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Star Wars: The Circle is Almost Complete

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1 hour ago, Rhom said:

What I can't accept is that Disney paid an astronomical amount of money for the rights to the Star Wars universe and then just decided to put out a trilogy of movies without at least an outline of what would happen between point A and point C.

That is literally what they did with the Marvel movies, except they put out 20 of them. 

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43 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

That is literally what they did with the Marvel movies, except they put out 20 of them. 

But... that isn't what Disney did with the Marvel films. Sure, they were all standalones until Avengers, but the seeds were deliberately planted since the second installment. Which came out mere months after the initial offering.

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16 minutes ago, Jace, Basilissa said:

But... that isn't what Disney did with the Marvel films. Sure, they were all standalones until Avengers, but the seeds were deliberately planted since the second installment. Which came out mere months after the initial offering.

Except that's not what they actually did. Phase 1 had no plans set at all, Feige talks about how Incredible Hulk's end credits scene almost derailed everything, Thanos in Avengers 1 was added at the last minute by Whedon and was a surprise to all the execs watching the film, Infinity stones aren't even mentioned til Thor 2, Loki's staff being one is talked about in interviews as being something they retconned later, and most of the plans they DID set up for in Phase 2 were thrown out when the story group and Perlmuter were ousted post Ant Man.

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Also, not saying Star Wars could not have used more planning ahead or that Phase 3 of the MCU wasn't plotted out really well, but the idea that Marvel had any real plans set in stone pre Ultron is just myth.

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I really don't get why Star Wars defenders have to always shit on the MCU to excuse the current trilogy's clearly abject lack of planning.  I don't know how much forethought went into the beginning stages of the MCU and I don't really care to argue about it - although obviously they had a clear objective from Iron Man to build to an Avengers movie (that's not debatable).  As far as the MCU goes, I'd just say scoreboard. 

Regardless, point is the whiplash from Abrams to Johnson has already reflected manifestly poor planning on the screen, and is a valid and significant worry for the final chapter.

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I'm not shitting on it. I love almost all of it, I'm just tired of Star Wars detractors pointing to it and screaming about how it was all planned from the start and they didn't deviate blah blah blah.

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1 hour ago, DMC said:

I really don't get why Star Wars defenders have to always shit on the MCU to excuse the current trilogy's clearly abject lack of planning.  I don't know how much forethought went into the beginning stages of the MCU and I don't really care to argue about it - although obviously they had a clear objective from Iron Man to build to an Avengers movie (that's not debatable).  As far as the MCU goes, I'd just say scoreboard. 

It's not about shitting. The point is simply that the idea that things were planned out in advance is absurdly wrong. It was wrong about the OT, it was wrong about MCU, and the one that was most planned out in advance among all the series we're talking about is...the prequel trilogy.

It's sometimes nice to have things planned out, but that isn't at all what happened, and that is totally fine. The point isn't the planning, it's how satisfying the conclusion is. And as it turns out, you can have things that work out as if they were planned out provided your story beats work well enough. 

1 hour ago, DMC said:

Regardless, point is the whiplash from Abrams to Johnson has already reflected manifestly poor planning on the screen, and is a valid and significant worry for the final chapter.

Counterpoint: TLJ was genuinely a game-changer and a major shakeup, and was awesome in the way it subverted expectations and defied what viewers expected. 

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Just now, Kalbear said:

It's sometimes nice to have things planned out, but that isn't at all what happened, and that is totally fine. The point isn't the planning, it's how satisfying the conclusion is. And as it turns out, you can have things that work out as if they were planned out provided your story beats work well enough. 

Depends on how you define "planning."  Is it necessary to establish a rigid road map from the outset?  Of course not, and you're right that doesn't usually happen and that's probably for the best.  But each successive project making sure it flows to build towards a finale that in hindsight checks out as a cohesive narrative?  That should have been expected on behalf of Disney in terms of Kennedy's responsibility.  And in that regard connective tissue between the first to second offerings was an abject failure.  Whereas almost all of the MCU's progress was decidedly not.

5 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

Counterpoint: TLJ was genuinely a game-changer and a major shakeup, and was awesome in the way it subverted expectations and defied what viewers expected. 

Well, that's just a fundamental disagreement.  IMO, such "subversion" comes off as fucking with the viewer when it renders what the previous film was clearly building to pointless.

