Star Wars Discussion Thread (Movies, Books, Plotholes, etc)

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Picao84, Dec 14, 2017.

  1. ToTTenTranz

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    Jul 7, 2008
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    Being given significant leeway is not a motive to write and direct a movie based on subverting people's expectations at the cost of dozens/hundreds of plot holes and assassinating beloved characters through weak story-telling.
    According to Red Letter Media, Rian was indeed given more leeway and didn't have to carry the Lucasfilm's team of "Lore protectors" with him, like JJ Abrams had to.
    However, not consulting the lore protectors and ultimately breaking the lore/canon and shitting all plot points and subverting all mysteries set up by TFA was Johnson's decision and no one else's. Writing a script that undermines the first film's heroes to give way to two new characters was Johnson's decision and no one else's.

    Why is there so much resistance in acknowledging the facts that Rian Johnson is the director and writer of Ep. XIII so he ultimately is largely responsible for the movie being a giant lore-breaking mess? And that Kathleen Kennedy / Lucasfilms / Disney are largely responsible for greenlighting all the stages that led to the release of the film?

    Why do people keep making up excuses as if Rian Johnson had to write it this way or that way, when in reality he had all the power to make a decent story and a decent follow-up to the Star Wars saga?
    Heck, he was even given permission to make the longest Star Wars movie ever, meaning he had more time than anyone else to make a larger main story and/or the story with the least amount of plot holes. Instead we got a main arc about a 18 hour-long slow space chase, an arc about emasculating Luke and Rey not getting any training, and a completely disjointed and nonsense arc about anti-capitalism and PETA ads.

    The lack of communication between Abrams and Johnson that you suggest is not on Abrams, it's on Johnson. Johnson had more than enough time to write a script and start shooting between TFA's post-production where the script was finalized. He had more than enough time to make a story that succeeded TFA instead of forcing his own (poor) Rey+Kylo+Jake Skywalker story down everyone's throats at the cost of everything else.

    And how is it that Rian Johnson writing 2 new main characters where TLJ was supposed to already bring over 6 or 7 from TFA (Rey, Kylo, Finn, Poe, Leia, Luke, Snoke) is somehow not a huge indication that the man was shitting on the continuity and lore just to selfishly tell that little story of his, in a power tripping egotistical rampage?

    Care to share some spoiler-free thoughts on the movie?

    While the original Tomb Raider series were great for innovating in many things (rarely empowered female lead for a 90s game, gameplay focused on acrobatics to solve puzzles, etc.), the reboot series are more interesting for these days because they are much more focused on Lara's character development.
    By taking away an interesting motivation for the main character (follow-up on the archeological/historical mysteries of her family) to change it to a tired old and unimaginative trope will just make it boring and predictible.

    There was never a world-ending threat related to opening the arc. The Nazis themselves didn't really know what to expect when they opened the arc, only that according to some interpretations their army could become invincible. And invincibility in 1200-500 B.C. could mean a very different thing in the 1940s.
    Picao84 likes this.
  2. 3dilettante

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    Sep 15, 2003
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    But enough about the prequels...
    More seriously, I don't personally feel bad about all the expectations being subverted, although my personal limit before it feels contrarian for the sake of being so was hit.
    I thought a bunch of the expectations weren't to my taste.

    Then that would have been a contributing factor to what happened, and would have been one baked into the process or approach by the studio. Johnson couldn't make that decision for them, and if they cared they wouldn't have let it happen.

    While I can see why the mysteries captured the imaginations of many, junking a number of them didn't really bother me personally, while I think some were missed opportunities.
    As for lore or canon being violated, I guess I'd need some specifics as to what lore or canon was broken in the sliver of Star Wars not already nuked from orbit by the big reset. Some of the items I've nitpicked in Episode 8 are things that have always been in Star Wars or introduced in the prior movie that it unfortunately makes more obvious.

    I'm thinking it's also consistent with a situation where it wasn't important to anyone that he did, and that this series was being treated more like loose anthology with shared elements regardless of the trilogy marketing. The rumors were more to the effect that he didn't feel like he had to use them all that much.
    If Johnson wanted to make his own movie with his own characters, and nobody had anything to say about that until after the release of Episode 7, I would argue there is a more fundamental concern that goes beyond just one movie.

    The original reason I noted this was in response to the narrative that the movie was actively subverting the male characters in favor of the female ones, while the reporting on production shows female characters were significantly pared back to bring them in. I'm not sure you can subvert a character that's not really present.

    I've cited a number of areas in the plot that were poorly handled or done in a manner more appropriate to other media or genres, and that he failed to get me enthusiastic about future movies.
    I'm indicating that there's an underestimated element of GIGO, whether in the whole production or perhaps even with Star Wars as it stands.

    Actually, this is the one I have more emphasis on.
    The approach, cadence, and permissiveness on choices that do not fit the structure of a 3-part narrative like the original trilogy are on them. Their apparent blindness to that part of the appeal of the original trilogy makes me think there's a significant gap in what they think they are making versus what everyone's been led to believe. I think the rash of director changes and rewrites marks the delayed realization that they've made some assumptions that have not been borne out. I'm not entirely confident that the IP itself has legs.

    I thought it was okay. This is inherently subjective, and in some ways I think some of the weakest elements are parts where I wish he had done more to break from the prior setup. When you say decent follow-up, it indicates there are conditions particular to your opinion as to what that is.

