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Return of the Jedi

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Why so much hate? I thought it was good. What do you guys think of it?

Not enough people read the EU.

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Hate’s a pretty strong word. I think it’s the worst of the three Star Wars films (there are only three), but I still enjoy it enough. Here’s where it falls down:

  • Unfunny funny bits: Comic droid torture, various Ewok slapstick, Chewie gives a Tarzan yell. These are the little excesses that, in earlier years, may have been pruned out, back when Lucas listened to criticism. Humor is good, but good humor is better.
  • Nobody has much to do except Luke, the Emperor, and Vader. Han is pretty useless, Leia stops being useful when the disguise comes off.
  • Nobody has uncertain loyalties. Han and Lando both wear white hats from the beginning. No scoundrels. Yawn.
  • Some people think the second Death Star is a cop-out. I didn’t mind so much.
  • Cute Ewoks. For me, it’s not so much that the Ewoks are cute per se, so much as that cuteness is really played up. The “roasting on a spit” sight gag was already so stale in 1983 that the audience knew there was never any menace (note that for younger folks, the “roasting on a spit/boiling in a kettle” trope might not be as thoroughly familiar as it was to audiences at the time).
  • Lots of exposition. Sure, it starts with a big action scene in Jabba’s palace, but quite a lot of the scenes are just people standing and talking. Luke and Yoda, Luke and Ben, Luke and Leia, Luke and Darth, even Luke and the Emperor a bit.

That said, it brings some good things to the table, IMO:

  • Great designs, scenery, effects. Sure, the Rancor looks a bit like a bluescreen menace, but Jabba’s palace in general, the the space battle were both great.
  • The score is still solid. I actually don’t care for the Ewok theme (talk about playing up cutesy), and the Yub Nub song and Lapti Nek only look good compared to what they were replaced with, but the rest is very solid. John Williams hadn’t hit his decline just yet IMO.
  • Even though the plot was overly focused on Luke’s journey IMO, Luke and the Emperor both are very engaging, and deliver with strong performances.
  • It closes the Star Wars story. While Empire followed more of an episodic cliffhanger path, this film clearly resolves things. I’m satisfied with a Star Wars saga comprised of three films, and feel no need for more.

Project Threepio (Star Wars OOT subtitles)

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It’s pretty crappy but Mark and Ian lift it from being as bad as the prequels.
I see it as the contractual obligation album of the original films.
Dull direction, tatty production design, inconsistent quality control on the effects (some amazing, some utterly awful). Phoned in performances from almost everyone. Every loose end knotted in ridiculously convenient ways (Yoda’s death scene is astonishingly mishandled). Some it makes no sense at all, what is Luke’s plan to rescue Han? Think about it and explain it to me please because it’s been bugging me since 1983.
That’s my position but if you thumb through this thread you will see others :http://originaltrilogy.com/topic/ROTJ-is-the-best-Star-Wars-film-discuss/id/15430

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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So you dislike it nearly as much as TPM? In the words of Buford Tannen: “Mighty strong words runt!”

Not enough people read the EU.

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At least there are no scenes of endless trade negotiations or senate debates.

To me Jedi always felt like the second half of the story began by Empire.

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I will say that most of the aliens in Jabba’s palace were pretty shoddy. But the speeder bike chase and the Death Star II battle hold up very well.

Not enough people read the EU.

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generalfrevious said:

At least there are no scenes of endless trade negotiations or senate debates.

To me Jedi always felt like the second half of the story began by Empire.

Does your quote “TWO OUT OF SEVEN” mean that you only like two Star Wars films, or is it something else?

Not enough people read the EU.

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I think Luke, Vader, and the Emperor more than make up for Ewoks. Han was never the main character. Also, the Royal Guards are an excellent costume design.

