Stop hating George Lucas, and stop loving 'Star Wars' so much: Why it's time to grow up

George-Lucas

Image Credit: © & TM Lucasfilm, Ltd

When I say that it’s time for us to stop caring so much about Star Wars, I want you to understand: When I was a kid, my obsession with Star Wars was all-encompassing. I had the original trilogy memorized — not just the lines, but the sound effects. I had a massive collection of Star Wars action figures: the Ewok village, the Y-Wing fighters, the Empire Strikes Back-era rendition of Han Solo, when he was wearing that awesome blue jacket. I collected Star Wars comics, Star Wars fan magazines, Star Wars T-shirts. I lost track of how many times I played through Shadows of the Empire on my Nintendo 64. In fifth grade, I had only one real goal in life: To write a series of books for the Star Wars Expanded Universe. The books were going to star Davin Felth, the stormtrooper who says “Look sir, droids!” in the first movie. (I can’t tell you why, exactly, I was so fascinated by such a minor character. Maybe it was his initials.)

What I’m trying to say is that Star Wars simply was my childhood. I didn’t have many friends, and I couldn’t play sports, so my obsession was splashed with a massive dollop of yearning. I wanted so badly to live in the Star Wars universe. Which meant that, for a young me, George Lucas was more than just my idol: He was a walking representation of transcendence.

And, as it happened, I wasn’t the only one who felt that way: When I was an adolescent, the God-Cult of George Lucas was a massive cultural force. There was a Star Wars exhibit at the National Air and Space Museum. You couldn’t walk through a philosophy section of a bookstore without seeing at least five books describing how Star Wars was a modern myth, how George Lucas was heavily influenced by Joseph Campbell, how Carl Jung was all over The Empire Strikes Back. Since the ’90s were a miserable time for sci-fi/fantasy movies — Lost in Space, Dragonheart, Wing Commander — the promise of more Star Wars films just over the horizon made Lucas seem (to my young, naive eyes) like the anointed savior of the cinema.

Like every other science-fiction-loving movie fan from my generation and earlier, I can pinpoint the specific day that I lost my innocence: May 19, 1999, the day Star Wars: Episode I — The Phantom Menace opened in theaters.

There was already an anti-George Lucas movement growing in the dark corners of the Internet after the 1997 Special Editions: You know, Greedo shooting first, that ridiculous Wampa costume, the bizarre choice to make the Sarlacc Pit look like a refugee from Little Shop of Horrors. But Episode I cemented a whole Star Wars counter-myth, best expressed in the eternal cry of the betrayed Star Wars fanboy: “George Lucas raped my childhood.” That’s a sentiment that returns to the spotlight every couple years, usually when a new version of Star Wars hits DVD with additional “corrections.” Certainly, it’s the most common response to the news — reported yesterday by EW — that the new Blu-ray version of Return of the Jedi will feature Darth Vader melodramatically screaming “Nooooo!”

Believe me, there is a big part of me that wants to join the chorus of betrayed fans. But why? Why am I so angry at the man who was responsible for some of the major formative moments in my existence? Studying various Star Wars encyclopedias was a gateway drug for enjoying actual genuine history books. Watching the films on repeat taught me basic film grammar. Star Wars made me love science-fiction, so I have to thank George Lucas for indirectly pointing me onwards to Philip K. Dick, to Iain M. Banks, to Robert Heinlein and Orson Scott Card and every other great S.F. author. George Lucas can’t ruin my childhood, because my childhood already happened.

And that, I think, is why all the George Lucas hatred is fundamentally misplaced — and, in fact, why my initial gut-reaction (“Screw you, George!”) reflects much worse on me. The reason why our first response is to hate George Lucas is not because Lucas is ruining our childhoods. Far from it. Lucas is, perhaps accidentally, forcing us to admit two things: First, that our childhoods are over; and second, that the things we enjoy when we are children tend to be silly.

Because make no mistake: Star Wars is extremely, extremely silly.

NEXT: Kids are stupid, and it’s not their fault.

Comments (376 total) Add your comment
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  • Lauren

    How does writing this billion-word essay count as “moving on” from the franchise?

    • daphne

      Agreed. And, if he has some personal need to pronounce to the world that he is taking it less seriously, fine, but it’s not like there’s been some massive resurgence that is effecting anyone. What a silly article.

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      • Tom

        a thousand words could have been replaced with one word – gimmicks

      • SNIKT!

        I somehow feel that this article’s author would have a completely different opinion if the movie studios started making sweeping changes to other classics. Little re-editing on “Citizen Kane”, “Casablanca”, or how about having Rhett say “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a F**K!,” in an “updated” “Gone With the Wind”????

      • J

        Wow Lauren, if you think that’s a “billion word article” you must never read or write at all.

      • Jar Jar

        I’m back and better than ever in A New Hope.

