Saturday, June 21, 2003

TheForce.Net put up a fan-written script for Star Wars Episode III yesterday. You all can check it out, but I'm not so geeky that I'd read such a thing.

Well, OK, I did skim through quite a bit of it. And it's not bad. Parts of it are quite good, actually. I do think that the author played up Palpatine's machinations a bit too much, to the exclusion of the idea that it's our choices that make us good or evil, which is a constant theme in Star Wars. I was also tickled at how the writer tries to square some of the stuff in the original trilogy with the prequels, as well as attempting to ground Obi Wan's "lie" to Luke ("Vader murdered your father") in better fashion ("Palpatine has killed you," Obi Wan tells Anakin). I do think that the script left fewer loose ends than George Lucas is likely to leave. One thing that seems to really vex a lot of fans, but which I find rather nifty, is the sheer amount of stuff that Lucas simply leaves unexplained or unexplored. Lucas actually enhances the epic feel of the story by not showing us everything, which is why I enjoy the likely fact that most of the action of the Clone Wars won't be shown at all. This script, though, seems overly concerned with tying everything into a neat little package. I really don't think Episode III is going to do this. But that's a feature, not a bug.

I also didn't care for the script's climax. (SPOILER warning, here.) We have the long-awaited duel between Obi Wan and Anakin on the volcanic planet, but added to this mix is Padme, who ends up dangling from a precipice above the lava whilst the two former friends do battle. I know that the Star Wars movies cite those old serials as one of their primary influences, but this just struck me as too Perils of Pauline-like to really work.

Still, it's an entertaining read. Check it out, if only to look at one set of possibilities.

(UPDATE: Just another thought that occurred to me. I liked this script because it treats the prequel storyline with respect. It's not at all like that "Alternate Phantom Menace" script of a few years back, the one that had horrid stuff like Obi Wan telling Padme that Qui Gon is sad because his wife and children were killed, or some such nonsense. This script isn't about "Let's squash Jar Jar beneath the foot of an AT-AT" fanboy wish-fulfillment.)

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