Escapism, Star Wars style
November 12, 2001 12:03 PM   Subscribe

Escapism, Star Wars style - The new Star Wars Ep II trailer, "Mystery" is out there - not the 'breathing' teaser, but a longer one. It's supposed to be unlocked by EP I DVD owners only, but of course there are mirrors. Post others inside if you find them. Star Wars haters can just move along, there's plenty other news today.
posted by kokogiak (37 comments total)

 
Star Wars haters can just move along, there's plenty other news today

I think you have it wrong. You'd have to hate Star Wars to have enjoyed what Phantom Menace did to the original trilogy. (It's like the bastard child Godfather III.) I thought that it would be impossible to find a more annoying actor than Jake Lloyd to play Anakin. I realized after watching the "Mystery" trailer that I was wrong.
posted by eyeballkid at 12:14 PM on November 12, 2001


At least they were nice enough to post a work-around for Mac users a couple of days after the release. Kind of silly if you think how "tight" LucasFilm and Apple/Quicktime are, yet the trailer (and 99.9% of all other DVD-ROM content on all titles) aren't playable on Macs.

Now what about all the Star Wars fans who shelled out $19.95 for the DVD (and are therefore "entitled" to see the new trailer) but don't have a DVD-ROM on their computer?
posted by robbie01 at 12:16 PM on November 12, 2001


"(and 99.9% of all other DVD-ROM content on all titles) aren't playable on Macs."

and you are upset with Lucas? You need to be upset with Mac. They need to get with the program.
posted by hotdoughnutsnow at 12:22 PM on November 12, 2001


hopefully they will blend the backgrounds a little better in the anakin/obiwan chase scene before release. looks too fake (during "this is a shortcut i think"). overall, liked the first teaser better. also enjoying how they conveniently keep jar jar as far away from the trailers as possible. city seems somewhat blade runner-ish (cramped), but clean. obiwan also seems to be further developing the sir alec/obiwan vocal nuances that we all have come to expect.
posted by mich9139 at 12:29 PM on November 12, 2001


Too slow to watch on that page. Try the file-sharing networks. I found a download straight away ...
posted by walrus at 12:33 PM on November 12, 2001


Jar-Jar is in this one - briefly. He stands to Padme's right in the scene where she is addressing Anakin & Obiwan.
posted by kokogiak at 12:34 PM on November 12, 2001


oops. my bad. maybe they're just slowly introducing him into the trailers. i actually thought it would have been cool to have a slow zoom out at the end of the first trailer a vader's breathing, revealing jar jar in vader's mask. maybe not?
posted by mich9139 at 12:40 PM on November 12, 2001


Jar Jar needs to be publicly drawn and quartered along with Microsoft Clippy.
posted by adampsyche at 12:40 PM on November 12, 2001


You'd have to hate Star Wars to have enjoyed what Phantom Menace did to the original trilogy.

The Star Wars fans are getting the same rep as Trekkies.

You need to be upset with Mac.

The company is named Apple, and they support DVD fully. There's nothing else they need to do to assure compatibility, but some DVDs use Windows-specific stuff.

I've never come across any problems playing content, but when/if I do, it will be entirely the DVD maker's fault.

Here's where I downloaded the trailer.
posted by jragon at 12:40 PM on November 12, 2001


jragon: I get the same link as kokogiac's original one. And they both(?)work fine, btw.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 12:46 PM on November 12, 2001


Why does Lucas insist on using CG when CG is not necessary? Why computer animate Yoda when you have a perfectly lifelike (and better looking) puppet?
posted by fleener at 12:51 PM on November 12, 2001


BEcause it'd be hard to make a rubber puppet wield a lightsaber and do a 360 degree kickflip while bounding down the senate stairs.

Not that he will, of course. But I hope he does.
posted by magnificentsven at 1:23 PM on November 12, 2001


However the clip of Yoda in the trailer is of him just sitting down and looking at the camera. Oh yeah, that's difficult to achieve with a puppet. I guess they need consistently so that the fake character looks consistently fake.
posted by fleener at 1:36 PM on November 12, 2001


er, consistency.
posted by fleener at 1:36 PM on November 12, 2001


Oh, he will :)

Sorry for the mislink Miguel, I mis-cut&pasted.
posted by jragon at 1:36 PM on November 12, 2001


That animation of Yoda walking with his cane just does not look convincing at all. On the other hand, the puppet work in Episode I was not as good as it was in "Empire Strikes Back". Yoda just hasn't looked very good since "Empire", computer animated or not.

Also, Lucas seems to be keeping up his habit of mixing good actors with bad ones. Anyone else think Hayden Christensen sounds like he's reading his lines off a cue card?

