2002)
    Revenge of the Sith (2005)

    The Force Awakens (2015)
    Rogue One (2016)
    The Last Jedi (2017)
    Solo (2018)
    The Rise of Skywalker (2019)

    I'm in between books at the moment so have a lot more free time than usual, but even so, I don't think I'll be able to handle watching more than one movie in a day. Actually, I might have trouble managing one in two days, especially if I'm writing them up.

    I'm really hoping I'll get to the end. If I can't make it through all eight movies, it'll mean that either I REALLY don't love Star Wars as much as I thought I did, or that the new movies REALLY suck. Possibly both.

    Why No Original Trilogy?

    The obvious question: why am I not doing Episodes 4, 5, and 6? Three reasons.

    1) I love the original movies so much that there's really no way I can possibly write an objective review about them. They're part of my childhood and that's how I'm always going to see them. I also don't think there's much point in writing yet another review of Episodes 4 through 6. They're excellent movies, everyone knows it. Even relatively understated scenes like this one from Episode 4 are great examples of how to write a script (seriously, count how many bits of world-building get delivered in only two minutes, and they do all that while establishing characters and advancing the plot too!)

    2) I'm already committing to watching eight movies, four of which I've seen before. If I have to watch a whole two trilogies before even reaching the first of the new movies, I'm going to be seriously flagging by the time I get to Force Awakens. I don't want to burn out before I get to the new stuff.

    3) This is kind of subjective, but I feel that comparing the Prequel Trilogy to the Sequel Trilogy is more 'fair'. They're closer in time (10 years from Episode 3 to Episode 7, compared to 16 years between Episode 6 and Episode 1) and they have more overlap in technique and technology (CGI rather than practical effects). Also, the Prequel Trilogy isn't put up on anywhere near as much of a pedestal as the Original Trilogy was.

    Finishing Off

    And that's it! I'll put up a predictions post, then the first movie is going to be Phantom Menace.
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    I just did a rewatch before Rise as well (though I included the OT and the Ewok movies because I love the Ewok movies, damnit!) Didn't have the ambition to do writeups though!

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Rating Guide and Predictions

    Rating Guide

    I'm using the same rating system that I did for my old Avatar: The Last Airbender watchthrough, based off my old D&D guides.

    Spoiler: Ratings
    Show
    A: Excellent. Anything that I loved, either because it's fascinating, really well-done, or hilariously funny. Doesn’t have to be perfect, but has to be compelling. Anything with an A rating is something I’ll be recommending to other people, and I’ll watch every bit of it. Not much makes it up here.

    B: Good. Anything that I enjoyed. Generally some combination of a good story and good characters, presented in a well-executed way. Might recommend it to other people if it matches their tastes, and will keep watching until it's done. If this is a movie I saw at the cinema, I'm happy to have spent the money.

    C: Okay. Anything that’s interesting enough to hold my attention. It’s probably not great, but it does enough things right that I'm willing to stick with it, at least until my attention wanders and I find something else. Probably contains both good and boring material, depending where you look. The kind of movie you like enough to watch if it's on TV, but not enough to buy a cinema ticket.

    D: Bad. This is the quality level at which I'm likely to pause the movie halfway through, realise that I don't actually care enough to keep going, and switch it off. Either it's annoying, or (more likely) it's just kind of boring and isn't making me want to know what happens next. In this case I'm unlikely to do that, but at this point I'm probably going to have more fun picking apart what's wrong with the movie than I am with actually watching it.

    E: Awful. This is past ‘bad’ and into ‘I want those hours of my life back’. Watching this movie actively makes me feel worse, usually by making me frustrated, depressed, or bored out of my mind. If a movie with a budget of hundreds of millions of $ is reaching this point, something has gone very, very wrong, and if a movie from a franchise I (supposedly) love is rating this low, it's a good sign that I'm not likely to stick with that franchise much longer.

    Predictions

    My best guesses at how much I'll like the movies, based on very vague evidence. This is mostly for personal amusement and I'm not expecting these to be very accurate.

