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A new, amazing, thorough and hilarious critique of The Phantom Menace


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#21 of 423 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted December 19 2009 - 03:13 PM

Also, the guys weird voice is part of the POINT.  An idiot savage like this guy can out-think the legendary George Lucas when it comes to whats wrong with these films.

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#22 of 423 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted December 19 2009 - 03:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Posten View Post

I'm assuming the people who are suggesting this is an unwarranted criticism are NOT among the group who felt like their best childhood memories were tainted or murdered by TPM? 
 

I didn't say it was warranted or unwarranted. I said it's sad that someone wasted that much of their life worrying about a movie that they didn't like when they could be focusing on something that they do like. I have no problem wasting my own life (look at my post count) but at least, I generally focus on what I like rather than obsessing about a movie that I didn't like for a decade.

If I just made a 70 minute video complaining about The Matrix or The Blair Witch Project or Eyes Wide Shut or Mickey Blue Eyes or any other movie from 1999, you'd most likely think that I needed to move on and you'd be right.

#23 of 423 OFFLINE   Sam Posten

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Posted December 19 2009 - 04:12 PM

But if you made a 70 minute critique of how Matrix 2/3 ruined the goodwill of the first one I'd be right there cheering you on!

Sam

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#24 of 423 OFFLINE   EricW

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Posted December 19 2009 - 05:07 PM

i was racking my brain trying to figure out what cartoon/movie/spoof voice that sounded like, and it wasn't til the last part that i realized it sounded like Ryan Philippe's actual voice :P

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#25 of 423 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted December 19 2009 - 10:43 PM

But this completely misses the point.

One, I think he had a blast making it, and doing something that makes you happy is never a waste of time. Two, the end product was quality, something that he could be proud of (whether one agrees with his premise or not). And three, I don't know if it was his intention or desire to get Hollywood's attention for perhaps a future career, but he certainly achieved that (read the part about who recommended the reviews). He got more Hollywood insiders attention with this one film than most aspiring filmmakers turning in dozens of half-baked scripts! If that was his end, this was far from a waste of his time and was actually constructive towards a career goal! And even if it wasn't his intention, it might still do him some good.

Quote:
I said it's sad that someone wasted that much of their life worrying about a movie that they didn't like when they could be focusing on something that they do like. I have no problem wasting my own life (look at my post count) but at least, I generally focus on what I like rather than obsessing about a movie that I didn't like for a decade.

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#26 of 423 OFFLINE   Lou Sytsma

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Posted December 19 2009 - 10:44 PM



Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Posten 

But if you made a 70 minute critique of how Matrix 2/3 ruined the goodwill of the first one I'd be right there cheering you on!

Sam
Ditto.


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#27 of 423 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted December 19 2009 - 10:54 PM

Chuck's point I can totally see. We all can present anecdotal evidence on whether kids still love Star Wars, but there are certain things we can't deny. The general consensus of the quality of the first two films is one of them (see the scores on IMDB with the massive amount of people who ranked, hardly a small statistical sample, or heck, just walk down the street and ask someone /img/vbsmilies/htf/biggrin.gif). The second is that SW is still selling to kids (see the presence of toys in places like Toys R Us and Wal-mart). It's more likely due to the Clone Wars which from what I hear is popular with kids.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chuck Mayer 

The kids around here could give a fig about either trilogy.  But man, they love the cartoon Clone Wars/img/vbsmilies/htf/chatter.gif

Star Wars is a very big deal for kids, but it is the cartoon they know.



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#28 of 423 OFFLINE   Chris Atkins

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Posted December 20 2009 - 12:34 AM

last week, I attended star wars in concert with 15,000 other people. we heard live music and saw images from all six films. whether those 15,000 cared about the PT or not, the PT certainly hasn't dampered enthusiasm for star wars in general. so don't overestimate the impact that the PT has had on star wars in general.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Carlo Medina 

Chuck's point I can totally see. We all can present anecdotal evidence on whether kids still love Star Wars, but there are certain things we can't deny. The general consensus of the quality of the first two films is one of them (see the scores on IMDB with the massive amount of people who ranked, hardly a small statistical sample, or heck, just walk down the street and ask someone ). The second is that SW is still selling to kids (see the presence of toys in places like Toys R Us and Wal-mart). It's more likely due to the Clone Wars which from what I hear is popular with kids.