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12 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

Counterpoint: TLJ was genuinely a game-changer and a major shakeup, and was awesome in the way it subverted expectations and defied what viewers expected. 

 

5 minutes ago, DMC said:

Well, that's just a fundamental disagreement.  IMO, such "subversion" comes off as fucking with the viewer when it renders what the previous film was clearly building to pointless.

And how much of that subversion is going to be just hand waived away as they return to form in the third movie.  It’s as obvious as watching Kylo Ren welding his mask back together! :lol: 

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3 minutes ago, DMC said:

Depends on how you define "planning."  Is it necessary to establish a rigid road map from the outset?  Of course not, and you're right that doesn't usually happen and that's probably for the best.  But each successive project making sure it flows to build towards a finale that in hindsight checks out as a cohesive narrative?  That should have been expected on behalf of Disney in terms of Kennedy's responsibility.  And in that regard connective tissue between the first to second offerings was an abject failure.  Whereas almost all of the MCU's progress was decidedly not. 

I think that's hard to say without seeing the actual ending. I also think that's problematic largely because of JJ Abrams, who is known for this kind of 'establish mystery and figure it out later' bullshit in most of his stuff. There's not a lot of room that Rian Johnson had thanks to Abrams, but what he did with it was both quite new AND entirely in line with what we knew of things in the OT and the prequels. 

I also think that it would have been really, really easy for Avengers to fuck it all up. That they didn't do that is largely due, IMO, to the Russos basically taking charge of the main series since Winter Soldier and asserting things in Civil War. People did not like Avengers 2 nearly as much, and it largely shat on prior expectations of things. Somehow a lot of folks forgot that disappointment. Endgame absolutely nailed the ending and did great, don't get me wrong, but that's not the norm, and quite a lot of what happened was decided months beforehand, not years.

3 minutes ago, DMC said:

Well, that's just a fundamental disagreement.  IMO, such "subversion" comes off as fucking with the viewer when it renders what the previous film was clearly building to pointless.

I guess I don't see what was made so pointless. There are plenty of reasons to dislike TLJ if you're so inclined, but the notion that we didn't get answers to what TFA set up isn't really one of them, unless you're devastated that we didn't learn more about Snoke's background. 

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1 minute ago, Kalbear said:

I also think that's problematic largely because of JJ Abrams, who is known for this kind of 'establish mystery and figure it out later' bullshit in most of his stuff. There's not a lot of room that Rian Johnson had thanks to Abrams

Sure, I generally agree with that as an outsider who doesn't follow it closely, but ultimately the buck stops with Kennedy in terms of making that work.

3 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

I guess I don't see what was made so pointless. There are plenty of reasons to dislike TLJ if you're so inclined, but the notion that we didn't get answers to what TFA set up isn't really one of them, unless you're devastated that we didn't learn more about Snoke's background. 

Rey's past/background was set up as important, Ren tells her it's pointless.  Snoke is set up as the big bad, his impact on the narrative ends up essentially null.  And even the mystery of why Luke is in self-imposed exile - the driving force (sorry) behind the entire first movie - is symbolically chucked aside in his first scene in TLJ.

9 minutes ago, Rhom said:

And how much of that subversion is going to be just hand waived away as they return to form in the third movie.  It’s as obvious as watching Kylo Ren welding his mask back together! :lol: 

Yup.  

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1 minute ago, DMC said:

Rey's past/background was set up as important, Ren tells her it's pointless. 

He was doing this while negging her and trying to get her to join him? You believed him?

1 minute ago, DMC said:

Snoke is set up as the big bad, his impact on the narrative ends up essentially null. 

He drove Ben Solo away from Luke, caused Luke to exile himself for a generation, used his power to link Kylo and Rey together in order to find Luke (which succeeds), and almost wipes out the entire resistance. That's a little bit more than null. 

1 minute ago, DMC said:

And even the mystery of why Luke is in self-imposed exile - the driving force (sorry) behind the entire first movie - is symbolically chucked aside in his first scene in TLJ.\

It's interesting you bring this up, because Luke chucking his lightsaber away and rejecting the violent path is literally the last action we see him take as a Jedi in RotJ. There's a reason he has that as a parallel - because Luke's answer to his failure as a teacher is to go back to what he knows best, which is to reject conflict. And the reason he does that is because he knows how he can easily turn to evil, just like his father. 

