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The Phantom Menace • Virtual DVD Commentary


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By ROTS though, we do get it...plain as it is, albeit it devoid of an elaborative explanation. Dating back to TPM where discussion is currently focused, we know via Ki Adi Mundi that "the Sith have been extinct for over a millennium!" Jumping ahead to ROTS, not only does Mace Windu tell Sidious "the oppression of the Sith will never return," but Sidious says to Anakin "once more, the Sith will rule the galaxy."

 

What bottom line could you finally walk away with?

 

The Sith oppresively ruled the galaxy at some point over a thousand years ago.

 

Clearly they don't anymore, but they're trying to again. It never states who is responsible for their oppressive reign over the galaxy being brought to an end - but without being shown or told directly, you have to assume that it's Jedi; they were, after all, the guardians peace and justice in the Old Republic for over a thousand generations. This was also told to us, like the three aforementioned dots connected before.

 

And to be clear, this is not a stretch. I put the explanation together within a matter of seconds in my head and the amount of time it took to type it out - and I got ALL of it from the saga itself, which has to mean that we weren't left entirely in the dark. Again, it's not very in-depth in terms of an explanation, but does it have to be?

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I see what you're doing.

He was using the force to fly the damn thing whilst trying to stop it falling apart.   Noobs.

Woo!!!! A new update!

 

I actually just watched this whole movie in full last night, so many of these scenes are still fresh in my mind.

 

When watching it, I kept expecting the Tatooine stuff to be great, and it all ended up very subdued. I noticed that the only parts you ever get to see are Anakins place, Wattos shop, The pod racing arena, and a brief stretch of city street. Probably some lost opportunities there to elaborate on the tatooine cities more than what we saw in ANH.

 

And Jar Jar in the dinner scene is about as pointless as he's going to get in the whole trilogy. He adds absolutely nothing other than breaking up the exposition with bad comedy.

 

I never really minded Anakins lines here. They are a bit cheesy, but for the character, i'll buy them. If Liam Neeson wasn't there, however, to hold down the fort, i think this scene would have really been in trouble.

 

I also didn't mind the midicholorian talk at this stage. I'll agree with Thomas that they should have left it at this one, and not explained it in depth later on in Coruscant. But it definately takes away some of the mystic elements of the Jedi that many people had of them in the OT. And interestingly enough, there was no mention of Midicholrians in either AOTC or ROTS. So he must have got the hint.

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-The shop owner’s got some of the less textured features of any of the CGI characters and looks pretty fake

 

-I love how Anakin’s first instinct with Padme is her his toys. It’s one of those little kid that totally fits with the age.

 

-But oh wait, now Darth Maul’s telling us they did get a trace despite no reply being sent. Absolutely no indication was ever given as to how this happened. This is where the “Captain Panaka is a traitor†rumors really got started I think because someone had to send out that signal. Too bad the guy was basically written out of the saga in the next movie in favor of the exact same character with an eye-patch.

 

-Here we have the virgin birth. It seems to be mainly a concept meant to fulfill a prophesy, but will also be lightly touched upon in RotS. I don’t have much use for it as Christ figures in movies are a bit overplayed, but it is an indication that Anakin is megapowerful.

 

1. i think that shop owener was a rubber mask...

 

2. I DO love that Anakin wants to show off his toys. Makes perfect sense for his age.

 

3. Was Panaka made a traitor i the Eu after all? I seem to recall hearing that.

 

4. Do you think Virgin Birth is iplied here as opposed to plain ol miraculous conception?

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1. i think that shop owener was a rubber mask...

 

Heh, irony there.

 

3. Was Panaka made a traitor i the Eu after all? I seem to recall hearing that.

 

I don't know about traitor, but, according to Wookiepedia, Panaka was the one who informed Palpatine about Padme and Anakin's marriage and eventually became a Moff.

 

4. Do you think Virgin Birth is iplied here as opposed to plain ol miraculous conception?

 

I'd bet against a slave girl making it to womanhood with her virtues intact, but who knows. Lucas's vision of slavery is uncomfortably idealized.

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Sort of an easter egg if you're into EU, Quinlan Vos is in the background during the scene where Anakin saves Jar Jar from Sebulba. Although it doesn't really make sense, surely a fellow Jedi would have helped Qui-Gon in his current predicament. Presumeably they spotted the background character, thought the design was cool and created a character from it.

