Monday, February 13, 2012

Still Disappointed with Episode One

The Stump family went out Sunday afternoon to contribute to George Lucas's latest moneymaking venture by seeing the theater release of Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace in 3-D.  The cultural mythology of Star Wars has had a significant place in my imagination over the years.  I remember the first time I saw the original Star Wars (episode 4), my youth group had gone to Fort Wayne and the bus broke down.  So we went over to someone's house and they had the movie on what was then the latest and greatest AV device: the laser disk.  I was hooked from the scene where Luke stood staring into the setting suns (a jigsaw puzzle of which can be seen hanging on my office wall).

Science Fiction has always fascinated me with the ability it has to reflect on our own situation by imagining very different worlds.  In this regard, I think Episodes 4 and 5 are some of the greatest science fiction films of all time.

So it was with great anticipation that I waited for Episode 1 to come out back in 1999.  And of course like everyone else, I was impressed with the technological wizardry of the images on the screen.  And while there are some thematic elements that have promise in the film (like the largely unexplored nature of the symbiotic relationship of intelligent species on Naboo), in the details of the script it is disappointing.  Unfortunately the 3-D version didn't help this!

Undoubtedly in the name of forging family memories, I'll try to convince my wife and kids to accompany me to Episodes 2 and 3 when they come out in 3-D over the next couple of years.  But I'm seriously looking forward to the outings in 2015 and 2016 when A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back hit the big screen in 3-D.  In the meantime, I'll have to content myself with watching episodes on Netflix of what is surely the most profound television series in the last decade:  Battlestar Galactica.


Anthony Parrott said...

1) I look forward to one day introducing my children to Star Wars, especially the original series.

2) I wish I could get more people on board with Battlestar. It certainly is, as you said, profound.

D.C. Cramer said...

When episode II comes out, you should ditch the family and go with Meister, Getz, Lightcap, Ingle, Maust, and me for a little Northern Ireland reunion. Maybe we could even stand outside the theater beforehand and try to start up theological conversations with folks waiting in line!