Discussion in 'Arts & Entertainment' started by EgonSpengler, Aug 15, 2014.
A more elegant light-saber fight for a more civilized time (of life).
Your explanation is good but I don't know if I agree with the fundamental view of the Force/Jedi being presented. Even in the OT before any additional lore and content came about, Jedi were presented as this mythical force to be reckoned with. Old Ben casually handles all challenges on Tatooine and even waves a hand to control the mind of an Imperial lackey. The entire scene on the Falcon is about how the Force grants you preternatural senses and reflexes. The climax of the movie is about how giving yourself over to the Force lets you guide a friggin' missile down a tiny shaft to a better margin of error than an advanced targeting computer created for that very purpose.
And then Ben faces off against Vader in personal combat and it might as well be two crippled four-year-olds going at it with too-heavy sticks they found by the creek. It was better in V and VI, but not by much, really. Without the emotion being cited, I'm not sure there'd be any enjoyment in it.
Mind, pointless choreography isn't enjoyable from a plot viewpoint, and I fully admit to that. But it's at least pretty and, if we dig down into connection to abilities, makes more sense than fencing. And I don't think the proposed view of Jedi being more detached and careful is necessarily incompatible, and for that I'll cite the combat in the animated series (Clone Wars to a lesser extent than Rebels). The final scene between Kenobi and Maul in Rebels has the emotion and the Samurai-esque combat without sacrificing the inherent preternatural advantages of the Force.
I gotta ask though... Duel of the Fates, Kenobi and Qui-Gon vs. Maul... you really thought that sucked? Or the scene in Revenge of the Sith between Kenobi and Anakin on Mustafar?
In addition to what Syn said, George Lucas came up with the concept of the force and was basically in full control of the prequels when the Jedi/Sith were at their most flashy. So saying that force users aren't supposed to be flashy doesn't really mesh with that.
I personally prefer the sequel fights the best. Unlike the OT, they have good choreography and competent actors/stunt people without having the over-the-top flips and twirls that the prequels had.
TBH the lightsaber is possibly the single most Star Wars'ey thing about Star Wars. You can't really blame them for going overboard with them... those goddamned things go for like $15 - $25 bucks retail for the toy and $75 - $200 retail for the light-up replicas. There was no way in gods green money they could pass up packing as much lightsaber into the PT as would fit without tipping over.
What i really like about the ST duels versus the PT and OT is how much of the duels involve a variety of weapons, showing that the lightsaber isn't just some magical invincible weapon... its really just a lazer sword, and can be parried by any energy weapon.
There are videos out there of actual stunt people who point out that the ST fights, particularly the one in TLJ with the Praetorian Guards, that are simply awful with terrible choreography (disappearing dagger anyone?).
I've seen a few of those videos myself. If you run a fine tooth comb over some scenes enough times you'll be able to spot inconsistencies. I still enjoy that Praetorian Guard scene more than most of the OT and prequel fights, despite its flaws.
For what it is, it's quite alright. Could have been much better with better context surrounding it. Which is TLJ's curse in all things. Even what it did right is worth less because of all it did wrong.
If you enjoy, great! But, from a technical standpoint they're rubbish and much of what was pointed out were things I noticed anyway. There was more than just inconsistencies in that Praetorian fight, the choreography was wholly unrealistic. I can't unwatch the background guards just mulling about waiting for their cue from the director to attack in sequence. Expecting SW fans to NOT run a fine tooth comb over the movies is like asking President Trump to stop tweeting!
The worst is Kylo's lightsaber with a lightsaber hilt. Kewl looking, but how does that advantage you in a fight versus the risk of cutting your own hands off?
Duel of the Fates absolutely sucked! It hurt my soul! I thought it was the best thing in the world, and then I saw them dance and it hurt my soul! That is why it sucks. Because I don't want it to.
Anakin and Obi-Wan on Mustafar is still pretty great though.
I think the fights in TFA were the best for me, because they felt like actual fights and there was nothing that looked wrong about them. Also you see the utility of Kylo's hilt blades.
*makes judicious application of fly-swat to Sommerswerd for repeated offences against spelling*
Actually the ‘flashy’ fighters tend to get creamed. Obi-Wan uses one dinky laser sword against Grievous and manages to kill him in spite of all his guards and arms and blades and rotating spark-throwing wrists and what-not… with a blaster that also adds to his oft-forgotten ‘acquire blasters’ win condition.
Anakin just rushes in against Dooku and loses a hand for all his bluster. And so on.
I don't think the intent of the Death Star run scene was that the force grants you superior reflexes. Rather, it plays into the whole idea that the Force is something that carries you to the right point, that Jedi go with it as opposed to the Sith who try and make it submit to their will. "May the Force be with you" is the space version of "God Bless you".
Plus, there is the whole thing about Jedi being guardians of the peace, and not minion killing machines which gets way overlooked. Heck, in Return of the Jedi, when Luke announces to the Emperor that he is a Jedi, he throws away his lightsaber. If that isn't a clear renunciation of the idea that Jedi=Awsome Fighter, I don't know what is.
Duel of the Fates was high quality fight choreography and stunt work, no doubt about it. However, I feel Lucas blundered in making the skills shown there the default skill level of Jedi and that all Jedi are combat masters. As a result, things kept escalating. Yoda got turned into Kermit the Frog hopping all over the place.* As far as the battle of Mustafar, I am not joking in saying I despised that battle. Fighting on a collapsing mining platform as it tumbles into lava removed any sense of plausibility from me, it felt too video-gamey, and it went on too long. The original trilogy stayed with us because of how the battles fit into the narrative and developed on themes. The fight on Mustafar was hard to follow besides two CGI model swinging bits of light around. I never got any sense Obi-Wan and Anakin cared about the battle, almost entirely because those two actors had absolutely no chemistry together.
*Also, who had the bright idea to make Yoda a master swordsman? His whole thing was that we are more than bits of flesh and counter-thrusts.
I have seen George Lucas in live interviews say that the Force is God in space so yes.
Given that the Jedi are errant knights samurai in space (in the original trilogy, at least), this totally would fit in with all those books that say that the true warrior is a warrior even without his sword (see Hero, actually a Chinese film, but with the same philosophy), and all the warriors who live the end of their lives as voluntarily unarmed, possession-less monks.
Stover is excellent. You should also definitely try Darth Plagueis.
I think I get it before everyone else in the world. Goes up around midnight and I live in NZ.
When do new episodes become available in New Zealand? They become available at 12am PST (Pacific Coast) time Friday. And, I'm able to watch it here in the Rocky Mountains at 1am, so about 4 hours ago.
Not 100% sure.
I thought that it was some sentient cosmic force.
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