Wednesday, November 23, 2005

Star Wars (trilogy and III)

I received my fairly sizable order from Deep Discount DVD yesterday (all except for Lord of the Rings Trilogy Extended Boxed Set; extreme plus three special Hobbit feet vorpal bunny edition). I am now current with Simpsons DVD collections and picked up the Star Wars trilogy (IV through VI) and Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith.

I was a little surprised at the cheapness of the Star Wars boxed set. The flimsy cardboard “clip” or end-piece covers a somewhat weak box structure. You would figure the magnificence of Star Wars would feature something more than a cheap package. I haven’t watched the discs yet but I expect my kid, GrouchyTeen will be one with the DVD player today. I’ll expect a report when I get home.

I watched Star Wars III: Revenge of the Sith last night on the widescreen. I wasn’t terribly impressed. It was a good movie, probably one that deserves a massive THX approved cinema experience complete with screaming children, psycho fans, and people barking orders at on-screen characters that have not hope in God’s green earth hearing the warning that a mean wookie is going to bean them with a giant, purple, electric cotton swab.

Spoilers ahe… ah, who cares.

The movie is mostly about Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi trying to end the Clone Wars between the Republic and the Separatist forces while Padme walks around pregnant and Supreme Chancellor Palpatine makes a massive power grab for the Sith at the expense of the Jedi. During this time, Palpatine is mind-goozling Anakin over to the “dark side” of “the force” to replace the old, but still bouncy and spry Count Dooku. The droid army is led by chain-smoking droid, General Grievous. At the end, all but two Jedi are dead, Palpatine is in control, and a dismembered, disfigured, horribly burned Anakin is transformed into the ominous, jet black, light-saber wielding vacuum-cleaner we have know for years as Darth Vader.

Uouououohhhhhf, paaaaaaaaah. Uouououohhhhhf, paaaaaaaaah.

The special effects are magnificent, breathtaking and in some sequences just mind numbingly confusing. Had I seen this at a theater I probably would have had a couple of seizures. The simple but perfect opening sequence of Star Wars (the looming star destroyer) has been replaced with about a thousand ships and camera sequences that would make roller coaster designers green with envy. The story itself is good, fairly well told, and didn’t have me wondering when it was going to be over (unlike the previous two movies; I and II which had me clock watching). Most performances were exceptional, except for Hayden Christensen (Anakin) and Ian McDiarmid (Palpatine) which I found more annoying than inspiring. The talking droids are annoying. Why would a droid say “Excuse me” (both polite and Steve Martin dialects)? Why bring character to objects that shouldn’t have character? The DVD technical specifications have more letters than the Greek alphabet, so they must be good.

To summarize: Jedi good, Sith bad. The DVD was worth the money paid for it but honestly won’t be watched much in the future: something for the collection but not viewed over and over again.

Rotten Tomatoes

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