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THREAD FOR THOSE WHO HATED THE MOVIE

Discussion in 'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' started by Kript, Dec 13, 2017.

?

Which points do you agree were not well made and you did not like?

  1. 1.Luke as a character

    171 vote(s)
    55.2%
  2. 2.Phasma being wasted

    136 vote(s)
    43.9%
  3. 3.Forced and bad humor

    185 vote(s)
    59.7%
  4. 4.Finding out nothing about Snoke and his premature death

    162 vote(s)
    52.3%
  5. 5.Rey parents being nobodies

    116 vote(s)
    37.4%
  6. 6.Maz and Luke's lightsaber

    109 vote(s)
    35.2%
  7. 7.The knights of ren are forgotten and nowhere to be seen

    158 vote(s)
    51.0%
  8. 8.Leia flying through space scene

    199 vote(s)
    64.2%
  9. 9.Luke's weightless death

    134 vote(s)
    43.2%
  10. 10.The whole Finn and Rose plotline

    207 vote(s)
    66.8%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. Darth_Nobunaga

    Darth_Nobunaga Rebel Official

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    Most of the people I mentioned have screenwriting experience. And there are people more qualified than them like Warren Ellis and Matt Reeves, who could've easily been consultants at bear minimum for fleshing out the era and conflict where Abrams and Johnson weren't able to. Warren Ellis is a profound builder of worlds, and has the ability to take existing universes and give them layered depth and nuance (his work on the Castlevania anime is proof of that). And if Disney was deadset on homaging elements from previous films but through a reimagined lens, they could've approached Matt Reeves for consultation, who wrote and directed the recent Planet of the Apes reboot trilogy, which re-interpreted much of the original source and created a completely unique setting and world for the reboot movies.

    There was a wealth of opportunities to have other people come in to aid in production, something that Disney/LFL have proven they're not above doing, if the calling in of new scriptwriters and directors for the Anthology films are any indication.

    But they didn't. And what we got was a setting and conflict for this new trilogy that offers nothing new, doesn't push the galaxy in any new directions, or even informs on the distinction these films have from the previous trilogies. The world Abrams and Johnson have created feels sparse, empty, hollow, lifeless and without any smidgeon of creativity or nuance.

    It's a generic sci-fi setting that just happens to feature a few familiar characters. And that's a tragic new low for a franchise that sat next to Lord of the Rings, Star Trek and Harry Potter as one of the all-time great examples of a detailed, sprawling, and engaging world of fiction.. It's absolutely disgusting to a fan like me.

    The reason my evaluation of Edwards' approach is different from the way I view Abrams or Johnson is quite simple: he's guilty of a different flaw. His film is a bloated, detail-heavy, intricate set-piece of world-building and exposition with weak characterizations. Both Abrams' and Johnson's movies are works completely lacking in the area of world-building, combined with absolutely TERRIBLE characterizations. The worst thing I can say about the Rogue One cast is that they're wholly unremarkable and disposable---but the film itself, despite treating them like martyrs to a cause, doesn't try to be anything more than an action setpiece around the meager drama of one character, that being Jyn. It's not particularly good at it, but it's not aspiring to be anything higher. Outside of that, it doesn't put nearly as much focus on the characters' motives, emotional development, or conflicting personalities in order to service some deep, underlying drama.

    You know which films do? TFA and TLJ. Those movies try relentlessly to make the likes of Rey, Kylo Ren, and Luke to be the dramatic focal points of the story, and they fail. The characters are HORRENDOUSLY under-written, with paper-thin motives that can be summarized with wave-away phrases like "MUH PARENTS" or "I'M CONFLICTED, FEEL SORRY FOR ME". And while those work for bad fanfiction, they work terribly for films that try to elevate the struggles of Rey or Kylo to the dramatic heights that TFA or TLJ try to do. The amount of drama Abrams attempts in that dimly-lit confrontation between Han and Kylo, despite barely elaborating on any history between the two characters, is undeniable. And on top of that, the world-building and establishing of setting---elements crucial to a Star Wars film---are so non-existent and poorly-done. So what you have are weak characters being shoe-horned into these attempts at harrowing character drama, failing miserably, on top of a non-existent setting and conflict.

    Rogue One had weak characters but decent world-building, in a story that was a one-off side-story at least. That's all it's guilty of, and even the weak characterizations can be attributed to production changes. You say there's "no excuse" for weak character writing, but a big part of character writing is putting them in situations that expand those characters. If you watch the early trailers for Rogue One, you'll notice A LOT of story elements that never made it into the final product. Jyn is more wry and callous, she actually appears in the final battle alongside her comrades on Scarif, the narration by Saw Garrera implies the Death Star Plan heists and the methods Jyn uses to accomplish it changing her for the worst...all scenarios and ideas that could've fleshed her out as a character, that were axed when it was time to reshoot and hire a new writer. I'm not defending the final product with that information, and I consider the final product to be a hatchet-job of a film, and an objectively-bad one at that. It matches the quality of a decent filler episode of Rebels, at best. Despite that, and the fact that the film is saddled to being just a one-shot film without sequels and confined to a pre-established era (severely limiting creativity by default), Edwards still wormed some decent world-building in the ultimately-mediocre film Rogue One ended up being, and I have to give him credit for that. We'll never see the untainted film he envisioned, but the surviving work has enough detail in its setting and emphasis on its conflict to make it feel part of the Star Wars universe.

    But the situation I mentioned above does not apply to either Abrams or Johnson. They had infinitely less production meddling and boundless creative freedom, particularly in the case of Rian Johnson. They didn't have the obstacle of having rewrites and reshoots compromise their intentions with the characters, and that CERTAINLY didn't get in the way of the setting and conflict they were trying to paint.

    No. Nothing got in the way of Abrams or Johnson attempting world-building...they just didn't attempt it, because they weren't creative enough. They made the films they wanted to make without any compromise or setbacks, and their vision was a woefully uncreative, sparse world with no in-universe progression or distinction from the past films.

    Their lack of creativity is a unique standard that only applies to them, because of they were tasked with making new Star Wars films set in the same era. And by that token, they're guilty of far worse failings, which they inflicted on the next Star Wars trilogy, not some one-off standalone like Rogue One.

    Well, whatever film that "delighted" Kasdan and Abrams is sadly an uncreative showcase of shallow action, weak characters, non-existent world-building, and no in-universe progression from the last trilogy.

    And Disney got what they wanted: a safe money-maker that was made for December of 2015, and December of 2015 alone. I could easily say the same about TLJ; it was made for the blockbuster period in which it was released, and that period alone. They're not made to continue the Star Wars storyline in any creative, expansive, or distinct way...they exist to hold five minutes of hype and attention. And that approach is precisely why these films are going to age horribly, and why I despise them so much. They aren't stories...they're empty and lifeless products. If someone were to marathon all 9 films in release order, they're going to notice the sharp decline in creativity and in-universe progression when they get to the Sequel Trilogy. Because that's how Disney/LFL designed these movies: for the short term.