This trailer has dashed any hopes I had of Episode II being good. It might be marginally better than Episode I, but that will probably be all. The Star Wars series just hasn't had a good film since "Empire". The worst thing Lucas ever did was get rid of his producer, Gary Kurtz. When you compare the movies made before and after Kurtz left, the change in tone is very palpable. I perferred it the way it was before.
posted by Potsy at 1:37 PM on November 12, 2001


It's pretty clear to me that Lucas absolutely hates working with live actors. Lucas can't even direct good actors very well -- look at how wooden Samuel L. Jackson was as Mace Windu. And don't even get me started on Jake Lloyd; that kid should never have gotten past the screen-test.

Lucas not-so-secretly wants to make Star Wars into a Pixar-like cartoon. He loves digital film because it allows him to play around with the story elements pretty much at will: actors, backgrounds, etc. Episode I was pretty cartoonish -- think of the Gungans and the hapless "battle droids". I expect that Episodes II and III will be just as disappointing as the first movie.
posted by mrmanley at 1:49 PM on November 12, 2001


Playing Devil's Advocate here, but A) isn't it his (Lucas') material to do with what he pleases? And B) Pixar has made some damn fine features and shorts, so I really don't see a problem there.
posted by kokogiak at 2:01 PM on November 12, 2001


That said, I have to agree about Jake Lloyd, and wish not-so-secretly that Haley Joel Osment had played that role in EP I.
posted by kokogiak at 2:03 PM on November 12, 2001


A) isn't it his (Lucas') material to do with what he pleases?

Yes. And it's our perogative to let him know how badly it sucks.

B) Pixar has made some damn fine features and shorts

Because they've never worked with a Lucas script. Paraphrasing Harrison Ford on Lucas' screenplays: "You can write that shit George, but you sure can't say it." Empire, the best of the bunch, wasn't directed or written by Lucas. He came up with the story, Kasdan wrote the script and Kershner directed. When I heard that TPM was going to be all Lucas, I did my best to convince myself that it was going to be okay. That didn't work so well. Lucas is better at dreaming up the scenery and effects (visual and sound-- he's a master of sound), but his direction and dialogue need serious help.
posted by eyeballkid at 2:26 PM on November 12, 2001


natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman!
posted by signal at 2:57 PM on November 12, 2001


I hope Lucas reveals why we don't see crackling pink energy beams at all in the original trilogy, but why it seems to be the power source of choice in the Old Republic.
posted by obiwanwasabi at 3:19 PM on November 12, 2001


I hope Lucas reveals why we don't see crackling pink energy beams at all in the original trilogy, but why it seems to be the power source of choice in the Old Republic.

There were some similar (blue) energy beams in ROTJ in the shield generator station on Endor. I assume technology will be greatly changed overall by the Empire. None of the ships in TPM resembled the Empire-era ships either.

Anyway, I am really looking forward to this movie. I think it will be better than TPM and while I did not love that movie, I still liked it better than anything else I have seen recently. I just like Star Wars. ::shrugs::
posted by bargle at 4:28 PM on November 12, 2001


(visual and sound-- he's a master of sound)
That would be Ben Burtt. I still distinctly remember listening to a radio documentary about him when I was a schoolgirl. Described as a sound designer, a term that would later presage industrial designer, information architect, and other seemingly synthetic or randomly-fabricated occupational titles.

Meanwhile, on the question of DVDs that choke on Macs, MacFixit holds:
I just got off the phone with the content providers of the Shrek DVD-ROM. I called to complain about the lack of Mac support, but by the time the conversation was over I was no longer angry with them but with Apple. At first I was told that Apple refused to provide them with the Mac information comparable to what is available to the Wintel developers. I told them that as an old Mac developer I did not believe that was entirely accurate. I then spoke directly with one of the content developers who told me that they have begged Apple to give them the API's to the DVD player but Apple has declined. It seems as if Apple has decided to go their own way yet again and try to a provide a different way of doing things. It may be better but it does little good if we are left out in the cold.
posted by joeclark at 4:49 PM on November 12, 2001


Ok...well here it goes...
  1. I get the idea that the "Ancient Republic" was once a center of commerce, power, art, etc. and that it was a sort of"ideal" kind of like our romanticized notions of Rome and Greece. And after the fall of the republic, tech changed dramatically[kinda like the dark ages...no one can say that Lucas is original. obiwanwasabi this could explain the difference in technology.
  2. I agree that cg is used just because. The Yoda outfit that Frank Oz et al created was wonderful, because you can suspend disbelief better with a puppet,in my estimate, than with cg which has to have perfect shadows, textures and movement to become believable. Unfortunately the people at ILM/Lucasfilm are very good at what they do,but I believe that the cg is very flat and unbelievable.
  3. Yes! Natalie Portman is not obscured by hideous makeup and clothes. Thank you
  4. As said before, Lucas likes to take unknown/untested actors which, in this trailer suck.

