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Old 01-09-2018, 11:45 AM   #1
sundialsvcs
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Why I Walked Out on Star Wars


Star Wars: The Last Jedi is supposed to be "the one movie that everyone on Planet Earth will see." But, I walked out on it last night.

The Star Wars franchise is not in good hands with The Mouse. Even though they have unlimited amounts of money to spend on movies, theme parks and such, they are playing hell with the central characters – especially, in my view, Luke Skywalker.

Now, part of the problem, of course, is that Disney waited too long. The (surviving ...) original actors are frankly old, and Mark Hamill hasn't kept himself up nearly as well as Sir Alec Guinness did. But, the character himself is completely changed. I come away completely agreeing with Hamill's obviously later-redacted comment:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Hamill (infamously):
“He’s not my Luke Skywalker,” says Hamill. “I said to [Director] Rian, I said ‘Jedis don’t give up.’ I mean, even if he had a problem, he would maybe take a year to try and regroup, but if he made a mistake he would try and right that wrong, so right there, we had a fundamental difference, but, it’s not my story anymore. It’s somebody else’s story, and Rian needed me to be a certain way to make the ending effective.”
In the first Mouse film, Luke has disappeared into hiding, yet he somehow leaves behind (in two pieces that are miraculously re-united minutes before the cliffhanger ending) an interstellar map pointing out his location. (Neither did the movie bother to explain why everyone was going to all odds to find him. Doesn't he have a Facebook account? ) But, when he is actually found, he seems surprised. Furthermore, there never was any good reason either for him to "go and stay gone," or to remain on a picturesque cliff-side with no obvious source of food. And then, sometime after the series of scenes that finally made me "balk and walk," (I am told that ...) he basically does nothing. You would fully expect the character who drove all three of the Lucas episodes would be front-and-center now. But that character is now nowhere to be seen. Not only does he not participate, he doesn't want to.

(The last movie that I walked out on was Terms of Endearment, even though Jack Nicholson's a great actor and the movie won several Oscars.® Suddenly, he had turned into "a good actor, reading his lines." It wasn't the actor's fault – it was the screenplay.)

I'm also tired of the repeated "Melted Mask" re-appearances of the Last Bad-Guy, Darth Vader nee Annakin Skywalker. Once again this is not true to this character's story, and the Disney films really have no other arch-villain with which to replace him. (I can easily anticipate that Kylo Ren will become a good-guy at the end of the next installment, although I hope they leave out the Ewoks.)

They did make two excellent casting choices in Adam Driver and Daisy Ridley. (Be sure to check her out in Murder on the Orient Express!) There is movie magic when these two play close-camera scenes together, and The Mouse might finally be figuring out that he shouldn't be wearing that mask (designed to look good on a doll action-figure, no doubt ...) that his character, unlike Darth Vader, has no technical reason to wear at all. Both of these actors are g-o-o-d at what they do ... when you can actually see Adam's face. (Otherwise, she's playing to a doll.)

Maybe Star Wars has fallen victim to "sure-thing disease." The Mouse is confident that moviegoers will watch anything that's got the logo on it. (Although SW: Rogue One bombed badly.) They've got all the money in the world to spend, and no one to tell them, "no."

Except, maybe, me.

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 01-09-2018 at 11:54 AM.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 12:08 PM   #2
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my thoughts is they are just trying to bleed the "S83T out of it just for the sake of money. I lost interest in that a long time ago, when I went back to revisit it. I wondered why I enjoyed it in the first place.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 12:13 PM   #3
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I've never done the "walked out of the cinema" thing, which I have on occasions read about in web forums' off topic sections... possibly because when I go to the cinema to see sensationalist special effects heavy Sci-Fi from the US I already have certain expectations.

I actually thought Rogue One was decent, the best of the new ones, but that's not difficult. The Force Awakens had some titillating bits and humour for the fans, but all in all was a reboot of the first film (in places laughably so). As with Lucas before, they just shoehorned characters into the films for effect and nothing more. The same happened with the Episode 1/2/3 prequels - the C3PO and R2D2 droids and later Chewbacca were (retroactively) "injected" into the plot in an implausible fashion.

