This past weekend Brenda and I managed to watch three movies. This is an amazing feat considering all the other chore and stuff we had to do.
First – We finished watching the bulk of Cold Mountain that we had started earlier in the week. It was good, a very bittersweet ending, but I recommend it as a study of “war is hell.” It occurred to me that the Civil War was probably the only time we had a mass war on American soil and it really did tear the country apart, a lot more then what we might read about in our history books.
Second – we watched About Schmidt. I thought it was an interesting quirky look at life after retirement. It had its moments but I wanted a little more humor in it. Just a touch more would have made it a lot better. It’s one of those movies like The Royal Tenenbaums that has this quiet, subtle humor but never really gets past that. I like a little more, just a little more to laugh at.
And finally – we saw Revenge of The Sith. (NO SPOILERS – you are SAFE if you have not seen it yet). It was an enjoyable, fun ride. I wouldn’t call it the greatest movie I’ve ever seen, but it does make up for Phantom Menace and Attack Of The Clones. It completes the puzzle, and it answers some other questions – as to “why this was this way”, etc… I thought it came closest to being like Eps 4-6 – maybe because of the transformation, and maybe because we start to see the seeds planted for the next three films. Its dark tone is very much like Empire Strikes back – and that was a really good thing.
I was reading an article about the movie in Entertainment Weekly and George Lucas was quoted as saying that for the three movies – Sith was supposed to contain 60% of the story, and the other two would take 20% for each – so he’s basically admitting that the first two had a lot of filler, and he had to play with them to make them more balanced. That’s probably why in Menace, we have this huge film about a little boy – when it probably didn’t need to be so long. But he had to fill 2 1/2 hours, on probably what he could have done an hour at most. Again – Menace shows Anakin as a teen – and he also could have spent an hour on it – but there again – it’s not a full movie. So they got stretched into these epics with extra plotlines and filler. I think you could probably do a nice four hour “extra long” movie cut together from all three – and it would tell the story of Anakin rather nicely.
It’s also funny that he says that the films are a character study of Anakin – because before seeing Eps 1-3 – you basically think they are centered around Luke and Leia. If it was really a character study of Anakin Skywalker – then why was he openly talking about how the series is a 9 part series? Vader dies at the end – so where does the story really go?
Even if you absolutely HATED Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones – you should go see Revenge of the Sith. It’s worth it.
And here are my spoilers (white text, just highlight to read them):
I liked the many connections they made: Chewbacca having met Yoda before, the reason for Yoda’s exile, Commander Antilles (at the very end of the movie) – it made it all part of the Star Wars pantheon – finally. I loved the scene where Anakin is “put back together” as Darth Vader. Putting on the mask was great, and when he’s finished – the whole Frankenstein’s monster-ness of the table he is on rotating down. VERY cool. I definitely want to watch it again – maybe on DVD so I can pause and catch all the other interesting bits. There were so many times I was like “oh man – can you back that up about 10 seconds so I can check that, or see that again?”
If you want to comment on a spoiler, comment in white text please, so there’s no spoilers in the comments (or email me your comments and I’ll put them in, in white text myself).