Star Wars

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Friday
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Friday » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:26 pm

Mongrel's spoiler about "the series being a prisoner of itself" is 100% accurate, and it's why I don't care about Star Wars anymore.

No, seriously. I actually don't. I was always able to forgive the flaws but after seeing The Last Jedi, I realized that this series will never do anything new or interesting. The idea of new Star Wars movies no longer fills me with excitement, and that's the worst thing you can say about a series.

Fan reaction is split. A lot of people liked it, and that's fine. It had a decent amount of moments and cool visuals (and one truly great visual/audio moment when LIGHTSPEED RAM happened) but overall it just felt like this godawful mess of bad editing, stupid jokes, and the exact same fucking things from the OT endlessly rehashed. I'm sorry, no, licking the ground and turning to the camera and saying ITS SALT, NOT SNOW, THIS ISN'T A COPY OF THE BATTLE OF HOTH GUYS does not make it not a copy of The Battle of Hoth, guys.
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Mongrel
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:28 pm

It's sad to me because it's such a fun universe and it still had potential to explore new stories (my blah blah mighta-been in the spoiler is an example), but yeah, there's so many expectations and it's so "sacred" that there's always going to be too many cooks and too much second-guessing.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:33 pm

The other thing that really upsets me me is how the sequels have gone out of their way to make every character in the OT suffer.

Everything they did is meaningless. Every success they won is undone. Their lives after RotJ are depicted as ones of failure and sorrow and pain. That's a fucking gut-punch when you realize it. The sequels essentially took one of Cinema's greatest happy endings of all time and sets out to utterly invalidate it.

I mean, is the sequel trilogy screenplay writer secretly GRRM? No wonder the next book's taking so long! Is that the theme of the art of our age? That there's no hope, no victory, only defeat and suffering?
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Friday
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Friday » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:36 pm

I don't buy that Star Wars is too "sacred" to change. People just want the same shit over and over. Seriously, I can't wait till Rey and Kylo have kids and one of them betrays the other one and it turns out one of them is related to Han's former roomate and the Dark Side is tempting but then an AT-ST shows up piloted by a mascot character in Star Wars: Episode XI: The Final Force.

I mean, is the sequel trilogy screenplay writer secretly GRRM? No wonder the next book's taking so long! Is that the theme of the art of our age? That there's no hope, no victory, only defeat and suffering?


You either die a Biggs, or live long enough to see yourself become a Vader.
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Mongrel
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:38 pm

Friday wrote:I don't buy that Star Wars is too "sacred" to change. People just want the same shit over and over. Seriously, I can't wait till Rey and Kylo have kids and one of them betrays the other one and it turns out one of them is related to Han's former roomate and the Dark Side is tempting but then an AT-ST shows up piloted by a mascot character in Star Wars: Episode XI: The Final Force.

I think it's a mix of causes - fans AND corporate interests, as well as pressure on new creators leading them to second-guess themselves.

By "sacred" I meant basically the same thing you did: Fans want it to never change.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Niku » Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:13 am

Yeah, I blame Disney and the producers over any of the individual writers or directors, largely because it's become CRYSTAL FUCKING CLEAR that you either play ball with what the overlords want or you're out on your ass over "creative differences". Rian Johnson is one of my favorite modern directors and holy shit for all the stuff people say about how bold he was and how much he changed the core of Star Wars itself did this movie feel like him being smothered by the almighty mothership of Star Wars to color in the fucking lines.

But I also really enjoy TFA and TLJ; I can even have fun watching the prequels. Star Wars has never been a sacrosanct obsession of mine, so much as it's been just a lot of breezy, entertaining stuff that has a few kernels of genuinely cool depth and worldbuilding that can be explored in fandom or extended material. The bad stuff tends to just slide away from my memory immediately into a haze of "that was overall enjoyable". What's incredibly disappointing to me is how tightly stuff is reigned in around everything that's NOT the main sequel trilogy; I liked Rogue One a great deal, but felt the areas where it was hamstrung felt a lot like "Alright, pull this back toward The Vision". I really goddamn wanted a Lord and Miller sci-fi Han Solo comedy romp.

What Fox is doing with their Marvel properties now is a perfect example of what I think modern Star Wars should be; you've got the X-Men movies X-menning on, but you've also got Deadpool, Logan, and The New Mutants all going for different styles and tones that still slot into that larger framework.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sun Jan 14, 2018 2:23 pm

I mean, the nicest thing I can say about TLJ is that there were a few fleeting moments when it really did feel like "Star Wars" to me.

