Archive for October, 2011

Taking A New Look At The Prequels

October 29, 2011

The New York Daily News posted a commentary by Mike Jaccarino on the prequel trilogy. It’s really more about the theory Anakin was created by the Dark Side, etc. but it beats the usual, doesn’t it?

H/T Lin.

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Clone Wars Debriefing: Darkness On Umbara

October 28, 2011

This week, the clones are back in force, har har. Anakin and Obi-Wan (hello thar, Obi-Wan, nice to see you again even for 30 seconds) are leading an invasion of a Separatist-allied planet, Umbara…not to be confused with Tarzan’s favorite word, “Ungawa.” The planet is dark and foggy. The locals are relentless and resourceful. The wildlife is lethal. The clones are in for a tough fight and that’s with Anakin by their side. Several clones die.

But they do have cool armor. Here we’re seeing the new phase armor, closer to what they were wearing in ROTS. Rex retains a bit of his old style, though with some new markings. Fives, the Lone Survivor, is in this episode. There’s a cholo trooper with a teardrop marking on his helmet. Maybe he has some loco dots on his gauntlet too.

Suddenly, Anakin is called away from the battlefield, ordered to return to Coruscant by the Supreme Chancellor himself. Interesting, no? Anakin doesn’t want to leave his men but he has no choice but to depart. Taking his place is Master Krell, a Besalisk Jedi. Sure he can do cool stuff with his multiple arms and double-bladed lightsabers (hmm) but as it turns out Krell is an a-hole who doesn’t know jack about war strategy and doesn’t give a crap about the men. His conduct is not only unprofessional, it’s also very un-Jedi like. He yells at Rex and Fives, at one point threatening the latter with a lightsaber blade. He’s mean and snarky with the troops. He won’t even let them rest when they are exhausted. This is contrasted with Anakin’s caring for his troops at the beginning of the episode. Worst of all, Krell won’t even address the men by their names, just by their numbers. Rex tells him off and reminds him they are men, not robots. If there’s ever a guy who’s a poster child for fragging, it’s Krell. No wonder the clones were pretty quick to obey Order 66. They were really sick of the Jedi’s crap by that point.

Krell’s behavior not only shows the arrogance among the Jedi Yoda, Obi-Wan, and Mace Windu spoke of in AOTC, it also shows how the war has corrupted some of them. The idea of the Jedi leading meat puppets in a war is disturbing enough but at least some characters treat the troops with dignity and respect, even affection. Krell treats the clones like well, slaves. It’s all about him and what he wants. If this was all I’d known about the Jedi Order, I would have given Anakin a ride to the Temple on that fateful day and packed him a pb&j.

We’ll see if Krell corrects his ways or not in the next three episodes.

Dee Bradley Baker did a great job. It can’t be easy playing a bunch of different characters with the same voice but with subtle distinctions. Of course the animation and action were spectacular. A great episode overall that will rank with other fan favorites.

Next week: More fun on Umbara!

Star Wars Needlework

October 28, 2011

Han Stitched First features all kinds of cool fan-made needlework and it has just started Prequel Appreciation Fridays. They’re looking for submissions if any of you crafty types are interested!

Finally! Trailer Officially Up On YouTube

October 28, 2011

Here ya go.

A Couple Of Fun Facebook Groups

October 27, 2011

If you’re on Facebook, you might want to consider adding to your queue these groups:

Jar Jar Binks Appreciation–Fan art, macros, photos, and other fun stuff celebrating all that is Jar Jar. Yousa need to “like” today!

The Art of Star Wars: The Prequel Trilogy–Conceptual art from Eps I-III. Yes, there’s a sister page for Eps IV-VI.

TPM 3D Trailer With “Tintin?”

October 27, 2011

A couple of guys posted on this TFN thread that they’d seen the trailer with preview screenings of the upcoming “Tintin.”

I’ll keep you posted on other movies that are reportedly showing the trailer beforehand!

Kids Devastated By ROTS

October 25, 2011

How would kids introduced to Star Wars through Clone Wars take the events of ROTS? Well, let’s just say that this piece blows the idea that the prequels are just worthless crud out of the water.

H/T TFN & Paul McDonald

Missed The Trailer?

October 25, 2011

You might want to check out this link.