    The Phantom Menace

    It's been a long, long time since I saw this one. I don't remember hating it, but I don't remember being super impressed, either. I did think that the sheer beating it took on the Internet at the time was more than it deserved, and that lightsaber duel was pretty cool. On the other hand, I have some memories of baby Anakin that make me faintly cringe. I'm going to guess a C-.

    Attack of the Clones

    I remember kind of enjoying this. Can't remember the plot (not a good sign) and probably the less said about the romance the better, but the battle scenes were kind of cool. I'm going to be optimistic and say B-.

    Revenge of the Sith

    This was my favourite of the Prequel Trilogy by a long shot. The duel between Obi-Wan and Anakin I remember as being really gripping. Going to say B+.

    The Force Awakens

    Now we're into guesswork. From what I've read and heard online, I've got the worrying feeling that TFA is going to end up being a carbon copy of A New Hope with the serial numbers filed off. On the other hand, the special effects are supposed to be good. I'm going to cross my fingers and guess C-.

    Rogue One

    I actually saw this on video a while after it came out. Can't really remember anything much about it one way or the other, which probably isn't the best sign, but I don't remember disliking it either. Going to guess a fairly safe C.

    The Last Jedi

    Hoo boy. This one caused some major nerd rage. I'm really apprehensive about this one since I have the nasty feeling it's going to have some really heavy-handed messaging of the kind that I'm going to absolutely hate. I've read a lot of critic reviews of TLJ, and literally no-one I respect has given it a positive review. I'm going to guess D and hope I'm wrong.

    Solo

    Didn't this one tank at the box office? I have to wonder how bad a Star Wars film has to be to do that. Going to guess another D.

    The Rise of Skywalker

    Well . . . the fans seem to like it so far, don't they? We'll be optimistic and say that this one'll be a B. I've generally enjoyed the end-of-trilogy movies in the past.
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Hey interested to see this. I actually thought of doing a similar-ish thing a month or so ago where I analyzed the protagonists of each of the three trilogies to see how similar they were and which qualified as “Mary Sues.”

    Wrote up the first post and just decided not to post it for fear of how annoying the replies would end up being.

    Anyway, hope the discussion here is cordial and engaging. Can’t wait to read your responses, have a feeling I’ll disagree with a bit of it. As personally Attack of the Clones was an easy worst movie for me. By a large margin. I also got bored during the Obi/Ani fight, about the time they both helicoptered at each other.
    Last edited by Dienekes; 2019-12-30 at 08:26 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    Rating Guide and Predictions

    Rating Guide

    I'm using the same rating system that I did for my old Avatar: The Last Airbender watchthrough, based off my old D&D guides.

    Spoiler: Ratings
    Show
    A: Excellent. Anything that I loved, either because it's fascinating, really well-done, or hilariously funny. Doesn’t have to be perfect, but has to be compelling. Anything with an A rating is something I’ll be recommending to other people, and I’ll watch every bit of it. Not much makes it up here.

    B: Good. Anything that I enjoyed. Generally some combination of a good story and good characters, presented in a well-executed way. Might recommend it to other people if it matches their tastes, and will keep watching until it's done. If this is a movie I saw at the cinema, I'm happy to have spent the money.

    C: Okay. Anything that’s interesting enough to hold my attention. It’s probably not great, but it does enough things right that I'm willing to stick with it, at least until my attention wanders and I find something else. Probably contains both good and boring material, depending where you look. The kind of movie you like enough to watch if it's on TV, but not enough to buy a cinema ticket.

    D: Bad. This is the quality level at which I'm likely to pause the movie halfway through, realise that I don't actually care enough to keep going, and switch it off. Either it's annoying, or (more likely) it's just kind of boring and isn't making me want to know what happens next. In this case I'm unlikely to do that, but at this point I'm probably going to have more fun picking apart what's wrong with the movie than I am with actually watching it.

