Saturday: 21.May.2005

Star Wars Episode III - Revenge of the Sith: Rad review

In a galaxy far, far away ... I saw the new Star Wars yesterday. Had to catch the matinee, cuz the later shows were all sold out.

What a spectacular event. Lucas was criticize last time (Episode II - Attack of the Clones) for abandoning the element of "story" and relying too heavily on wiz-bang special effects. Episode III (Revenge of the Sith) presents a richly-layered, tightly-woven story.

What does it take for an altruistic Jedi to turn from the light and embrace "the dark side"? That's the backstory behind episode III. We see young Anakin Skywalker, the "chosen one", forsake his noble Jedi brothers and become transformed into Lord Darth Vader.

continued

If you are a visual type of person, like me, you will be mesmerized by this picture. The most striking thing is that the film contains many sweeping panoramas of various other-worldly scenes, yet those panoramas contain incredible *detail*.

If I had to mention something I didn't like, I'd say the love-story parts seemed out of place. I enjoy a good love story, but in this film, where another galactic battle ensues at every turn, they stood out awkwardly from the rest of the film.

Very entertaining. Well crafted. It doesn't feed you too much info, nor too little. Nice transitions from one scene to the next. It moves right along at a clip that holds your attention. The story is presented with a methodic pace. No glaring plot problems, except, Why do the space craft need wings in outerspace where there is no atmosphere?

I loved it .. enough to add it to my official Recommended list. It was an experience. The coolest character Yoda is still. Again, the visuals are simply stunning, especially when you consider their detail. Reviews here.

One of the most interesting aspects of human nature (and why the story works) is that even the best people have their dark side (whether they admit it or not), and even the worst people have a benevolent side. Life is not black and white, because people are not black-n-white (deities excluded).

Even Jesus cursed the fig tree, and killed it ("withered from the roots"), despite it being "not the season for figs." Seems like the Lord was in a bad mood that day, and took out his frustration on an innocent fig tree.

And what about Hitler? Certainly he wasn't *born* an evil man? I'm sure he was a sweet baby. What made him turn to the dark side? Could it have been something similar to what drove young Anakin there?

There's a great line from Apocalyspe Now (my favorite film, 1979, which just so happens to be inspired by Joseph Conrad's novel: Heart of Darkness), directed by Francis Ford Coppola (my favorite director), which says:

[spoken by GENERAL CORMAN] "You see Willard... there's a conflict in every human heart .. between the rational and the irrational, between good and evil. And good does *not* always triumph. Sometimes the dark side overcomes what Lincoln called the better angels of our nature. Every man has a breaking point. You and I have ours. Walt Kurtz has reached his. And very obviously, he has gone insane."

That describes what I'm talking about. What would it take for *you* to go over to the dark side?

Speaking of the dark side, it seems that Episode III has already been leaked to the Internet, with downloads available via BitTorrent. When I walked into the theater, I saw a a notice posted on the entrance door that read: "Recording devices of any kind are prohibited".

When I came out of the dark theater, into the bright sunlight, I noticed (while squinting & blinking like a mole at high noon) that the line for the 6:30 show continued down the street and wrapped around the corner, extending clear out of sight.

Trailers HERE.

Some criticize the acting. I tend to think it was *intended* to be stiff in parts, because that's how people of the future will be: more brain, less emotion .. more like Spock from Star Trek. I know what they mean, but it worked for me.

Roger Ebert reviews the film here. Some people didn't enjoy it. If you're looking for more info, a Google search has been pre-configured for the query: star wars revenge sith review

UPDATE: Looks like Revenge of the Sith has broken several box office records, including opening day ticket sales, single day ticket sales, 4-day, and probably a few others.

If you could see this film on digital projection, *that* would be cool.





Posted by Rad at May 21, 2005 11:19 AM

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