 

I like the droids first meeting (although its a little meaningless since 3PO had his memory erased so they would have had another 'first' meeting after Sith) , its funny to see R2 was making jokes at 3PO's expense from the beginning. I have no problem with Anakin being 3POs maker either, it wasn't necessary but when I first saw it I just thought "Oh, ok" and didn't think anything more about it, still don't.

 

Regarding the scene where Sidious sends Maul to Tatooine, and Maul's desire for revenge. I also think it could have been explained better why they wanted revenge. I would have liked some details on what the Sith have been doing in that time, how they've been operating without detection, how apprenctices have been trained, what their grand plan for revenge was etc. I mean has every Sith master before Sidious been content with just training an apprentice in secret till they were usurped? Or did they all have plots for revenge but only Sidious has been able to pull his off?

 

I think it was a little silly to reveal Anakin had never even finished a race before, never having won a race would have sufficed but still left Anakin with some credibility.

 

Midichlorians, never gave them a second thought when I first the film and still don't. They are obviously not the Force itself just messengers so I don't think it ruins anything, unnecessary perhaps but thats all.

 

Oh and the scene with all the little kids gathering to see Anakin's pod is horrible!

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Probably the biggest, necessary explanation screwed up by GL neglect. He made a mistake in assuming such a crucial plot point--ater the Skywalker's effect, the prime motivator of the saga--could be sold & settled with the all too vague "revenge" line. In the OT, the audience witnessed the aftermath of the Sith's power grab, so it was not necessary for say, Obi-Wan or Yoda to go into a laborious explanation, since Luke (and the Rebellion for that matter) were already living under the thumb of evil. In other words, they got the message.

 

In the case of TPM being the "origin" film, GL needed Palpatine to finally hip us to what motivated the Jedi/Sith conflict beyond "Jedi = good / Sith = bad" as we--like the Prequel characters--were tossed into a "more civilized time" where GL should have treated us as though we were like the main characters: not knowing 2 sh*ts about Sith reasons for revenge. Even by the time of Revenge of the Sith, you would think Sith motives would have been laid out (beyond galactic takeover), but all we really hear are Sith accusations of Jedi fear (Anakin), Jedi lies and dogmatic behavior (Sidious), but no clear, this-BIG-DEAL-is-the-reason-we-want-revenge statement.

 

They are two sides of a religious movement; GL really needed to dig into that, instead of crap about midichlorian levels, and Sidious being haughty, etc.

 

Adding to what Exodus said, the revenge component of the Sith pretty much dies with Maul and ceases to be a major driver of events in the saga. Palpatine doesn't seem to have much use for revenge, he's mostly out to gain power and killing Jedi is merely a delicious bonus. Anakin becomes a Sith in order to learn the secrets of eternal life. Dooku's goal was somewhat obscure in the movies, but had to do with a desire to clean up the galaxy.

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3. Was Panaka made a traitor i the Eu after all? I seem to recall hearing that.

 

I don't know about traitor, but, according to Wookiepedia, Panaka was the one who informed Palpatine about Padme and Anakin's marriage and eventually became a Moff.

 

 

The EU material I've read doesn't mention Panaka at all after the Attack of the Clones novelization. In the novelization of Revenge of the Sith, Palpatine tells Anakin that he has friends among the holy men of Naboo when he reveals that he knows about Anakin's marriage to Padme, so the reader infers that he heard the news from one of them.

 

Is anyone aware of where that Wookiepedia entry would come from? Any basis for Panaka being the source of the information?

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Again, it's not very in-depth in terms of an explanation, but does it have to be?

 

In a sense, yes. More than the Empire and Rebellion's clear cut political issues, the Jedi vs. Sith conflict goes beyond the mere "oppression" Mace revealed in ROTS. If there was some sort of ugly, ecclesial rift (think as though the EU does not exist--as it does not for mainstream general audinces), some series of events playing up the deep mystical side more than we were exposed to, then something of that should have found it's way into the "revenge" conversation in TMP, or somewhere in the PT.

 

In short, I felt the the mysticism angle was not as strong (in relation to an explanation for Sith motives) as it could have been. How that would have played out in script form, I do not know, but that is how I felt about the scene in question.