    E: Awful. This is past ‘bad’ and into ‘I want those hours of my life back’. Watching this movie actively makes me feel worse, usually by making me frustrated, depressed, or bored out of my mind. If a movie with a budget of hundreds of millions of $ is reaching this point, something has gone very, very wrong, and if a movie from a franchise I (supposedly) love is rating this low, it's a good sign that I'm not likely to stick with that franchise much longer.

    Predictions

    My best guesses at how much I'll like the movies, based on very vague evidence. This is mostly for personal amusement and I'm not expecting these to be very accurate.

    The Phantom Menace

    It's been a long, long time since I saw this one. I don't remember hating it, but I don't remember being super impressed, either. I did think that the sheer beating it took on the Internet at the time was more than it deserved, and that lightsaber duel was pretty cool. On the other hand, I have some memories of baby Anakin that make me faintly cringe. I'm going to guess a C-.

    Attack of the Clones

    I remember kind of enjoying this. Can't remember the plot (not a good sign) and probably the less said about the romance the better, but the battle scenes were kind of cool. I'm going to be optimistic and say B-.

    Revenge of the Sith

    This was my favourite of the Prequel Trilogy by a long shot. The duel between Obi-Wan and Anakin I remember as being really gripping. Going to say B+.

    The Force Awakens

    Now we're into guesswork. From what I've read and heard online, I've got the worrying feeling that TFA is going to end up being a carbon copy of A New Hope with the serial numbers filed off. On the other hand, the special effects are supposed to be good. I'm going to cross my fingers and guess C-.

    Rogue One

    I actually saw this on video a while after it came out. Can't really remember anything much about it one way or the other, which probably isn't the best sign, but I don't remember disliking it either. Going to guess a fairly safe C.

    The Last Jedi

    Hoo boy. This one caused some major nerd rage. I'm really apprehensive about this one since I have the nasty feeling it's going to have some really heavy-handed messaging of the kind that I'm going to absolutely hate. I've read a lot of critic reviews of TLJ, and literally no-one I respect has given it a positive review. I'm going to guess D and hope I'm wrong.

    Solo

    Didn't this one tank at the box office? I have to wonder how bad a Star Wars film has to be to do that. Going to guess another D.

    The Rise of Skywalker

    Well . . . the fans seem to like it so far, don't they? We'll be optimistic and say that this one'll be a B. I've generally enjoyed the end-of-trilogy movies in the past.
    Better than my rating system.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    SamuraiGuy

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    The Last Jedi

    Hoo boy. This one caused some major nerd rage. I'm really apprehensive about this one since I have the nasty feeling it's going to have some really heavy-handed messaging of the kind that I'm going to absolutely hate. I've read a lot of critic reviews of TLJ, and literally no-one I respect has given it a positive review. I'm going to guess D and hope I'm wrong.

    Solo

    Didn't this one tank at the box office? I have to wonder how bad a Star Wars film has to be to do that. Going to guess another D.
    Actually, you are quite wrong. Solo deserves at least a B or C. It's as good as Rogue One in my opinion, and it tanked at the box office solely because it had the misfortune to come after the Last Jedi, which was the biggest F-You to the saga and its themes in general. If every method of bashing star wars mercilessly could be done, it was done in that movie. People didn't like it, and then Solo came, to get nearly all of backlash that Last Jedi deserved. Especially since the fact that disney pulled a massive discredit of fans for disliking Last Jedi, complaining about what was wrong.

    Disney basically called fans morons or worse for not liking The Last Jedi, and so people reacted in the best way that they could, by tanking Solo in the Box Office. The Last Jedi deserves its crap, Solo doesn't
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  7. - Top - End - #7
    Titan in the Playground
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    I'm immensely looking forward to this, I really liked the Avatar thread!

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Oh this sounds like fun. I also enjoyed the Avatar runthrough. Looking forward to this, Saph.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    I'm kinda sad you already read reviews of The Last Jedi, I would've liked your...umm what's the word?

    Your opinion without knowing what anyone else thought about it. Whatever word that is. Regardless, this should be fun.
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  10. - Top - End - #10
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Forum Explorer View Post
    I'm kinda sad you already read reviews of The Last Jedi, I would've liked your...umm what's the word?