    They had no plan from TFA, no creative path, no interesting direction to go, and no unique conflict or era to present. The thankless bunch over at Lucasfilm Animation put more thought, creativity, and adherence to detail and scope in a single episode of Rebels than either Johnson or Abrams have put in the entirety of the ST movies...and Rebels is a cartoon aired on a TV block for 7-year-olds, produced on 1/16th of the budget shoveled into the ST films. When THAT show is doing more world-building and expanding of its conflict than the mainstream Star Wars films, there's a major problem in the approach being taken.

    The ST movies are shallow, vapid products that contribute nothing of value to Star Wars. And I wouldn't be so bitter towards the sparse and empty setting they've created if only that setting and conflict WASN'T the focal point of every piece of Star Wars media nowadays. The comics, the novels, the new cartoons...every single piece of media cursed with being set in the same era as the ST movies is marred by the bland, lifeless world that TFA and TLJ have created. I literally can't even turn to supplementary Star Wars material as a means of escaping the movies like I used to, because the setting of the ST has tainted the supplementary material as well.

    The mediocre conflict and setting of the ST movies has infected the Star Wars brands like the Bubonic Plague.

    Considering how 90% of the confrontations, emotional moments and action scenes in the ST are based on drama that the story hasn't earned yet, by way of questions it hasn't answered, history it hasn't provided, and context it has completely walked over in favor of trying to get the audience to relate to these scenes on a wafer-thin level of emotional relatability, I'd say "don't think, only feel" is the perfect descriptor of Abrams and Johnson's approach, despite how uncomfortable that ugly truth may make you feel. Just because Abrams peppered his film with questions he didn't have the answer to, in a shallow attempt to build hype over mysteries that he left other directors to solve for him, doesn't make his film thought-provoking...that just means he purposely made the film a narrative enigma in place of an actual, developed plot. My half-finished college essay isn't magically some Freudian mystery simply because I left out half of my argument and research points...all that leads to is a confused teacher labeling the paper with the stamp of "Unfinished", and rightfully so. Having a few unanswered mysteries in a film to take into sequels is one thing: having the ENTIRE PLOT and every single character, plot element, emotional moment, confrontation, mythological development, and entire character motives left completely empty is where it stops being a mystery, whilst still expecting me to be invested in what's going on, is ludicrous. Being mystified or confused isn't investment...it's a ploy to get you to watch sequels. But if the starting point where those questions originated isn't substantial or detailed enough to begin with, the answers to those questions won't save the film where the questions were introduced.

    The film itself, removed from all the mysteries set up, is a flimsy, poorly-put together mess. It wants us to be invested in Rey, when her entire character revolves around finding her parents, rendering her useless, bland, ineffectual and forgettable the moment that aspect of her character is removed. It wants us to be invested in Han Solo and Kylo Ren's relationship and eventual confrontation, when nothing about that relationship or history between those two characters has been set up or illuminated whatsoever. It wants us to be invested in the new Rebels vs Empire conflict, when the film's done nothing to explain who or what is happening, why it's happening, what makes this conflict different to what came before, and why its respective factions are taking part in the first place. The film reeks of the urge to get to dramatic or suspenseful points without doing the work or writing to get to them. Abrams wanted all of the moments in the film to resonate with the audience, but instead of leading the audience to those moments organically through writing and build-up, he just drops the audience into those scenes without any, and expects full emotional investment or caring.

    Sorry, but that is the textbook definition of "don't think, just feel." Abrams doesn't want the audience to think about why anything is happening in the scenes he orchestrates, just to "feel" the atmosphere and emotions of the characters, whether they're justified by the story or not.

    And it's funny that you mention Ridley Scott, because his approach is the complete opposite. In fact, he'll actually risk something like a slow pace or a bloated runtime to work his way to moments of emotional resonance, profound character development, or confrontations between characters (so long as he's got a good writer with him. That seems to be the factor that dictates whether or not Scott delivers a good film or not these days, as Robin Hood, Prometheus, and Alien Covenant prove).

    And I hate to break it to you, but some of Ridley Scott's best films are the ones in which he was able to balance world-building AND characterization, the very thing you argue is unnecessary in regards to TLJ and TFA. Blade Runner and Alien meticulously build the worlds they're set in, either through visual tours, exploration, exposition or long explanations.

    And the films Scott has received the most criticism for are the films where he failed to retain that balance, Prometheus being quite possibly the most egregious example, and by far the perfect example...at least, until the ST movies came along.

    You can't really blame the Nu-Canon authors for not featuring more of Luke or Kylo Ren in their work, or for failing to provide insight or development on their history between films.

    The films didn't care to do that, and you can bet that the Story Group won't permit any expansion on their characters till the Trilogy is over. And as for the books providing meaningless details like space illnesses and Leia's favorite picnic spots...can you blame the writers? They're trying to fill in the void with whatever details the filmmakers left in the films like table-scraps, working off of whatever meager narrative architecture or detail exists in the actual movies. How many fascinating stories or world-building details do you expect out of an era that was designed to replicate the OT-er conflict for no other reason than a shallow attempt at catering to nostalgia?

    One of the reasons the Clone Wars was such a bastion of great spin-off material and storylines was because enough detail and world-building for that conflict and era had been done in the PT. Don't be surprised when the opposite is true when Abrams and Johnson prioritize moronic mystery boxes and thoughtless action sequences over developing the next era in the Star Wars continuity and history.
     
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  2. Darth Wardawg

    Darth Wardawg Rebel Official

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    Funny, but the wife and I binged Rebels over the summer and she mentioned how the dialogue and characterization of Rebels was superior to that of TFA and TLJ. I understand there are films that aren't great that I like, but I don't call them great. Why is it that fans of TLJ insist the dialogue, plot, etc is good when it is not? I love Rogue One. I realize the characterization isn't good, but I really enjoy that film. I enjoy Promethus as well. I know it's not a great film, but I can't help but like it. I admit it. However, fans of TLJ simply can't admit that it is, at best, problematic. Weird.
     
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  3. Darth_Nobunaga

    Darth_Nobunaga Rebel Official

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    Two things:

    1. Your wife clearly recognizes quality when she sees it, so props to her.

    2. What you're describing is the ability to distance objectivity from personal enjoyment. I, too, enjoy many films that I freely admit have a wealth of objective problems. There's films I enjoy like the Star Wars Prequel Trilogy, the Verbenski-directed Pirates of the Caribbean Trilogy, and standalone films like Troy, Bram Stoker's Dracula, Excalibur, Punisher Warzone, Masters of the Universe, The Black Cauldron, Ninja Scroll, and whole host of others. These movies are all slippery to outright clumsy in their execution, and everytime I feel the urge to defend or justify their faults, I stop to ask myself this question: "Would I tolerate these flaws in my favorite films of all time, like The Godfather, Gone With the Wind, Raiders of the Lost Ark or LOTR: The Two Towers? Would I want to see those films marred with the same problems?" And I always answer myself: "Of course not."