If Plagueis shows up in the ST, not only will I refuse to watch the movies, but I won't so much as watch the trailers, either. - DuracellEnergizer

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I think the PT and ROTJ have the potential to be as good as ESB but that potential is squandered by the lack of grounding in the fantasy. The rebels in the first two films feel like real people. The threat of the Imperials feels tangible. Adding puppets and later CGI to the pro and antagonists makes both sides feel less realistic. The aliens are either depicted as plausible replacements for real world archetypes (the Tuskens represent the resistance of first peoples against colonists for example) or a background characters in the first two films. The exceptions (Chewie and Yoda) paved the way for aliens beings taking more of the centre stage but the technology used to depict them is less and less phyical and the effect is that they become increasingly divorced from physical reality.
The Sandpeople are depicted as physical beings with interesting details in their costumes that speak of a culture beyond what is said.
The Ewoks and Gungans could have filled a similar role but they look increasingly less physical and are played for laughs. Even the Jawas have a sinister edge to them and yet I felt genuinely sad for them when were slaughtered by Storm Troopers. One feels the beginning of that with the Ewoks but none of that at all with Gungans. Similarly the droids are physical in the first two films and treated as abused characters which we are supposed to care for. In ROTJ they become more puppetised and the subject of very strange jokes (the droid torture scene is really out of place compared to the torture scenes in ANH and ESB). They then become comic animated characters in the PT the battle droids lacking any menace and lacking any sense of sympathy.
Jedi is where the rot set in. The PT is just rotten.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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Bingowings said:

I think the PT and ROTJ have the potential to be as good as ESB but that potential is squandered by the lack of grounding in the fantasy. The rebels in the first two films feel like real people. The threat of the Imperials feels tangible. Adding puppets and later CGI to the pro and antagonists makes both sides feel less realistic. The aliens are either depicted as plausible replacements for real world archetypes (the Tuskens represent the resistance of first peoples against colonists for example) or a background characters in the first two films. The exceptions (Chewie and Yoda) paved the way for aliens beings taking more of the centre stage but the technology used to depict them is less and less phyical and the effect is that they become increasingly divorced from physical reality.
The Sandpeople are depicted as physical beings with interesting details in their costumes that speak of a culture beyond what is said.
The Ewoks and Gungans could have filled a similar role but they look increasingly less physical and are played for laughs. Even the Jawas have a sinister edge to them and yet I felt genuinely sad for them when were slaughtered by Storm Troopers. One feels the beginning of that with the Ewoks but none of that at all with Gungans. Similarly the droids are physical in the first two films and treated as abused characters which we are supposed to care for. In ROTJ they become more puppetised and the subject of very strange jokes (the droid torture scene is really out of place compared to the torture scenes in ANH and ESB). They then become comic animated characters in the PT the battle droids lacking any menace and lacking any sense of sympathy.
Jedi is where the rot set in. The PT is just rotten.

LuckyGungan, this explains the TWO OUT OF SEVEN signature. If the PT were never made, things would have been a lot more tolerable, becuase Jedi is just a natural extenstion of creators being exhausted with a franchise. It’s not bad at all and in hindsight is much more forgivable. But then we got three anti-films from Lucas himself, and the once sacred franchise was thrown out of orbit forever, only to be possibly thrown off course yet agin by the corporate suits at Disney.

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Bingowings said:

I think the PT and ROTJ have the potential to be as good as ESB but that potential is squandered by the lack of grounding in the fantasy. The rebels in the first two films feel like real people. The threat of the Imperials feels tangible. Adding puppets and later CGI to the pro and antagonists makes both sides feel less realistic. The aliens are either depicted as plausible replacements for real world archetypes (the Tuskens represent the resistance of first peoples against colonists for example) or a background characters in the first two films. The exceptions (Chewie and Yoda) paved the way for aliens beings taking more of the centre stage but the technology used to depict them is less and less phyical and the effect is that they become increasingly divorced from physical reality.
The Sandpeople are depicted as physical beings with interesting details in their costumes that speak of a culture beyond what is said.
The Ewoks and Gungans could have filled a similar role but they look increasingly less physical and are played for laughs. Even the Jawas have a sinister edge to them and yet I felt genuinely sad for them when were slaughtered by Storm Troopers. One feels the beginning of that with the Ewoks but none of that at all with Gungans. Similarly the droids are physical in the first two films and treated as abused characters which we are supposed to care for. In ROTJ they become more puppetised and the subject of very strange jokes (the droid torture scene is really out of place compared to the torture scenes in ANH and ESB). They then become comic animated characters in the PT the battle droids lacking any menace and lacking any sense of sympathy.
Jedi is where the rot set in. The PT is just rotten.