 



#29 of 423 OFFLINE   Chad R

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Posted December 20 2009 - 01:47 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sam Posten View Post

I'm assuming the people who are suggesting this is an unwarranted criticism are NOT among the group who felt like their best childhood memories were tainted or murdered by TPM?  =p  From 1977-1988  or so I lived and breathed Star Wars.  TPM and its ham-fisted tax revolt and disgusting midiclorians felt like a knife stuck in my childhood....
Not true at all. I too grew up on "Star Wars" and nothing that was done in the prequels spoiled those memories, or did anything to "taint" the original stories to me. I can still watch them as a self contained piece. I never let the "Droids" or "Ewoks" cartoons, the Holiday special, or the two crappy Ewok TV movies spoil it for me either (not to mention the scads of terribly written novels that actually includes the characters I love).

Or, to put it another way, I've loved "Spider-Man" most of my life. Loved the first two films, and despised the third. That third movie in no way diminishes my love for the first two or interferes with my enjoyment of them after the fact. I'm not going to go on and on about how the third one got so much wrong -- it is what it is. I just concentrate on the things I do like.


#30 of 423 OFFLINE   Carlo Medina

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Posted December 20 2009 - 04:19 AM

I agree we shouldn't overestimate how much the PT may or may not have soured people on the OOT, but you also can't draw too much of a conclusion from that concert's attendance for a couple of reasons:

1.Was there an option to watch the concert with only the OOT? If not, then it was the only option and there was no way for people to register their opinion on the quality of the films by attending only a concert with the OOT vs. only the PT vs. all six. I detest the PT but I'd probably attend that concert, because...

2. The music was never a problem with the PT. Couple that with the fact that you only had to watch images from the PT, sparing you from the "whole awfulness" (my words, my opinion) of the PT movies. That's why trailers to some crappy films look so good - you take exciting music, show clips and montages, and voila!

John Williams' score is so great, it wouldn't be hard to pick and choose clips and snippets from the PT to put together a montage that would stir and excite people. Heck with that music someone could probably put together a stirring and exciting montage from Battlefield Earth and Alien vs. Predator! /img/vbsmilies/htf/biggrin.gif

What time has done for me, rather than vindicate the PT, it's hardened the line in my mind between the PT and OOT. I still love the OOT and in fact, in my mind the PT doesn't really exist as part of the canon for me, so there is no negative effect for me between the PT and OOT. I will watch the OOT, and I don't ever watch the PT.

But we're starting to stray from the thread topic which is the great piece of satirical comedy that was the video review Sam posted. I'm getting overwhelmingly positive responses from my friends regarding it (none are HT/HTF guys but they're all in their thirties or early forties).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris Atkins 

last week, I attended star wars in concert with 15,000 other people. we heard live music and saw images from all six films. whether those 15,000 cared about the PT or not, the PT certainly hasn't dampered enthusiasm for star wars in general. so don't overestimate the impact that the PT has had on star wars in general.



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#31 of 423 OFFLINE   TravisR

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Posted December 20 2009 - 05:07 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad R View Post

Or, to put it another way, I've loved "Spider-Man" most of my life. Loved the first two films, and despised the third. That third movie in no way diminishes my love for the first two or interferes with my enjoyment of them after the fact. I'm not going to go on and on about how the third one got so much wrong -- it is what it is. I just concentrate on the things I do like.
 

For me, I would use The Simpsons as an example. I think the first decade or so of the show was one of the best and funniest shows in the history of television but I think that the last 10 years of the show has ranged from OK to utter crap but those newer episodes are never going to dampen my enthusiasm or change my feelings for the great episodes of the series.

#32 of 423 OFFLINE   Brent M

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Posted December 20 2009 - 06:10 AM



Quote:
Originally Posted by Chad R 


Not true at all. I too grew up on "Star Wars" and nothing that was done in the prequels spoiled those memories, or did anything to "taint" the original stories to me. I can still watch them as a self contained piece. I never let the "Droids" or "Ewoks" cartoons, the Holiday special, or the two crappy Ewok TV movies spoil it for me either (not to mention the scads of terribly written novels that actually includes the characters I love).

 
Well said, Chad. Unfortunately there are a lot of people unable to do the same.


On a side note, I watched about the first minute of that video and had to turn it off. If anyone could sit through 70 min. of that guy's voice they're a better man than I. Seemed like it would be about as funny as swine flu.