    That inability to tolerate flaws and defend them simply because I enjoy the film their apart of is something that a massive portion of the pro-TLJ crowd cannot do, because many of them have attached a type of value or idealogical resonance with the film, to where to to admit the film's faults is to, in their eyes, admit themselves as wrong or misguided. Thus, the urge to defend it arises.

    Funnily enough, I never felt the need to embark on a similar defensive crusade in favor of the Prequel Trilogy, because I don't attach that kind of value to them.
     
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  4. Jeden.Dwa

    Jeden.Dwa Clone

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    I don't buy that whole force wielding children bit. True change comes from within. With character flaws like Jedi Not a clone way. "Force Children" came from those flaws Yoda spoke of came from Jedi going to Canto Bighto and other places and planets on Sabbatical for some fun and excitement and adventure, and a cheap way of relesing tensions in The Rigid Jedi Council. And those damn fools wanting to bring change and END to The Republic.
     
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  5. Darth Wardawg

    Darth Wardawg Rebel Official

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    You hit the nail on the head. For some (or perhaps many) of the pro-TLJ crowd, the film is ideological, and thus inherently good (I hope I'm saying that right). If they admit the film is bad, then what does that say about the ideological values they have attached to the film?

    I don't have a problem with a film being a metaphor for the real world. I don't mind books that do it as well, as long as both DO IT WELL. I know Tolkien denied until his death the idea that LOTR is a metaphor for either WWI or WWII. It may in fact not be, but it does have messages that are applicable to, and based upon, real world experience. But it doesn't hit you over the head. There is no Rose Tico constantly badgering the reader/viewer. The heavy handedness in TLJ, as well as the desire to put a real world agenda ahead of what should have been the goal, crafting a well told story, means they've ruined the sequel trilogy.

    I realize JJ put them in a bind, but darn did they ever screw the pooch on this ST. I was super excited about TLJ. I will go see IX, but I can't see myself seeing it multiple times in the theater. Maybe I will. Maybe JJ will pull a rabbit out of his hat. I just can't see it happening now and that is sad.
     
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  6. Kylocity

    Kylocity Rebel Official

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    Not to me, for reasons I gave above.
    I mean, disappointment, yes. But disgust? This is just hyperbole, isn’t it?


    My thought process after TFA or TLJ had nothing to do with being swept by emotion. There were several themes that resonated with me, about family, about children following the wrong path, about parental vulnerability and accountability, about the guilt for failing. I don’t think these themes are superficial or underdeveloped or less effective just because the film’s conflict has not been set up with expositional details. Making the villain the son of our legacy heroes was an effective way to connect us to the story directly, throwing us in the middle of it. I think this is the best way in which the legacy characters could have been used. Not everything has to be spelled out or flagged in human, relatable stories. They are not like some weird new world set up that need explanation... I get you don’t find these kind of stories engaging or interesting but to say that these films only offer cheap thrills and make us surrender all intelligence is neither true nor fair.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 27, 2018, Original Post Date: Nov 27, 2018 ---
    You do not have to “break it to me”... I am very much acquainted with Ridley Scott’s work and know he’s a master of cinema. He doesn’t just create worlds, he makes us experience those worlds. He is fastidious about set design, about lighting, costume and make up in order to deliver texture, mood and character... He is a true artist, a visual storyteller, just like Lucas in his hey day. Better actually.

    I’m glad we have found common ground, finally, as you also appear to like Ridley Scott’s work. I agree with your choice of good and not so good movies... My only contribution to your “good” list would be Gladiator (I know that many disagree with me on this). Gladiator is second in my heart, after Blade Runner, obviously. Alien would be number three.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 27, 2018 ---
    I know that she was following instructions about not dealing with those characters. I just think that perhaps she should have mentioned childhood events, or typical motherly worries and ponderings: is Ben eating his vegetables? Is he getting along with his uncle? Wouldn’t such and such make a lovely girlfriend for my Ben? Ben would like that speeder... Or that starship... I wonder if Ben has changed....And so on and so forth. This is what mothers do and that was sorely missing from the story... Han was also not extremely dealt with either, in this pondering sense... She didn’t have to give spoilers, just a bit more of Leia’s true worries. That would have made her novel better.

    But maybe I’m just nitpicking...
     
    #5406 Kylocity, Nov 27, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2018
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  7. Darth Wardawg

    Darth Wardawg Rebel Official

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    The more I think about it, the more I think LFL should have set this trilogy closer to the end of Return of the Jedi. Perhaps even within a few years of the film. They should have simply made Rogue One and another film (heck even Solo which I enjoyed) and then go into the ST. They could have recast the characters. Yeah, there would have been some whinging (and I might have been one of them), then they could have rolled with Luke rebuilding the Jedi order, etc...

    Instead Disney insisted on pushing for a film in 2015 which gave us what is, ultimately a flawed trilogy. They could have used that extra time to truly develop a story. And let's face it, the First Order sucks. Everyone loves the Empire, so we could have seen the remnant of the empire. We could have seen a Sith lord as the bad guy (maybe Darth Plaguies)... Either way, Star wars IS the Jedi/Sith. It is the Empire. It is the Skywalker clan. Sure, I love me some Clone Wars, and I hope D&D are gonna do a trilogy set in the "Old Republic" era, but does anyone really care about Finn? Poe? Rey? Hux???? I get ticked off thinking of the golden chance they had and they blew it.
     
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  8. Stormagadon

    Stormagadon Cantina Court Jester
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    I was thinking about things the other day, looking at the development of TFA, TLJ, Solo, R1, and how they were all in some state of being at the same time, and I couldn't help but think that maybe each one of those films would be vastly different if Disney didn't want to rush TFA so much.

    "Mystery box" debate aside in regards to TFA and TLJ, the one real issue I had with TFA was the timing. It felt very rushed, and it was a lot to take in. On repeated viewings (I've lost count now, haha), it's much more palatable, but it doesn't feel as... casual as ANH or the other two OT films.
    It really suffers from needing to play catch up and hurry up, that I think if they had an extra year behind the scenes, the final product would be much easier to digest.
    That would of course effect TLJ and the spin offs, but I think fans who loved, hated, have mixed and varied opinions on this era would agree that given more time, each product would have been better.*

    *and that means for those who haven't enjoyed the films, they would have, and the ones who have enjoyed them would have really enjoyed them! :p
     
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  9. Darth Wardawg

    Darth Wardawg Rebel Official

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    I've said it elsewhere, and it's exactly how you put it. The rush to get TFA out by 12/2015 set off a chain reaction that brought us to where we are.

    And yes, TFA does feel rushed. There is no world building, no REAL building of the story. There are moments where if FEELS like it's on course, but then no. That scene of Rey in the wreckage of a Star Destroyer... no dialogue. Just visuals and music... Bloody brilliant! But the whole First Order, Starkiller Base... it just feels half baked. That in turn made TLJ feel half baked. Like RJ decided he didn't like the questions asked or care about the possible answers.