    Your opinion without knowing what anyone else thought about it. Whatever word that is. Regardless, this should be fun.
    Untarnished opinion?

    Been a while since I watched the movies (and I was shown them in numerical order), so, hey, might be nice to revisit. I'll follow this thread along.

  11. - Top - End - #11
    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Forum Explorer View Post
    I'm kinda sad you already read reviews of The Last Jedi, I would've liked your...umm what's the word?

    Your opinion without knowing what anyone else thought about it. Whatever word that is. Regardless, this should be fun.
    I know, it would have been nice, but let's face it, it's Star Wars. Short of spending the last two years hiding under a rock with no internet connection, there was no way I was going to avoid getting spoiled somehow, so going in totally blind wasn't really going to happen.

    That said, while I've read reviews of the new Star Wars movies, I've deliberately skimmed over all the plot points without taking them in, so while I have vague ideas of what people liked or hated, I couldn't actually tell you what happens in them. I'm not going in completely cold, but it's still going to be pretty fresh.
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

  12. - Top - End - #12
    Titan in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    I know, it would have been nice, but let's face it, it's Star Wars. Short of spending the last two years hiding under a rock with no internet connection, there was no way I was going to avoid getting spoiled somehow, so going in totally blind wasn't really going to happen.

    That said, while I've read reviews of the new Star Wars movies, I've deliberately skimmed over all the plot points without taking them in, so while I have vague ideas of what people liked or hated, I couldn't actually tell you what happens in them. I'm not going in completely cold, but it's still going to be pretty fresh.
    I'm actually surprised you've gone this long without seeing them if you have any interest in seeing them.
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  13. - Top - End - #13
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Flumph

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    This should be good - I shall look forward to it.

    It's a shame you aren't going to review the OT, but I can see your reasons for skipping them. In part because it would be interesting to see how the entire set plays out in plot sequence.

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    Better than my rating system.
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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Quote Originally Posted by russdm View Post
    Actually, you are quite wrong. Solo deserves at least a B or C. It's as good as Rogue One in my opinion, and it tanked at the box office solely because it had the misfortune to come after the Last Jedi, which was the biggest F-You to the saga and its themes in general. If every method of bashing star wars mercilessly could be done, it was done in that movie. People didn't like it, and then Solo came, to get nearly all of backlash that Last Jedi deserved. Especially since the fact that disney pulled a massive discredit of fans for disliking Last Jedi, complaining about what was wrong.

    Disney basically called fans morons or worse for not liking The Last Jedi, and so people reacted in the best way that they could, by tanking Solo in the Box Office. The Last Jedi deserves its crap, Solo doesn't
    Sorry, Solo failed for a lot of reasons. Coming out too close to the last one, Bad production, bad script. A lot of stuff. It's just not a good movie. Last Jedi had nothing to do with it's failure.
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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Episode I: The Phantom Menace (Part 1/2)



    Introduction

    It’s 1999. Bill Clinton is finishing his stint as president of the USA, France and Germany have just replaced their currencies with the Euro, The Matrix has just been released in cinemas, and Ally McBeal is one of the top shows on TV. (Some of you are probably going to read that last one and go “who?” while others are going to go “oh god, I’m old”.)

    At this point, a Star Wars movie came out. To say that there was a lot of anticipation is an understatement.

    I’ll note down my reactions as I go, then write up a proper review at the end.