    Emasculating Luke? Luke abandoned his friends, family, unavenged students, and the galaxy to an actively murderous Kylo Ren and Death Star x10 in Episode 7 so that the movie's MacGuffin could exist. We just didn't get to see what a person who would do that would look like until the next movie.
    Star Wars canon, even what we have left after the acquisition, gave Luke all the means to stay in the fight or to call for aid if he were trapped. What excuse would seem plausible where Luke gets to keep his hero-man card? The capitalism bent would fit right in the prequels with the Trade Federation, and the overall concept of deep-seated decadence and corruption was baked into the feckless Republic that was introduced with the reboot.
    The animal cruelty angle seemed abruptly handled, and I didn't see how it added to the movie. However, the chase sequence that necessitated the animals in the first place and much of that arc in general bothered me more.

    As far as Rey's training goes, that is one of the things I believe was a missed opportunity and disappointing.
    I guess I can't get mad about it because the limited lessons given in Episode 8 provide some of that element, and that makes it one of the few that handles it at all in this franchise. Some of it actually made me think the Force could be interesting again, in a manner that Episode 7 only sort of did and the prequels did the opposite for.

    Process-wise, the production timelines are significantly compressed due to the 2-year cadence, and that's assuming everything goes as scheduled. Decisions were being laid down in parallel whose impact that would propagate further in parallel, due to lack of time and separated staff, exacerbated by a studio that doesn't really get the material.
    And my point goes beyond communication, because reducing my argument down to a lack of communication assumes that Abrams had something to communicate. There's precedent and evidence that the spectacle of a shiny mystery took precedence over whether contorting the universe to fit it or its resolution was a good idea.

    This seems to assume a goal of succeeding Episode 7, in some unspecified manner to your liking.
    And this assumes following through with a number of Episode 7's implications is necessarily a good idea.

    Isn't this assuming Episode 8 was supposed to do all that? I brought up those stories about early production changes as possible evidence that this wasn't the case, and that there are more fundamental problems.

    I'm not sure how to characterize the use of the term power tripping.
    Writer/director isn't an uncommon occurrence, and any action whether it meets your approval or not is exercising the same amount of power. The veto power would have been with the studio, producers, or Disney.
    Other than that, it's a story being told in movie format, where text and framing have the power to define all reality, not a democracy.

    edit: grammar
    #122 3dilettante, Feb 15, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 15, 2018
  3. ToTTenTranz

    Legend Veteran Subscriber

    Jul 7, 2008
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    I know you're joking, but the prequels didn't do any character assassination for old characters.The main problems with the prequel trilogy were the overuse of CG, too much / too dense worldbuilding, some mediocre dialogue (queue those "I hate sand" memes) and Jar-Jar Binks.
    The sequel trilogy madeHan into a coward who ran away from his family and their cause, and Luke into a coward who ran away from his family and their cause.

    Johnson made the decision to write and direct a movie filled with plot holes, nonsense and gratuitous subversion.
    Being the writer and director, that's entirely on him.

    Here are some specifics:

    1 - Rey hears about the Force one day and the next day she's effortlessly doing mind tricks on Stormtroopers, reading Kylo Ren's mind, beating Kylo Ren + Luke Skywalker + Snoke's praetorian guards in melee skirmishes, force-lifting tens of boulders that weight several tons each, etc.
    Mastering the Force isn't something you have to train and work hard for anymore. It's something that comes naturally as long as you wish really hard, like the fairy godmother.
    Regardless of which side (light, dark, grey), the mastery over the Force was conceived through Lucas' research on oriental religions and martial arts, which are intertwined.
    JJ Abrams' TFA left the door open for Rey being someone who had Jedi/Sith training but then got her mind wiped out (a nod to Revan in KOTOR, e.g.).
    Rian Johnson made sure that Rey is the fictional embodiment of a spoiled millennial with rich parents who gets everything they wish for, without any real effort or sacrifice.

    And it's not with just the Force, as she also magically learned Wookie language so she can translate Chewbacca's growls to Luke. (Luke, who at that point knew Chewbacca for >35 years, needed Rey to translate to him) And she apparently learned how to swim effortlessly while living in Jakku, a desert planet.

    2 - The Hyperspace ram. It stupefies the whole saga. This isn't written by me, but it's on point:
    A New Hope: "Sir, we just analyzed the Death Star plans and devised a risky assault plan....
    "Just hyperspace ram it"
    Empire Strikes Back: "Sir, our troops are assembled and ready to commence the ground assault against the Rebel base...."
    "Just hyperspace ram the Shield Generator, then hyperspace ram the Rebel base"
    Return of the Jedi : "Sir, the Death Star is just ahead and we are preparing our fleet to...."
    "Just hyperspace ram the Death Star"
    "But sir, its protected by an energy shield from the Forest Moon of Endor"
    "Hyperspace Ram the Shield generator, then hyperspace ram the Death Star"
    Rogue One: "We have the Death Star plans, but we need to deactivate the shield in order to be able to transmit it to the...."
    "Just hyperspace ram the shields until they are.... actually we can just hyperspace ram the Death Star anyways. I guess we dont need those plans after all, ok guys lets go home"
    (not to mention, in The Force Awakens, hyperspace ramming the StarKiller base's cooling facility instead of sending a team to the ground to trigger explosives and then losing dozens of starfighters to blow the thing)

    3 - The Force Awakens establishes Leia's crew as The Resistance.
    In TLJ, Rian Johnson shits on this and everyone starts casually calling The Resistance as Rebels, even though 24 hours earlier the New Republic was ruling the galaxy and Leia's crew were their standing army, and the First Order army were the de facto Rebels.
    All of a sudden the First Order rules the Galaxy completely unchallenged and Leia's crew are the Rebels instead.
    Rian Johnson couldn't even keep up with the names given in the previous film.

