Some Stuff To Read

i09 might have written a grudging piece about five things the prequels did right a few days ago, but I much prefer this piece from Furious Fanboys called “Why I’ll Always Defend The Star Wars Prequels.”

Someone on the SWPAS Facebook page linked to this post on another fan blog. It has a lot of good points (even if I don’t agree with everything), especially about “nostalgia goggles” and “response bias.”

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47 Responses to “Some Stuff To Read”

  1. piccolojr1138 Says:

    Hello, (I’m french, sorry for grammar mistakes)

    It’s good to see more people acclaiming the prequels. Thanks to them !

    There is just a point which I find a little disturbing. Everyone wants to remind how much the Prequels use models and practical stuff. I understand the point, but sometimes it feels like we’re accepting the basic premise of the haters : “CGI sucks”. No, prequels have also a lot of CGI stuff, and I love it too ! For example, Coruscant is the most beautiful planet of the saga in my opinion, way more than many practical sets.

    • lazypadawan Says:

      I don’t mind CGI if it’s done well and in Star Wars, it is done well.

    • PrinceOfNaboo Says:

      I agree with you.

      A lot of times, though, haters accuse a “bad effect” (one they didn’t find convincing) of being CGI when there was no CG at all and they actually found a practical effect not convincing.
      In that case, CGI are defended simultaneously.

      Personally, I consider CGI hate to be one of the most ridiculous “developments”. CG technology just offers a lot of opportunities that weren’t there many years ago. Peter Jackson also confirmed this recently (and of course internet nerds now hate him as well).

      It makes me a bit sad that the idiotic haters have managed to turn Star Wars into something that’s backwards. You won’t get anything innovative from a SW film again for long time, I’m afraid.

    • Hunk a Junk Says:

      People’s complaints about using CG in Star Wars are completely about nostalgia and comparing everything to the OT. It’s not about whether an FX shot is convincing, it’s about how the shot feels juxtaposed against the motion control, rotoscoped shots from 30 years ago. For example, the same fans who praise any shot in a film like 300 for its visual awesomeness will cringe in horror if a similar shot was in Star Wars. They can accept and praise the fakery there but reject it and hate it in SW. I remember watching The Two Towers as Gandalf is falling with the Balrog down the mountain shaft and they’re spinning and hacking away and thinking to myself, “If this sequence was in a Star Wars movie, people would be screaming about how awful it looks.” The shot of Theed in TPM as the Federation tanks invade, for example, is a beautiful and very realistic shot. I’ve heard people bash that shot, however, because “the camera moves too fast.” Basically, the realism is blown for them because it wasn’t a locked off, static shot like the matte paintings in the OT.

      • lazypadawan Says:

        It is worth pointing out that no one has a problem with CG being used in movies the “consensus” liked.

      • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

        Yes…the CG in Lord of the Rings was far more over animated, overused and unbelievable than in the prequels.

        The orc army within the mines of Moria was just ridiculous. There were hundreds or thousands of them and we’re supposed to believe the fellowship can fight them all off.

        Same with the battle of Pelennor Fields at the climax of Return of the King. Way too many cgi characters on the screen at once! Too unbelievable that the heroes could fight them all off.

        But I never saw any criticism of any of that.

        Yes, CG often sucks because it isn’t used well. When it comes off like animation in a live action film that’s a big problem. But unfortunately that is the case most of the time. The attitude seems to be the more CG the better. They throw as much as they can up on the screen. This was never the case with stop motion.

        The prequels are one case where the CG is actually done right. It’s very rare that it comes off as cartoony, even with characters like Jar Jar. And Lucas usually refrains from putting too many CG objects on screen at once, especially in the foreground.

        But it’s no surprise, it was Lucas’ company that pioneered this technology. Yet according to the critics he doesn’t know how to use it.

  2. piccolojr1138 Says:

    On another topic, I’ve seen the first episode of Rebels and it’s very good.

    I’m happy that I had the right premonition : the “back to the OT spirit” talking is very exaggerated, with the aim of attracting medias and some fanboys.

    Actually we feel very much PT and TCW influences as well. Thanks to Dave Filoni for staying loyal to the whole past of Star Wars.