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#33 of 423 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 20 2009 - 02:19 PM

One of the funniest things I've ever seen on the web.
I didn't expect to sit through all 70 minutes of it, but found it compulsively watchable.
More than that, I found it a remarkably well thought out deconstruction of a movie that itself hadn't been well thought out beyond it's most superficial trappings.
See, for me, I could have envisioned being motivated to lavish nearly that same amount of critical attention on Return Of The Jedi - this was the first SW movie I experienced to be a brutally crushing , moviegoing disappointment.
After that, all the criticisms that were heaped upon TPM and the rest of the prequels by (the now older) fans were a big "duh!" to me. I never understood why so few people hadn't dismissed Lucas as a still competent filmmaker long before 1999. The Special Editions revealed explicitly what Lucas's values were as a storyteller circa that time period and how much they had changed. I never saw the prequels as a huge surprise.

Anyways, as far as the 'review' goes- very well done incorporation of clips from the other films as well as the documentary to make his (serious) critical points, as well as providing LOL punctuation. Not every joke hits the mark- but for me the % was overwhelmingly positive. And most of the criticism was surprisingly sound and serious- and applies to MANY overproduced films, especially in the fantasy adventure genres.

In fact, I think this same level of criticism could easily be applied to The Dark Knight, with equal devastation.
I'm surprised given how much money and attention this had, that more thoughtful fans haven't turned on it already.
I think my anticipatory/ reactive trajectory for that film was comparable to many SW's fans experience with the prequels (and TPM specifically). It's taken me over a year to come to accept that this movie- with so many admittedly wonderful individual elements- is a sloppy, incoherent, and foolish mess in aggregate.
A lot of people will dismiss that- until someone sits down and steps you through how idiotic the film is within it's own universe, the way this guy has done with TPM.

BTW, as funny as the review is, I just about fell out of my chair laughing at that Red Dwarf clip that played afterward. The perfect punctuation to the whole thing.


#34 of 423 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted December 20 2009 - 03:06 PM

I really enjoyed that 70 min piece (found it via DF).

But what impressed me was that it was also a nice primer on story telling and movie making.


#35 of 423 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 20 2009 - 03:21 PM



Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveF 

But what impressed me was that it was also a nice primer on story telling and movie making.
Absolutely.
Lots of basic principles addressed there that any aspiring storyteller should always be conscious of.
For that reason I think this is a helluva piece of work. Anyone dismissing this for being just more snarky SW criticism is really missing out.



#36 of 423 OFFLINE   mattCR

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Posted December 20 2009 - 03:22 PM

I loved the originals and watched them in the theater.
I enjoyed the Prequels as well; I dont find them up to the originals, but I can sit with my 8&10 year old and they cheer like crazy at all the right moments.

I rarely ask anything of a film except to entertain me.  That's it.  There are some films that I will praise for their efforts to do more then that, to provide meaning to their effort.

While the Prequel trilogy isn't the greatest thing ever, in comparison to some of the dreck that has managed to rack up box office (Transformers2?  GI Joe the movie?) it's a film I can still enjoy with my kids.

I get that someone didn't like it.  And they felt compelled to write a book about it and some people who are still angry think it's funny.  I'm wondering what's wrong with him that he's so obsessed about it.  Imagine someone doing this same effort with regards to "Godfather III" which I will contend is a far greater sacrilege against the original content.   Or going for twenty minutes about how "Bewitched" the movie is a destruction of good family memories?

We'd think they'd gone mental. 

So, I have to admit, I won't waste time watching through a 70 minute destruction of a film.  If i wanted that, I'll wait for an MST3k version.   And at the moment they pop up on Bluray, I'll grab them right away.  Because just as the original is part of my childhood, my kids enjoyed them.  So..

Enjoyment is always up to the viewer.  But I'd watch "Phantom Menace" in a marathon before I'd have any desire to watch "Transformers2" again..


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#37 of 423 OFFLINE   DaveF

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Posted December 20 2009 - 03:59 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by TravisR 

I said it's sad that someone wasted that much of their life worrying about a movie that they didn't like when they could be focusing on something that they do like.
I don't understand how in a forum dedicated to the (fundamentally luxurious) hobby of discussing movies--raving and ranting on them-- people can say that a clever examination of the work of one of the most important filmmakers is a waste of time. Or that in a forum dedicated to watching movies from today and from 60 years ago--restoration and re-release of Snow White ring a bell?--can say that examining a movie from a mere decade ago is pointless?