    • crispy

      This is quite honestly one of the dumbest columns I’ve ever read on this site. It is entirely reasonable to object to George Lucas continuing to make changes that impact the plot of a film I enjoy watching and having a dozen different versions of the movies floating around. It doesn’t have anything to do with “raping my childhood.”

      • JPX

        How do any of his changes “impact the plot of the film”? They don’t – it’s the same story, dummy. I hope he keeps changing them, I love the updated FX.

      • Meh

        Why can’t he just release the versions as they were originally? I don’t get it.

        Yes, it the grand scheme of things, this is small potatoes, but the hubris of Lucas continually tweaking his films is staggering.

      • why?

        @JPX – you love the updated changes?, wow, you must think Roseanne is incredibly hot.

      • Jono

        I wouldn’t be so quick to dismiss Return of the Jedi. The themes of not giving in to one’s desire for vengeance and one’s feelings of hatred are vital ones for both children and adults to learn, as is the value of the courage required to sacrifice of oneself for the benefit of others. Whatever flaws the film has, it examines these profound ideas wonderfully. An army of Ewoks do not a bad movie make.

      • crispy

        If you don’t think Greedo shooting first changes the essence of the story, then you are too retarded to even participate in this discussion.

      • Alyssa

        I am as devoted a Star Wars fan as anyone, but I agree we all need to get over the little changes. WE are the ones being melodramatic. @ Crispy, Han shooting first doesn’t alter the story or vice versa. In the 97 version, you cant tell who shoots first. And Han still moves and fries Greedo. You guys need to grow up. Jesus Christ. – OH and there is nothing wrong with defending the prequels, I enjoy all 6 as a whole. Plus the expanded universe novels. Just cause you guys hate something doesnt mean it ” SUCKS!”- that is such a middle school way to act.

      • Howard

        I’m a duck. Now I could use some revisions.

      • Howard

        I’m a duck and I could use some revisions.

      • crispy

        Alyssa, maybe if you spent less time reading those terrible expanded universe novels and more time studying characterization and motivation, you’d get why people care about this.

      • Mike

        I personally like where alyssa includes herself on the ones who are being melodramatic but then instructs everyone BUT her to grow up! That was nice. Enjoy neverland without us Alyssa!

      • AC2280

        @ Crispy, like Alyssa I love the expanded universe books, they are part of the reason I am such an avid reader now. The Thrawn trilogy was great and would be a perfect story to tell as episodes 7,8, & 9. If you read those novels you would’nt be so quick to diss someone for liking them. Greedo shooting first does not change the essence of the story, it changes the essence of one scene. And the reason 90 percent of the comments say that the author is full of it is because he is right. All of you need to let it go and grow up because lets be honest, A New Hope is full of bad acting and bad dialouge. I love Star Wars and a few tweeks are not going to make me stop loving it. Like I said before let it go because all the bitching in the world is not going to change george’s mind. PS I bet you will one of the first people to get star wars on blu-ray.

      • Jonathan

        It’s George Lucas’ film. If it weren’t for George Lucas, you would never have had the film in the first place. If he wants to change it, it’s his prerogative. If it ruins it for you, you can’t do much about it. Just get over it and either be glad you were able to see an earlier version of GEORGE LUCAS’ film, or not. It doesn’t change the fact that he owns it, not you. It’s his vision, not yours. He’s in charge of his own artistic domain.

      • Alyssa

        Crispy- the expanded universe novels are anything but terrible. If your only a fan of the original 3, that is a very small amount of the STAR WARS universe.

        Mike, I would include myself if I too had a $%!# fit everytime someone mentioned tweaking Star Wars or the prequels. BUT I dont. I except everything and anything Star Wars. I find the changes minor and okay. Some actually make sense if you stop and think about it. So I am the grown up in the situation here.

        1. Hayden SHOULD BE the ghost in ROTJ because that is when ” Anakin Skywalker” died and became the monster that is Darth Vader.
        2. Why get upset or call Vader a p****y when he says ” NOOO!” after Padme dies? that makes him no less evil- in fact you know from that statement he is going to be even more bitter – that is the reason he gave himself to Palpatine- to learn the ” skill of stopping death” and Sidious tricked him and killed his wife. The new ” NOOO!” is not as good, but it reflects or parallels him coming back and having feelings for the only part left of Padme – their Son.
        3. For the 5 millionth time. Han vs. Greedo- you see Han take the blaster out of his holster and Greedo still gets fried. WHAT IS THE ISSUE

      • Pukeus

        me suh wee suh thinks tis is gonna be da best evar

      • dude

        I agree with alyssa down there greedo still dies either way and yes them taking that crap pile of a yoda out of episode one and replacing him with a CGI one was a great idea

      • Tracygrrrl

        Agreed; all I could think while reading this column was, “F— off, Darren.” I LIKE the original Star Wars trilogy, and I don’t need some twit preaching to me that it’s silly and I should “put it away.” I LIKE the original films, and no amount of telling me they’re not “cinematic masterpieces” is going to make me change my mind about liking them. I haven’t watched them even close 100 times, but I do like to pull them out every few years. I am irritated by the thought of Lucas adding an asinine “Nooooo!” to Jedi, and I am even more irritated by this column telling me I am childish and shouldn’t be irritated.

