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November 5th, 2013 - Yew Erdri Ming — LiveJournal

About November 5th, 2013

Whose Wars in the Stars? 06:21 pm


It's been going around to-day that J.J. Abrams might be taking his cues from the "Dear J.J." YouTube video regarding the upcoming Star Wars film he's directing. Though, really, the stuff the video is asking for is stuff Abrams I think has already talked about wanting to implement--mainly in returning the Star Wars universe to the more Western, mysterious, and deadly feel of the original trilogy.

I agree those are wonderful things about the original trilogy but I don't think it's the absence of those things that sabotaged the prequel trilogy. The problems with that trilogy could be described more succinctly as conflicting tones resulting from a lack of focus and passion. I guess it's all been said before--Lucas stopped making art and started making gizmos, etcetera. And in the midst of life we are in death, etcetera . . .

But honestly, I love Coruscant. Long before Episode I, I loved the Expanded Universe stories about the hundreds of levels of old city beneath the surface of the city planet. It seems to me there's plenty of room for danger and mystery in that.

I love the "secondhand" quality to the technology in the original trilogy though I don't necessarily think seeing the shiny and untarnished tech in the prequels was bad. Just a different thing. Well, the more lived in, human stuff is always going to be better. Naboo being shot in meticulously maintained vacation spots didn't help--maybe if there'd been some of the crumbling Roman side streets like in an Italian neorealist film it would've felt less like a rich person's guided tour. I wouldn't mind seeing something like that in a new trilogy's visit to Naboo.

The impression I have of the Empire is not unlike the early Soviet Union taking over after the downfall of the Tsarists. Uniform but sort of dangerously inexpensive technology, like the TIE Fighter which notoriously lacks shields.

And I think back to how Lucas was inspired by Kurosawa movies not just for the unique vision of Kurosawa but also just for the, for him, foreignness of Kurosawa's samurai films. They give you a lot without explanation and yet the viewer is generally able to run with it and enjoy it. It occurs to me that the factions in The Hidden Fortress were always in the "wild west"--there was no clean and organised Coruscant. I just hope they'll upgrade the sinister and messy on Coruscant rather than lose it completely.

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