Sir, that may be the best explain of exactly when, why, and how Lucas ruined the franchise. An excellent example of why Star Wars and Empire are one story and the last four are another film series entirely.

Well explained indeed.

originaltrilogy.com Moderator

"Why are you here, Rey from nowhere?”

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WE HAVE SO FUCKING LITTLE AND ITS GETTING SMALLER AND SMALLER ALL THE TIME. WHY DID THINGS HAVE TO HAPPEN THIS WAY, WHY CANT JEDI BE ANY BETTER IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN THE GREATEST TRILOGY OF ALL TIME BUT ITS ALL RUINED FOREVER AN IT WILL NEVER BE THAT SACRED TRINITY IT WAS WHEN I WAS YOUNGER. I CANT BELIEVE IT ALL CRASHED AND BURNED AFTER EMPIRE SO FAST THIS TRAGEDY IS THW WORST OF ALL TIME. ARRRGHHHHH!!!

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Chillax I’ve been disappointed by Star Wars films since 1983 but I get so much entertainment by fixing them in my mind.
If the films had all been classics I would watch them every once in a while and that would be it but seeing so many pieces of potential left in the increasing wreckage of the series so far keeps me coming back to these movies.
It’s why I watch Exorcist 3 more that The Exorcist. The first one is almost perfect as it was, the third one might have been perfect if the director was left alone to do his job. The first sequel and the prequels to The Exorcist are bizarre to the point of almost being entertaining because of themselves rather than because of what they were trying to do and the least said about the special edition the better.
I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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generalfrevious said:

ITS GETTING SMALLER AND SMALLER ALL THE TIME.

What? Did one of the two movies disappear when I wasn’t looking?

Anyway, Jedi is all right by me. Yeah, it’s kind of a letdown, but it’s not an actual terrible movie like Baby Geniuses or something. I don’t need every single entry in a series to be transcendently great to like the series, especially now that more entries are on the way. None of the other Star Trek movies live up to Wrath of Khan, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t worth watching or impossible to enjoy.

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Bingowings said:

I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

You have some serious problem with understanding the concept of art. Art work is not an engineered machinery with a objectively defined intended operation that can be broken and repaired. Art work is a subjective expression of an artist, which simply is what it is.

真実

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imperialscum said:

Bingowings said:

I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

You have some serious problem with understanding the concept of art. Art work is not an engineered machinery with a objectively defined intended operation that can be broken and repaired. Art work is a subjective expression of an artist, which simply is what it is.

No I have a different idea of what art is.
Art is work and work can be meaningless or meaningful but in either case it is functional.
The first two films provide a functional experience. They are designed to evoke nostalgia for cinematic and fantastical forms which I only became aware of around or after the release of the first film but they also are immersive fantasy stories which have a distorted but tangible sense of other ‘reality’. Jedi has a Wizard of Oz joke in the first act and an open nod to Tarzan in the last act.
These date the film and wreck the sense of immersion in that world not just for that film but for the whole series. It breaks Star Wars.
So naturally my mind tries to imagine ROTJ without the malfunctions and it’s a rewarding experience that I wouldn’t have if the film wasn’t as much of a let down as it was. For me… Clearly not for you. That’s were the subjectivity you talk about kicks in.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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Bingowings said:

I prefer The Motion Picture to TWOK so there you go it’s a subjective thing to a degree but I think there are measurable qualities to the first two Star Wars film that dip afterwards.

