The Clone Wars

August 23, 2008

The Clone Wars is not a good film. I knew this before I saw it yesterday, just as I know that the animated series is going to dissapoint me. Despite that, I went to see the movie and I’m going to watch the series – most likely via Xbox Live. Why?

I’m a fan. At this point I’m not even a fan of the movies; statistically speaking the amount of screentime I find frustrating and annoying is beginning to overwhelm the amount of Star Wars movie screentime I enjoy. But I do love the world, I love the setting. There’s a lot to like in the Expanded Universe, and the basic concept of a space opera gone magical is a firm foundation for storytelling.

That said, I’m getting pretty sick and tired of trying to enjoy the Star Wars universe despite the machinations of George Lucas. If you look around the absolutely terrible dialogue in Clone Wars, there was a pretty great experience to be had there. High adventure,  a war story in an evocative setting, and absolutely beautiful imagery. I really like the movie’s artistic sensibility – it was like watching moving concept art, almost. Jabba, particularly, looked really cool. His flabby chin had some scaly definition in the film, resulting in a look not unlike some sort of dragon.

To be honest, I really want to see Lucas done with the world. Give it up, let other people run it from now on. I think it’s a fantastic setting, I think there should be people telling stories there … but I just don’t think he’s the right person to do it anymore. Let some other people deal with it in an intelligent and forward-thinking fashion. Please!

That said, looking twenty years into the future, I can already forsee the ‘re-envisioning’ that will happen after Lucas has stopped meddling. Folks are going to come back to the series to retool, straighten, and strengthen the tatters of story and simply incomprehensible core components. Much as I expect we’ll see Abrhams doing with Star Trek early next year, all it takes is a singular vision to breathe life back into a beloved franchise. I guess I can wait if I have to.

But I don’t wanna.

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