    I think about how I would have done it, if I were tasked with leading LFL back in 2012. The first thing I would have done: what is the story for the ST? Do we have one? Why are we doing this, simply to make money or to tell a story?

    Next: we want to do a "marvel"? Then we need to view the Saga films as Avenger films, and the "Story" films as what helps to build up TO the Saga films.

    Personally, I think it was a bad idea killing off Han. I know Harrison didn't want to really come back. So why not just set the ST earlier in the time line and recast? Either way, they should have done something where they released the equivalent of Iron Man I and Iron Man II prior to VII. Make each one a Luke Skywalker doing cool Jedi stuff with Ben film. But have Ben star to turn, etc. Let us see that. Also world build and show us the rise of the FO. Release one in 2016, one in 2018. 2019 VII. Then go from there. DO NOT set TLJ like 24 hours AFTER TFA. And DO NOT kill Luke.

    Finally, I would do a film or two which shows Rey and her struggles to become a Jedi. Set it/them in between TFA and TLJ. So something like this:

    2016: Luke and Ben
    2017: The Knights of Ren and the destruction of Luke's new academy
    2018: Rogue One (which I still really enjoy) But have SOMETHING in there that ties into TFA in some way.
    2019: VII The Force Awakens
    2020: Rey and Luke
    2021: Obi Wan (because I"m in charge and I love me some Obi Wan).
    2022: VIII The Last Jedi (Luke doesn't die here)
    2023: Solo (I do enjoy the film)
    2024: Bounty Hunters done by James Mangold (I loved that rumor)
    2025: IX (Here you can have Luke die in a glorious battle with Snoke whom I'd make Darth Plageius).

    Maybe you drop the Star Wars Stories (RO, Solo, Obi and Bounty) and have all films tie into the others. Or perhaps by that point you can do more than one film a year. I don't think Solo filed because it was too soon per se. I just think the anger over TLJ, the bad press surrounding the film, the timing (right after Avengers AND Deadpool????) all meant it was always in trouble.

    Finally, no risky director choices. I like what RJ did in his little films and with Breaking Bad. But that is a far cry from doing Star Wars. JJ was a good choice. I had no problem with Gareth Edwards. But Lord and Miller and RJ I think were not good choices. I'd have tried to get Ron Howard in and James Mangold. Maybe the guy who did Mission Impossible this past summer, what was his name? Anyway, that was far longer than I intended. LOL
     
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  10. TrumanJ

    TrumanJ Rebel General

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    I agree...the story is more important than the actors. I have the utmost love and respect for the actors, but to me the story is more important. I would like the original actors to have a part in the films, but the story is what made us love the universe. And the story needs to be well crafted. Rushing to make money created a lack of detail.

    Wish I didn’t have boycott Solo because it’s an awesome movie, but I’d still boycott it today because it’s the only way for me to prove I’m upset to Disney and them to listen. But it’s awesome and I’d love to see sequels. The price we pay.

    By the way, no darth plageius, he died before tfm, leave him dead. If he somehow survived, wouldn’t he have paid darth Sidious a visit when the emperor was still alive?
     
    #5410 TrumanJ, Nov 29, 2018
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  11. Darth Wardawg

    Darth Wardawg Rebel Official

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    I agree about the Darth Plageius in that he should be dead. Unless he is using some crazy Sith technique to take over someone's body. Yeah, perhaps he should visit Palpatine. I think you could come up with a reason for him not having done so. I think the problem with NOT making Snoke Darth Plageius is that they made Snoke look like what I imagine Darth looks like after Palpatine killed him (If that makes sense?). It is like that was what JJ was thinking, but then RJ threw it out the window. Oh well.

    I totally and completely agree. The story is what is important. Get that right, place that front and center, and everything else falls into place. Instead Disney forced LFL to start churning out films before they were truly ready to do so. Then, to add more difficulty, KK seems to have decided that Star Wars needed fixing. Not enough "strong women." Its as if she doesn't even know ANYTHING about what went before. Leia, Padme, Asokha, Mara Jade... There were plenty of strong women! Heck Mon Mothma was the bloody leader of the rebellion in the OT!!!! She wanted to put forward this social agenda and focused on that INSTEAD of simply making great films with great characters. I still want to pull my hair out when I see that photo with her wearing a t-shirt saying "The Force is Female." No, it's BOTH!! It's yin and yang.

    Anyway, we are where we are. Hopefully somehow JJ and Chris Terrio can deliver the goods with episode IX. I'm just glad I'm not responsible for bringing this one home. LOL
     
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  12. TrumanJ

    TrumanJ Rebel General

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    There was a technique where a dying sith could take over an apprentices’ body in the old republic books. Or at least that’s what they implied with darth bane, I believe. It’s been about a decade since I read the book. If memory serves me correctly, darth bane had a female apprentice that when he died he was able to move his life force into her body. There was no continuation to the story so I don’t think they expanded on it.

    Also when Luke started the new Jedi school on yavin 4, there was an old Sith Lord (exar kune I believe)that’s spirit was still in the temple that the students had to defeat with the help of the solo kids. So there is a way to make it work. But with this “let the past die stuff” I think they’d be contradicting themselves.

    They have made it difficult for them to explain how snoke learned to use the force. My understanding is that it took thousands of years to learn all the things force users could do. It’s not supposed to be something that you can do over night. And I certainly hope they don’t make it so the knowledge is downloadable into your brain like the matrix. In the matrix it makes sense.

    Also, who trained snoke? I guess they may make him plageius. But if it was plageius, he not very good at staying alive.
     
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  13. Darth_Nobunaga

    Darth_Nobunaga Rebel Official

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    Nope, that isn't hyperbole in the slightest. "Disappointment" is something I feel towards a product I have mild investment in...things such as poor movie or video game sequels, or bad seasons of otherwise excellent TV shows. My reaction can only ever be disappointment because I don't have any further investment in them.

    But Star Wars is my favorite media franchise in existence, the one hobby that has remained a constant that I've never outgrown or tired of, no matter how old I get or how many new things I get into. And part of why I've been able to sustain that enjoyment is because of the creativity and originality it retained all throughout the time I've indulged in it over the years.

    And when the ST staggers in, stinking of creatively-bankrupt ideas, shameless rehashing, directionless plotting, and completely disinterested in building any kind of world or conflict unique to itself, you can bet that I'm absolutely disgusted. It's an abhorrent product that spits in the face of all the exhaustive effort and creativity put into the previous trilogies to establish progression and distinction between eras, and originality in their feel, tone, aesthetics and story.

    The ST abandons all of that for shallow, empty nostalgia meant to keep each respective film relevant for five minutes, contributing nothing of value or originality to the Star Wars universe, and upon satisfying Disney's financial quotas, slips into mediocrity and irrelevance as quickly as it clambered atop its short-lived position at the peak of Hype Mountain.

    Disposable, unoriginal, regressive, and counter-productive to two trilogies' worth of storytelling. Of course I'm disgusted.

