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Member Since 07 Jul 2009
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#486488 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 27 January 2018 - 01:12 PM

@Ocelot, your posts in this thread are filled to the brim with great analysis. That RO post summed up basically every problem I have with that film - particularly how RO has no conception of the value of life, when it's the Star Wars version of war film. Always refreshing to see well thought-through comments on Star Wars threads #RipAdmiralAckbar #ChildhoodRuined



#486391 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 07 January 2018 - 10:43 AM

A couple of things:






Also, I watched both this film and TFA again. A couple of things stunk a little more on the second viewing, but the things that worked worked even better a second time around with proper context. TFA feels more rewarding when it doesn't feel like half the film is dangling all this JJ mystery box schmuck in front of the viewer.


EDIT: I also watched 'Hail, Caesar!' this weekend. Great film I'd recommend if you're a fan of 50-60s big-budget cinema like Ben-Hur, as it's the Coens' comedic tribute to that era of cinema. Anyway, Aiden Ehrenreich, the guy playing the young Han Solo, was pretty good in that film. That said, he was doing a comedy performance as a character who can't act, but he was very entertaining, and I - think - it made me somewhat more optimistic about the film? Idunno.

#486314 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 21 December 2017 - 02:30 PM

^perfect description of rogue one. Make it a random WW2 movie, amd it'd score as highly as Fury lol. Foreseeable plot, dull characters, predictable, visually uninspiring, intellectually and emotionally bereft. A solid 5/10 that is venerated by nerds because Darth Vader kills some people. Jooooooke

#486302 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 20 December 2017 - 01:37 AM

Yeh, Mark Hammill and Rian nailed it with Luke. He felt far much more like a living, real extension of the character we knew years ago than some of the boring, oh-so-wise interpretations from the EU.

#486296 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 19 December 2017 - 03:14 PM



You literally can't say that given the huge backlash. You can't. I personally thought it was a very bad film regardless of how I felt the franchise should go.



EDIT: I'm just gonna leave this discussion. This movie broke me. I walked out of that theater devastated and I am literally depressed after seeing it. I hated it so much. Talking about it will only hurt more.


I'm genuinely very sorry you feel that way. It does suck having your expectations shattered, but I hope you can come back to the film at a later date when you perhaps have a changed perspective/interact with entertainment in a different way and can appreciate the quality of the film. If not, as I said you'll always have the OT - I do exactly what Scorp does and cut the Alien films off with the end of Aliens in my mind (but I equally can appreciate aspects of Alien 3 and don't resent its existence).


A word on objectivity: I do understand your point, and I use the term a little more loosely than some. Nevertheless, you could analyse the pacing, cinematography, editing etc. of this film in depth and it would score highly. Vice-versa, do the same for the prequels and they fall woefully short. The criticisms of the film I see rarely engage with these more objective measures of quality, and are more about what Star Wars should be rather than what a good film should be. "This film is bad because I don't like seeing Luke having lost" is a different level of criticism to tearing apart the prequels for how lazy the exposition-dump dialogue is compared to how crisp and witty it is here.


It's fair enough if you disagree with that assessment, but there is a lot of critical weight to back this up from people looking at this from a critical rather than emotional perspective. That's also not to say that something having objective quality makes you wrong for disliking something. I am just saying, (and I will preface this with imo) the evidence is that this film is resonating well outside of less devoted audiences because it is structured, paced, written, presented etc. in a way that engages with how we derive entertainment from cinema. I'll pass on a more detailed quantitative analysis but, outside of RT and Metacritic (which are basically venues for review-bombing nowadays) the film trends well.

#486291 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 19 December 2017 - 02:34 PM

> misunderstood you sorry


So here's a different comment because I can't speak to KotoR, having never finished either.


This is a main saga story undermining the most famous trilogy of all time. This is unacceptable.


Lots of people apparently said the same thing after TESB, as the tone was so much darker and more bizarre compared to ANH, and because they didn't like how miserably all the heroes suffered. Sounds familiar?


I guarantee TLJ will last the test of time and be venerated. All my non-SW fanatic friends love this - my girlfriend watched 4-8 with me these last few months, and this was her favourite. That's because it's an objectively well-made piece of entertainment and sequel, and that matters a lot more than a small subset of fans with very specific and often unhelpful ideas of what the largest entertainment franchise of all time should look like.

#486289 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 19 December 2017 - 02:27 PM

That's not the point I was making? Kotor II undermines basically the entire heroic journey of Kotor, determined to save the Jedi and Republic, by eradicating the Jedi - in part unwittingly through the player's own actions - and decimating the Republic. There's a clear parallel to how the new Trilogy of SW has followed the ending of the OT.

