The Inner Child
I’ve just finished watching Return of the Jedi. Indeed, over the last week I’ve watched The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith, A New Hope and The Empire Strikes Back too.
It’s not the first time I’ve watched all six movies in quick succession. I once watched them all from early on in Hogmanay to the early hours of New Years Day, back to back. My wife and I had something of a tradition of having a movie marathon to end the year, a tradition that is currently on hiatus until such times as we can do it all as a family.
I’m pretty sure I’ve done the Star Wars marathon before that as well. Either way, I’m well versed in all six movies but they never fail to entertain me.
But this is the first time the marathon will involve watching all seven.
Tomorrow evening I’m off to see The Force Awakens. I’m not going to lie, I’m like a kid on Christmas Eve at the moment. I’ve been buzzing to see the new movie since it was announced, a feeling heightened to ridiculous proportions when I watched the trailer and especially with the words “Chewie, we’re home”. I’m back up at those heights again now knowing that the marathon has only one movie left in it and it’s the one I’ve never seen.
I’ve been off social media now since Wednesday night when people started to go and see the midnight showings, and I won’t be back on until after I’ve seen it for myself tomorrow night. If you’re reading this before Saturday night then thanks for subscribing to my blog!
I haven’t read any reviews, I didn’t watch any of the TV spots, and I haven’t even looked at the track listing of the soundtrack that automatically downloaded to my phone this morning. I don’t want any spoilers, I want to go into this movie with only a hint of what’s to come.
I know I’ll enjoy this one immensely. I’ve said before that I came out of the prequel movies having enjoyed them, and to be honest although I know their flaws I really enjoyed them on my rewatch this past week as well. In fact, I came to appreciate a few more things as I went.
Like how Jar Jar Binks isn’t as annoying in the Phantom Menace as C3PO is in the Empire Strikes Back. Do you know the difference? C3PO got turned off.
On more that one occasion.
I think the subtle difference is they played up to C3PO’s annoyance and it works really well. Jar Jar was just there for comedy effect.
Well, that and to later be the guy responsible for giving Palpatine too much power in the Senate. It’s all his fault!
I found myself appreciating Anakin’s arc a lot more too. He was slated in the prequels for growing into Vader purely because he was a mummy’s boy. But everything he does throughout the entire six movie saga is for his family.
He sells his winning pod racer to get money for his mother, even before he knows he’s free. He risks exposing Padme to go and try and rescue his mother and eventually kills those responsible for her death in rage. He saves Palpatine from Mace Windu after doing the right thing originally because only Palpatine can help him save his wife and unborn child.
That might have been flawed thinking in the end, but if anything Windu is giving in to hate but insisting he has to die rather than stand trial! Isn’t that the path to the dark side, Mace?
Anakin even reckons he does everything after that to secure peace in the galaxy for his family to grow up in. More flawed and twisted thinking, but the motive is clear for all to see. Even the anger at the end when he finds out Padme has died may well be laughable in its execution, but its understandable given all we’ve seen so far.
But that all came from the original trilogy. There’s no family he knows of in A New Hope, but by Empire Strikes Back in even mentions in the credits that Vader was obsessed with young Skywalker. Clearly he wanted him to know the truth about who he was, and even eventually wanted him to help rule the galaxy as father and son – so without the Emperor!
By the end, he sacrifices his own life to defeat the Emperor and save his son who has just shown him you can always turn away from the dark side. That wasn’t so much redemption for Anakin, more the family man we’ve seen throughout. Finally, Anakin is able to do right by his family.
Maybe it’s just me, but the prequel movies aren’t as bad as they’re made out to be. Sure the CGI is overdone and some of the dialogue is cheesy, but some of the dialogue was cheesy in the original trilogy too, and both trilogies pushed the boundaries of technology for the visuals – they were just 20 years apart.
If Star Wars is really aimed more at kids and that’s why those who grew up with the original trilogy moaned so much, then there’s a simple way to deal with that. See that inner child we all have locked away inside ourselves? Let them out to play for a bit.
That’s what I’ve done this week and its been brilliant. Tomorrow, that inner child will be out at the cinema.
I just need to try and get him to sleep first.