    You just listed a bunch of themes that resonated with you on a personal level. How is any of that not being swept by emotion?

    If you want to counter my accusations that these films are devoid of proper world-building or logical development of the mythos, the surface-level themes---all of which are communicated to the audience with the consistency and depth of a Linkin Park songfic, might I add---are not the place to start.

    Well, our discussion was originally about how the world-building and conflict are abhorrently-sparse, all of which have nothing to do with the effectual nature of the themes. But since you've brought them up, I'd like to say that nowhere in my post did I state that expositional details are needed to make the dramatic scenes or thematic elements more convincing.

    The lack of exposition is not the reason these characters and dramatic scenes are more supercial and non-existent than Paris Hilton's book collection: it's because the story has done nothing to set that up. That doesn't refer to the lack of exposition---if anything, showing us why we should care within the film itself, rather than from the mouths of the characters, is the way to do this. For instance, instead of having Kylo Ren quiver his lips and talk about being conflicted about killing his father, with the plot bashing us relentlessly in the skull that we should care about this wannabe-dramatic confrontation between Kylo and Han, we should shown why we should care.

    Han and Kylo have no history with each other as characters to make this scene even remotely emotionally weighted. What relationship to Kylo and Han have, and is it different than what they had during Kylo's childhood? Was Han even a good father? When did he abandon Leia and Kylo? What does Han think of his son, outside of dismissing him as a lost cause to Leia when they reunite at the Resistance HQ? The way to show this instead of telling it through exposition is to showcase it: provide flashbacks between them, maybe have more scenarios where Kylo reveals aspects of his character that are a byproduct of his upbringing, maybe show Han's interactions with younger characters like Finn and Rey as something as a damaged or impacted product of his falling out with his own son...these latter things, especially when dealt out with intensive hints from the script itself, could do a lot to flesh out Kylo and Han's history before they meet in Starkiller base for that scene. Because with the addition of those flashbacks, history given through interactions or clues scattered through the characters' actions, suddenly the Starkiller Base scene now has the narrative weight to warrant the mountain of melodrama and tension the scene is desperately going for in the final film.

    But without those things? Without any reason to care about the characters involved outside of the films telling us to without having earned our investment organically? You have a shallow, empty, ham-fisted, unwarranted bloated set-piece. It's simply Kylo acting conflicted because he says he is, not because the film has done anything to make us as the audience believe it from conclusions we've drawn from everything the plot and characters have given us so far.

    In fact, I'm not even joking when I say this---when I watched TFA for the very fist time, unhindered by expectations and prepared to enjoy the film at any cost, I literally watched the Kylo and Han scene with a sense of confusion. Kylo blubbers about being conflicted, but what reason do I have to believe that? The only thing we're told about him is that he idolizes Darth Vader, and will stop at nothing to recreate his image and legacy. Why should I believe that killing Han would in any way hinder that motivation? I've been presented with nothing to suggest that he cares about anything else. And yet the film clubs us over the head regardless about this being some kind of difficult choice for him, even though there's nothing in the film to suggest that to be the case. Even trying to rationalize it with the basic, fundamental human element of a son unwilling to kill his father doesn't work, because there's been no evidence to show that Kylo cares whatsoever for Han as a paternal figure, in addition to being impossible for the audience to concede through personal interpretation with how aggressively of a sociopath the films paints Kylo to be.

    As I've stated before: don't think, just feel. Don't stop to ponder why this is going on, just go with what the film tells you---that it's dramatic, and you should care---like a good little gerbil. That way, Abrams can get away with his mindless action scenes and vapid character drama without having to work his way and earn those moments through the natural progress of the story.

    Making the villain an offspring of one of the legacy characters isn't worth a wet fart if the writers aren't going to give us any insight on what relationship or bond he has WITH said legacy characters. It's not enough that Kylo Ren is Han's son---that tells me nothing about his character, his history with his parents, why he's the main villain, or what his motives are (which, as of TFA are non-existent outside of fulfilling Darth Vader's legacy, and even THAT is flimsier than wet paper since we don't know WHY he cares about recreating Vader's legacy so much). Being related to someone important is not a character trait.

    And you don't need to spell everything out to make characters or stories relatable---but the divulging of why things are happening through the methods ^I just mentioned are a feasible alternative to exposition, something that plenty of films do well....except this one, because God forbid J.J. Abrams slow down the plot long enough to have the characters act human or relatable in the slightest, instead of agency-lacking puppets in his mystery box theater.


    It is 100% fair to call out a story that presents itself as the seventh sequel in sequence of a chronological film saga, when it jumps 30 years into the future but does nothing to inform on how that world has changed, what the new conflict or stakes are, and why the audience should care and distinguish it from what's come before.

    As I've stated before in earlier posts, if any other franchise, like Harry Potter, were to take this same approach in sequels far-flung down their respective chronological timelines, there would be carnal outrage from the fanbase, and rightfully so. But hey, we get to see more TIE Fighters and X-Wings and suffocatingly-uncreative homages to the OT, so I guess it's perfectly okay for Star Wars to REGRESS instead progress within its in-universe world.


    Yes, Ridley Scott knows how to create worlds, inform audiences on them, and layer them with detail through exposition, visual storytelling, character interactions and even at the expense of pacing or organic story flow...and the funny thing is, he cites the original Star Wars trilogy as one of his major influences in that respect. Pretty amusing how the series that inspired Scott to build his worlds with intricacy and detail no longer indulges in the things that inspired him.

    I should also mention that Scott's films are only as good as the script he works with. He very rarely writes his own movies, and the quality of his films often rest on the competency of the writer attached to them (the abhorrent talents of David Lindelhoff on Prometheus, for instance). But since J.J. Abrams co-wrote TFA, and Rian Johnson completely wrote TLJ, they don't have the luxury of that excuse.

    Why would the LFL Story Group allow Claudia Grey to indulge on the specifics of Kylo Ren's childhood? The films didn't do that, and with Episode 9 looming close, there's an (unlikely) risk that Abrams might actually indulge in some history about Kylo Ren's childhood, thus jeopardizing anything Grey comes up with and potentially contradicting with them. If things at Del Rey Publishing under Disney/LFL function anything like how they did during the EU days, then common novel writers aren't going to be given access to the film script years before they're actualized through the movies themselves, much less allowing authors to come up with their own explanations for how characters were raised or what their histories were.

    And frankly, the time and place for that kind of potent, immesurably-vital information that could inform on the Solo Family---the narrative anchor of the ST's family drama---was in the movies themselves. If there was something important or vital in Kylo's childhood that shaped his motives or character into what they are in the films, then we should've received them in the films, to actually warrant half of the drama these movies are inorganically shoving down our throats and screaming for us to care or be invested in them.

    But, hey, not everything has to be spelled out or flagged in human, relatable stories, right? "They are not like some weird new world set up that need explanation", after all.

    Character history and proper context would only drag on this incredibly-detailed and intricately set-up story.
     
