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THE MANDATE FROM GEORGE

21 May 2005

Warning: absolutely NO spoilers will be here in this rant. So get out of your epileptic seizure and read on. When you read this I will have been to Starwars yesterday evening. As I write this it is a few hours before that momentous occasion. Another fact that you should keep in mind at this point is that I have no access whatsoever to any time-travelling device or tarot cards, so I have no way of knowing anything about it yet.

Over the past months I have been successfully avoiding any and all footage and news about the movie, so I know quite little about what will happen. Apart from, well, the obvious of course. I was especially keen to avoid all things (yes, humans in their entirety actually) Episode 3 because I have tested it out and lived it and now I know it: hype is bad. Especially the positive kind. It will destroy your experience because you're tainted by someone elses opinion and can't judge the movie anymore without that weight. I'm pretty mental so I'll probably experience this twenty thousand times stronger than anyone, but still.

Some five or six years ago when Episode 1 was released, the day before I went to the premiere, a friend from school who had downloaded a screener (footage secretly recorded in the cinema) came to me and joked about Qui-Gon Jinn dying. That scar still burns. Ever since then I've had special appreciation of people whenever something comes up that everyone wants to see and wants to talk about. It consists of slaughtering them. Or maybe locking myself up in a cupboard to avoid them. Possibly both. I'm just saying: I take steps to assure that such a dismal event can not repeat itself. Which is more difficult than it seems, as even close friends who are intricately aware of how childishly volatile I get with even the slightest mention of spoilers sometimes blurt out things in their enthusiasm. This usually happens under the motto: ,,But I thought everyone already knew that?!'

But now on to the actual message of the day: I'm not even that hyped up by the movie. In fact, my opinion of Starwars has never been lower than now! How so you say? Because I just watched Episode 2 on DVD. And whatever favourable impression I had of it when I saw it in the cinema three years ago, today I am a more educated man in terms of digital effects and storytelling through my schooling. So I saw the movie for the first time, so to speak. And the term underwhelming comes to mind. How could I not have noticed the mediocre bluescreen effects at first! How could I not have seen the horrible acting, or the horrible dialogue at that?! And the movie itself, it's a mess, an inconsistent collection of random scenes that more often than not just fail to even entertain me. Why are there so many pointless actionscenes in there, like that elaborate factory-setpiece, when the story could have used more dialogue and explanatory scenes? Basic as the Starwars story is, this is its most intricate part with lots of different allegiances and motifs and characters that have different hidden agendas. But instead of telling that story it just indulges in scenes full of action and more action. And I think this is the first time I'm not saying 'well it's Starwars so I can look past it'.

So that's really why I don't think a lot about tonight. Oh sure I'm excited and I'll just enjoy the brainless entertainment, I'm not saying that. But I've long since given up the hope that this will be anything special.

And now that my hopes are on an alltime low, maybe, just maybe, it may succeed in surprising me.

Roderick.