I haven't seen the latest one yet, I'll wait until I can get a second hand DVD from ebay...
 
Old 01-09-2018, 02:12 PM   #4
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totally agree and a few more pointers:

1) Disney is most likely killing off the old characters so they can replace them with characters they control and own. Even though they own the old ones, they do not necessarily control them as they were cemented in the minds of viewers for 40 years.

2) Millennials and younger have such a short attention span that the idea of following characters over generations or hell even from one movie to the next is perhaps impossible.

3) The writers may fall into #2 so they don't even know what was in the prior movie let alone the original 3 + 3 prequels.

4) No longer a light side and dark side, good versus evil, now there is the gray side.

5) Disney is using these films to push their liberal agenda like they do in all of their films and shows.

6) Hollywood had their golden age decades ago, now it is recycled rubbish that goes far beyond Star Wars or Disney.

7) Just wait, the next movie you will find out that Darth Vader was really transsexual, transspecies, hermaphroditic, dyslexic, paraplegic, and the movie will spend 3 hours about his daddy issues........No offense intended towards any of those categories.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BW-userx View Post
my thoughts is they are just trying to bleed the "S83T out of it just for the sake of money. I lost interest in that a long time ago, when I went back to revisit it. I wondered why I enjoyed it in the first place.
Well, I'm old enough to remember watching the original film – before George Lucas fscked it up – where the opening crawl said simply, "THE STAR WARS," not "EPISODE IV."

There was one movie-house in town, with one screen and three broad aisles, and yes, they played "Let's All Go to the Lob-by!" before every movie played. I'm sorry to say now that I had a box of Jordan Almonds in my hand, and that I actually ate it all – without thinking – during the show.

What people today do not realize is that the original Star Wars movies were made without computers. (Except for the brief Tektronix® display that appears in the console of Luke's X-wing.) Also, movies basically did not use "symphonic" sound-tracks. So, when the movie opened with John Williams' iconic score perfectly following the "20th Century Fox fanfare," and then an incredibly-detailed Star Fighter came on the screen from behind ... everyone on Planet Earth was blown-away because no one on Planet Earth had ever heard or seen such a thing before.

Motion picture executives were so confident that Star Wars would bomb – "space movies" never made money – that they weren't interested in any of the merchandising rights. (Heh ...)

The plot was simple – "Cowboys and Indians meets Swords and Sorcery in Outer Space." A double-helping of movie cereal serial. "George Lucas 'laid it on thick,'" and of course struck pure gold.

The special-effects people who were working on the project jokingly – at the time – began to refer to themselves as "The Industrial Light and Magic Company." (Who knew? Well, maybe George Lucas did.) But, theirs was a world of motion-controlled cameras (such as had never existed before ...) and "Death Star trenches" that had to be physically modeled in styrofoam.

Looking back, I know that I was very privileged to live during a period of time when technologies that we take for granted today were being invented ... both with "motion-picture special effects," and, in a great-big sense, "digital computers." It was all happening for the first time, right before our disbelieving eyes, and, "we were there."

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 01-09-2018 at 03:30 PM.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:50 PM   #6
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I firmly agree that Star Wars has lost it's appeal for me but I maintain that is because it is not written for my demographic anymore, since...well, I got old and the demographic is largely from 8-28. It's basically a Teen Fairy Tale with a slightly shifting demographic in that the first release, now #3, was fairly wide encompassing the full range of 8-28 and a few young-minded older folks. The 2nd release, Empire Strikes Back, was substantially darker and more grown-up fare. The 3rd, Return of the Jedi swung back to the opposite end, especially once Ewoks were introduced. Seriously, friends, cutesy pie teddy bears with spears and tomahawks taking on Planet Destroyers?

I contend that this has always been the nature of Fairy Tales. If Barnes and Noble replaced modern Fairy Tales with the originals there would be book-burnings on every street corner and years of litigation involved. This shifting in appeal, and generally to the lowest common denominator, is only amplified when Fairy Tales are controlled by corporations.