  3. Adam D. Bram (The Nilbog) Says:

    “You’ve watched the original trilogy how many times? If you really want to give the prequels a chance, you have to be willing to watch them more than once. There’s always something to enjoy in any of the films, whether it be intense lightsaber battles, pod racing or some seriously cool force lightning. Don’t give up, even if you feel like your biases are making Star Wars hard to watch. Be patient.”

    THIS FULL STOP.

  4. M. Marshall Says:

    I don’t agree with the introductory paragraph of the io9 article, but what I did like was what that among the choices the author chose for his five reasons: was the introduction of the Jedi and the Sith, the aethetics of Naboo, Coruscant, etc., the politics (gasp!), and the fact that the films turn the Messianic Chosen One trope on its head.

    • lazypadawan Says:

      The guy who wrote it gets this better than he thinks it does. It’s just that he’s working for i09 and cannot break with orthodoxy on what one is supposed to believe about the prequels.

      • M. Marshall Says:

        True that, true that. It’s too bad I can’t email him and tell him that he shouldn’t be ashamed of his love for the prequels (he even defended them in the comments section of another article), that he’s not alone.

  5. PrinceOfNaboo Says:

    Liked his point about the other film “Mortal Kombat: Annihilation”.

    What makes Prequel Hate obssesive and sick is the fact that these insane haters are not “pleased” with their own hate, they want EVERYONE to hate. Either you hate the PT with us (and be equally irrational and childish and completely brainsick) or we hate you too.

    I hope this is not inappropiate, but their mindset is dangerously close to that of religious extremists.

    • lazypadawan Says:

      That’s the biggest problem I have with these haters: they didn’t enjoy something so they want to make sure nobody else does either and if you did, they’re going to make you miserable.

      • Hunk a Junk Says:

        I plan on doing a blog post on this, but I’ll throw this out there. I suggest prequels fans start using this term: prequel shaming. That’s what the haters are doing. They’re making sure anyone who likes the prequels is shamed into avoiding comment sections or not saying so in public. The first step in combating the problem is giving it a name, because otherwise when you call people out they fall back on the old, “I’m just giving an opinion, dude,” excuse or, “You’re trying to police what I say,” garbage. Their actions aren’t about expressing an opinion or having a reasoned debate, it’s about scoring points and poisoning the well of public opinion. #prequelshaming

  6. madmediaman Says:

    My mostly spoiler-free review of Star Wars Rebels:

    Starts Out Weak and Finishes Strong

    Well, finished the first episode of the new Disney Star Wars series, Rebels. Overall a mixed bag as the show starts out a little weak, but finishes in a rousing and poignant ending.

    The Good:

    Vanessa Marshall/Hera: Solid voice acting, great character, and the moral center of the show.

    Zeb: Great character… started off a little one dimensional, but by the end of the episode I really loved him.

    Ezra: Our main character. I really thought I was going to hate him as he starts out as little more than a clone of Aladdin. Taylor Gray really imbues the character with a depth that I was surprised by. Solid performance.

    BIGGEST SURPRISE OF THE SHOW: Freddie Prinz Jr: He can actually act. I was shocked. When I heard he had been cast as former Jedi apprentice in hiding, Kannan, I was filled with dread. But Prinz manages to give the character a sense of melancholy, and sadness.

    David Oyelowo: Steals the show, and thankfully creates a sense of danger in a show that starts out lacking any sense that the characters are at risk. Oyelowo is just great in the role.

    Animation: Most of the animation is great, the environments are fantastic, and characters look good. A lot less detail and depth of image than the Clone Wars, but this show is really trying to emulate the flat look of the cinematography of A New Hope… but there are problems (more on that later)

    The Bad:

    The 1st Half of the Episode. This story is crafted from two scripts, and it really shows. The first half of the episode is all smart aleck back and forth between the leads. This would all be fine, but EVERY character talks like this… listening to the five primary characters, and their smart aleck droid gets old real fast. Pretty much all of the dialog is equally interchangeable between the heroes… and that’s a bad thing.

    Thankfully the second half of the story dials back the snarkiness and instead focuses on story and character mixed with well timed doses of humor. The second half of the story is marvelous.