But also, again, the mystery of why he is in exile isn't a major big thing, but it's a massive secret that changes how we view everything. He isn't there stopping some interplanetary super evil - he's there because he personally feels responsible for his nephew's result. He is responsible for Kylo Ren on some level, he is responsible for Snoke on some level, and he knows it. Even Snoke remarks on this, because Snoke knows that light will rise to fight darkness and achieve balance, and (as Snoke says) he foolishly thought it would be Skywalker. 

Whereas instead, we get Rey as having power essentially equivalent to both Ren AND Snoke, which answers another thing about why she's so incredibly awesome and gifted in TFA that was entirely glossed over.

And even better - while Luke throws away his responsibility early, he figures out later how to rekindle the entire resistance, oppose the First Order, oppose Kylo Ren, save his friends, and do so entirely in a manner consistent with his pacifistic leanings - meaning that while TFA was wrong in thinking Luke was going to go in and kill everyone with a laser sword, it was entirely right to go after Luke and get him back. 

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16 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

He was doing this while negging her and trying to get her to join him? You believed him?

If there was any hint that he was lying, or much preferably they resolved that he was lying to the viewer by the end of TLJ that'd be one thing.  But just leaving that out there between movies is fucking with viewers in my book, sorry.  I mean, I'm sure if Abrams wants to bring it back, he'll resort to the obvious explanation that Ren was lying.  See Rhom's comment on hand waiving in that regard.

19 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

He drove Ben Solo away from Luke, caused Luke to exile himself for a generation, used his power to link Kylo and Rey together in order to find Luke (which succeeds), and almost wipes out the entire resistance. That's a little bit more than null. 

The first two could have happened if he was long dead by the time of the main narrative.  Linking Ren and Rey?  I mean I guess, but finding Luke turns out to be pointless as well anyway.  And obviously whomever is in charge of the villain contingent is going to be on the verge of wiping out the resistance.  That happens in almost every offering except the first two prequels.

24 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

But also, again, the mystery of why he is in exile isn't a major big thing, but it's a massive secret that changes how we view everything.

It ends up literally not being a massive secret at all.  His reasoning for going into self-imposed exile is by far the most common reason for doing so:  guilt and passivity.  This could have been covered with him turning to Leia and saying "I'm too old for this shit.  Peace."

31 minutes ago, Kalbear said:

And even better - while Luke throws away his responsibility early, he figures out later how to rekindle the entire resistance, oppose the First Order, oppose Kylo Ren, save his friends, and do so entirely in a manner consistent with his pacifistic leanings

Don't get me wrong, I thought Luke's arc in TLJ was very well done in the confines of that film.  That's not the topic though.

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I'm glad you were able to get something out of the movies, Mr. Bear.    Saying that VII set things up which VIII then followed through on is quite an accomplishment, and you pieced it together better than the movies told it!    I did benefit from reading that.  So thanks.

   I just can't agree that VII set anything up.   It did a lot of spinning its wheels, folding and unfolding its X-wings, serving up a collage of familiar imagery.   And it tore down a lot more than it set up.   Then VIII took that mess and turned it into a hot mess by adding fuel to the bonfire of what Star Wars had been.  It literally burned the jedi tree and more figuratively burned through all the positives of the older movies & cast and gave us in its place this new cast of absolute zeroes.

   I'm sorry but Ren is a zero.  I can't attach any sense of importance to his ' journey' as a character, nor do I feel empathy for his plight, nor does it matter what he thinks or is going through.   The tantrums and the abject stupidity of his mask and then Rian destroying the mask like he hated it as much as I did, and just the absurdity of a character like that being taken seriously by people, it's too much to ask of me to join in.  it's on the level of the Teletubbies, where we're all dumber for having seen it and I'm just astounded that it got greenlit to begin with.  He kills Han and then ....what?,  I'm supposed to hang around and hope he redeems himself?  No.  I tuned out because that was the proper response.  They gave us no reason to get invested in that idiot.   He hadn't earned the murder of Han.  I hope someone telekineses the mask back onto his face so hard it kills him.   No, wait, I don't even care that much.   It's just too late in the game for him to start to matter now.

