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Defining the Magic of the OT

Discussion in 'Original Trilogy' started by Skynet83, Jun 9, 2015.

  1. Old Biff from the Future

    Old Biff from the Future Dune Sea Hermit

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    The Magic of the OT


    1977

    upload_2015-10-12_17-19-21.png

    1980


    upload_2015-10-12_17-29-3.png

    1983


    [​IMG]
     

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  2. GaelTrooper

    GaelTrooper Clone

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    I'd have to agree with the essential good vs. evil overall plot line. I'd also say the lack of profanity was big as well. Today's movies feel it's necessary to drop all kinds of profanity to make it "real". Movies should be an escape from reality. If I want to hear swearing, all I need do is go out into the world and I'll hear it. Another thing that made the OT so good was it was a family film. A lot of these previous attributes listed above (and in previous posts) come from the fact that these films where made in the mid and late 70s (I know Return was filmed in the 80s), a more innocent time, certainly when it comes to movies if not attitudes and expectations.
     
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  3. Cole

    Cole Force Sensitive

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    Popples! Yes! "(no need to be preachy!)" Another Yes!
    Yes I read the whole thing! Great post.
     
  4. Jimba Fett

    Jimba Fett Rebelscum

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    The definition for the magic of the OT can probably be summed up in one word - mystery. The OT is the complete antithesis of the PT. In that unlike the PT there wasn't a need to explain everything in fine detail about every aspect of the story. The best example of this is obi wan's concise definition of the force in ANH. This is in complete contrast to the concept of midichlorians in the PT. Obi wan didn't need to spend a lengthy discussion as to the scientific explanation of the force. His explanation was sufficient but left a feeling of mystery and awe about it, the force is both in nature and is supernatural. In essence it was magical. In fact there are many many examples throughout the OT where explanation is treated as an unwelcomed fiend which threatens to destroy that magic. Only enough is explained leaving plenty of room for interpretation and endless discovery.
     
    #24 Jimba Fett, Oct 15, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2015
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  5. Bandini

    Bandini Jedi Commander

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    The magic is about the inner child and the initiatic way.
     
  6. Get In Gear

    Get In Gear Force Sensitive

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    I've tried - and failed - to put together a reply to this thread several times, because I just can't express what I am imagining whenever I try to answer this question.

    I suppose, first and foremost, Star Wars has always appealed to me on some zen-like aesthetic level.
    Let me explain exactly what I mean. If somebody had given me the early synopsis of Star Wars and said: "look, we've got this robot character. He does this, and acts like this, and kind of looks humanoid..." I might actually be able to come up with something like this myself:
    mcquarrie 3po.jpg
    Now, I don't mean I'm as talented as Ralph McQuarrie, I simply mean it looks like something you might come up with as a design for a robot for a sci-fi movie, given the brief. It's a robot. It's humanoid. And it looks like it has a function.
    So when you talk about the magic of Star Wars, I always think of things like this. C-3PO ended up looking like this:
    c3po.jpg
    He's gold. And he's kind of abstract. But somehow it's just perfect. And that - to me - is the "magic". I just don't/understand know how they wen't from the concept to the finished thing. I mean, yeah, I've seen all the other McQuarrie concepts that came after the original "Metropolis" ones... and I can see how the design evolved and got closer to what we ended up seeing onscreen, but I can't quite grasp how that happened, that final leap from a robot-human thing to the finished costume that kind of looks so odd, it doesn't look like it was actually designed by anyone, it has to exist as a real thing.
    Does anyone else know what I am getting at?
    I mean, was it just that the movie-making was so good, and Daniels inhabited that charater so well that it just *worked* and therefore it becomes a great piece of design because of all that, or is it just an inspired design? Or is it just all of the above?
    It works on a level that I can't quite comprehend, and that is why it is magic to me.

    And it happened time and time again.
    From this:
    falconss.jpg

    ... to this:

    Millennium-Falcon.jpeg

    ... for example. I just don't quite understand how (or why) that leap was made.

    And then on top of all this aesthetically appealing stuff, I have always been attracted to the fact that the story, and the universe it is set in, is totally unpatronising. Movies, and sci-fi movies in particular, have a habit of explaining stuff because it is presumed the audience won't understand it. But Lucas - if anything - was smart enough to see that none of that is important, because the drama is the only thing an audience is interested in, and the only way you can get an audience to understand stuff is to have characters explain it to them. So, yeah, there is some clunky dialogue in Star Wars, and, yeah, there is exposition just like any other movie... but how many other movies would have wasted time explaining what moisture vaporators are and how they work? What Tosche Station is? What Jawas are? Star Wars doesn't bother with any of that.
    The audience is bombarded with all of this stuff, and it is ultimately all the more believable because it isn't ever explained. It just kind of exists, and you accept that. It makes the whole universe more believable. Because, why would Uncle Owen ever need to explain how a moisture vaporator works to Luke, for the benefit of the audience? That would be like someone in a movie set in New York explaining how a car works to another character.
     