Sorry to single your post out, ChuangTzu, but I disagree with a few points. #1 is likely spot on but #2 leads me to believe you may be older than 30. I'm more than twice that but I recognize that pigeon-holing entire generations has always been popular but also, like all generalities, a bit flawed. All people between 16 and 30 have relatively short attention spans, always have, likely always will. #3 is accurate in that Millennials fall into that age bracket, at least NOW, but will soon be replaced by the next wave, as they grow out of it, like we all do. #4 is right on since "lowest common denominator" sells the most tickets/dvds.

#5 I find absurd as I do whenever someone refers to any corporation with "liberal agenda". Again it's an issue of age and evolution. Even companies that start out as even vehemently liberal (think PETA) before long are whittled down by the Corporate Environment or they simply cease to survive. Disney Inc. has been around so long they sold their souls to The Almighty Dollar ages ago, which you also noted and I find in direct opposition to "liberal" - something of a contradiction in terms.

#6 though a bit over-the-top is still quite funny while holding a kernel of truth, as I imagine you meant it to be, but I suspect watering down to the point of a two-dimensional image is more likely. Even from the beginning Star Wars seemed filled with Kens and Barbies, not a hairy genital in the lot of them.

Disney knows it's audience. It is their business to know and, sadly enough, We are not It.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:54 PM   #7
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There's very few movies that I will pay full price to go see in the theater. Our family has had a tradition over the last several years, to go see the "big" movie release of the season on Christmas Day.

So, it's been a string of Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and Star Wars movies over the last several years at Christmas. I was so disappointed by The Force Awakens that I swore at the time that I would see no more new Star Wars films, and cursed J.J. Abrahams quite verbally.

By the time Rogue One came out, I changed my mind, went to see it with the family as usual, and found that I actually enjoyed it.

The Last Jedi left me feeling mostly "meh." I could have just as easily not gone to see it. Yeah, I feel like the franchise has jumped the shark at Disney's hands.

At least Bladerunner 2049 was awesome.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:54 PM   #8
ChuangTzu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enorbet View Post
I firmly agree that Star Wars has lost it's appeal for me but I maintain that is because it is not written for my demographic anymore, since...well, I got old and the demographic is largely from 8-28. It's basically a Teen Fairy Tale with a slightly shifting demographic in that the first release, now #3, was fairly wide encompassing the full range of 8-28 and a few young-minded older folks. The 2nd release, Empire Strikes Back, was substantially darker and more grown-up fare. The 3rd, Return of the Jedi swung back to the opposite end, especially once Ewoks were introduced. Seriously, friends, cutesy pie teddy bears with spears and tomahawks taking on Planet Destroyers?

I contend that this has always been the nature of Fairy Tales. If Barnes and Noble replaced modern Fairy Tales with the originals there would be book-burnings on every street corner and years of litigation involved. This shifting in appeal, and generally to the lowest common denominator, is only amplified when Fairy Tales are controlled by corporations.

Sorry to single your post out, ChuangTzu, but I disagree with a few points. #1 is likely spot on but #2 leads me to believe you may be older than 30. I'm more than twice that but I recognize that pigeon-holing entire generations has always been popular but also, like all generalities, a bit flawed. All people between 16 and 30 have relatively short attention spans, always have, likely always will. #3 is accurate in that Millennials fall into that age bracket, at least NOW, but will soon be replaced by the next wave, as they grow out of it, like we all do. #4 is right on since "lowest common denominator" sells the most tickets/dvds.

#5 I find absurd as I do whenever someone refers to any corporation with "liberal agenda". Again it's an issue of age and evolution. Even companies that start out as even vehemently liberal (think PETA) before long are whittled down by the Corporate Environment or they simply cease to survive. Disney Inc. has been around so long they sold their souls to The Almighty Dollar ages ago, which you also noted and I find in direct opposition to "liberal" - something of a contradiction in terms.

#6 though a bit over-the-top is still quite funny while holding a kernel of truth, as I imagine you meant it to be, but I suspect watering down to the point of a two-dimensional image is more likely. Even from the beginning Star Wars seemed filled with Kens and Barbies, not a hairy genital in the lot of them.

