Defending The StarWars Prequel Trilogy
Defending The StarWars Prequel Trilogy
With the seventh installment in the Star Wars series quickly approaching, I’m starting to hear a lot concerning the future of the franchise. The majority of the criticism comes from the way the prequel trilogy was received by the general public. I can’t even mention The Phantom Menace without getting a chorus of groans and harsh criticism in response. Sure, they weren’t the best three movies in the world, and I believe whole-heartedly that the original trilogy was exponentially better. However, I believe that every flaw in the original trilogy can be logically explained.
Yes, the Senate meetings. The seemingly endless torrent of aliens yelling at each other for reasons you don’t care about. If you took all of the Senate scenes out of the prequel movie, you could probably make the trilogy a lot more tolerable..
It would also make things a lot more confusing.
I’m assuming you all know that you can’t just become Emperor of the Galaxy overnight. It takes a lot of planning, resources, and yes, politics. In the original trilogy, Palpatine has a Death Star, an army of Stormtroopers, and control of the galaxy, yet in the Phantom Menace, he is just a trusted political official to Queen Amidala. That’s a major change between trilogies, and the film’s use those tedious Senate scenes to depict how he was able to manipulate his way into complete domination.
While the original trilogy did have an amazing and talented cast, including Samuel L. Jackson and Natalie Portman, the trilogy’s acting was merely decent. Most of the acting criticism I’ve heard has to do with Hayden Christiansen, who played Anakin Skywalker. Many Star Wars fans claimed that he came across as whiny and frankly unpleasant to listen to.
While it may be true that the acting of the trilogy leaves much to be desired, the same could also be said about the original trilogy. A quick example would be during Return of the Jedi, when Luke reveals to Leia that they are siblings. The scene didn’t quite come off as genuine to me. I do agree that much of the rest of the original trilogy has delightful acting, though both trilogies have their flaws here and there.
Along with a certain Gungan who I’ll cover later, the CGI of the prequel trilogy is one of the most criticized aspects of the film. In fact, many fans were excited by seeing that J.J. Abrams took the CGI down a notch in the Episode 7 trailer.
Even though the costumes, make-up and puppets are a major part of what made the original trilogy so great, you can’t really blame the makers of the prequel trilogy for wanting to modernize. When I heard about a possible 5th Alien movie in the works, my first thought was how the Xenomorphs are going to look with modern CGI. In a science-fiction movie, it’s reasonable enough for the movie-makers to want to make things look more futuristic. You have to admit that the lightsaber sequences in the prequel trilogy are more impressive than the sequences in the original trilogy.
Jar Jar Binks
Hold on, I’ll give you a moment.
Finished? Okay, I know it must seem inconceivable for someone to attempt to rationalize Jar Jar, but think about it. Where is Star Wars now? I mean before The Force Awakens comes out. It is currently an animated television show. It’s been clear for years that the franchise is trying to integrate itself for the next generation of Star Wars fans, so in a movie where Qui-Gon gets killed by a scary (but awesome) Sith with spikes growing out his head, the movie needed a sillier, more light-headed character for the kids to love. It worked, as Jar Jar was well received by younger audiences, but the classic Star Wars fans immediately hated him. When Return of the Jedi first came out, the Ewoks came off as childish to a lot of people, yet they are still beloved by the majority of the Star Warscommunity.
SOURCE: Ian M. Simpson