*Walks away whistling innocently.*

Epic Fail: What If They Released A Trailer & Nobody Saw It (Commentary)

October 24, 2011

The trailer for TPM’s 3D re-release was unleashed on October 21 and just about everything that could have gone wrong did. Theaters didn’t get the trailer in time or didn’t get it at all. There was no press about it. StarWars.com posted about the re-release and mentioned the trailer on October 14, but didn’t remind fans afterward. There was no mention of it on the StarWars.com blog or on @starwars on Twitter. (At one point, I tweeted @starwars and asked why it didn’t remind people about the trailer, but got no reply.) I checked Twitter, Facebook, and various Star Wars fan sites/message boards over and over from Friday evening until Saturday night. There was barely a peep about it on TFN’s message board. There was no buzz about the trailer whatsoever. Nothing. AICN posted about it today as though it was a Bigfoot sighting. Note that it said not a single reader reported seeing the trailer.

It isn’t due to a lack of interest. I saw on my site stats that per hour views SPIKED on October 21. People wanted to know about it.

But people can’t talk about the trailer if they haven’t seen it. And if Star Wars fans–the amen choir–aren’t buzzing about it, that really should worry Lucasfilm. The question is, do they even care?

Not all of last weekend’s snafu can be blamed on Lucasfilm or Fox. Indications are the company distributing the trailer messed up. “The Three Musketeers” was a poorly-reviewed film by a poorly-regarded director that had the misfortune to open against the Paranormal Activity powerhouse franchise.

But that doesn’t change some facts, such as the aforementioned lack of promotion on or around the 21st. The official site does a pretty good job promoting Clone Wars, games, novels, and Simon Pegg’s latest flick but is AWOL when it comes to a big deal like this trailer. And it is a big deal. TPM’s success in February determines whether or not the other five will follow. Where are their priorities up there in San Francisco?

Finally on Sunday, Eric Geller posted a bootleg on his Vimeo account (which also made its way to YouTube) then linked to it on TFN. That was the way most folks got to see it before it was pulled from Vimeo and YouTube today. And it finally generated a small amount of buzz. POSITIVE buzz, and it wasn’t even in 3D.

Usually I don’t like the idea of bootlegging or pirating copyrighted material. But this time I was all for it. Why? I think part of the problem is that Lucasfilm/Fox has this backwards. Not as many people are going to pay $15 to see a 3D movie just for a trailer sight unseen. What generates trailer buzz in 2011 is the internet. Look at how the geek world lit up with the internet debut of the trailer for “The Avengers” just a few weeks ago. It’s ironic this is happening to the film that spawned the event trailer in the first place. The smart thing to do was to post the trailer on starwars.com and urge people to go see it in 3D in the theaters. As Geller tweeted today, “To summarize this whole thing: StarWars.com, get your freaking act together and post the gee-dee trailer.”

Somebody somewhere is getting paid a salary to get the word out. It shouldn’t be up to me or Eric Geller to get the world jazzed for this release. I have a job already. It’s lazy to rely on unpaid fans to do your dirty work. What’s the use of spending millions of dollars on converting these films to 3D if this is the best they can do?

I also have to wonder if this would have happened had it been TESB’s 3D trailer.

I want TPM to succeed because I want to see the whole saga back on the big screen and because I know if it fails, the media/fanboy industrial complex will make sure you and I never forget it.

So get your shiz together, Lucasfilm and Fox. Or I’m gonna sic Toby on ya!

Other Films Showing The Trailer

October 23, 2011

I’ve now seen from two different sources that the Rowan Atkinson film “Johnny English 2: Reborn” is showing the trailer and as mentioned a few days ago, some theaters may be showing it with “Paranormal Activity 3.”

Now, I’m beginning to wonder if there are in fact two different versions of the trailer, one shown with 2D films and one shown with 3D films. Let’s just say that secret sources have indicated a 2D version of the trailer that seems quite different from the one described by “Captain Typho” on TFN. The 2D version seems to focus exclusively on TPM while the other version is longer and includes bits from all of the Star Wars films.

Update: TFN has posted the trailer. After watching this and a bootleg back to back, I’ve concluded it’s the same trailer. The bootleg version just had the first part cut out.