    #5413 Darth_Nobunaga, Nov 30, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2018
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  14. Kylocity

    Kylocity Rebel Official

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    The point I’m making is the depth of a film is not only determined by the amount of world building, political context and myth creation in it (as you seem to believe). There is depth in the social and psychological aspects of human behaviour and existence that both TFA and TLJ alludes to and deals with. I’m not countering your argument, I’m explaining how your argument is not a valid one when you want to demonstrate with it that TFA or TLJ is facile or devoid of thought provoking themes.
     
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  15. Darth_Nobunaga

    Darth_Nobunaga Rebel Official

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    The narrative depth of a film is not just in its world-building. Unfortunately, TLJ and TFA aren't just standalone films---they're being masqueraded as sequels to a film franchise, the entries of which are well-renowned for having an expansive and detailed settings and conflicts, selling the illusion of another fictional world so well that many fictional franchises have tried exhaustively to replicate its depth and nuance. And my original point, before the conversation was steered into characterization and interpersonal drama, was that in the crucial department of fleshing out the setting in which the era takes place, this trilogy is a blatant, sloping downgrade in quality, creativity, originality, scope and risk. That is an objective shift in quality, and undeniable degrade in quality. It may not bother you, and I'm not saying it should--but this aspect in particular is sorely lacking and absolutely inferior to past films. And it's an element of inferiority that I refuse to indulge in, because it showcases laziness and creative bankruptcy on the part of the writers and directors....especially when smaller projects with infinitely more meager budgets and resources are vastly outpacing the new films. It's pathetic, and inexcusable.

    In addition, I'm not saying there isn't depth in social or psychological aspects of human behavior, but as I pointed out, neither ST film has that either. You can read into these films and enjoy them all you like, but purely through information and character interactions communicated through the film, (see my entire Kylo Ren and Han Solo example), there is nothing even remotely resembling "depth" to the characters and themes. Depth comes from interactions, motivations, character development, conflicting principles, and thematic nuance that's communicated clearly through build-up and organic writing. The ST doesn't do that even once---it narratively leaps from one dramatic scene to another like a paint-huffing frog jumping lily pads, never once making an attempt to earn the narrative moments and big character confrontations it so desperately wants us to be invested in. This has nothing to do with exposition or world-building---it's all about setting things up organically through the writing, with the ST movies certainly do not. The Kylo/Han scene in TFA swerves in with all the natural progression and build-up of a rushed Transformers sequel---the film certainly wants us to be enamored in the underlying layers of the characters (and given your posts, I can tell it worked on at least somebody), but objectively speaking, the films don't do enough storywise to warrant them. The most barebones of motivations or character traits, like "vague emotional indecisiveness" in the case of Kylo Ren, or "wanting a family to belong with" in the case of Rey, are flung into a narrative taffee-puller and stretched beyond believability to service these titanic, harrowing scenes of emotional weight...and none of it works. Not one dramatic scene in these movies, with the characters involved, the interactions and behavior observed by those characters, or the unfortunate brevity of time across movies, is even remotely believable. You have to leap through so many labyrinthine layers of head-canon to rationalize the barebones reason for ANY of the drama in these movies, and I know that because that's precisely what defenders of this movie do: I've seen the kind of head-canon defenses like "Kylo Ren isn't really evil, he's conflicted because he has PTSD from the incident with Luke, the upbringing with his parents, and Snoke calling him a 'boy'," despite there being no tangible evidence of this suggested anywhere in the film, or "Rey's psyche is so emotionally tied to belonging with people that it makes sense for her to bond with Kylo after one day" despite that very idea being ludicrous and straining any belief or logic in the character outside of her being dim-witted or hopelessly naive, neither of which are supported by the film but are forced as a consideration by the audience due to the sheer stupidity of her actions. Not to mention the absolute, fanfic-levels of suspension of disbelief this film demands to believe that Rey, through this solitary connection of "loneliness and the desire to belong like Kylo Ren" (a trait that he doesn't showcase, despite the desperate cries of Reylos everywhere), she has enough emotional investment to risk life and limb to redeem and bring him back from the light....this connection alone, not family or deeper character dynamics, this connection that formed over the last 48 hours is enough to make her journey to Snoke's ship personally and try to redeem him. This is the epitome of rushing to dramatic conclusions without working properly to reach them: nothing that has happened in the short span of events even remotely justifies this, and it strains credulity to the point where it's painfully obvious that the writers and directors of these overproduced Wattpad-worthy offenses to human intelligence didn't want to work for the narrative high points they're desperately trying to create.

    And that's precisely why these films come off as superficial, hollow, puddle-deep blunders, the same kind of fumbling and desperation of a student who cobbles together a science project last minute, and still expects a good grade despite not putting in the work to get it.
     
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  16. Kylocity

    Kylocity Rebel Official

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    You said:


    “It wants us to be invested in Han Solo and Kylo Ren's relationship and eventual confrontation, when nothing about that relationship or history between those two characters has been set up or illuminated whatsoever.”


    You also said:


    “The film reeks of the urge to get to dramatic or suspenseful points without doing the work or writing to get to them. Abrams wanted all of the moments in the film to resonate with the audience, but instead of leading the audience to those moments organically through writing and build-up, he just drops the audience into those scenes without any, and expects full emotional investment or caring.”




    Han is a father who spends his days cheating and robbing mafiosos while his son is turning into into a mass murderer... And his feeling of guilt about it are deducted from his scene with Leia and obviously from his acting... Kylo’s feelings towards his father have been flagged all over these films too: “I feel it again, the pull to the light”, “he means nothing to me”, “he would have disappointed you“ “I didn’t hate him”. His acting has also helped to see this (that lip quiver you feel so comptemtously about... Jeez, shoot the actor for acting!)


    The point is: some things just do not need to be explained, but hinted at... character development is not like world building... or not always. It follows different rules, specially when dealing with universals, like the father son dynamic.


    And flashbacks are just tedious in film. They need to be used pointedly and sparingly to be effective.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 30, 2018, Original Post Date: Nov 30, 2018 ---
    No, not saying anything vital about Kylo but about Leia’s attachment to Kylo. Very different.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 30, 2018 ---
    Honestly, we are talking about novels here, not films. In books it’s enjoyable to get into characters’ heads, something you usually cannot do in films, unless you do voice over, or flashback... and both things only work if used sparingly in films like SW, as they slow things down and there are more effective visual ways show this kind of thing: dialogue, set design, etc
     
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  17. Kylocity

    Kylocity Rebel Official

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    No, Rey went to Kylo and tried to turn him to save her friends and the resistance from the FO. I don’t know what in the film made you think otherwise.
    --- Double Post Merged, Nov 30, 2018, Original Post Date: Nov 30, 2018 ---
    Again, Rey went to save the day, not Kylo. She’s a heroine of legend not a girl desperate to get a boyfriend... In her vision Rey saw Kylo turn good, and she not only welcomed it at a human level, but also tried to use it to fight the FO. That’s the reason she rushed to Snoke’s ship.
     