  5. I could go on and on...but that would just be repeating what was said. Unfortunately I probably will see SWII when it opens...just out of sheer hope that the damn CG that was in the trailer wasn't fully rendered, and this was only a "test" render.
    God I hope so.

posted by plemeljr at 4:55 PM on November 12, 2001


mich9139, not only is Jar-Jar in the second trailer, but he's hiding in the first one too. If you go through frame by frame (yes, I'm a geek... sue me), you'll find him in the background of one of the shorter scenes. The top of his head out of frame, but he is definitely there.

Oh well... all we can hope is that "you-say me-sa gonna get decapitat-o with an lightsaber?"
posted by Lionfire at 5:23 PM on November 12, 2001


Wow. As a geekazoid that bout the DVD, it's kinda interesting how many of the questions asked here were actually answered in the DVD. And pretty much to my satisfaction.

Jake Lloyd was problematic during shooting, and Lucas knew it. They had an alternate kid who tested much better, (IMO), but the went for Lloyd's 'innocence', and paid the price.

Jar-Jar is in one scene in 2 - sorta a hello-goodbye. No fears on that count.

Lucas recognized the Blade-Runnerish atmosphere of Coruscant. In fact, there are two 'Spinners' hidden in the traffic there.

Yoda does do some butt-kicking in 2, CG.. but mainly Lucas had an obsession with CGing damned near everything. In fact, it seems like a real irritation in the production staff. "He directs in the editing room", one said. He uses comp tech to mess with everything. Hardly a frame of film was shot he didnt recompose later using computers. Cut a character, move a character, slow a character, change a background... Seems like a major control freak, as if we couldnt figure that out.


I agree that 1 - and probably 2 - will not come up to Empire.. but I am beginning to see the 'Big Story', and why Lucas said the whole story will only make sense once all of the films can be seen in succession.

The battle droids were intentionally bad.. leading to the need for a new weapons system that will premiere in the next film. All part of that extended storyline.

All sorts of good stuff in there. I still dont like the film much, but I understand it and forgive it now. And am looking forward to seeing how it all fits in the jigsaw.
posted by Perigee at 7:04 PM on November 12, 2001


I thought it looked kinda cool. Plus Natalie gets better looking every movie.
posted by Hugh2d2 at 7:20 PM on November 12, 2001


Re - explanations for the declining use of pink energy beams post Old Republic era: Dudes. Seriously. You sound like Trekkies. Thanks anyways :)
posted by obiwanwasabi at 7:27 PM on November 12, 2001


Natalie Portman is getting older in every film. Older might equal better looking.
I downloaded both from the Gnuttella network and preffered the breathing one. It had the lovely imagery (all those alarmingly scenic views) without the plot (that may manage to suck).
posted by davidgentle at 7:57 PM on November 12, 2001


natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman natalie portman!

sure you're at thr right community weblog? ;o)
posted by lotsofno at 7:58 PM on November 12, 2001


With respect to the classic Star Wars score, I think Georgie should give these guys a chance to do a song on the soundtrack. Its sooooo catchy and I find my white boy self rapping it to myself at work.

I GOT DEATH STAR!
posted by andryeevna at 9:28 PM on November 12, 2001


is it me or does the anakin in this one look just like ewan mcgregor?
posted by elle at 10:10 PM on November 12, 2001


Plus Natalie gets better looking every movie.

Wait till she's, oh, 35 and onwards, and you'll see how right you are, Hugh2d2...
posted by MiguelCardoso at 11:27 PM on November 12, 2001


In my opinion, the second trailer is better, if only because of Ewan's line towards at the end of it. I keep watching and I keep laughing.

I'm not expecting great things from this film, but I will, of course, go see it.
posted by jeffvc at 5:11 AM on November 13, 2001


When has Samuel L. Jackson NOT been wooden? Sure, he was great in Pulp Fiction, since his role called for him to spout out overly-scripted, unnatural-sounding lines. But he's been pretty much awful in everything else I've seen him in.
posted by MrMoonPie at 7:45 AM on November 13, 2001


I'm just surprised that they're actually putting out trailers to reveal, a little bit at a time, just how much the movie sucks. They're chipping away at the built-in demand they still would have had solidly if they'd played their lame hand closer to their chests.
posted by bingo at 11:54 AM on November 13, 2001


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