And here we go.
Although, I haven’t even gotten to the menu and I’m already pissed at George Lucas. I was so happy to see that Netflix had the Original Theatrical Version available for rental. Oh, right, that was a point I was going to make!
So I had dinner with my sister tonight, and she mentioned that she thought that I had watched Star Wars by now. I told her that that was my plan for after dinner – to go home and watch A New Hope.
Missy: Did I ever tell you what Dad said when I told him you’d never seen Star Wars?
Alaina: No — what’d he say?
Missy: He said that I was lying. And I was like, “No, Dad — Alaina’s never seen Star Wars.” And then there was this pause, and then he said: “But — she lived here. In this house. With me. How did she never see Star Wars?”
Alaina: But I have seen it! Just —
Missy: Not in chronological order or in one sitting, yeah, we know. But the point is, why have you waited so long to watch it?
Well — because around the time I thought to myself, “Hey, I should probably sit down and watch this at some point,” at the same time, George Lucas was going in and fucking things up. And while I may not have seen the majority of the movies, there were two things I did know: that Han shot first, and that Jabba the Hut was not in A New Hope.
So I didn’t go see them in theatres when they were re-released, because they were wrong. And I didn’t buy them on DVD because, again, they were wrong. And everywhere I looked, all I could find were the fucked-up versions. (Nowhere — and by no one– did I hear that the additions made the movies better.) And if my only option to watch the original trilogy was to dig through the shit in the attic to try and find the VHS copies that my dad … uh, “bought legally through a PBS pledge drive,” knowing that his copy of The Empire Strikes Back was nearly falling apart as it was, if I could even find them? I decided to wait.
Which is why I was ecstatic when I learned that Netflix had the Original Theatrical Releases available on DVD! That would make my life so much easier! I could watch the original movie, be able to confer with friends who may have seen Star Wars in the theater when they were younger and be able to truly share that experience with them, and not be the idiot going around saying, “Wait — I thought Greedo shot first?”
So why am I pissed now? Because when I opened the special red envelope tonight, I learned that the Original Theatrical Release was actually the “Bonus Disc” in some set that was released recently. Seriously, George Lucas? Go fuck yourself.
Also, before I (finally) push play: I am going to try as hard as I can to not mock this movie. Hopefully, this entry will have less vitriol and confusion as some of my other ramblings. I really, really hope I like it. But we’ll see.
10:19 p.m., in an apartment in Maine
Alaina pushes play and embarks on an epic journey of geekdom discovery.
It is a period of civil war. Rebel spaceships, striking from a hidden base, have won their first victory against the evil Galactic Empire.
During the battle, rebel spies managed to steal secret plans to the Empire’s ultimate weapon, the DEATH STAR, an armored space station with enough power to destroy an entire planet.
Pursued by the Empire’s sinister agents, Princess Leia races home aboard her starship, custodian of the stolen plans that can save her people and restore freedom to the galaxy …
RIGHT! THAT’S why Darth Vader captured Leia in the first place! It was the blueprints to the Death Star that she stole during battle! Dammit – I can’t believe I forgot that…
Yeah, big ol’ spaceship. Glad to see I wasn’t making that up. And if that doesn’t look like a shark chasing a guppy in an ocean, I don’t know what does.
C-3P0! And R2-D2! And actual humans playing actual humans! Damn, I forgot what real movies looked like without all the special effects. I mean, yeah, sure, green screen is awesome and way cost-effective, but to quote one of the heroes in this very movie, “Hokey religions and ancient weapons are no match for a good blaster at your side, kid.”
Hm. I think my metaphor got lost in there somewhere. Oh well. Oh hai, Anakin!
Already this movie is tons better than Phantom Menace. HE SHOT THE PRINCESS!
Here’s a question that I have, now that I have seen the prequels: did the memory wipe of C-3P0 that Senator Jimmy Smits ordered make him prissier? Because you know what? I like this C-3P0 way better than the other one.
This is where the Jawas get him, right? The Jawas? That’s what they are, right? Yeah, here’s the ambush where Luke finds R2 and somehow C-3P0 gets back here, and then they watch the video of “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi, you’re my only hope.”
Okay, seriously? I kind of love R2-D2. And the scene where he gets captured by the Jawas is really cute. I especially like the scream that the robot emits when he gets stunned. Because robots can’t scream!
Wait — what? Okay, funniest scene so far — the Storm Trooper poking his head up into the frame, holding a metal ring and saying, “Look, sir — droids!” That was so random — I mean, HOW CAN HE TELL IT WAS DROIDS? Does the ring have the word “DROID” etched in it? How does he know it’s not debris from the crash site? Is he the Storm Trooper who rode the short bus to school?
