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Friday I headed into the hell that is Phipps Plaza (hell for a poor slacker with a bad attitude like myself) to catch Star Wars Episode
II, Attack of the Clones. Since I felt absolutely RAPED after the last one, this one didn't hurt so bad.
If you haven't seen it yet and intend to, skip this section 'cause I'm gonna get off on a rant and if you're like me you prefer not to know too much about a film before seeing it yourself.
Episode II was shot in something like 60 days, followed by years of computer generated effects, and it shows in every shot. You just can't fix bad acting in post-production, no matter what kind of computer you're using (yet.) Christopher Lee was fun to watch, but he's not featured enough. Instead you're stuck with a parade of wooden characters who can't generate enough emotion for you to care about.
But you aren't going to see it for the acting, are you? The effects are technically impressive, but more often you wonder why they bothered. Every shot is done on a blue screen instead of an actual location. Could it really have been less expensive to do computer-generated footprints in sand than to shoot a scene on an actual sand dune? It's distracting when everyone's feet don't seem to touch the surface on which they appear and everything has that slightly glossy look that's just not quite right.
As for the much-lauded fight scene of the new entirely computer generated Yoda, it is fun, but you've got to wait through two hours of often dull movie to get to it and it's far too short once it starts. I found the new computer generated Yoda less impressive than the old latex version. Though he didn't seem quite "real" as a puppet, at least he was an object. Now his skin and shadows aren't right. Yes, he's a TINY bit more emotive, but it's at the cost of looking like a cartoon. I would have preferred him be a puppet until he needed to start hopping around and kicking ass. I've seen Henson productions do believable combinations of puppetry and computer graphics, it's too bad Lucas has such a love affair with the virtual medium.
In fact, there are countless scenes that look more like a video game than they do reality, even some with live actors in them. I miss the old sets, the old models, the old latex makeup, the old MAGIC that was the first Star Wars or Empire Strikes Back or even Return of the Jedi. At this rate there won't even be live actors in the next version, which somehow might be less distracting. Instead, it comes off like those old Disney films where they painted in animated characters over live action, ruining both. I kept waiting for the dancing penguins, a la Mary Poppins.
As for the story, well, we get a lot of background as to why Vader becomes Vader, but even minor players who's backgrounds we shouldn't know about are given way too much importance. Boba Fett became a cult favorite from his brief appearances in Empire and Jedi because he was mysterious and dark. You didn't know if he was man or beast or android, you didn't know anything except he was supposed to be ruthless, and the best. Now not only do you know everything about him, but he's given the "honor" of being a major character in this film. I was annoyed in Episode I when it turned out Vader build C3PO as a boy - why can't even the robots just roll off an assembly line? Can't ANYONE just be unimportant in the distant past, i.e. prequel? Must we know everyone's backstory? Must everyone be historically important and have a deep rooted motive?
Frankly, I don't think Lucas has added much to the story as a whole. Sure, we have backgrounds for everyone. Sure, we learn how the Federation became the Empire. Sure, there are more characters. But does more mean better? Only in terms of money. And it's obvious in almost every scene that there are video games, action figures, costumes, mugs, potato chip bags, toy light sabers for sale and you've just sat through two hours and thirty five minutes of ads for them.
At least Jar Jar only has a few lines.
Speaking of movies, it was too chilly for the mildly ill SW and I to head to Starlight Drive In for the monthly Mondo Movie. Who the hell turned it back to winter?!?
The left/right rhetoric flows on and on, kicking off with one from
Here's some links to further my charge of nepotism toward Murphy...
Tom Murphy get his son an appointment:
Tom Murphy makes his family rich:
See May 6th and 7th AJC (sorry online version no longer available for free)
>Perhaps one day PK will understand that when one becomes obsessed with the enemy (as he seems to be)
I'm not obsessed with the enemy. I was simply debating JDP's "Old Boy
Network" argument with the facts. Facts make an arguement worthwhile.
Flowery language is nice, but it holds no clout against the truth.
>Out of curiosity, if all of your facts are correct, and so blatantly obvious, why have not the feds indicted the entire Murphy conspiracy?
Payola from the Left perhaps?
>Your friend, BOB BARR Congressman
And yes... I totally agree. Bob Barr is completely rediculous. Oft times he Sounds like a Southern Baptist preacher than a public servant...
THANK GOD I'm not a GA Republican! He's a scary individual and a true embarrassment to his party and this state. He is not an example of conservatism. He is an example of the Religious Right. He's a sick emented individual... a real nut!
And speaking of nutty Southern Baptist preachers...better not get me started on peanut farmer, Jimmy Carter... another embarrassment to the state of GA and his party. Seems he'll befriend ANY dictator!
No doubt his Cuban meetings will result in something similar to his 1979 blunder in which 66 Americans were taken hostage in Iran, or perhaps his brother Billy will receive a $250,000 check from the government of Cuba like he did from Lybia back in the 70's.
I believe that the embargo on Cuba is outdated, but if we plan to ease restrictions on open trade and travel with Cuba, we should use a catalyst who has not had such historically ilked dealings with the country. In 1980, Castro used comments made by Carter as a pretext for clearing out prisons and mental wards and sending 125,000 unwanted Cubans to the United States.
What is Castro going to do next with Carter's commitment to bumblesy?
This is not a job for an idealistic, intellectual lightweight. Perhaps this is a job for Neal Boortz.
Holy fuck, bashing Carter for making a visit to Cuba? You wanna talk links to presidents and dictators I'm sure some of my more educated colleges can site a few serving presidents who helped set up these dictators, as opposed to only former presidents who go to promote democracy, free speech, and the opening of trade(which the rest of the world did decades ago.)
Unfortunately I'm too busy looking for a job under the current administration to do the legwork, but certain former CIA heads named
Bush and his predecessor Reagan come to mind immediately. Someone help me out here with a bit of history!
"There is an old Vulcan proverb: 'only Nixon could go to China.'"
Spock, from Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country
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