The Dartmouth Observer

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Saturday, May 28, 2005
Star Wars

A bit late, I know, but the euphoria of witnessing the Greatest Football Game Ever Played two mornings ago rather drained my desire to write anything for the next few days. However, since I said I'd say something about the movie, I will.

It was a decent effort. Not as a bad as the first two, but certainly not as good as Empire. On the plus side, the lightsaber fights were on the whole good, particularly Yoda-Palpatine, and Windu -Palpatine. I just wish we had seen some variety in the choice of sabers employed: Anakin briefly fought with two sabers against Dooku in Episode II, and I was hoping to see him do the same this time around. But the use of force powers was quite good: choke, which Dooku used on Obi-Wan at the start (I thought it only worked on muggles), push, right at the end between Obi-Wan and Anakin, and throw, which Palpatine used to great effect to get Yoda off his back in the senate chamber. And speaking of Palpatine, Ian McDiarmid gave an excellent performance, especially before he was outed as Sidious and received his, erh, makeover.

I'll just point out one negative, since the others have been covered elsewhere. Between Coruscant, Kashyyyk, Utapao, and Mustafar, the audience simply had too many places to take in. There was never enough time to get the feel of any of the latter three settings, especially as our time there was solely consumed by frenetic battle sequences. Empire, by contrast, besides featuring real sets, took us slowly from Hoth, to Dagobah, and then to Bespin via the asteroid field sequence. We had the chance at each locale to take a look around, and as a consequence the level of immersion was far deeper. Return of the Jedi is even leaner on sets: Tatooine, and then the Endor moon.

Not so in Revenge of the Sith. At Utapao -- which looks spectacular, by the way -- Obi-Wan arrives, and the next thing you know it he's flying around on a giant lizard. At Kashyyk, we arrive to see the droid army motoring across the lake. At Mustafar, Anakin arrives, hacks the Separatist leaders to pieces, and then confronts Obi-Wan. Where's the "local colour," so to speak?

All that said, I enjoyed myself, and am a little sad that it's all over.