I really don’t see how being influenced by a dozen old movies is in any way comparable to blantantly recycling story elements, structure, and visuals from the same movie series.
It’s not, nor was I addressing that issue. I was responding specifically to Collipso saying “Neither Star Wars nor Empire ripped off any movie whatsoever”. In fact, it ripped off several films. For the record; I’m not bothered by that. Not now, not in 1977.
Neither am I 😉.
Regarding your claim that TFA recycled elements from the OT; I can’t imagine there is anyone on here who doesn’t see that to be the case. There are all sorts of parallels between the OT and the ST. The differences seem to be more about the level at which people are bothered by them.
I would be fine if that were the case, but I don’t believe it is. Some posters here conflate recycling Star Wars tropes with being influenced by other film makers, and works of fiction, thus arguing in a sense, that the current creators are more or less doing what Lucas did in 1977. Lucas’ Star Wars wasn’t original in their view, because he was obviously influenced by many sources while making the first film, and it’s sequels. The current creators are doing the same thing, they argue, but they just happened to be influenced by Star Wars movies. My argument is Lucas didn’t invent most of the ingredients, but he did invent a new and original recipe, and one that has resulted in some very tasty meals, while the current creators deliberately stuck to Lucas’ old recipe, and added a few twists to disguise the fact that they couldn’t come up with a new recipe. The meal might still be edible, but it’s just so similar to Lucas’ recipe in many respects, while altering a few key aspects of Lucas’ recipe for the worse, that I can’t shake the notion, that I’ve tasted far better versions of it in the past.
I think Lucas was more than simply “influenced.” I don’t have a problem with not calling the original Star Wars original because I don’t think that’s a bad thing. It’s still my favorite film after all.
I’d just argue that no SW film since the first has had the same “new and original recipe,” including ESB and ROTJ. Their “recipes” are firmly rooted in what was done in the previous film(s). Same with the ST, only there’ve been more previous films. Are the tropes that the ST is pulling from SW tropes? Absolutely, you’ve nailed that that’s how I see it. And again, to me that just makes sense, it seems a natural extension of the franchise at this point in time (it only seems fitting for these films to be influenced by what came before, just like Lucas, only now what’s come before are SW movies - films which have had an enormous impact on cinema in general and this genre of storytelling specifically).
I forgot to respond to this one. The difference between the ST, and the OT sequels, and the PT is, that Lucas’ sequels progressed the story in new directions. Sure all his films used Star Wars tropes, but the ST is unique in the sense, that it essentially retells the same story we’ve seen before, where a small rebel force fights a tyrannical regime led by an evil Force user. We have another Jedi student turning on his master, and being instrumental in the destruction of the Jedi Order. We have another young person living on a desert planet, who turns out to be the new hope, and then I’ve not even touched on recycling the concept of a super weapon, a walker assault on a white planet, a confrontation in a throne room, etc, etc.
Then there’s the fact that both the good guys and the bad guys look very much like they did in the OT, and use very similar equipment. Sure, some new characters and elements were added, but overall the basic story premise and the aesthetics are the same. A few changes in characters and structure are not going to change that. There were a ton of possibilities in coming up with completely new stories, characters, and visuals that did not involve recycling large parts the OT, while still incorporating Star Wars tropes like the Force, lightsabers, space battles, and what not. However, the current creators chose to take the safe route, and rather than take the franchise in a new direction narratively and visually, gave us a loosely based remake of the OT, and worst of all, they chose to diminish the accomplishments of the classic characters to achieve this end. That is what makes the ST far less original to me than any of the previous films made by Lucas.
Now, does this mean the ST cannot be entertaining, or competently made? Of course not! There’s much to enjoy, the story is compelling, the action is great, the special effects are great, the acting is generally good. IMO they are above average blockbusters. However, as sequels to the OT, they are a disappointment to me, and in the face of rethreading rebels vs Empire, a new hope vs fallen Jedi, and all the other elements I’ve mentioned, any argument that tries to pass off the ST as being on a similar level of creativity and originality as Lucas’ films simply falls flat on it’s face in my view.