    These aren't missed opportunities as you suggest. It's just bad writing through and through. Rian Johnson didn't need Lucasfilm's team of lore protectors to prevent him from writing this crap. All he had to do was watch the previous movies.

    The motive for Luke disappearing isn't mentioned in Episode 7. All they say in TFA is Luke's map points to the site of the first Jedi temple. You're only using the term "abandoned" because that's what Episode 8 tells you he did.

    1) - He went on a pilgrimage to the first Jedi temple to learn more about the force and become more powerful enough to face Snoke
    2) - He went on a pilgrimage to Jedi temples to search for Jedi allies so they could help him face Snoke
    3) - He went on a pilgrimage to Jedi temples with the intent of 1) and/or 2) but found something that turned him dark or grey, or some other motive strong enough to hold him.
    4) - He went looking for Kyber Crystals to make lightsabers (since all lightsabers have somehow vanished from the galaxy.. where the hell did the Clonetroopers store the thousands of lightsabers they took from fallen Jedis after Order 66?).
    5) - He foresaw the awakening of a powerful Force-sensitive being and left a map that would lead to him so he could educate and train this new powerful being.
    6) - Combination of the above
    7) - Dozens of other, plausible options that wouldn't defecate on his character.

    Instead what we got was:
    - Luke felt sad because Kylo destroyed his academy and stole his students,
    - So he turned into a coward, ran away to a place that is very difficult to find
    - (but somehow is also the place of the first Jedi temple, pure coincidence according to Rian Johnson)
    - Went to that place to die in solitude
    - But somehow left behind a map to his location with R2-D2 and erm.. someone else. Because things.

    There is? With Star Wars?
    How's this: shitting on all the groundwork left by previous Star Wars storymakers just to further your own crappy little story that otherwise wouldn't fit the universe.

  4. BRiT

    BRiT (╯°□°)╯
    Moderator Legend Alpha Subscriber

    Feb 7, 2002
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    I very much enjoyed your post @ToTTenTranz .

    It's painfully obvious to me that Disney doesn't care enough about the franchise to hold up extremely troubled productions in the SW Universe. They would rather hit their general release timelines in order to make money.
  5. 3dilettante

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    Sep 15, 2003
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    Would I say it did well by Vader?
    If evaluated uncharitably, Vader was a brutish Jedi who was stupidly tricked into serving the emperor, was not someone Obi Wan should have been proud to have been associated with in Episode 4, and was a whiny wife-beater whose most significant kill streak was a dozen or more children.

    Yoda and Obi Wan wussed out, went into hiding despite having a significant portion of the previously mentioned actions on tape.
    Also, the Jedi were fine with slavery, and so was Anakin for over a decade.
    And they thought an army of clones of the man trying to kill Padme couldn't have any relationship to the plot to kill her--because they were idiots.
    Padme telling Anakin they cannot fall in love, late at night, in her romantically lit room, while wearing an S&M outfit.
    The baffling motivation of the Trade Federation's allegiance to Sidious.
    The baffling thought processes of the Jedi for handling Palpatine or Sidious--because they were idiots.

    Balance to the force (this is going to haunt us)
    Virgin Vader birth.
    No wait, midiclorian-induced pregnancy.
    Death in childbirth, no wait, she lost the will to live.

    As far as lore, Qui Gon aside from being unnecessary did contradict the established lore as to Obi Wan's training.
    Leia's recollection of her mother--her real mother--doesn't mesh with the prequels.

    The strain between emphasis on lineage and familial inheritance of the force, and the prequels having the Jedi being explicitly structured to discourage it.

    To be fair to the prequels, "from a certain point of view" was probably because the original trilogy borked its own lore.
    Similarly, Leia and Luke being twins was not something that was planned or necessarily what they thought they were going to do until episode 6.
    And ewoks.

    I agree with this to a significant extent, but that goes beyond one movie.
    My recollection was that Han and Leia split after their son became a rogue mass-murderer, however.
    Until the events in Episode 7, their cause had already been "won". Leia was fighting a foreign border war in violation of her government's position and endangering an armistice, long after most had gotten tired of fighting. She wasn't wrong, but I can see why it wouldn't hold the same charm for Han.

    Not sure about getting into a list-off of contrivances in Star Wars.

    It's not that I don't agree with how problematic that is, but Star Wars isn't that consistent.
    For combat, well that would be like having a child who has never flown a starfighter flying through a defensive screen and destroying a battleship with one salvo, when said ship is directly controlling a planet-conquering army with no backups, thus ending an interstellar war.
    These aren't plot holes as much as the concentration of fault lines running throughout the franchise.
    I don't feel as strongly that today's brand of Stupid stands out in Star Wars.