    #5417 Kylocity, Nov 30, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2018
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  18. TrumanJ

    TrumanJ Rebel General

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    I would agree with you on this idea with most movies. However, with the amount of years between the sequels, I think flashbacks would be very effective. I would’ve welcomed many more flashbacks to help understand what transpired over the years to better understand why and how they got to where they are.

    This trilogy is supposed to end the skywalker saga. I want to see more of them to understand the story of the skywalkers. My questions aren’t about the new characters. It’s been 40 years since my favorite characters were brought back to the screen. Show me what happened to them. Tell me their story. Then tell a different story about the characters you want to create in the next saga.
     
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  19. Darth_Nobunaga

    Darth_Nobunaga Rebel Official

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    I’m aware of what I said. The initial starting point for this argumentative bout, if you remember, was my view that these films do a poor job of balancing world-building and characterization, especially when the world-building is so quintessential to Star Wars, and is part of what separates it from generic sci-fi settings that scramble to replicate its success. Your contention was that the filmmakers’ imbecilic decision to not even attempt that balance, and instead compromise the world-building for the characterizations, was completely justified because “the characters and themes are so good.” This became a reoccurring plea on your part to accept the film, so finally I decided to indulge on the matter of the characterizations…because let me tell you: the compromise of world-building for the characterization and drama didn’t pay off because the characterizations and drama are phlegm-inducingly terrible.

    So now, the world-building is not only compromised, it’s compromised for something that isn’t even well done. Now you see how we got here in the conversation. I’d rather keep the discussion on the world-building, because I feel that’s an area where these new films are an inexcusable decline in quality compared to the previous movies, but you seem SO insistent that it’s perfectly fine because of the characters and drama we got in the process, that I felt the need to respond.

    The difference between the world-building and the characterizations in the ST is that one simply doesn’t exist, and one DOES exist, and is done with all the consistency and competence of a bootleg Bollywood film, except with five times of the empty melodrama and none of the amusing dance numbers.

    “Obviously”? What are you talking about? We still don’t get any insight on Han and Kylo’s relationship from this conversation. The only barebones explanation we get from Han is that he took off when Kylo turned evil, while the audience is busy scratching their heads and asking: “Where the hell was Han when Kylo Ren turned evil? How involved was Han in raising Kylo Ren anyway? Why does Kylo’s descent into evil even bother Han when he wasn’t a good enough father to stick around while Kylo was turning evil?” Again, we’re given vague explanations about what is happening, but the “why” isn’t there. The organic components, the emotional compulsion to necessitate all the drama of the later confrontation on Starkiller Base doesn’t exist.

    You can’t compress the substance, weight, nuance or tension necessary to justify Han and Kylo’s confrontation later in the film with just this wave-away conversation with vague details between Kylo’s parents. This kind of thing needed to be fleshed out properly, and distributed better across the overall film, not bottled into this one scene, especially with how vague and un-illuminating it was.

    Again, all of these wave-away lines are meaningless in context. Why does Kylo Ren feel the pull to the light? What part of his character or history necessitates that, when he’s shown to be almost 100% merciless and irredeemable with no redeeming qualities to make considering the Light Side even remotely sensible within his character? Why does Han mean nothing to him? Why does he think Han would’ve disappointed Rey? Is it just because Han left (which wouldn’t make sense, since Han left AFTER Kylo turned into a mass-murdering sociopathic viper, not before), or is it something else? Why does he not hate Han, and what compassion does he reserve for him outside of base familial obligation?

    There isn’t a basis for anything Kylo Ren says. Every word he funnels into acting conflicted or having some kind of family turmoil is just meaningless specks in a void, since we don’t know why he feels the way he does, just that he feels this way. Even the most prominent aspects of his character are completely baseless: we know he blindly follows Snoke, but why does he follow him? What does Snoke offer him that Luke or his parents didn’t? What is his and Snoke’s relationship, and why was it Kylo’s first option after turning against Luke, other than sheer narrative convenience? Why does Kylo worship Darth Vader so much, and what about Darth Vader inspires so much passion in him that he would place fulfilling his legacy over the livelihood of innocent people or his own parents?

    Do you see what I mean by all of this? There is only “what”, but no “why”, in this story. There is no basis for any of the drama these films hoist upon characters like Kylo Ren outside of the films superficially and lazily telling us to.

    And your constant attempts to make a character feast out of the table scraps the writers have lazily afforded us as an audience is laughable. To take these quotes from Kylo Ren as if they explain even a microscopic portion of his character or warrant even a smidgeon of these movies’ desperate attempts at drama speaks more to the fact that you’re putting infinitely more effort into Kylo’s character than the writers ever did.

    This is no fault of the actor’s and I never said it was. This is all down to direction and warranting of drama through the story. Adam Driver is committing all of his acting prowess to a scene that doesn’t warrant it, and to service emotional weight that doesn’t exist. This can happen to any actor with a weak script, good or bad.

    Michael Fassbender is a fantastic actor, and one of my favorites in this current decade of film (normally I’d daydream about him landing a role somewhere in Star Wars, but given how these films have atrociously wasted the talents of legendary actors like Max von Sydow, Andy Serkis, Mads Mikkelsen and Gwendoline Christie in some insultingly-throwaway roles, I’d rather he stay away from Star Wars so his talents aren’t squandered), and he underwent the same problem in X-Men: Apocalypse. His acting wasn’t the problem in the scene where his “family” dies, it’s how awfully-written the scene is…and his face contorting and the production of literal tears comes off as cringy and awkward, not because he’s acting poorly, but because it comes off as overacting in a barebones, empty scene that doesn’t service it even remotely. And that’s completely down to the directors and writers.

    Character development functions I identically to world-building, in that it has to be built. While world-building is “built” differently, it’s something that happens naturally over the course of a film, through natural or expository means.

    Character building is done over the same course of time, and through its own unique means. You don’t necessarily have to do it through exposition or dialogue, it can come from things shown to us as the audience, through character actions or confrontations between characters…scenarios that provide insight without outright spelling it out.

    And I already detailed all of this, including effective alternatives to flashbacks, in a previous post. You keep harping on “why flashbacks don’t work”, but conveniently don’t seem to remember that flashbacks aren’t the only method I’ve suggested, which means one of two things:

    Either you aren’t paying attention to what I write, or you’re deliberately ignoring points I make to bolster your own argument.

    Wouldn’t you think, with how much these movies are trying to drown us in the importance of the family drama as a resource for Kylo’s woefully-shallow “conflict”, that any further emotional insight on Kylo and Leia’s relationship should’ve been…oh, I dunno….reserved for the movie where their presence is needed most, and essential for making the drama work?

    Y’know, just a crazy thought. But I’m also the same bizarre kook who wants the franchise famous for its elaborate and expansive world and expansive mythos to have an elaborate and expansive world again.

    “Getting into the character’s heads is something you usually cannot do in films”?