#486287 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 19 December 2017 - 02:20 PM

@Scorp also contrast Kotor and Kotor II to TLJ and the OT. Both sequels are dark and bizarre and put the SW universe in a darker and worse place than the preceding work, despite all the sacrifice and heroism of the first part. Both absolutely intellectually destroy basic assumptions of the canon (Kotor 2 far far more so tbh) relating to morality and spirituality. And you loved one of these sequels and apparently don't the other, which is fine as you have your reasons that are clearly thought-through. Nevertheless, I really do think that when the shock and surprise of Rian Johnson's curveball wears off, you might be surprised what you'd get out of a viewing.

#486286 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 19 December 2017 - 01:39 PM

I thought this film was pretty great. It wasn't perfect and it did make some mistakes, but it's definitely the most creative and intelligent and confident that Star Wars has been since TESB. And I'm finding the backlash to this film frustrating, because the nostalgia that's driving it denigrates it precisely for what makes it great: its boldness and vision


Bad sequels try to recreate the feel of the original film without understanding the uniqueness and creative boldness that made that film succeed. They don't grow the characters, they add nothing to the lore and mythos of their universe, and they fail to justify their existence from any critical (ie. not fan-service) perspective. Conversely, good sequels take the narrative consequences of what came before and explore these honestly, frankly and creatively, expanding on rather than merely deifying the films that came before. They have a purpose to exist outside of standing as an empty monument to the past, and are unafraid to stand beside the original film with an identity of their own.


What the older generation of Star Wars fans need to understand is that these new films belong to a new generation of movie-goers as much as they belong to us. These films are not The Original Trilogy Part 2, and have to tell their own stories without being limited in a narrative, dramatic or creative sense by the past. Whilst it is understandable to be protective of old characters, this is no longer their story; the Star Wars universe is bigger than three characters. If you want to see Han, Luke and Leia traipse around kicking ass and always coming out the other side unscathed, the old Legends fiction still exists. But I'd really not have wanted to see a film trilogy following this timid and self-congratulatory approach, too afraid of its own mythic status to explore, expose and challenge its fundamental assumptions. 


What I find really impressive is that Rian Johnson found a way to balance honouring the DNA of SW with subverting and shattering many of its tropes, in the process creating something that builds upon what came before without repeating it. He took the core concepts of Star Wars - the spirituality of the force, family and identity, the importance of balance (light/dark, impulsiveness/indecision, action/inaction), dealing with failure and rejection etc - and wasn't intent to just regurgitate them. Rather, he stripped them apart and explored them in dynamic and complex ways that the other films never did before, in the process adding the depth and nuance that will allow the universe to grow and thrive rather than stagnate and become redundant.


To be frank, I think this comes down to divide between those able to accept good storytelling and filmmaking on its own terms and those who want to restrict it with formula and checklists. And it is difficult to be objective with something as beloved as SW. I really can understand being protective of the OT, as they and the broader SW universe clearly held such meaning to everyone here. But the OT is still there and always will be, and I think it's frankly selfish and limiting to expect this new trilogy of films to stick to such a narrow vision of what something as expansive as broad as WARS in SPACE with magic and little green men and laser-swords should be.


Not gonna bother with any of the crackpot sexism. Rey is also not a Mary Sue, but people can keep throwing around that very loaded misnomer (when was the last time you saw an 80s masculine wish-fulfilment hero dismissed as a Gary Stu?) if they like.

#485471 Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker

Posted by Darknoon on 06 September 2017 - 07:35 AM

Yeah, I feel harsh for having wanted this for ages. Jurassic World didn't seem to have a single inspired or unique thing about it, and The Book of Henry is awwwwwful. The fact he and his writing partner still hadn't figured out a script after this long, and needed a random British guy to fill in, says it all. Personally, I hope they get Rian Johnson to just finish the saga and re-write the entire script. I think they'll want a safe pair of hands on this one. Long-shots I'd like to see would be Alfonso Cuaron (Children of Men is absolutely amazing, and he's done franchise and blockbuster sci-fi), whilst Guillermo Del Toro has been talking to Disney for a while about a potential spin-off (though I didn't rate Pacific Rim). Or George Miller...I think he did Happy Feet? Regardless, if it's not Rian, I expect JJ, or somebody of that sort, rather than a more young and experimental director.


EDIT: Apparently insiders are saying that Disney are now done with green directors, and will not be considering them for future SW titles. Unsurprising, considering a) the Han Solo debacle, b) the extensive reshoots they brought Tony Gilroy in for with R1, and c) Josh Trank. Though by all accounts, the film Rian has made is really unique and fresh.


Part of me is torn...I definitely don't want people as inexperienced as Trank getting thrown films they aren't ready for/have the proven character to handle, but I think the rumours of Stephen Daldry directing the Obi-Wan spin-off are just so uninspiring. Fair enough if they want safe hands, but I'd rather they at least pick directors on the up and with their own sense of style. I mentioned Curon and Del Toro, and those are both directors I'd much rather see tackling SW than uninspiring journeymen like Daldry and Ron Howard. Hell, even someone like Gore Verbinski or Brad Bird would be interesting to see.