    You have to go through at least a 2 week course like Luke did, where he learned no lightsaber skills, and failed to lift his X-wing explicitly because he didn't believe, not because he didn't train hard enough. I'm not saying that getting awesome quick is good, just that the ship had sailed.

    Contradicted by his introduction of midiclorians, which he added because he didn't like the mystical interpretation the Force had taken on after the first movies. As far as the idea that Lucas really thought a lot of this through, if that makes some people happy I'll nod along.

    Is the idea that her memories of growing up abandoned on Jakku are planted? In which case, the only thing I specifically recall being revealed is that Rey's parents are nobodies--which doesn't have bearing on what happened past her being born.

    I thought the explanation was that she was selected by the force in order to bring balance to the rising power of the dark side embodied by Kylo Ren.

    These actually seem like they could be fair criticisms for continuity and capability, as they fall out of the purview of magical space wizards.
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  6. 3dilettante

    Legend Alpha

    Sep 15, 2003
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    Apologies for the double-post.
    I've seen commentary that in the old EU there was discussion of offensive use of hyperspace for a use case like this.
    However, I discount stuff not in-movie.
    Don't see how it's less universe-breaking (edit: more) than the fact that planet-destroying superlasers can now fire across the galaxy via hyperspace.
    As to the list:
    1) Ram it with what, a few star fighters? While I agree the scene makes the ram appear too powerful (probably looked prettier that way) in terms of the number off additional ships impacted and their level of damage, the overall fragmentation cone for a fully-specced armored cruiser and hyperdrive is on the order of tens of kilometers with much of it open space, and involved a close-in use of the jump phase into hyperspace.
    The first Death Star's dimensions were larger and much of that depth being shields, armor, and decking.
    2) Or you could just do what they did and save the capital-ship class hyperdrive and construction.
    They lost a few AT-ATs due to direct action on the base.
    3) Concerns with the above (also bigger station and shield), expense of limited numbers of capital ships, and woeful accuracy. The ram was a close-in jump that was deeply off the center of 60 km ship that for partially contrived plot reasons was effectively standing still. That they were so close is based on other dumber reasons.
    And so on...
    4) Accuracy, active defenses, the bulk of a massive planet, and loss of their one capital ship.

    I actually don't mind there being a ceiling on the size of stupidly large ships, if that limit is literally whether you are big enough to be hit by a nearby capital ship while standing still.

    Not sure whether it's after-the-fact rationalization or part of the overall structure, but the obliteration of the governance of the Republic and its fleet was already carved in stone by Starkiller Base. The numbers given (not in-movie granted) for the First Order's fleet and resources put it somewhere in the range of some figures I've seen for some the Empire's fleet in raw ship count. In fact, you could say it's a First Order approximation of the old Empire (haha, I'm laughing because it's a contrived reset).
    Its original territory and fleet are external to the Republic. It was an invading force and now a conquering one. Even without that inflation, it already had a modest number of ships in Episode 7 that would have had no opposition beyond the resistance detachment.
    The Resistance is no longer a non-sanctioned expeditionary force (all 40 of them, not saying what was done here was wise for the franchise).

    Is that what they said it was? I recall it being stated as the Map to Skywalker, rather than its location being confirmed as the first temple.

    It would have to be, since it would need to override any concern or compassion he might have for the rampage of Ren and the First Order throughout the years prior to the movie, or Luke's clairvoyance warning him about Han or the multiple planets destroyed. Even if he didn't see it coming in advance, it would have to be a strong reason to stay away and out of communication after sensing the events.

    This is not inconsistent with prior movies, in fact, it's like poetry--it rhymes.

    The end of Episode 7 shows Luke on a barren tiny island, looking like he's not taking care of himself.
    I'm not sure if his undisguised replacement arm was a choice prior to the destruction of his academy, or if it's from that event.
    If the latter, he's bearing a mark of that disaster and looking a lot like Yoda--who was not looking to teach Luke when he was found there.

    Visually, I'd have expected a Luke with a purpose to look a lot more like how he imagined himself, when he found it again. Maybe that's evidence for the theory Abrams and Johnson were in on this all along...

    I actually liked the few parts relating to Luke's starting to train Rey, I wished there were more.
    I liked the few parts where he was able to impart some of his own interpretation of the force, where Luke was sarcastic and grizzled, but he knew his stuff.

    I didn't really mind that it came after he had given up, in part because I appreciated the character moments where despite his cynicism and regret there were flashes where it showed that try as he might he couldn't help but care.

    While there are some notable points of overreach, there are parts of the movie that contemplate what it's like to live with the force or experience it. It shows elements of exploration of the Force--or at least acts as if it's worth exploring.

    Can a satisfactory answer to the question of how to rebuild the Jedi, or make things interesting? I'm not sure given what we've seen, and not just from this movie.

    With Abrams.

    I seem to have a somewhat higher opinion on what was done recently, and somewhat lower opinion of said groundwork. I think it's Star Wars-ish enough, and that it's not dumber than what's gone before.