    Um…yeah. Yeah you can. I don’t know how many films you’ve seen, but this a very plausible thing to have in movies without the benefit of dialogue or flashbacks. Ever heard of The Godfather or Once Upon A Time in The West? Hell, even the 1982 Conan the Barbarian film manages to do this, giving insight to how characters feel just through the use of music. You just need to flesh out the story and characters to a point where the film can allow non-verbal insight into character’s emotions without the need for dialogue or flashbacks.

    But the story and characters in the ST aren’t strong enough for that to work. We barely know anything of consequence about these characters, their histories, their relationships, their motives…nothing.

    And I find it hilarious that now, the storytelling in Star Wars has gotten to the point where the BOOKS have to do all of the pick-up work for the filmmakers’ stubborn unwillingness to organically set up or work towards the moments of character drama they ham-fistedly shove into their films.

    Okay, no.

    You can’t sit there and tell me that after the film aggressively pushing the emotional weight and connection of Rey and Kylo through their routine Force Skyping that she’s only on that ship, risking life and limb, for the sake of protecting her friends. That’s absolute nonsense, especially with how the film frames the two people’s interactions throughout every single confrontation, both via the Force and in-person. Hell, the official author of the TLJ novelization, Jason Fry, even described their relationship as “even deeper and more substantial than mere lovers, because it goes deeper than that.” The film is absolutely trying to establish a personal investment for Rey to redeem Kylo---it may not be related to romance, and I’m not claiming it is, but the emotional investment is there.

    You think if her motives involving Kylo only went as far as protecting her friends, she would even bother with risking her skin to redeem him in the first place? If her top priority was to protect her friends, and there was no interpersonal relationship being set up between Kylo Ren and Rey, the film would not be pushing for them to have such an interpersonal dynamic whenever they converse, much less have Rey funnel the time and investment to redeem the person who sliced open her friend’s back 48 hours ago.

    An event, which, should really give her an idea about how likely it is she can use Kylo as a means against the First Order. Unless they’re writing to have Rey equipped with the mind of a child or a simpleton, there’s no reason that, with the brevity of time passed between films and the nature of all their interactions prior to TLJ, she should have any kind of emotional investment in Kylo Ren.

    It’s an example of this trilogy wanting something between the characters that completely contradicts with their placement in the story, their interactions thus far, and all justification or believability given each respective characters’ time and interaction with each other.

    It’s the only thing more forced and inorganic than Kylo Ren’s conflict, and given the Constitution-sized rants I’ve penned about how much that doesn’t work, it’s saying A LOT coming from me to proclaim that ANYTHING in this series comes within the same ballpark as that fanfic-tier drunken stagger of a plot element.
     
    #5419 Darth_Nobunaga, Dec 1, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
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  20. Kylocity

    Kylocity Rebel Official

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    So you’re saying that you started to attack the ST characterisation and drama element with the same scattergun approach you criticise everything else about these films because I was “so insistent” in talking about it? You are trying to fit your argument for world building into drama and characterisation and it’s not working for me. I understand you, personally, need to have more information to relate to Han and Kylo’s conflict, but it is not needed as far as I’m concerned. All we need is in the films.


    My point was and still is that the ST favours drama and characterisation over other storytelling aspects like the introduction of a new fantasy world, new original conflict etc. Also that the ST fed almost directly from the OT in the latter. I said that I like the films and what they offer. Sorry for not giving you counter arguments about world building, which I see is what you would have preferred, but I just happen to agree with you there. For me the interesting part is to talk about what I think is good about the film.

    For me TFA makes a good job of exposing Kylo and Han’s problemstic relationship. Another thing is us wanting to know more about it. I would also like to find out more, but that knowledge was not necessary for me to be invested in the conflict between both characters and understand it. What the film gave me was enough.


    I’d love to have all these answers too but the difference with us is that you find them necessary to empathise with the situation and get something out of it whereas I don’t. It doesn’t really matter who did what and when exactly... Early on when watching TFA for the first time it became clear to me that this was not going to be a story of objective, clear-cut good and evil, but of point of view. The villain felt justified and pondered self-righteously about his actions...This made me intrigued and wonder about what was going on in the head of this tempestuous and angry manchild. Also, I never thought while watching this film that Han did anything wrong towards his son apart from being himself. The way I understood it (and thought everyone had too) was that Kylo had been seduced by Snoke and that this event had destroyed their family. It was telling, however, that Han had decided to escape after this happened... did he feel responsible? “If Luke couldn’t help him how could I?” Leia’s words were very deliberate: “It was Snoke”, implying: “It wasn’t your fault”. Han being an uninvolved parent is suggested in this dialogue... as it is in TFA interrogation scene. My joining all these dots was not what you call “head canon”. It’s not me creating a narrative that isn’t there. This conflict and the nature of it was strongly suggested in the film. Children often do not see the value in their parents and decide to follow the wrong path. It’s something that happens. You don’t need the details to sympathise with this turn of events. The tragedy in TFA is that the son seems to have reached a point of no return. I think that is relatable for parents and children all over.

    I completely agree. The way the character of Rey is shown in the scene showing the inside of her ATTA home is an very good example. Finn helping the bloody stormtrooper and not being able to shoot at the villagers is another. To a lesser extent, Kylo talking to his grandfather helmet is another.




    There is no need to use aggressive, dismissive words like me “harping on” or “not paying attention” or “deliberately ignoring your points”. Let’s keep this conversation civil.


    Of your list of character development tools I only mentioned flashbacks, because I had already given enough examples of dialogue character and conflict development in TFA. I missed you also mentioned “in scene” characterisation. It wasn’t a deliberate or neglectful omission so no need for all the vitriol.



    What I meant was that films cannot expand in characters thought process in the way books can. Indeed you can allude to states of mind, with music, snippets of dialogue, actions, an on screen magic. This is what I was referring to when I mentioned what I love about Ridley Scott’s films: He is able to give us a character’s point of view with the ambience he creates. But I was talking about expanding Leia’s thought process in the written narrative of Bloodline. Something the author could have done more convincingly IMO.

    In TFA JJ did this character introspection exercise when he showed Rey’s environment and perception of the world in those first Jakku scenes: her scratching a calendar, her world made out of spare parts, her doll and desert flowers on the table, her flying simulator, her observing that old woman scrubbing parts and seeing her future, her hungriness, her longing for another life... all those scenes were there. Nothing was gratuitous or disposable.



    That connection is very relevant and I’m sure there is a lot resulting from it in the future, romantic or otherwise, but it’s not the reason why Rey risked her life. That connection made Rey realise the resistance had a chance to win if Kylo turned. “If he were turned from the dark side it could shift the tide... this could be how we win.” Her sympathy for Kylo is understandable at a human level, but it is not her main motivator. I see Rey as a heroine with a higher purpose. Reading “Reylo” in that scene is fun in the sense that there is no reason why these two people wouldn’t find each other attractive, but to use it simply to diminish Rey as a heroine, when she is clearly (even though not very wisely) trying to be one is not fair to RJ’s writing and clear intention for that scene to play out.
     
    #5420 Kylocity, Dec 1, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2018
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