Disney knows it's audience. It is their business to know and, sadly enough, We are not It.
all in fun, substitute liberal with conservative and its more of the same...the older I get the more I see its two wings of the same bird.... PS: much much older then 30, just think things have gotten progressively worse during a particular generation compared to others...but apples and oranges I guess.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:56 PM   #9
ChuangTzu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWJones View Post
There's very few movies that I will pay full price to go see in the theater. Our family has had a tradition over the last several years, to go see the "big" movie release of the season on Christmas Day.

So, it's been a string of Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, and Star Wars movies over the last several years at Christmas. I was so disappointed by The Force Awakens that I swore at the time that I would see no more new Star Wars films, and cursed J.J. Abrahams quite verbally.

By the time Rogue One came out, I changed my mind, went to see it with the family as usual, and found that I actually enjoyed it.

The Last Jedi left me feeling mostly "meh." I could have just as easily not gone to see it. Yeah, I feel like the franchise has jumped the shark at Disney's hands.

At least Bladerunner 2049 was awesome.

LOL..this is why I like Netflix or other similar services...don't like a movie, just stop, go back search for another...
 
Old 01-09-2018, 03:58 PM   #10
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There are some astounding (IMHO) Disney Movies, such as Zootopia, which "have Walt's signature on them" in the opening label.

But the Star Wars episodes are not among them.

(When The Walt Disney Company® does its very best work ... "Walt signs his name to it." Pictures with that designation are few and far between ... as they should be.)

P.S.: If you have not seen Zootopia yet, do so. There is far more depth to that movie than the trailers might suggest, a quite-sophisticated story, and clearly-superior production values throughout. (IMHO.™)

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 01-09-2018 at 04:02 PM.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 04:46 PM   #11
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I thought it was an OK bit of action special effects and reasonably enjoyable - just misnamed because it wasn't a Star Wars film (more an alternative universe story, like Churchill marching through France and Germany (after his 1938 coup d'etat) into Russia).

Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuangTzu View Post
...PS: much much older then 30, just think things [attention spans] have gotten progressively worse during a particular generation compared to others...but apples and oranges I guess.
Apples and Androids might be more appropriate
 
Old 01-09-2018, 05:03 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JWJones View Post
At least Bladerunner 2049 was awesome.
I really have a hard time letting go of some movies. Bladerunner is one. Dunno about seeing that follow-up.

They always seem to go too far with squeezing bucks out of an idea.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 05:38 PM   #13
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I really have a hard time letting go of some movies. Bladerunner is one. Dunno about seeing that follow-up.

They always seem to go too far with squeezing bucks out of an idea.
I was very pleasantly surprised. I went into the theater VERY skeptical, and came out VERY impressed, as I am a huge fan of the original.
 
Old 01-09-2018, 09:36 PM   #14
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There were only three Star Wars movies.

I add this with some trepidation: At the end of the December 29 episode of the Professional Left Podcast (warning: the podcast itself is highly political), Driftglass discusses why Star Wars is not, in his opinion, science fiction. He is a science fiction fan (one could almost say "scholar") whose working definition of science fiction is this (I'm paraphrasing here): if you take away the science, the story doesn't work.

If you want to listen, go to http://driftglass.blogspot.com (again, highly political--you have been warned) and look for "Ep 421 Year End Double Episode (Featuring Science Fiction University)." The relevant portion ("Science Fiction University") starts about an hour in.

Last edited by frankbell; 01-09-2018 at 09:37 PM.
 
Old 01-10-2018, 09:17 AM   #15
sundialsvcs
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Meh, to me, there was only one Star Wars movie. And it was the very first of its kind – an advancement of the then-state of the art in special effects far beyond anything that had ever been done before, accompanied by a rompin' good yarn taken straight out of the Saturday Morning Serials.

And, unless "the Mouse" reverses some of Lucas' stupid moves, you can't see it anymore in its original form.

Last edited by sundialsvcs; 01-10-2018 at 09:19 AM.
 
  


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