    Is it a good next step in an effective trilogy, or for driving the universe forward? I have serious doubts.
    I've stated I think it's part of a series of strategic missteps, and some of the plot decisions make it harder to paper over the corner they're in. Functionally, it's almost more like if it were a Rogue One intermediate movie between other mainline movies.
    It's more damaging because it's in various ways a misstep like Episode 1, but in the middle of a trilogy--if that's what Disney actually intended despite not managing these movies like one.
    #126 3dilettante, Feb 16, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018
  7. Grall

    Grall Invisible Member

    Apr 14, 2002
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    La-la land
    Picking apart Star Wars for inconsistencies is as pointless as herding cats; the franchise was never created to be credible to begin with. Instead it is deliberately fantastic in its overall style and make-up. It is space opera, not science fiction, and certainly not science! :p

    In the original Star Wars (which Lucas then lyingly re-branded "episode 4"), the Force and the Jedi are described as a "religion", but this is subesequently dropped in the following movies never to be mentioned again, and entirely contradicted in the prequels with the midichlorians shit. I think Lucas got jittery by the unexpected phenomenal success of the first movie, and didn't want christian fundamentalists campaigning against his future movies.

    Then it's that whole debacle of "Luke, I'm your father" in Ep. 5, and Leia being Luke's sister in Ep. 6; all clearly made up on the spot by a Lucas flying by the seat of his pants. And so on.

    Lucas was a good idea smith, but fairly poor at executing them. His actual scripts have always been described as stiff and wordy, and even that might be putting it charitably. People now worshipping his genius after seeing the new Disney movies clearly have pathologically short memories, seeing the way Lucas was panned by almost everyone over the prequels (which were all packed chock full of simply incredibly dumb shit.)
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  8. 3dilettante

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    Sep 15, 2003
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    The tight cadence and penciling in reshoots and rewrites is in evidence with what happened with the director and scripts for Rogue One, Solo, and with Episode 9.

    7 and 8 show evidence the timeline pressure, though "troubled" may need to be clarified. 7 was somewhat delayed, though the delay I'm aware of was blamed on waiting on Harrison Ford's recovery after the hydraulic door used for the Millennium Falcon set crushed his leg.
    Episode 8's early production had rumors about an introduced a delay for rewrites, but I haven't seen rumors to the effect that there was a late-stage intervention and heavy reshoot/rewrite. There seem to be clearer signs when the production is not executing to Lucasfilm's or Disney's liking, and if 8 were troubled it seems odd that the result is that the writer/director got his own trilogy with barely a pitch made.
    A well-running production can still put out a divisive movie, and troubled or not troubled a production is tends to be evaluated by the metrics of the executives. Perhaps that is something more ominous.

    Some references on the those changes.

    Liked this little joke:
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  9. Malo

    Malo Yak Mechanicum
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    Feb 9, 2002
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    omg spoilers!
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  10. ToTTenTranz

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    Jul 7, 2008
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    I can't tell if you're being serious, but the transformation from Anakin to Vader is the one thing that few can point as a flaw of the prequel trilogy. Everything that happens in the prequels carefully and brilliantly converges to Order 66 and Anakin's final transformation in Mustafar.
    He is taken from his mother at an early age, she dies in his arms, the Jedi Order purposely holds him back because they fear his power and he figures that out, he falls in a forbidden love, foresee's Padme's death and becomes obsessed with gaining the power to prevent her death which he couldn't do about his mother, gets slowly and carefully manipulated by Sidious/Palpatine, etc.
    We have pretty much three full-length movies that are almost entirely dedicated to Vader's slow transformation and Sidious' rise to power.
    It's also well established in previous movies that force-sensitive beings are prone to losing control and becoming overtly aggressive when giving in to the dark side (goes as far back as Luke fighting Vader in RotJ), hence his behavior in Mustafar.
    And Anakin doesn't kill only younglings during order 66, he's shown killing dozens of older Jedi before reaching the younglings.

    Comparing Vader's transformation to a rushed up 5 minute depiction of Luke wanting to kill his nephew in his sleep because he felt the darkness in him and then gets stuck in the debris and then gets sad and goes to a far away planet to die alone seems unfair to say the least.

    The difference here is that George Lucas wanted to tell the story of how Anakin became Vader, whereas Rian Johnson wanted Luke to be Jake Skywalker the drunkard ASAP so he could spend more time on his PETA commercial, anti-capitalism message and his general Ma-Rey Suing.
    Again, the great problem is not that Luke eventually became Drunk Jake. The problem is that this was done gratuitously through terrible writing. The disservice to Luke's character is not in his downfall, it's in how the character was so poorly handled.

    Not to mention the glaring continuity errors regarding Luke between TFA and TLJ.
    JJ Abrams planned Luke to be powerful, to the point of both Leia and Snoke being thoroughly convinced that finding him would tip the scale of the between the Rebellion and the First Order.
    TFA's initial, middle and final premise is about finding Luke. The film opens up with Poe getting the map to find Skywalker.

    Snoke doesn't order the destruction of the Hosnian system to establish the First Order as rulers of the galaxy. He orders the destruction of those planets because that will weaken the Resistance and hamper their success at finding Luke Skywalker.
    In fact, every appearance of the First Order's Supreme Leader in TFA focuses on preventing the Resistance from finding Luke. Snoke is genuinely afraid of Luke Skywalker and his power in TFA, and Leia is genuinely confident of her brother's power.

    And then TLJ completely disconnects from this and makes Luke into a worthless bystander who eats and drinks. And then dies of exhaustion after a 4 minute force projection (which Snoke does several times throughout both movies).