    The Music: I know a lot of fans have celebrated the return of the standard John Williams music, but as they say sometimes “too much of a good thing can be a bad thing.” Kiner makes copious use of Williams themes, oftentimes with mixed results. Some scenes Kiner is allowed to shine, but other is feels like Kiner is just trying to stuff as much Williams in a scene as possible. At times it got so distracting I was taken out of the episode as my brain rifled through the old databank retrieving the moment a particular flourish appeared in the OT.

    What’s incredibly frustrating is that Kiner is a great composer and wrote some incredibly memorable themes for Clone Wars. Why reign that in? Let Kiner loose and let him write new themes along with using hints of Williams score.

    One moment completely took me out of the show…

    SPOILER!
    At the end, the Wookiees are reunited, and underlying the whole scene is Han & Leia’s Love Theme from Empire Strikes Back??? What the heck does that have to do with a family being reunited? Let Kiner write something original for that.

    The Dreadful:

    Tiya Sircar: Awful. She simply can’t act. Her range kind of reminds me of the “Many expressions of Kristen Stewart meme.” Here’s Sabine’s concerned voice… here’s Sabine’s excited voice… here’s Sabine’s sad voice. Unfortunately they all sound the same. I guess that’s par for the course for a lot of Disney animated TV projects, but when the rest of the cast is bringing their “A” game it kind of makes Sircar’s deficiencies stand out. NOTE: I’m more than willing to give her a chance, and she could easily grow into the role, I just feel she’s the weak link right now.

    Stormtroopers: Basically reduced to comedic bumblers. Gone are the days of the Stormtroopers being the Emperor’s shock troops. Flawed to be sure, but still a threat to our heroes. I never once felt anyone was in any serious danger with these Keystone Cops in pursuit, and that could wind up being a problem later on. While Kallus and the Inquisitor will certainly fill the role of dangerous villain, the Stormtroopers at least have to appear competent or there’s no sense of risk… makes for boring storytelling.

    One scene in particular really just made me shake my head.

    SPOILER
    One of our heroes has been captured, and he begins making bold statements like “My uncle, the Emperor is really going to be angry when he hears about this.” Of course the Troopers take the bait, walk into the cell, hero escapes behind them and shuts the door behind them. The shot then lingers for a few seconds as the Troopers look at each other dumbfounded… yeah, that’s something I expect from Scooby-Doo, not necessarily Star Wars (unless we are talking Battle Droids)

    The Wookiee’s: Wow… what can I say… the visual design is positively laughable. They look like fudgsicles that were left out of the fridge for an hour and somebody plopped some eyes on them. The rest of the aliens in the show look fine (most look fairly close to their Clone Wars counterparts), but the Wookiees look like they were a design afterthought.

    Overall Impression: A solid, but flawed start to the series. The first half of the episode is incredibly weak, but by the middle of the episode it picks up steam, culminating in a really solid finale. I’m cautiously optimistic.

    Yancy

  7. BansheeGun Says:

    Furious Fanboys always seem to go out of their way to defend the PT (Much like SWPAS!) and that should be commended. Not to get overly political, but SW fandom does seem to lean to the Atheist, Liberal side of the political spectrum, so I always found it odd that so many of them were upset with the introduction of Midi-chlorians. Wouldn’t they relish at the prospect of this discovery in real life? It’s science!

    • M. Marshall Says:

      It is ironic because I’m religious and I had no problem with the midi-chloreans at all. It reminded me of the book of Genesis, when God made Adam out of the dust and science has proven that humans share the same ingredients as dust. I think it was Lucas’ way of saying that science and faith can be compatible, because I certainly think so. Just because someone doesn’t believe in evolution, doesn’t mean they’re anti-science. I’ve also seen blogs on Tumblr that will post their love of Star Wars, yet ridicule the Bible even though Star Wars has biblical themes!

    • lazypadawan Says:

      It might seem that way but rank and file fans vary all over the place.

      I had no problems with midichlorians or Anakin’s “virgin” birth because it’s all fiction.

    • Tarrlok Says:

      Lucas is himself a Star Trek fan, and he was inspired by the works of Isaac Asimov among others when he created the Star Wars setting. He’s well-versed in science-fiction, even though Star Wars diverges from sci-fi into the realm of fantasy.