    Thoughts While Watching

    • A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away . . . STAR WARS!
    • ”Turmoil has engulfed the Galactic Republic. The taxation of trade routes to outlying star systems is in dispute.” I have to give credit to Lucas for ballsiness on this one. Starting off his trilogy with a dispute over trade policy.
    • I’d forgotten just how nice Star Wars movies look. Music, visuals, etc as we follow the ambassador ship in to the Trade Federation battleships are great.
    • I’d also forgotten just how bad the dialogue can be. Right from the start, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan’s conversation sounds weirdly stilted. They somehow manage to make the Force sound boring.
    • ”Are you brain-dead?” Cringe.
    • And we get into the shooting. I also forgot how silly and unthreatening the battle droids are.
    • The combat is mildly fun to watch, but there’s no tension here. The Jedi don’t feel threatened, and we don’t really care who wins.
    • Queen ‘Amidala’ gets introduced. Her makeup really does look awful. Again, the political meeting feels weirdly stilted and nothing like an actual policy discussion – it sounds more like they’re reciting lines for the camera. Which they are, but you know what I mean.
    • The troopships occupy a patch of empty forest.
    • And . . . it’s Jar Jar. Oh boy. I’m steadily remembering all the stuff about the prequels that I’d managed to forget.
    • Those robes must really suck to swim in. And to walk in, once they’re soaked.
    • Gungan City section. Pretty visuals, boring dialogue. Qui-Gon negotiates to make sure Jar-Jar stays with them. I’m having trouble caring.
    • Sea ride through the planet core, pursued by fish. Then the fish gets eaten by a bigger fish. Then they run into another fish. Then that fish also gets eaten by a bigger fish. I’d forgotten about this bit as well. Come to think of it, why is it even here? Who cares about all these fish?
    • ’Amidala’ gets captured, the Trade Federation goombas act like villains, the Jedi show up, kill the droids, rescue everyone, and get on a ship.
    • These battle droid fights are so pointless. I’ve lost count of how many Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan have hacked their way through by now. They’re like speedbumps. It feels completely different to how the Stormtroopers were handled in the original trilogy.
    • Blockade running, R2 saves the ship. This is a really bad scene. It’s all ‘tell instead of show’ and makes very little sense. If the Trade Federation battleship could blast through the shields and cripple the shield generator in one volley, why does getting the shields back up even matter? And if having the shields down is so dangerous, how come the ship could survive under 60 seconds of direct fire while R2 did repairs?
    • Introduction of Darth Maul, while the Trade Federation goombas continue to be ineffective Saturday morning cartoon villains.
    • R2 gets introduced. It feels like a droid character getting added to a Star Wars party.
    • ”Padmé, clean this droid up. It deserves our gratitude.” This is kind of hilarious given who Amidala and Padmé really are. Maybe she’s trolling her.
    • Padme: “You’re a Gungan, aren’t you?” Jar Jar: “Uh-huh.” Padme: “How’d you end up here with us?” Jar Jar: “My no know.” Then he goes on to talk about his breakfast and how his day’s been. WHY IS THIS DIALOGUE EVEN IN THE MOVIE?
    • We’re on Tatooine. I’ll give this movie credit for one thing – it’s fast. We’re only 30 minutes in and a ton has happened.