    You mean like Kylo Ren flying through a defensive screen and destroying all of the Resistance's fighting capability by firing a missile into a hangar that miraculously held all of the Resistance's fighters (so that Rian Johnson doesn't have to worry about Poe being grounded the rest of the film)?
    Or how the captain's bridges aren't protected by shields anymore so a single missile from a small fighter easily destroys the bridge (so that Rian Johnson could have his Leia Poppins moment and force Holdo into the narrative)?

    Yes, the scene where Anakin almost accidentally destroys the droid ncontrol ship isn't good. But at least it got the scale right. Young Anakin went unnoticed until he reached the hangar bay because there was a massive battle going on around him.
    In TLJ, the First order has deployed about 8 Star Destroyers and a Dreadnought, but somehow they can only deploy 3 smaller fighters (because Johnson needed to have his boring slow 18 hour space chase).
    Both moments in the movie do impact the suspension of disbelief, yet the scene with Kylo piloting the fighters is rarely mentioned because TLJ has so many other problems.

    It feels like one has to struggle rather hard to find even remotely similar flaws in one of seven previous movies to counter each flaw that is found in TLJ.
    Which only seems to point to the sum of TLJ's problems being or greater similar to the sum of the problems found in the 7 movies.
    How's that for a brand of Stupid for TLJ?

    Yes, the previous movies have flaws. None of them is even remotely as flawed and downright stupid as TLJ.

    Last I saw in tweets from Lucasfilm executives, Luke spent around 6 months training with Yoda, which is around the time the Falcon needed to reach Bespin without a Hyperspace jump. And that was after he had some initial tips from Obi-Wan.
    And that amounted to nothing when he faced Darth Vader in Bespin, who simply toyed with him and could have killed him at any moment.
    Luke is only able to level with a conflicted Darth Vader in RotJ after training for another 3 years.

    Are you seriously comparing that to Rey beating Luke Skywalker, Kylo Ren and the Praetorian guards in melee skirmishes, 24 hours after learning that the Force isn't a myth?

    Quotation needed for the bolded part.
    Midichlorian count is just a method to observe one's current affinity with the Force. It's not an absolute measurement of power or capabilities.
    The Phantom Menace doesn't even say if midichlorian count remains unchanged throughout the time in a being.

    Yet TFA and TLJ show that Kylo's ability pales in comparison with Snoke's, which defeats that argument. TLJ can't even maintain coherence with the arguments they make up in the very same movie.

    You don't see how?!
    The Star Wars lore establishes the existence of thousands/millions of large spaceships with functional hyperdrives, but within a span of 40 years only 3 planet busters are built (arguably only 2, because the second death star doesn't reach its final stage).
    Each planet buster is treated as a major threat and all opposing forces become focused on destroying it once they know of its existence.
    After the events of TLJ, do you think the First Order is going to persecute and destroy all medium to large spaceships with hyperdrives in the galaxy? Because all of the sudden we have ships everywhere that can hyperspace-ram star destroyers. It's like every household on Earth getting their own big red button that launches a nuclear missile.
    It is stupid, it is a lore-breaking scene made to create an admittedly pretty picture, but lore-breaking nonetheless.
    BRiT likes this.
  11. ToTTenTranz

    Legend Veteran Subscriber

    Jul 7, 2008
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    That's beside the point.
    None of this explains why the First Order conveniently starts calling Rebels to the Resistance in a span of hours.
    You know what does explain? Rian Johnson wanting to gratuitously shoehorn the cringe-worthy lines where Phasma call Finn "Scum" and Finn replies with "Rebel Scum".
    Just another drop of situations where Rian Johnson breaks continuity just to get that particular scene he envisioned and thought it was cool.

    It's said very clearly during TFA that it's the first Jedi Temple.

    There's no rampage to speak of, prior to the events of TFA.
    Before the destruction of the Hosnian system, the First Order kept a low profile and had a few skirmishes with the Resistance. Which is why Leia's army was under-funded.

    Previous movies show that Jedi clairvoyance is severely hampered when dealing with dark side users, like Kylo and Snoke, and Sidious/Dooku/Maul/Vader before them.

    Nah, that one doesn't stick.
    Even the most fervent supporters of TLJ will claim that the movie is very good because Rian Johnson was so brave to take the story in a completely new direction.
    You can't have the cake and eat it too, sorry.
    TLJ rhymes with nothing.

    1 - Jedi are never shown to value vanity in their looks. The times of the Republic demanded a certain level of presentation because they were often emissaries/ambassadors for the Republic, but Anakin describes that their code of conduct explicitly tells them to avoid mundane values. So Luke's aspect when living alone in an island is not representative of his capabilities.
    2 - Undisguised arm is present in Luke-ponders-murdering-teenager-nephew-in-his-sleep scene, so it's the former.

    Care to give examples where TFA has scenes that serve no real purpose other than to create a pretty picture?

    Not that TFA is a flawless movie, though.
    I feel like this is going in circles. Arguing that TLJ is less terrible because other Star Wars movies have flaws seems like a recurrent strawman here.

    This is where we fundamentally agree to disagree.

    The plummeting merchandising sales can factually tell you it was not. TLJ created an unprecedented fatigue and fan divisiveness that no one saw coming.
    And this is going to be a huge problem for Disney, as we're one year away from them opening the doors on the Star Wars theme parks where they probably sunk hundreds of millions building and will demand millions on maintaining.