 And Rey, if she is double-powered to go against Ren and Snoke (or now the Emperor)  that's the first such explanation I've heard for her untrained powers being so profound, because the movies failed her character utterly.   It was their job to provide in-universe plausibility.   Just give us something.  Anything.    A rationale for why the force awakened.  Nope.  Just the movie title is all we got on that one..... which means you might as well not see the movie if you know just as much by simply reading the title.   

And Luke has been pants'd by this portrayal.   Guess what kids?- - every hero is actually a failure!   See?   Leia died from that first movie.  Horrible.   And the new resistance members are zeroes.   Fin hoots as often as Ric Flair.   The big side mission in TLJ is an abortion shown to be pointless , so why is it in the movie!   The wartime bravery we get demonstrated for us is someone trying to sacrifice himself but then he's "saved" from sacrificing himself, which doomed them all, including the ex-stormtrooper who was just 'saved', because they had no way of knowing Luke would show up like that....to commit suppuku (however that's spelled).     Just.... not good.

This hasn't set up IX to be anything but more of the same.    The vampires have taken this thing over.  Abrams is their sire.   But there is another elder vampire queen.   And through them  Disney's mistake is now complete.

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5 hours ago, DMC said:

Depends on how you define "planning."  Is it necessary to establish a rigid road map from the outset?  Of course not, and you're right that doesn't usually happen and that's probably for the best.  But each successive project making sure it flows to build towards a finale that in hindsight checks out as a cohesive narrative?  That should have been expected on behalf of Disney in terms of Kennedy's responsibility.  And in that regard connective tissue between the first to second offerings was an abject failure.  Whereas almost all of the MCU's progress was decidedly not.

Hmm - I think I'm the opposite on this - we get *so* many movies, especially franchise movies, made this way that I don't really mind seeing a franchise take chances by letting the directors write the story where everything *isn't* 'planned', so to speak.

Not everything needs to be done the way the MCU does it, imo. And part of the reason some of those movies have been a snooze fest & entirely forgettably is because they're made by committee.

I don't want this to come across like I'm bashing the MCU, I'm not, I have *plenty* of TLJ criticisms myself but they generally center on the awful & obvious 'B' plot that the film has which I don't think works at all

( As an aside, all this discussion re: what's important or not is entirely subjective - I know lots of people really cared about snoke's backstory & rey's parentage, but I don't care about either of those things ( again, this stuff is a good thing for some people and not for others, and that's understandable) - for me, the best parts of the new trilogy are Kylo, Rey, Luke & Finn - and I think Johnson did a *much* better job with those characters than JJ did ( then again, I think TLJ suffers with other characters such as Rose, Finn ( to an extent), & Poe)

Edited by Raja

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Disney set up the possibility of directors going their own way and taking chances with their side project movies like Rogue One and Solo. Those movies are where id expect some continuity issues and more creativity because you could disregard them if you choose.

With the continuation of the main plot line then I’d expect everything to be tighter and better planned

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5 hours ago, Rhom said:

 

And how much of that subversion is going to be just hand waived away as they return to form in the third movie.  It’s as obvious as watching Kylo Ren welding his mask back together! :lol: 

That’s not Kylo melding his mask back together, unless he suddenly has Wookiee hands.

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8 hours ago, Kalbear said:

That is literally what they did with the Marvel movies, except they put out 20 of them.  

Marvel did a bunch of independent open-ended film serieses that take place in the same universe and allow for crossovers. That's a completely different situation from Star Wars producing a trilogy they know from the start is meant to complete a nine film cycle. Not having a solid plan for all three films would be more like Marvel making Infinity War without having any idea what's going to happen in Endgame, and I'm pretty sure that didn't happen.

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7 hours ago, DMC said:

Rey's past/background was set up as important

I've discussed this before, but... was it, really? 

I mean, there isn't zero setup or anything. But it's undeniable that a large part of the idea that Rey's background is important, or to be more specific that it is a deliberate mystery that will be revealed as having a canon-significant answer, comes from audience expectations. TFA certainly makes clear that Rey's background is important in the sense that being abandoned as a child is a motivating factor for who she is, and there are one or two looks or lines of dialogue that indicate the possibility that it is canon-significant, but nothing that actually clashes in any significant way with what we're told in TLJ. I certainly didn't go away from watching TFA - even the second or third time - pondering whether Rey was Luke's lost child as one of my major takeaways about the character. I just thought she was a very cool character.

Edited by mormont

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