    • ”The queen commands you to take her handmaiden with her.” I remember that when I was seeing this movie for the first time, this was the point at which I got really suspicious about this ‘handmaiden’.
    • You can really tell how the visual aesthetic shifts from ‘shiny shiny make everything pretty’ to ‘now we have to make it match with Mos Eisley’.
    • ”Are you an angel?”
    • The dialogue between baby Anakin and Padme isn’t actually all that bad. Still obviously forced though.
    • It’s a bit weird that Republic credits don’t go for anything on Tatooine. You’d think they’d have black market value, just like the US dollar.
    • Sebulba shows up and gets shooed off by Anakin. The more I hear Anakin talk, the more off it feels. “Your buddy here was about to be turned into orange goo. He picked a fight with a Dug, an especially dangerous Dug called Sebulba.” Anakin is supposed to be NINE. Nine year olds don’t talk like that! For that matter, neither do most adults.
    • Anakin’s mother looks way too beautiful to be a slave single mother in a junk yard on a dirtball planet.
    • ”At last we will reveal ourselves to the Jedi. At last we will have revenge.” Ray Park is an amazing martial artist, but dear lord is his delivery bad.
    • ”I saw your laser sword. Only Jedis carry that kind of weapon.” Seriously, HOW DOES ANAKIN KNOW THIS STUFF?
    • Some tedious set-up to justify the podrace.
    • ”A ship without a power supply isn’t going to get us anywhere.” Wait, I thought it was the hyperdrive that was broken?
    • ”Who was his father?” “There was no father.” Honestly, I don’t know what Lucas was going for with Anakin’s single parent status. I think it’s supposed to be mystical, but it just made me confused. If Anakin has a mum, why isn’t he allowed to have a dad?
    • To make sure things don’t get too serious, we have a skit about Jar-Jar’s tongue going numb.
    • ”It’s working! It’s working!”
    • Midi-chlorians. Man, I remember the amount of nerd rage that generated on release. Seems kind of quaint now.
    • Darth Maul arrives. I wonder where all those Sith get those high-tech, high-fashion black and red ships. Is there some company that supplies them and makes sure they have the same colour scheme?
    • ”You’ve never even finished a race?” “Well, I will this time.” It’s kind of annoying how heavily they signal what the result is going to be.
    • I forgot how little Obi-Wan has to do for most of this movie. For the whole Tatooine section he stays back on the ship and takes no part in the plot except for the odd phone call.
    • Pod race time!
    • The dual-headed announcer and the introductions for all the different pod racers are actually kind of fun. Really makes it feel like a popular sports event.
    • In true Snidey Whiplash fashion, Sebulba sabotages Anakin’s pod. He even has the moustaches.
    • Those crashes look 100% fatal for the pilots.
    • The pod race is really well shot. Great camera work and sensation of speed.
    • This would be utterly terrifying for a mother to watch, though.
    • ”That’s gotta hurt!” in response to yet another crash. Rewatching this now that I’m older, it’s kind of hilarious how sociopathic the announcer is. You wonder how anyone lives long enough to get famous in this sport.
    • Even though you know who’s going to win, this is still really tense.
    • Sebulba’s the last one to wipe out. Amusingly, he’s also the only racer apart from Anakin who definitely survives.
    • And Anakin wins. Victory cheer.