    You're welcome to not be a part of the discussion, then :)

    What is relevant is if the final story is good and coherent, not the timing of story changes behind the scenes.
    It's rather worthless to try to criticize the story of the science fiction trilogy that unarguably passed the test of time, based on the fact that some story elements were changed during production.
    Picao84 likes this.
  12. eloyc

    Veteran Regular

    Jan 23, 2009
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    I agree with you in many, many points (almost everything)... however, I enjoyed the movies and I think the Poppins moment was very cool. So, there's this middle ground where you acknowledge the movie's flaws but even with that you manage to enjoy it. It's not just you hate it because of its flaws or you love it because you see no flaws.
  13. ToTTenTranz

    Legend Veteran Subscriber

    Jul 7, 2008
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    Of course!
    I also mostly enjoyed the movie when I was watching it. It's "beautifully made", and some moments do feel like Star Wars.
    The best moment in TLJ for me is when Luke is in the Falcon and R2 shows him the old recording from Leia. For a moment there, we had Luke, not Jake, and Mark Hamill suddenly became my childhood hero. For that brief moment with just a couple of spoken lines, I had my unspoiled, non-corrupted hero in front of me after all those decades and it was magical.

    I'm not saying TLJ can't be enjoyable, because it can!

    But stating how far the movie is a disservice to the saga and the franchise is a whole other discussion.
    BRiT and eloyc like this.
  14. 3dilettante

    Legend Alpha

    Sep 15, 2003
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    Well within 3d
    I said I was giving an uncharitable interpretation, but I didn't perceive the actual handling in the movies as being good.
    I don't have a count of the population at large that might agree, though I wouldn't know how to argue this point without resorting to a logical fallacy based on popularity or one based on authority. The already mentioned Redletter Media would be a source of a rather exhaustive evaluation of that and other elements of the prequels. I think I've seen a fair number of reviews or personal opinions whose lists are so detailed that they might be parroting that list, so I don't want to give all of those items out as my own. Some of what I found off-putting does jive with their review of the topic.

    While I am willing to go into detail of what you listed later concerning the prequels, it would be a tangent of a tangent. In short, I think we have very different lines drawn concerning what was personally appealing or not about them.

    This is 5 minutes of referencing an inciting event, rather than a dedicated historical character arc.
    Such an arc could be something a fan of the character would want, but I think the differing opinions on the movie shows that it can come down to what one wants for a character that a subset of the audience has an attachment to. The comparison is between the choice to have a 3 movie arc detailing it (IMO grinding an unconvincing case for it over 6+ hours) versus a decision to just say a singular event happened over some years and moving on.
    An actual arc is something I think there's a compelling case for, particularly in the markets where the Luke Skywalker has significant cachet. If someone doesn't have that level of investment in a character on his way out, it doesn't necessarily register as being unfair
    That said, Yoda ran away and hid after his Jedi order was destroyed, and he didn't want to train Luke when he was tracked down.

    The first part that Lucas wanted to tell the story of Anakin Skywalker is true, since that was his stated purpose.
    The second half assumes a similar storytelling intent about Luke's story over the time elapsed, and then imputes an additional thought process from a personally-created narrative.
    It is trivially true that Lucas wanted to tell 6+ hours of Anakin Skywalker setup, whereas Johnson decided not to create an arc of events for one character the trilogy was apparently gunning to dispose of, like it did Han previously and probably was going to do to Leia later.

    Is this congruent with how he was a dishevelled hermit wearing cruddy robes a tiny island at the end of Episode 7?

    It's a MacGuffin. Whether a thing is actually that significant or even makes sense in the end is secondary to the motivation for the plot and characters it supplies.
    Since Luke had no material impact in Episode 7, the map's actual value in the film outside of it making people want to do things was zero. The later list of actions and beliefs attributed to those seeking the map rather than any consequence it has goes to what a MacGuffin is.

    The resistance was a non-sanctioned expeditionary force. The planets destroyed and the fleet stationed there were not part of their resources, and blowing them up would only hinder the search for Skywalker if those with the map were on them. This is reinforced by how Kylo Ren gives up chasing BB-8 once he's convinced he can extract the memories of the map from Rey, and he wouldn't have been there if he thought the droid was somewhere else.

    And in the later movie he made a pretty good point asking what it is everyone thought he personally could do, something Episode 7 ducked on explaining.
    In this regard, it is more in line with the original trilogy, where in reality the elements related to the Jedi after destroying the first Death Star had little import as far as the overall conflict was concerned.
    That Episode 8 rather tightly associates the survival of the rebels to Rey's vicinity is in my opinion a step back from the decisions that made the ebb and flow between the Empire and Rebellion more of a backdrop for the latter two movies of the trilogy.

    Quite a stretch, as many things in Star Wars are. Technical consistency is not a strong suit of the franchise, and if I didn't cite that deficit including the inconsistency of the shields in Episode 8 it was by accident.
    I presumed Kylo Ren had at least piloted military assault craft before, and that the scene's underlying conflict over whether his rage or the remnant of his feelings for his mother would win out was something of a compensating factor.

    He was not unnoticed. He tried spinning, which apparently caused further attempts by the defenders to cease. He then button-mashed until he fired missiles at the central reactor that was sitting in an annex of the hangar.