Oh shit — oh right! That’s right! I’m sorry, I totally flaked out for a second. Uncle Owen smarmed up to C-3P0 and said that he’s probably been programmed as an etiquette and protocol droid, and it took me about a minute to remember the joke I had written in an unpublished pilot where I compared a character to C-3P0 being a protocol droid! Damn — I completely forgot about that joke! I really need to rewrite that pilot.
Wow, Luke’s kind of whiny at first, isn’t he? “But I wanted to go to Toby’s garage and play with power converters!” Yikes.
It’s weird — this version of C-3P0? I’m not sure what it is, if it’s the cadence of his accent, the prissiness of his manner, or just the uptight Britishness of him, but — I’m getting a very Giles vibe from him. What did I say — Buffy the Vampire Slayer is my Star Wars.
Luke: Who’s she? She’s beautiful.
Alaina: SHE’S YOUR SISTER
Ol’ Ben Kenobi! See? I knew that!
Wait, are those things the Jawas? Or are they just the Sand People? Are they the same thing? I know they’re not Ewoks. Ewoks are cute.
Holy shit … that is some class-A fighting. Way more realistic than anything I saw in Attack of the Clones. And look at Luke play dead! Very effective tactic. Oh, he’s not playing, he’s unconscious? My bad.
I’m sorry – I said I wouldn’t mock. I don’t think I’m mocking. I’m trying not to.
Ben! Obi-Wan! Uh, Ben? You were Obi-Wan up until Luke was born. I’m not mocking this movie, by the way — I’m mocking the prequels for having shoddy continuity. Did Lucas not go back and watch A New Hope before writing Revenge of the Sith?
Duct tape is like The Force: it has a light side, and a dark side, and it holds the universe together.
Obi-Wan, are you getting too old for this shit? But, much like Murtaugh, you keep getting up and doing more shit. Good on you, Obi-Wan.
“I find your lack of faith disturbing.” I know that line!
I was right! They were Jawas! I can tell them apart from Sand People! Wait, he’s just going to leave them there? I mean, it’s heartbreaking to see the farm burnt to the ground, but — he’s going to have to go all the way back for 3P0 and R2 and Obi-Wan now, right?
DARK HELMET and “Nobody knows…. the trouble I’ve seen … nobody knows … but Jesus…” Oh, man — I totally need to watch Spaceballs at some point.
Now we get to meet Han Solo? We can has Han Solo now? (Sue me — I like Han Solo.) And wow, this scene also looks like Cairo in Raiders. Marion!!
Chewie! Is that a werewolf? Nice! You go, Obi-Wan!
NICE. Han Solo is the man! In other news, I’m going to have to work in the phrase “Sorry about the mess” into more conversations. Y’know, after I go vigilante on their asses.
“Besides, I know a few maneuvers.” That’s another line I’ve got to say more often. Hopefully, followed by a wink and a saucy smile.
HOLY SHIT THEY JUST BLEW UP ALDERAAN
“I feel a great disturbance in the Force. As if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror, and suddenly silenced.” Poor Obi-Wan. Poor Alderaan. Alderaanians? Alderaaniuns?
Sorry. I was too busy watching the movie to talk about it. That’s a good sign. Luke and Han have broken into the Death Star and are rescuing Leia. Hooray!
I think I figured out another reason why I detested the prequels so much: everything was so pristine. Between the green screen backgrounds, the crappy dialogue, and the digital effects, there was no dirt, or grease, or gunpowder or anything else. The grit and disgusting aspects of a war weren’t there – they were Photoshopped out. It’s like George Lucas became a germophobe in the intermittent twenty years and directed the prequels from inside a hyperbaric bubble.
See? That happy laughter at not being compacted into trash? THAT was what was missing from the prequels! No one rejoiced, no one was happy! Everything was “all in a day’s work” for Obi-Wan and Amidala that I don’t think anyone even smiled at all. I should have taken a shot for every smile that happened. I didn’t think about it at the time.
Because, seriously – this movie is so much happier than the prequels, I can barely stand it.
HOLY SHIT LUKE HAS A BATARANG
Oh. There goes my happiness. Rest in Peace, Obi-Wan Kenobi.
(Wait – at this point in writing the movie, Darth was Darth Vader’s first name? So, George Lucas decided later to make it a title, not a name? Fuck you, George Lucas.)
Okay, again, sorry. It’s a good sign when I’m not talking about the movie.
And in the end, R2 was okay too!
I HAVE NOW SEEN STAR WARS.
Grade for Star Wars: A New Hope: Duh-doi: AWESOME.