Certainly there are, especially when you get to the prequels, but I think the reaction to Jedi tends to get unduly drastic when it’s folded in with them. When you’re looking at the whole thing as a continuous chain, yes, Jedi was where the quality first declined and after that every movie was a step down. But if you take the prequels out of the equation for a second, it stops looking like the sky is falling. The first two movies are great. The third one loses some of that mojo, but it’s able to coast by because we’re all invested in the characters enough from the previous films that we keep watching, and really the movie’s enjoyable enough and it’s got some inspired set pieces. End of part one. Part two: twenty years later, George Lucas makes some more movies and they’re just awful and it’s obvious now that his approach is wrongheaded and he has terrible instincts and he was only ever as good as the people he surrounded himself with and he’s maybe a little nuts. That’s all a bummer, but it’s kind of extraneous. It really only affects part one if you let it, especially because that part two is over by now as well. 1997-2012 were indeed the dark times, and 1983 foreshadowed it, but I think it’s hyperbole to actually say it’s all the same thing.

EDIT: uuuugh I hit “quote” instead of “edit” and made a mess of things. Apologies.

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Bingowings said:

imperialscum said:

Bingowings said:

I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

You have some serious problem with understanding the concept of art. Art work is not an engineered machinery with a objectively defined intended operation that can be broken and repaired. Art work is a subjective expression of an artist, which simply is what it is.

No I have a different idea of what art is.
Art is work and work can be meaningless or meaningful but in either case it is functional.
The first two films provide a functional experience. They are designed to evoke nostalgia for cinematic and fantastical forms which I only became aware of around or after the release of the first film but they also are immersive fantasy stories which have a distorted but tangible sense of other ‘reality’. Jedi has a Wizard of Oz joke in the first act and an open nod to Tarzan in the last act.
These date the film and wreck the sense of immersion in that world not just for that film but for the whole series. It breaks Star Wars.
So naturally my mind tries to imagine ROTJ without the malfunctions and it’s a rewarding experience that I wouldn’t have if the film wasn’t as much of a let down as it was. For me… Clearly not for you. That’s were the subjectivity you talk about kicks in.

Basically all your just said (meaningfulness, functionality, immersion, especially “malfunctions”, etc.) is more or less your personal impression of an art work.

真実

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imperialscum said:

Bingowings said:

imperialscum said:

Bingowings said:

I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

You have some serious problem with understanding the concept of art. Art work is not an engineered machinery with a objectively defined intended operation that can be broken and repaired. Art work is a subjective expression of an artist, which simply is what it is.

No I have a different idea of what art is.
Art is work and work can be meaningless or meaningful but in either case it is functional.
The first two films provide a functional experience. They are designed to evoke nostalgia for cinematic and fantastical forms which I only became aware of around or after the release of the first film but they also are immersive fantasy stories which have a distorted but tangible sense of other ‘reality’. Jedi has a Wizard of Oz joke in the first act and an open nod to Tarzan in the last act.
These date the film and wreck the sense of immersion in that world not just for that film but for the whole series. It breaks Star Wars.
So naturally my mind tries to imagine ROTJ without the malfunctions and it’s a rewarding experience that I wouldn’t have if the film wasn’t as much of a let down as it was. For me… Clearly not for you. That’s were the subjectivity you talk about kicks in.

Basically all your just said (meaningfulness, functionality, immersion, especially “malfunctions”, etc.) is more or less your personal impression of an art work.

No if an artist designed a painting that spins and the rubber band making the motor spin broke it would stop doing what the artist originally intended to do with the piece.
Clearly from watching the first two movies we are supposed to have purchased an immersive experience of fictional reality. Being reminded that we are watching a movie with clear references to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DJPCqUhSRbY and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MwHWbsvgQUE breaks that sense of being in another world. The canvass stops spinning. I paid for a spinning canvas I want my money back.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t6Dp2OfIT_M

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imperialscum said:
Basically all your just said (meaningfulness, functionality, immersion, especially “malfunctions”, etc.) is more or less your personal impression of an art work.

Bingowings said:
I see Jedi and the PT as broken art works that the mind can’t resist trying to repair.

I see

Bingowings literally said that this was his personal opinion, I don’t get what your problem is and why you desperatly try to make it look like he thought this was a universal truth.

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