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The more I think on it, I think it came from the Star Wars website. There was that very brief time while they were in the midst of their re-design where starwars.com beame the holonet news, and the entire site was written from an in-universe perspective. It was one of the few EU things I thought was pretty clever and enjoyed it.

 

I THINK a newsbrief about Panaka being a traitor came from there.

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But how would Panaka find this information out? He wasn't at the wedding, after all. They kept their marriage secret from even their closest friends and family (eliminating even the most obvious people who could have disclosed to the Chancellor that they married since Anakin realized that Palpatine was a Sith solely on the basis of his knowing about the marriage - according to the information seen on film), so how would her former security chief find out?

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Oh I don't recall him being a traitor over that particular event-- just that he was one.

 

i want to say that he was rumored to have joined Count Dooku's inner sanctum.

 

It was just amusing given that Hugh Quarshdie left because he thought he should be paid more, and wasn't a fan of Lucas' style of filmmaking. The response was to make his character into a bad guy.

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4. Do you think Virgin Birth is iplied here as opposed to plain ol miraculous conception?

 

I'd bet against a slave girl making it to womanhood with her virtues intact, but who knows. Lucas's vision of slavery is uncomfortably idealized.

 

I would agree that George's representation of slavery is romanticized in the mythological sense. I also think that Shmi did not need to be a slave her whole life. The way I always took the Tatooine exposition is that Shmi entered into slavery around the same time Anakin was conceived. Also Shmi doesn't indicate that she was a virgin, just that in the case of Anakin there was no man involved. It is possible she was not a virgin at all and yet still conceived without having sex for months prior.

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I got that she was from someplace other than Tattooine, but had always been a slave.

 

To be honest, I'm not sure what the slave angle really paid off on with the story. Anakin's alienation had more to do with being a Jedi than a slave. All it it really did was serve the plot in separating Anakin and Shmi-- but that could have been done in other ways. Hell, Darth Maul coulda killed her.

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I thought that the set-up between Watto and Qui-gon was WAY over complicated. Meeting Anakin and getting his help to win money for the parts could have been separate from dealing with Watto. But you know-- coulda woulda shoulda.

 

Slavery in the Star Wars universe is what it is. This is also a universe where Queens are elected!

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As for what pushed me to think Shmi wasn't a slave her whole life... it was just how I took her and Ani's exposition about how they came to Tatooine. I had in my mind that something got really fudged up and she was taken or something. Obviously my impression was faulty. :)

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As far as the trace goes, I just assumed the Sith had some better tracing technology than everyone else. Where did they get it from? I dont know and I really dont care.

 

The Tatooine scenes fall flat for the simple reason that we know exactly how they are gonna turn out. We know Anakin is gonna get off that planet, it just takes a long time. I know we know pretty much exactly how the whole trilogy is gonna end but in TPM Tatooine scenes its a major problem. No one really cares how he gets off that planet, as long as he does. In order for these scenes to work they would have to be beyond excellent. Its like the Jabba scenes in ROTJ, we know they are getting Han and getting off that planet. If Han is gonna die it aint gonna be at the hands of Jabba the Hutt in the first 20 minutes. Its gonna be at the hands of the Empire in the final 20. The third Pirates movie has the same issue, its like "we know Johnny Depp is coming back, just egt him back already." This is the essential problem with the Tatooine scenes in TPM.

 

Also are people really saying that Palpatine needed some kind of traitor or inside info to know of Anakin and Padmes marriage? I mean hes a Sith Master, he just read Anakins thoughts.

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You'd rather these scenes be rushed just because we know how it's gonna turn out? Doesn't make sense to me. The "how and why" is really the only reason to make the movies.

 

 

No, if the method for him getting off the planet is the race and all of that then I dno't think it could have been much different. I think there are a few ways to make this middle part of the movie better. You could totally change how he gets off tatooine so it happens faster. Or what Id have liked is scenes on Naboo showing the people suffering rather than just hearing it from a hologram. That would have possibly given the Tatooine scenes urgency. Maybe thats more what I meant, those scenes just sort of happen. We hear a couple characters mention that they have to hurry but I don't get that sense while watching teh movie. Its sort of like "they'll get off Tatooine eventually and end up back on Naboo and fight and win." Just no sense of urgency.

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