    First Half Thoughts

    I’d planned to do the whole movie all in one post, but this is taking WAY longer than I expected. I forgot how long these movies were. Given that I’ve got two pages of notes already, I think I’ll have to split the thing in two.

    So far, Phantom Menace is turning out . . . okay. Dialogue is bad, characters are pretty average, story is average, individual scenes are mixed but mostly not very good. Still, the whole thing hangs together better than you’d expect, for reasons I’ll go into later. More detail after part 2.
    I'm the author of the Alex Verus series of urban fantasy novels. Fated is the first, and Book #10 in the series, Fallen, is out as of September 2019. For updates, check my blog!

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    IIRC, the fake Amidala is explicitly trolling Padme with her order to clean the droid, though it's more the 'trolling' you get between very close friends rather than the malicious kind the term implies.
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel, on quest rewards View Post
    "Is a stack of ten pancakes too many pancakes to give to the party, even if most of them fell on the floor and one or two were stepped on? I wanted to give my party pancakes as a reward but I'm unsure if it's too much. The pancakes are also laced with blowfish poison so the party would have to get an antitoxin before they could eat the ones which weren't pulverized by shoes."

    I don't think anyone would want those pancakes even if you paid them to eat them.

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    smile Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    Introduction

    It’s 1999. Bill Clinton is finishing his stint as president of the USA, France and Germany have just replaced their currencies with the Euro, The Matrix has just been released in cinemas, and Ally McBeal is one of the top shows on TV. (Some of you are probably going to read that last one and go “who?” while others are going to go “oh god, I’m old”.)
    Yes I was and yes I am
    Last edited by comicshorse; 2019-12-31 at 12:27 PM.
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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    I actually find The Phantom Menace to be the best of the prequels. First, it has the podracing sequence, which, despite all the BS around it, is a good action sequence. Second, the Maul vs Qui-gon and Obi-wan fight is, IMO, the best lightsaber duel in the prequels. Third, this is the best movie for Padme. She's a commanding presence with awesome fashion, not forced into a chemistry-less romance in the next two movies. And she's such a non-entity in RotS, it's maddening.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    I actually find The Phantom Menace to be the best of the prequels. First, it has the podracing sequence, which, despite all the BS around it, is a good action sequence.
    Eh, I always felt the podrace was the weakest part of the movie.
    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    Second, the Maul vs Qui-gon and Obi-wan fight is, IMO, the best lightsaber duel in the prequels.
    Wholly agree on that one!
    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    Third, this is the best movie for Padme. She's a commanding presence with awesome fashion
    Which costume would you describe as the awesome fashion?
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    Your bread looks like a rotary phone.
    This right here, is some prime quality culinary critique.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Which costume would you describe as the awesome fashion?
    I like the ornate, Asian stylings in general, but specifically, I think her first look is her strongest. It's iconic, and unlike Padme's later looks in the other movies that all call back (or forward?) to Leia, it's pretty unique. Her decoy outfit for the Battle of Naboo is better than the white outfit that gets strategically ripped in AotC. I also dig the black outfit in Palpatine's office when she decides to return to Naboo.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Only one of those images was Padme.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Your bread looks like a rotary phone.
    This right here, is some prime quality culinary critique.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Only one of those images was Padme.
    No, I'm pretty sure that's all Padme. It's the decoy, Sabe, when they are being escorted out by battle droids, on Tatooine, and when they arrive on Naboo.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Saph View Post
    [*]”Padmé, clean this droid up. It deserves our gratitude.” This is kind of hilarious given who Amidala and Padmé really are. Maybe she’s trolling her.
    Lucas wanted an establishing scene between R2, Palme, and Jar-Jar. And like most of the prequels it’s poorly thought out to get the scene Lucas wanted.

    [*]”Who was his father?” “There was no father.” Honestly, I don’t know what Lucas was going for with Anakin’s single parent status. I think it’s supposed to be mystical, but it just made me confused. If Anakin has a mum, why isn’t he allowed to have a dad?
    So Lucas is a disciple of Joseph Campbell and his Hero’s Journey. And a part of the HJ is that the hero has a virgin birth. Which was really just a fancy way to say that the hero is signified as important before he actually does anything. In this case, it just comes across as strange. Having Qui-Gon sense Ani as uniquely strong in the Force would have done the same thing. But no, he had to throw in the virgin birth in one line, which threw everyone for a loop, and is never really expanded upon again.

    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    I like the ornate, Asian stylings in general, but specifically, I think her first look is her strongest. It's iconic, and unlike Padme's later looks in the other movies that all call back (or forward?) to Leia, it's pretty unique. Her decoy outfit for the Battle of Naboo is better than the white outfit that gets strategically ripped in AotC. I also dig the black outfit in Palpatine's office when she decides to return to Naboo.
    Personal opinion, always thought her costumes looked silly. But then I’ve never been really fascinated by Eastern design, or clothes that looked like they are restrictive to move in.
    Last edited by Dienekes; 2019-12-31 at 02:28 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    So Lucas is a disciple of Joseph Campbell and his Hero’s Journey. And a part of the HJ is that the hero has a virgin birth.
    No, no, it's not. Virgin birth is another whole can of symbolist worms.
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    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
    I'll take that bet.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    No, no, it's not. Virgin birth is another whole can of symbolist worms.
    Yes. Yes, it is. Virgin Birth has it's whole chapter in Campbell's Hero of a Thousand Faces. It's on the table of contents if you want to go look.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    Personal opinion, always thought her costumes looked silly. But then I’ve never been really fascinated by Eastern design, or clothes that looked like they are restrictive to move in.
    Fair enough. Let's be clear, I don't like any of the prequels, but if I were also doing this rewatch (which, I'd consider if I had Disney+), I feel like the prequel I'd enjoy rewatching the most is TPM. Put it this way, at the time, I saw this movie multiple times in theater. I did not do that for AotC or RotS.