#485426 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Darknoon on 28 August 2017 - 09:02 AM

Yeah, I thought it was kind of embarrassing how hard they were trying to surprise the audience. As you said, the resulting outcomes of all these plots were highly predictable, but I guess they figured they could paper over nothing happening if they presented the illusion that things actually were. I didn't doubt the outcome of 90% of what happened in that episode for a second. But I did at least appreciate the fact that the show had more time to breathe, and that the quality of the dialogue was generally of a much higher standard. This wasn't as awful as series 5, but it did feel like a step-back from series 6 (and obviously series 1-4, but those practically take place in a different universe lol). The final two episodes of series 6 were genuinely thrilling and sometimes shocking, whereas these final two episodes relied on cheap slights of hand and empty spectacle.

#485394 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Darknoon on 22 August 2017 - 05:04 AM

^Hey, leave Ian Glenn alone. He's actually a pretty accomplished actor on stage :( Jorah is a pretty flat character, but I do appreciate him as a constant in that he's one of the few characters throughout has consistent and at least sympathetic motivations. Though everything they've done with him since he got greyscale has been redundant rubbish, I just kind of think he's too inoffensive to have such a burning hatred for haha.


Also, I know they've already established the stupid mechanics of the faceless men in the show, but how dumb was



The other thing I'd say is the show is starting to suffer now due to the pacing. Most of the complains about S6 and the first half of S7 were just logistical things. At the moment, though, the show isn't spending the time necessary with the characters left for us to truly understand their perspective. Compare how much time we wre alloted following Arya in Braavos to how little time we spend actually seeing things from her perspective now. Was some of the stuff in Braavos redundant and boring? Maybe, but it's preferable to characters acting without understandable motivation and inconsistently from their established character. Everything about how Arya has been written this season has been the story dictating her character, rather than her character dictating her story.


edit: I just realised where I recognised Dickon from: BBC's Merlin. It's got swords and magic so it's basically directly comparable...so gritty and dark.

#485392 The Video Game News Thread

Posted by Darknoon on 22 August 2017 - 01:32 AM

I found it weird that they were still talking about N7 day in that press release. I suppose it still makes sense for this year, since they're still supporting the multiplayer, but you'd have to assume they'll nip that tradition in the bud from here on. You can't do a yearly celebration of the series you killed :P



"Thanks all the memories, now buy some microtransactions pls."

#485382 The Video Game News Thread

Posted by Darknoon on 21 August 2017 - 03:04 PM

So sad to see Mass Effect go out like this. I've said since the first bits of footage and news started coming out that we should be very wary, because the IP had been chucked away for the B team to deal with. But I'm not going to act like I predicted how staggeringly incompetent the whole project would be - from the developers wasting two years trying to make Andromeda: No Man's Sky and writing the entire story in the last 18 months of development, to EA providing early access to an incomplete and buggy mess that they then launched in basically the same state. It's just saddening to see the series treated without the love and reverence it deserves.


In a way, I guess it could work out for the best. They bungled launching the Andromeda setting so bad that I don't really have any interest going back there, nor seeing Montreal offer such an appallingly lacking version of Mass Effect. What I would say is that both Drew Karpyshn and Casey Hudson - the two people most intellectually and creatively responsible for Mass Effect - are now both back with Bioware. I'm hoping that give it 5-10 years, and maybe we get some sort of Deus Ex: Human Revolution-style relaunch. Regardless, I'm sure Mass Effect will come back some day, in some form.

#485317 Game of Thrones: Chaos Is A Ramp

Posted by Darknoon on 09 August 2017 - 08:34 AM


Yeah, the willingness with which the characters in this show ignore the rules of space and time is astounding. Euron is probably the worst offender this season, but Tyrion last episode was also pretty mad. This said, Littlefinger has been doing this for a long time. So whilst I note it and would dock points for it if I were to ever review the show, I do accept it at this stage and try not to focus on it. There is still plenty to enjoy about it.


You should probably spoiler some of the stuff in your post. I'll do the same addressing it.








As for dialogue, YMMV. I agree dialogue was definitely better in older series (not just the adapted but also the original stuff), but I think the quality is fine right now. Especially compared to the trainwreck that was "good girl, bad pussy" (an admittedly low bench-mark). There are still plenty of deep and eloquent conversations this series.


Finally, I can definitely appreciate your concerns. But a lot of them are obsessing over small details without appreciating the broader picture of the show. Losing perspective on how a bunch of feuding aristocrats throwing away thousands of peoples' lives for their own ends is a substantial criticism, as that is an overarching theme that is important to the richness and depth of the show's message. "Sam cured Jorah's greyscale too easily without the narrative further bogging things down by keeping Jorah there to be watched" is just quibbling over a small detail. By all means criticise these things, but don't imply people who can look past those are "drooling idiots" with standards apparently far lower than yours. It's just a bit much, and people wont be inclined to listen to your points if you implicitly act as though they're inferior for not joining in your disdain. Cynical superiority is easy, but being able to understand why people like something you don't actually makes you look more substantial in your analysis - especially when you haven't actually watched what you are so venomously criticising people for enjoying.