I'm not really invested in it as a "Star Wars fan". My thing as a kid was Star Trek and I only came to the Star Wars train as I was becoming disillusioned with where Trek was going, so I could never be as invested in Star Wars. When the old EU was bad (which was frequently) I just laughed it off and ignored it. And my hopes for great films were already dashed by the prequels, so I already had lowered expectations for the sequels (though that first trailer for TFA... that had me going for a while... I thought maybe, just maybe, they'd pull it off).

What IS important to me is great storytelling. Not that the OT was perfection, but I think the OT is an example of some of the greatest storytelling on film. It's mostly tightly written (there are surprisingly few plot holes and the ones that exist are pretty small), well-acted, elegant, and hits almost all the right notes at the right times, showing you rather than telling you in most cases, and generally follows all those rules about how to tell a story well and right, as well as how to create a whole new world and immerse a viewer in it without overwhelming them. It pushes the rule of cool to the limit without sacrificing drama or logic. That's how you make a classic.

Neither the prequels nor the sequels would have been memorable at all without the OT to tie them back to and it's funny how easily people are ready to deny this.

It's fascinating to me that for many fans any complaints about Episode 8 are met not with efforts to justify the flaws in Ep 8, but to tear down the OT, to try and create or enlarge flaws which are nonexistent or really minor, to deny that the OT was ever anything special.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:27 am

Oh hey...

We lost the original Expanded Universe for this:

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From "Join the Resistance: Escape from Vodran"

Yes this is weird humiliatory fart pseudo-porn. Yes this is genuine. Yes this is a licensed and "canon" Disney Star Wars book.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Niku » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:52 pm



this improbably makes me even SADDER about the lord/miller split, because i could have seen them actually trying to release this as the trailer
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Thad » Fri May 11, 2018 11:21 pm

Finally got around to finishing up Rebels. A deeply satisfying end to a deeply satisfying series. It's funny to think back to how hokey and uneven the first half of the first season was, because once it started to click, it got everything right. Stuff like this is why people love Star Wars.

Onward and upward.

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I bet we haven't seen the last of the Ghost crew.

I'll be watching in the fall. And if it starts off a little hokey and uneven -- well, I'll give it time.

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Re: Star Wars

Postby Thad » Sat May 12, 2018 3:39 pm

Fridge Logic on the ending of Rebels:

Okay so Hera's definitely been pregnant for the last ten episodes.

That was awfully nice of Sabine to look after Lothal from its liberation to sometime after the end of Return of the Jedi, but...like, couldn't her family have used her help? I know she gave the darksabre to Bo-Katan and left her in charge of the Mandalorian clans, but, like, the Mandalorians still had a war on their hands, right? They probably could have used her help. Instead, she spends years protecting Lothal from an attack that never comes, all because she misunderstands Ezra's last directive to her to mean "Look after Lothal for me" when he actually means "Come find me someday". All this could have been avoided, and she could have spent these years off helping her damn family, if Ezra weren't being an inscrutable douchebag for no reason other than that's what Jedi are.

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Friday
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Friday » Sat May 26, 2018 9:05 pm

Solo is more of the same.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Friday » Sun May 27, 2018 4:28 am

Solo is more of the same.


Actually, you know what? I'm just gonna write a blanket review because I can just copy paste it again into this thread whenever a new Star Wars movie comes out.

"__________, the new Star Wars movie, is a visually impressive but entirely predictable and safe outing. It's loaded with fanservice and every time something or someone from the past shows up, the camera lingers and you get a little musical motif. If it's the Millennium Falcon, x10 time spent doing this. The acting, characters and script were mostly flat and some of the humor felt out of place and dumb. A few good moments aside, ___________ was a boring and safe film that felt more like a fanfic that leaned heavily on the original trilogy than a real movie."
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Mongrel
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sun May 27, 2018 4:33 am

That's really what all the newer SW movies feel like to me. Shitty fanfic.

Which, in a way, they are.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Friday » Sun May 27, 2018 3:19 pm

I really want to lean away from descriptors like "shitty", or "good" or even "bad."

These movies are, beyond all other things, Safe with a capital SAFE.

