I Hope Right You Are
Star Wars, Episode III has come to Toronto.
The sexology? Hexology? Double trilogy? has finally come to an end, breaking sales records as per usual.
After the wide acknowledgment of the poor writing (especially of romantic scenes and Yoda's grammatical idiom) in the critically panned Episodes I and II, what brings people back?
While other Torontonians watched the Victoria Day fireworks over Ontario Place, I followed a group of Ryerson students to the 7pm showing at the Rainbow Cinema, in hopes of discovering the source of the appeal.
In anticipation of the film, Karl Rantala said that although the recent two films were bad compared to the originals, he "wants to see how it plays out." His friend Jenn Luk admitted that she's "a sucker for marketing." Samantha Wootton states that she's going to see Anakin, even though "he's not even hot anymore."
Although Karl avers that the newer, younger fans of Star Wars have been drawn in by merchandising, a Forbes report indicates that there was actually more success in terms of toy sales with the original films. Both Karl and Elaine Salonga admit to having light sabers in their households.
At Tim Hortons after the film, Karl, Jenn, Samantha and Elaine all agree that they enjoyed it. "When that robot had four light sabers, I crapped my pants" Karl enthuses, though the love scenes were disappointing for all but Samantha, who says "they were totally worth seeing the movie for, (...) I just wanted to see the really bad acting."
Thematically, the students all saw political parallels to the polarity of opinions in the US, though they were quick to note that they don't think George W. Bush is evil. As Jenn says, the "similarities are in [political] manipulation - you never know what's right." Elaine believes the appeal lies in the"timeless storytelling." It's "just the story of good versus evil, (...) good always triumphs," says Karl, "eventually."
Ultimately, Elaine says, the satisfaction of the film lies in seeing "everything coming full circle," learning the events and situations that lead to the original episodes. The students also all agree that they now have an urge to go back and watch the original films again. Whether this is true for all viewers is impossible to know, but it's clear that the mythology Lucas created, despite stilted dialogue or poor direction, engages the imagination, and appeals enough to survive multiple viewings.
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