The style of the piece might be offputting. You might think it's outdated and misguided anti-fanboyism.  But it's smart work: taking the addled voice of a nutball, he plays the Jester; the fool who can tell truths in guise of jokes. The examination is specifically relevant as it considers the downfalls of the "genius" taking sole creative control of his work with no peer input (see also Spielberg retooling aspects of E.T.). More importanly, it is relevant today: consider the three minutes starting at minute 7:00 of Part 6, considering the use of combat and conflict in storytelling. I would wish that every would-be maker of Ironman or Transformers could watch this tutorial on storytelling and learn from it.


#38 of 423 OFFLINE   Tony J Case

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Posted December 20 2009 - 04:08 PM

>SEARCHING FOR FUNNY

. . . . .

>FUNNY NOT FOUND. DO YOU WISH TO CONTINUE Y/N?

>

Seriously, that guy slurs like he had a stroke and then he gets all insulting to people who might actually like 1-3. I couldnt make it past 45 seconds let alone an hour plus.

Secondly - lets assume that the prequil movies are as bad as The Haters say. We'll give Phantom Menace a pass for being the first Wars movie in 16 years. Lucas could have filmed a cinderblock with lightsaber sounds dubbed over the top and it would have made millions. but for the sake of argument, lets say that TPM was a hideous story telling failure. Why then did Attack of the Clones go on to make a bazillion dollars?

Or, lets say that TPM and Clones were both absolutely dreadful movies. Fool me once, shame on me, fool me twice etc, etc. Why didn't Sith stall at the box office, making like only 150 bucks for the whole run?  Why didn't people learn their lesson if "They" hated 1 and 2? (Extending that thought a little bit further, if Lucas raped their childhoods as badly as they say, then why was Indy 4 reasonably successful at the box office. If everyone was tired of his shenanigans, surely Indy would have totally failed.)

I'm not saying that TPM wasnt a weak movie. It had the feeling of 16 years of directoral rust coming off of the hull for sure, and I could have done with less Wacky Jar-Jar. But compared to a utter shithole of a script like Transformers 2 (or GI Joe) or an incoherantly edited mess like the Borne flicks, TPM looks like freakin' Citizen Kane.


#39 of 423 OFFLINE   Paul_Scott

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Posted December 20 2009 - 04:19 PM


Quote:
get that someone didn't like it.  And they felt compelled to write a book about it and some people who are still angry think it's funny.  I'm wondering what's wrong with him that he's so obsessed about it.  Imagine someone doing this same effort with regards to "Godfather III" which I will contend is a far greater sacrilege against the original content.   Or going for twenty minutes about how "Bewitched" the movie is a destruction of good family memories?

We'd think they'd gone mental. 
The first mistake you are making Matt is to think the point of the piece is just to carp in a fanboy way over TMP, because he was disappointed in it as a SW film.
There is a bit of truth in that since the first (two) films were amazing pieces of cinema- fantasy or otherwise.
They were supremely well made, going beyond mere production gloss. They were entertaining stories told very well. But that isn't the main gist I was taking away from this.
It seemed to me, the guys point-of-view is that TMP is simply a very bad movie (a weak conceptual story told in an incompetent way), and when he uses specific comparisons to the OT it is only to illustrate more clearly why and how TMP fails at being a quality fantasy film in general.
You and Tony and others may love it to death- but it really is a dreadful piece of work full of mind numbing inconsistencies, contradictions, inane plot development and foolish clutter.

I can understand someone being put off by the morbid and off color humor in that crops up in pt 2 and after, but the only people seeming to have a problem with this can't even make it a few minutes into the first part.



#40 of 423 OFFLINE   Brent M

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Posted December 20 2009 - 04:22 PM



In fact, I think this same level of criticism could easily be applied to The Dark Knight, with equal devastation.
 

I don't hate The Phantom Menace as much as most people do, but even I will admit it is a giant turd compared to The Dark Knight. To say that TDK should undergo the same kind of intense scrutiny as Episode I truly blows my mind. It's not often I'm rendered speechless by comments on this forum, but this one certainly had that effect on me.

Then again, we obviously see things quite differently if you found this moron's obnoxious ramblings "one of the funniest things you've ever seen on the web".

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