      But science-fiction does have a sizeable influence on Star Wars. The basic sci-fi concepts are to Star Wars what pre-Renaissance technologies are to the typical Tolkien-inspired fantasies. Where the medieval-style fantasies have their longswords, stallions and charioteers, Star Wars has lightsabers, starfighters and podracers. These are the basic elements of the setting.

      And then there are the midichlorians. They do “demystify” the Force to an extent, but that’s part of the whole trend of the PT, which is a look back into a lost age of enlightenment as it withered. Force-sensitivity is rooted in IU science, but many – both atheist and theist – would disagree that such “demystification” is even that. In the case of real-world science, it can be just as wondrous in its own way for both theists and atheists (such as myself), and the final completed arc of TCW showed just how the sci-fi/fantasy hybridisation of the midichlorians can inspire.

    • Jim Raynor Says:

      The Midichlorian thing feels “weird” at first because it’s adding a “scientific” element to a “mystical” thing.

      However, that’s ignoring the fact that science is simply a logical process for studying things. If there was real, observable “magic,” you could bet that scientists would accept and try to quantify it. They wouldn’t draw an artificial distinction between what is supposed to be “scientific” or “magical.”

      That’s a concept that’s actually used by many science-fantasy stories. Look at the Thor and Avengers movies. They depict mythological gods as advanced aliens, who interchangeably describe their abilities as the product of both technology and magic.

      What also needs to be pointed out is the hypocrisy in fandom. The idea that Force abilities can be inherited by children from their parents goes back to the Original Trilogy. Expanded Universe books (such as the fan favorite Thrawn Trilogy) have shown Jedi clones with Force powers. Cloning was such an easy way to make new Dark Jedi enemies for Luke that it arguably did a lot to cheapen the idea of Dark Jedi. Yet no one ever complained about that.

      So Midichlorians completely ruin the mysticism of the Force, but Deoxyribonucleic Acid (DNA) does not?!

    • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

      I

      I think what Lucas was trying to say with the Midi-chlorians was really not understood by a lot of people.

      I think he was trying to say that science and religion are two sides of the same coin…which of course, they are. Religion is a philosophical way of looking at the universe where science is purely analytical.

      I never understood the viewpoint that it is natural to only look at things analytically.

      I think Midi-chlorians were an analytical way of dealing with religious ideas.

      Everything in the world was described in strictly religious terms before there was a scientific explanation to describe them.

      I think this would be an easier way for agnostics/atheists to look at the force…though I am sure some dislike it even more than the way the force was talked about in the original trilogy.

      George was not pushing an atheist message though. I think that is pretty clear. Though I agree with the criticism that the religious ideology was pushed too far to the background in the prequels.

      I wish the Midi-chlorian talk had continued through II & III. This seemed like the main philosophical message George was trying to impart on people. Science and religion can co-exist. The Force is both science and religion. It is everything! The Force is with us!

      However, it seems like George backed off due to the criticism. Damn it.

      • PrinceOfNaboo Says:

        I don’t think he backed off due to critism. I think this was a decision that was the result of him trying to make sure the six films feel like ONE Saga instead of TWO trilogies.

        It’s the same reason why there is no big single space battle in the PT, why Shmi was introduced, why Anakin was a little boy, why Obi-Wan wasn’t TPM’s lead etc.

        The way it is now, it doesn’t feel odd that the Midis are never mentioned during the OT, because they haven’t been mentionied in AOTC as well and in ROTS only one time.
        It would have been jarring, I think, if the Midis had been talked over and over again in AOTC and ROTS.

    • PrinceOfNaboo Says:

      What annoys me the most about haters is that their claims and demands don’t even make sense withing themselves and are contradicting.

      For example, they hated the midiclorians because it destroys the idea that “everyone can learn the Force” (a notion that doesn’t even make sense within the OT alone). On the other hand, though, they want “certain” characters to be “special”. Yoda should be so powerful with the Force that he’s “beyond” a lightsaber. The Emperor should be the only one who is “powerful enough” to use Force Lightning (Dooku is not allowed to have it “learnd”) etc.

      It just doesn’t make sense. Either everyone can learn the ways of the Force (and Force Lightning) or you need certain condictions (high midi count). It doesn’t go both ways – except for Haters, whose logic is whatever crosses their minds at whatever time under whatever conditions.