How can I put this. Imagine the MCU without the standout movies. No Winter Soldier, no Guardians of the Galaxy, no Thor Ragnarok. Just boring, safe, predictable yearly entries. Some are a little bit better, some a little bit worse, people argue over whether or not Ant Man (Rogue One) was good or terrible, etc.
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Re: Star Wars

Postby mharr » Sun May 27, 2018 4:17 pm

The comparison feels unfair to fanfic generally without some kind of negative adjective. Fanfic is often bad, but it's rarely safe and never feels like fantasy by committee. It's starting to feel more like the original movies are good fanfics of the Disney universe.

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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Sun May 27, 2018 5:47 pm

mharr wrote:The comparison feels unfair to fanfic generally without some kind of negative adjective. Fanfic is often bad, but it's rarely safe and never feels like fantasy by committee. It's starting to feel more like the original movies are good fanfics of the Disney universe.

Well, yes, I mean fanfic in a negative way.

The word "shitty" may also be an indication of this implication!
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Re: Star Wars

Postby Thad » Mon May 28, 2018 2:31 pm

Friday wrote:I really want to lean away from descriptors like "shitty", or "good" or even "bad."

These movies are, beyond all other things, Safe with a capital SAFE.

How can I put this. Imagine the MCU without the standout movies. No Winter Soldier, no Guardians of the Galaxy, no Thor Ragnarok. Just boring, safe, predictable yearly entries. Some are a little bit better, some a little bit worse, people argue over whether or not Ant Man (Rogue One) was good or terrible, etc.


Lord and Miller being fired from Solo does feel an awful lot like Wright being fired from Ant-Man.

Course, what happened then was Guardians came out, succeeded beyond anybody's wildest expectations, and gave the suits some more confidence to let guys like Waititi and Coogler do their thing.

Fox appears to be going through a similar kind of thing with New Mutants: Boone tried to color outside the lines; the suits insisted on another safe PG-13 superhero movie; Deadpool and Logan (and It) made a shit-ton of money; now they're trying to re-shoot it as the movie Boone wanted to make in the first place. This is...not an ideal way to make a movie, but we'll see how it turns out.

There's still a chance that the play-it-safe Star Wars era is temporary and eventually they'll see more variety as a better approach. Hiring Mangold for a Boba Fett movie isn't a bad sign, but it's probably fair to assume we're likelier to get a not-bad entry like The Wolverine than something revolutionary like Logan.

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MarsDragon
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Re: Star Wars

Postby MarsDragon » Wed May 30, 2018 1:30 am

Mongrel wrote:
mharr wrote:The comparison feels unfair to fanfic generally without some kind of negative adjective. Fanfic is often bad, but it's rarely safe and never feels like fantasy by committee. It's starting to feel more like the original movies are good fanfics of the Disney universe.

Well, yes, I mean fanfic in a negative way.

The word "shitty" may also be an indication of this implication!


You gotta explain which kind of shitty, though.

Like "boring" is different from "incoherent" is different from "pretentious" is different from "just an excuse to jerk off to the writer's favourites".

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Re: Star Wars

Postby Mongrel » Wed May 30, 2018 5:20 am

MarsDragon wrote:
Mongrel wrote:
mharr wrote:The comparison feels unfair to fanfic generally without some kind of negative adjective. Fanfic is often bad, but it's rarely safe and never feels like fantasy by committee. It's starting to feel more like the original movies are good fanfics of the Disney universe.

Well, yes, I mean fanfic in a negative way.

The word "shitty" may also be an indication of this implication!


You gotta explain which kind of shitty, though.

Like "boring" is different from "incoherent" is different from "pretentious" is different from "just an excuse to jerk off to the writer's favourites".

In this case #4 is sorrrrt of the biggest one?

Basically that tendency for the fanfic writer to say "Well, I think this is how things should have gone.", where 'this' is jarringly misaligned with the source material due to a shallow or superficial understanding of the originals (characterization, plot, tone, etc.), fetishizes pre-existing characters, and is also just poorly and amateurishly written in general.

I also still sincerely believe that Rey is a Mary Sue. Two movies in and she's still pretty much a blank cipher and they have yet to justify her abilities in any way. Even if they pull a rabbit out of their hat in the last movie, it's kind of too late to justify the previous 5 hours or so of film?

EDIT: Oh and I still haven't seen Rogue 1. I might actually end up liking that. But a minor ancillary story doesn't really redeem the Disney versions of the sequel trilogy, which is the real meat and potatoes.
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