    And, if anyone finds Padme's Asian-inspired design problematic, given the broad and arguably racist use of the Trade Federation, I won't disagree. But, as I said, she's more assertive and allowed to lead here, I hate her being barefoot and pregnant and lifeless in RotS, her "romance" arc with Anakin is DOA in AotC ... so I'd still argue that fans of Padme are best served in TPM (in the movies, I hear she gets some good moments in the Clone Wars animated series).

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    No, I'm pretty sure that's all Padme. It's the decoy, Sabe, when they are being escorted out by battle droids, on Tatooine, and when they arrive on Naboo.
    I don't think it's Padme in the beginning, though; the voice sounds like Sabe's, not Padme's.
    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    Fair enough. Let's be clear, I don't like any of the prequels, but if I were also doing this rewatch (which, I'd consider if I had Disney+)
    All I'm saying is, the one month subscription for seven dollars is worth it for The Mandalorian.
    Last edited by Peelee; 2019-12-31 at 04:20 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Your bread looks like a rotary phone.
    This right here, is some prime quality culinary critique.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    Fair enough. Let's be clear, I don't like any of the prequels, but if I were also doing this rewatch (which, I'd consider if I had Disney+), I feel like the prequel I'd enjoy rewatching the most is TPM. Put it this way, at the time, I saw this movie multiple times in theater. I did not do that for AotC or RotS.

    And, if anyone finds Padme's Asian-inspired design problematic, given the broad and arguably racist use of the Trade Federation, I won't disagree. But, as I said, she's more assertive and allowed to lead here, I hate her being barefoot and pregnant and lifeless in RotS, her "romance" arc with Anakin is DOA in AotC ... so I'd still argue that fans of Padme are best served in TPM (in the movies, I hear she gets some good moments in the Clone Wars animated series).
    I don't particularly find the outfit problematic so much as uninteresting and sticks out as misplaced even among other Nabooians (Nabooans? Nabs?). But mostly, it's just not something I find interesting. Same way I find knights visually interesting but have not really given samurai more than a shrug. There's no real reason for it. Just how I am.

    There is also that I'm just not a fan of Padme in general. Not sure what's there in the character to be a fan about. The most interesting thing about her was that she apparently chose to pretend to be a servant. Something I thought was neat when she was royalty, maybe a more hands on kind of royalty. But no, apparently she was elected to be queen, which is position with a term limit... as a 14 year old. Huh. I kinda wanna see a 14 year old endure a televised political debate and campaign now.

    But if you find her interesting I would be fascinated to hear your reasoning.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    Yes. Yes, it is. Virgin Birth has it's whole chapter in Campbell's Hero of a Thousand Faces. It's on the table of contents if you want to go look.
    So it does. Uh. Well, I sit corrected.
    I never did get far into this book...
    Quote Originally Posted by ImperiousLeader View Post
    her "romance" arc with Anakin is DOA in AotC
    Devoid Of Ambition?
    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    All I'm saying is, the one month subscription for seven dollars is worth it for The Mandalorian.
    Spoiler: Alternatively...
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    EDIT:
    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    Nabooians (Nabooans? Nabs?)
    Naboo.
    Last edited by Fyraltari; 2019-12-31 at 05:02 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peelee View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    the Vector Legion [is the IFCC's new pawns], mark my words. Way too much unfinished business there and they already know about the Gates.
    I'll take that bet.

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    Default Re: The Great Star Wars Watchthrough

    Quote Originally Posted by Dienekes View Post
    But if you find her interesting I would be fascinated to hear your reasoning.
    Interesting might be a stretch, but Padme is an important character. Again, to be clear, I'm merely making a TPM is the least of three evils argument here, especially for Padme, given what happens to her in the other movies. She sets the plan for the final battle, she manages an alliance with the GunGuns, she takes the Trade Federation guys hostage ... she gets to be an active player, not the sidelined participant in the other two movies.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fyraltari View Post
    Devoid Of Ambition?
    Dead on Arrival, but that works too.
    Last edited by ImperiousLeader; 2019-12-31 at 05:20 PM.

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