      • lazypadawan Says:

        Lucas himself seemed to vacillate between whether anyone can learn to use the Force (never stated in the films but implied in story meetings, interviews done long ago, etc.) and whether only a select few with the right amount of mojo can. But he settled on the latter when he did the prequels, probably because he realized he had to limit the number of Jedi. Also no one in the films ever told Luke to just go ahead and train the entire Rebel Alliance as Jedi.

        As far as midichlorians go, the implication is that everybody has them (without them life would not exist) but Anakin’s extreme high count made him unique, even among Jedi. Otherwise, he’d be just another dusty son of a single mother. Also, the Emperor could’ve just as easily have taken Han Solo or Wedge Antilles as an apprentice to replace Vader.

    • Hunk a Junk Says:

      Not to keep the can of worms open, but I don’t think SW leans atheist or left. Clearly, SW has a huge spiritual component and conservatives have taken cues from the idea of “freedom fighters” and standing up against what they consider tyranny. If Newt Gingrich is a SW fan, it’s hard to say its left. The irony of Lucas is that some people consider him a greedy capitalist with conservative old fashioned values while others think he’s a political lefty taking potshots at conservative politics (especially in ROTS). Both are true, but neither paint a complete portrait. Okay, enough of that before it gets ugly… 😉

      • PrinceOfNaboo Says:

        Yes, I do think Lucas did his best to keep Star Wars politically neutral. What seems a fact is that Lucas was very displeased with the American policy during Vietnam and with Nixon/reagan and that inspired him in part for Star Wars.
        If you look closer, there is the supposed Gunray –> Raygun –> Reagan thing among others, but everthing is deliberately kept ambiguous.

        I think the only scene that was destinctively political was the deleted scene from AOTC with Dooku and Padmé and corperations “buying out” democracy. I also think that’s the reason why it (or at least that part of the dialogue) was cut.

        Lucas did want Star Wars to be political, but he didn’t want it to be too close to real-world politics.

      • BansheeGun Says:

        You’ll need to go back and read what I said, I was referring to the fandom of Star Wars, not the universe itself.

      • madmediaman Says:

        Again, I’d be careful painting fans in such broad strokes. There are plenty of thematic elements in Star Wars that would appeal to non-religious people, just as there are people of faith.

        As for the politics of Star Wars, they are all over the place, which explains why you can find someone of the right like Newt Gingrich commenting on the films at the same time as someone on the left like Nancy Pelosi. And using Star Wars: The Legacy Revealed as a guidepost for that is dangerous as most of the commentators in that show were politically on the left.

        Lucas himself is a man of the left, at least on social and foreign policy issues and makes no bones about that. He has also said that elements of ROTJ and ANH were speaking about the politics of the time when he began writing the Saga (Watergate/Vietnam). But at its base Star Wars is about the struggle against tyranny, and most people, whether ideologically leaning to the left, or to the right can come to agreement on that (for the most part).

        However, fandom is another thing, and I think Star Wars fans are largely a reflection of society and I suspect most Star Wars fans are all over the map politically, but by and large are centrists who lean ever so slightly to the right (at least in the US). Unfortunately, while fandom overall is largely centrist, the subculture of the uber geek community, which is the most visible part of fandom to the general public, is another thing altogether and has largely been hijacked by by people’s whose views are very left of center. Just look at the recent Gamergate controversy for evidence of that.

      • BansheeGun Says:

        I guess I’m speaking from the experiences I’ve had with the fandom. I try not to air out my politics too often (this is the internet, after all) but when I do in a SW setting it usually becomes very ugly. It’s obvious there are right-leaning Star Wars fans out there, but it seems the left-leaning Star Wars fans have a louder microphone.

        I think the only people who were on the right in the Star Wars: The Legacy Revealed were Newt Gingrich and Joan Breton Connelly.

      • lazypadawan Says:

        I concur with Yancy on his points. To me, Lucas comes off as a bit of a traditionalist who is also a product of the ’60s and being a long-time resident of Marin County, all wrapped up in some naivete and idealism. Star Wars in many ways reflects that contradiction but Lucas was smart enough not to make anything too on-the-nose or ideological. Lucas’s perspective on Vietnam might have influenced the Ewoks battle against the Empire but in the final product, it’s a traditional underdog wins story.