    Care to clarify this point? Did you mean it's difficult to find flaws from the other movies, or that there isn't a single move that has a counter to each flaw in Episode 8. The latter point isn't possible if you tried such an exercise with any of the other movies either, nor is it necessary.

    This comes down to a matter of opinion being asserted as fact. From my experience watching the prequels, I don't see things the same way.
    Despite my opinion on this matter, however, I do not doubt that the prequels are Star Wars or that Lucas didn't have the right as the movie's creative lead to make the decisions he did. Nor am I motivated to argue against Hanlon's Razor to explain how the prequels happened.
  15. 3dilettante

    Legend Alpha

    Sep 15, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Well within 3d
    If that's what they've decided the time period left undefined since the 1980's that's good on them. I'm sure they were pretty grody after six months wearing the same clothes, and I guess part of Leia's strengthened bonds with Han or Chewie might be from one of them helping her maintain her hairdo for half a year.
    And I guess the Empire could have waited five months and 29 days before going over to Bespin to arrange the welcoming party.

    She beat Kylo Ren after something like ten seconds of holding a lightsaber in Episode 7. This is a symptom of the hyper-charging of everything in the new movies, where there's literally nothing but the stakes and characters turned up to 11, with no dynamic range or room to grow. It's something I found problematic before Episode 8. While I faintly hoped the new film would find a way to walk that back, I made peace with that annoyance ahead of time.

    Partial correction, I interpreted the intent based on earlier reading concerning the initial mystical interpretation and Lucas' later stating it's something he meant all along in a book released nearly 30 years later. I may have extrapolated that he disliked the magic intonation: his position is that he thought it would have been too complicated to introduce and he finally had the chance to correct the record with Episode 1. It's up to the observer to determine if the scenario is closer to his story that he meant it all along but didn't say so for 30 years and years after the criticism, or he made it up later.
    There are also references to DVD commentary about wanting the Force to have a more physical explanation, but that's not a set I have.

    Up until the point Kylo demonstrated Snoke wasn't as capable as he thought, as ham-fisted that scene was.

    Since the EU was discarded, I wouldn't be able to list the half-dozen instances of something similar or worse.
    Within the movies, there was also a demonstrable counter to these weapons in terms of their needing to travel to their target and make their presence known. A Starkiller-type weapon would have made an end run around Yavin and Endor scenarios, and 5 stations 1/5 the capability spread throughout the galaxy would be beyond the scope of any plucky band of heroes. Pairing that tech with any sort of mobile Death Star with more modest firepower would make the attacker's maneuvering space impossibly vast to counter.

    Hyperspace-based bombardment was apparently mooted in some portion of the EU, though it's a logical extension of kinetic bombardment since the energies inherent to anything that can carry at those distances and dump things in a gravity well is game-breaking.
    Even Han's guesstimate about what it would take to destroy Alderaan (>1000 ships more powerful than he knew) is actually illustrative of what happens if you think too hard about Star Wars--since overcoming the gravitational binding energy of a planet is >>> than is necessary to permanently wreck it.

    In the movies, it's not demonstrated that this method is desirable outside of an instance where the rebels were planning on sacrificing their ship anyway, and in a rather specific set of circumstances.

    The trick is to not let your mid-life crisis compensation ship sit still in front of an enemy capital ship obviously gearing up for a jump unmolested. It seems like once they realized what it was doing, they knew full well what the result would be.

    What in the lore said it wasn't possible? Star Wars generally has for better or worse had an additive canon, where new things frequently put on the pile with little to no comment.

    I can accept your argument is that it's too fast a transition, though your cited example has Finn taking on the moniker for himself.

    I supposed I'd have to re-watch, since I remember that it was commented that's what Luke was trying to find or might have been trying to find, not necessarily meaning the map listed the same thing.

    I thought the reputation the First Order seemed to have given reactions to its presence and Finn's terror, and Kylo Ren's own reputation within the First Order and beyond meant they had all done something to earn it within the territories it operated in. There's also references outside of the movies to Ren's purges which I am willing to put aside given my policy to generally not rely on such things.

    I stated either before or after. Palpatine and Vader didn't stop Obi Wan from sensing Alderaan.

    Why should I be pinned down by the positions held by other people?
    Have I stated it's a completely new direction or amazingly brave, given my position of "look at all the times they did the same stupid stuff" and "I don't know if Star Wars has anywhere new to go"?

    This is denial of visual shorthand in movies and not matched by the hygiene displayed by everyone in the franchise. I suppose the totally defeated Yoda living in a swamp was a little unkempt.

    This is excising the other part of my quote, concerning Abrams and his mystery boxes.
    That said the largest visual offender would have been the decision to make the firing of Starkiller base immediately visible by everyone in the movie, effectively reducing events spanning vast distances to effectively the same city block. I've made note of that particular weakness in terms of time and space on his part in other places.

    If the same flaws don't elicit the same emotional response, or the same implication of some higher-order ideological conspiracy other than the usual not thinking things through or bad decisions, why can't I ask why this time it's so bad?

    This is asserting is that the contrivances of the past are acceptable because they have been accepted.
    #135 3dilettante, Feb 21, 2018
    Last edited: Feb 21, 2018
  16. rcf

    Regular Newcomer

    Nov 6, 2013
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