    #26 Get In Gear, Oct 18, 2015
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2015
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  7. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Rebel Official

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    The OT was known as "The Adventures of Luke Skywalker" with Luke being the main protagonist, not Darth Vader or Anakin Skywalker. It was Luke who actually decided or was instrumental to the outcome by rather sacrificing himself than to join Vader (ESB) and by not fighting his father to the death (ROJ).

    It never ceases to amaze me, that I'm still able to watch and enjoy ANH ad ESB, both are "timeless" films which provide such a realistic feel that each time I watch them it feels like "being there".
    I recently reread the old SW Cinefantastique issue from 1978, and there was one particular aspect John Dykstra highlighted: Other films with a 10,000 $ prop felt the need to somehow place it in the center image to cry for attention. With ANH even the more elaborate and extensive props remained in the background to enrich the realistic feel.
     
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  8. Jimba Fett

    Jimba Fett Rebelscum

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    I know that it was originally the adventures of Luke skywalker and while I agree with the importance of Luke's role in the original trilogy it was the addition of the prequel trilogy that made it into the story of Anakin Skywalker. It's open to interpretation of course as some choose to even believe that the prequels aren't relevant, shouldn't have existed in the first place and I for one can understand why.

    I agree with you on the realistic aspect of the OT.
     
  9. stencil

    stencil Rebel General

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    Books have been written on this subject, and I could write my own, so I will be as brief as possible and expand later if anyone wants to discuss. Many people have mentioned similar things.

    What makes Star Wars magic?

    1) The purity of the story - Good vs. Evil, Joseph Campbell and all that. The simplicity appeals to kids and to adults of a certain type. I love the purity of the plot.
    2) The sheer imagination - Not just the genius of George, but in the original trilogy there were so many talented, creative people who were just allowed to go nuts. Ralph McQuarrie and Lawrence Kasdan especially, but effects people, costume designers, set designers just seem to have been given permission to do things that hadn't been done before. It created a wonderful creative mess that felt like real life, not just the product of one mind.
    3) A lived in universe - This has been discussed a million times, but I don't just mean the fact that everything is dirty and banged up, thought that is part of it. More importantly, there were so many throw away visuals and lines of dialog that just made you feel like you were an uninformed observer of a real universe. Things like:
    - The Clone Wars - what is that? A war against clones? Once it was explained it didn't live up to my imagination.
    - The bounty hunters in ESB - They all had such unique looks. You just knew each of them had a history. Later explained in books - not as cool as my imagination.
    - Ord Mandell - What is that? Please don't tell me, but I'm sure it has been explained to death in some comic book or other
    - Captain Antilles - Who was that? Was that Wedge? Wedge's dad?
    I could go on and on, but the whole point is that these questions HAD NO ANSWERS. And it was better that way. You may think you want the answers, really really badly, but trust me it's better if you don't. Once you start explaining every little bit of Star Wars, what you get is... Star Trek. (Honestly no offense meant to Star Trek, I really like Star Trek. But that is the main difference between the two in my eyes. Star Trek will explain dilithium crystals and tachyon emissions. Star Wars is supposed to avoid explaining anything at all, especially midichlorians)

    My number one fear is that JJ and Kathleen will feel the need to overexplain, especially what has happened in the last 30 years. We don't really need to know. Just show us what is happening now and we can infer, maybe even incorrectly, what has happened already.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 4, 2015, Original Post Date: Nov 4, 2015 ---
    Absolutely! I mention this in a previous post. When you start talking about midichlorians, Star Wars becomes Star Trek. (DISCLAIMER: I love Star Trek. I just don't want it in my Star Wars)
     
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  10. Darth Sidious

    Darth Sidious Rebel Official

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    In ANH, the galaxy seems so big and mysterious. What other aliens live on Tatooine? Who built the Massassi Temple? What are Yavin 1-3 like? What other twisted experiments is the Empire performing?
     
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  11. Darth Sidious

    Darth Sidious Rebel Official

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    A theme of ANH is believing in oneself. The Death Star was closing in Yavin, all the pilots but Luke had been shot down, Vader was closing in on Luke, but Luke believed in his ability to use The Force and destroy the Death Star, so he released the proton torpedoes when The Force told him to, and the Death Star was destroyed, saving the galaxy.
     
  12. Lt. Hija

    Lt. Hija Rebel Official

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    ^^ I'd dare to say that believing in oneself is rather the predominant theme in ESB and illustrated by Luke, NOT doing what he is being told (i.e. to finish his training, first)

    With all my love for ANH I must nevertheless concede that Luke essentially does as he is being told. Without Ben Kenobi's "Use the Force" advice he would have relied on his targeting computer instead - and probably failed.
     
  13. Darth Sidious

    Darth Sidious Rebel Official

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    I love how "I am your father" changes the meaning of everything. Vader's actions in ESB weren't about the war. Rather, they were about getting a chance to meet his son.
     
  14. AstromechRecords

    AstromechRecords Jedi General

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    @Old Biff from the Future IS THAT YOU
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 28, 2015, Original Post Date: Nov 28, 2015 ---
    Vader was just really sensitive .
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 28, 2015 ---
    -_- . .
     
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