        Yancy’s also right about fandom vs. geek culture; they’re not always synonymous though they are often conflated. The Mary Sue often doesn’t speak for me but I don’t presume to speak for anyone else.

      • madmediaman Says:

        Like I mentioned in another part of this EPIC threat… I lean center right politically, and I understand what you are saying BansheeGun, but I think Star Wars fandom in particular is wildly diverse. When I was in the Army in the 90s, most of the rank and file servicemembers I served with were ideologically to the right… and they LOVED Star Wars. I frequently hosted Star Wars marathons at my house on base.

        I just think the more vocal people in geek culture tend to be more open about their politics. As a conservative leaning centrist, I don’t discuss my politics that much, and certainly don’t take a position that I’m right and anyone who doesn’t conform to my way of thought is wrong. I’ll certainly be vocal if someone is spouting bad information, or are being unjust toward someone else, but for the most part I live by the motto, “live and let live.”

        Unfortunately, there’s a strain within fandom that is trying to get people to conform to a certain mindset. It’s a form of groupthink I find particularly distasteful. When people start lobbing phrases like “racist,” or “intolerant bigot,” or “misogynist,” at members of the geek community simply because they have another opinion, then we have a problem. And unfortunately it appears people of a certain mindset have the loudest microphone. I tend to ignore their ramblings because I’ve simply found it not worth the effort to engage in dialogue simply because they are so closed minded.

        But, my friend, you are definitely not alone.

  8. BansheeGun Says:

    Huh, I didn’t know the SWPAS was listed on StarWars.com! http://www.starwars.com/community

  9. madmediaman Says:

    Ehhh… I’d be careful with that. Back in the 70s Star Wars was frequently being used used in Sunday schools in lesson plans. There’s certainly a large segment of the more popular fan web sites that are run by a more liberal leaning crowd, but I don’t think that’s a reflection of fandom at all.

    Personally I’m center-right leaning politically, and practicing Christian. I’d love to run a Star Wars fan site, and not to sound arrogant, but I do think I have some worthwhile opinions about my Star Wars passion that I’d enjoy to share with others (one of the reasons I frequently comment on this site). But between work, my personal life, and volunteer work I’m fairly busy and would have a hard time making room for a blog or podcast (which would be my preference).

  10. Jim Raynor Says:

    I’ve pointed it out before, but the anti-CGI complaints are a bunch of internet fanboy, echo chamber whining. People can have their preferences about filmmaking, but it’s getting more than a little annoying with the way every entertainment article just keeps pointing out the “practical” effects as if CGI is inherently bad.

    CGI isn’t perfect, and some of the effects in the prequels of course look fake. That’s no surprise, because they’re portraying fictional things under the limits of the technology of the time. That time period being 1999-2005, which is about a decade to a decade and a half ago. Not exactly as “new” as a lot of stuck-in-time fans still make out to be, and certainly not uncommon or uniquely wrong given how much CGI has proliferated in other films since then.

    But with all the CGI-bashing, I don’t see anyone pointing out how terribly some of the effects in the original trilogy have aged. Do people really want to see lots of unconvincing, barely mobile rubber suit and puppet aliens in a big budget blockbuster anymore? Actual stop-motion used for Imperial walkers and the creatures, the same type of animation most famously utilized by extremely dated children’s shows?

    How’s about the shot in The Empire Strikes Back (every vocal fan’s favorite movie ever) when Luke jumped after losing his duel to Vader? They didn’t use modern CGI there…no, they apparently cut out a still photo of Mark Hamill and just superimposed that on a picture of the big pit he was supposedly falling into. Because of course they weren’t going to actually drop Mark Hamill several hundred feet in real life.

    All of that stuff in the originals looks extremely fake and unconvincing. Yet no one in the media ever complains about it. It’s using two different standards, while ignoring the reality that most of the mainstream movie going audience couldn’t care less about what’s CGI and what isn’t.

    • jarjarbacktattooguy Says:

      I agree that some people hate CG, and I disagree with those people. You on the other hand, seem to hate everything that isn’t CG. One extreme to the other, I’d say.

      Millions of people around the world still enjoy all of those “fake” effects from the OT.

      And a lot of those “old” techniques were used to great effect in the prequels.

      Should the Wookies, Rodians, Ithorians all have been CG in the prequels?

      As for stop motion, the fact that you only associate it with the Rankin-Bass TV specials shows you just don’t know much about it. It was used in all sorts of films, big budget or otherwise and was still considered the best type of effect to portray characters in motion in 1980 and for years after that.

      As for puppets…should the Muppets be CG now too? Would that make them more enjoyable?

      If you are an effects fan, then I would think you would appreciate all sorts of different techniques.

      CG is good at doing certain things, while puppetry, stop/go motion, models, and other optical effects are still superior in some ways at doing certain things.

      But it’s art. There are many different techniques and that’s what makes it interesting. They are all different. You seem to associate how advanced technologically something is to its artistic worth.

      • Jim Raynor Says:

        No, I don’t hate everything that’s not CG. Please refrain from such extreme simplifications. I said no such thing.

        Stuff like stop motion may have been necessary thirty years ago, but it’s certainly not what’s being used nowadays and for good reason. It looks “fake” too, like a lot of CGI, but is a lot less versatile.

        Just pointing out the limits of movie special effects, the fact that they have always looked fake, and the double standard that OT fans have against CGI.

    • Hunk a Junk Says:

      Jim, I agree. While OT worshipers praise “old school” SPFX, kids growing up in the digital era see them an entirely different way. The Taun Taun shots, for example, make fanboys weepy with nostalgia, but my kids see them and say, “That looks so fake.” The problem is that for many hateboys, the Taun Taun shots establish “the look” and when they see, for example, Obi-Wan riding Boga in ROTS they think it looks fake because it’s not stop-motion even though its technically better and visually more realistic.

      • BansheeGun Says:

        What really gets me is why JJ and Disney are so adamant about using “practical” effects in Episode 7. Instead of bowing down to the Prequel-Hating, CGI-Loathing trolls, they should try to create the best movie possible with the best technology possible. I would argue that George Lucas is responsible for most of the advancements in CGI today with ILM. Why not honor him by continuing the innovation he pioneered all these years?

      • Hunk a Junk Says:

        BansheeGun, they are going to use a ton of CG. There’s really no way around that while still being cost-effective. The spin about “practical effects” is just that: spin. It’s just a less direct way of telling people, “We’re not going to make this movie like the prequels.” That’s it.

      • madmediaman Says:

        My daughter questions to this day why George never replaced the Taun-Taun. I honestly have no answer other than it looks ok in a couple of shots, and it’s onscreen for such a short period of time he may not have felt it was worth the effort.

  11. lazypadawan Says:

    Hunk A Junk’s right. Kyle Newman talked about this on a recent Rebel Force Radio podcast; he said, “Watch, they’ll use more CG than any movie in recent memory.” Notice we have not seen a single soundstage photo from Ep VII. Why? Because THEN you’ll see the green screen and the PR is meant to de-emphasize digital effects. If you’ve seen the drone shots from some outdoor sets, notice a particular ship isn’t completely built. Maybe that’s because it’s going to be partially practical, and partially digital.

    • PrinceOfNaboo Says:

      Don’t be so ciritical! I’m sure Pinewood is just a blue harvest like distraction and JJ, crew and cast have actually and secretly shot all scenes “on location” in Space and on Planets in a Galaxy far, far away! I’ve heart it was Disney who bought the last Space Shuttle….they might miss the premiere in December 2015, however, because it takes some time to return to our galaxy.

      In all seriousness, though: I thought it was funny how everybody ignored that our “practical heroes” are obviously only “flying half a ship”.

      • Tarrlok Says:

        I think I saw a few jokes along those lines on TFN’s forums.

        The “geek media”? I neither know nor care how hard they try to avoid obvious ROTS puns staring them in the face.

        And don’t forget, Abrams is planning to surgically remove Mark Hamill’s hand to “keep it real” with the prosthetic hands, which have been designed to survive re-entry into Titan’s atmosphere (that’s their local film location).

      • lazypadawan Says:

        Heh heh.

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