      • Big_Zilla

        the controversy with greed is how it reflects on Han as a character. a man who kills in absolute cold blood turning into a man who’s caring and honorable is a far different development from someone who kills in self defense. with greedo shooting first, Han just looks like an unlucky victim instead of a true galactic scoundrel. but I agree with this author, star wars is a childish story intended for children. it’s inspiring, epic, and creative, but it’s still childish. if you don’t like it, please just move on to other science works; I’ve personally moved on to mass effect.

      • Aziatino

        I can’t believe the two wdrols of Cracked.com and BBG are colliding, I saw these posters a few weeks ago there. They have others that boggle the mind even more so than the Star Wars one, the Czech Republic poster for Ghostbusters is a brain bender, and worth the click alone.

      • Meddan

        Uh they’re actually the same deal. Iron Man 2 furiges are also $6.99 each at regular price and for this week also, are two for $10.99. So I don’t understand how you think that’s better when they are the same.

    • MultiPass

      Has your armchair criticism gotten to the point where you are writing something THAT efin trite? He’s an entertainment writer for chrissakes. His JOB is to write about these things. And by the way, he has quite a valid point here and is that rare writer in the entertainment world who can apparently do it without copy and paste functions, 15 links to other material or texting language.

      • crispy

        Nah, this is standard backlash-to-the-backlash piece dreamed up in a morning editorial meeting and created specifically to provide a counter-point and drum up pageviews. It’s hardly rare; it’s essentially a media cliche. I wrote a hundred of ‘em when I was fresh out of J-school too.

      • KFed

        @Multipass So all you’ve done is explain the difference between an opinion piece and true journalism. Either way, links are to attribute research, anyone who has done a high school essay should be familiar with a bibliography.

        In any case, why is his armchair criticism more valid than anyone else’s? This “story” seems utterly misplaced in EW and fails to make any points I find convincing. The only reason I can think of for George to tinker and re-tinker with this films is to sell ever more copies. The fact that he still can’t call time on his edit 35 years later only makes him an undisciplined film maker. At this stage we can learn far more from his mistakes in film making than his successes. In terms of marketing and getting people to buy something they own already every three years, we can learn plenty.

      • MultiPass

        There are NINE PAGES of comments. While you pontificate why and write meaningless, hair splitting critiques of his opinion, or try to brush it off as pointless, the amount of response leads me to say “job well done.” He obviously hit a nerve . Which is the point.

      • crispy

        Actually, that was MY point. He wrote something purposely provocative with little merit for no other reason than to generate pageviews and return visits. And for the record, 90% of the comments on the nine pages say he’s full of it.

      • Dave Olden

        Which reminds me of Sturgeon’s law: “90% of everything is crud.”

        I’m one of he proud 10% that thinks this article is spot on.

      • @crispy

        I think that proves that 10% of commenters have grown up, and 90% haven’t.

    • Roy Buckingham II

      “How does writing this billion-word essay count as “moving on” from the franchise?”

      Couldn’t of said it better myself. GFY

    • Brett

      Are you paid by the word, Mr. French?

    • Frozen in Time

      It’s not important how many times Lucas tinkers with the original Star Wars trilogy — nobody forces you to watch them. I own the original versions in 2 disc sets with special editions, that’s all I need. I never have to look at another altered version again. Nobody else does either. It doesn’t make the originals “childish” or “awful” because one writer is so whiny about them. Darren’s whole article is condescending to every fan of Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back and The Return of the Jedi.

      • Hot Rod

        I agree! And when they put out a new edition of Deliverance I hope they change the name of Ned Beatty’s character to Darren Franich.

      • Skip182

        If Lucas would actually sell the origional, unaltered films, there wouldn’t be an outcry like this. The majoroity want THAT version, not the special editions that were released.

    • Alex F

      The simple fact is that revising films years after their original release is fundamentally, and perhaps morally, wrong. Then Lucas takes it another step by doing it repeatedly, and probably doing it just so he can sell still more stuff when he releases the “original” versions on blu-ray somewhere down the road. As he probably also will do when the next hot new home media format comes along — release it first all fooled with, then release it again original. The guy’s just an evil, greedy monster.

      • Dave Olden

        @ Alex F. The person who has the MOST rights, morally and ethically and legally — is the creator of the work.

        It’s *his* creation, and he can revise it as often as he wishes. It is in no way wrong, and in fact it is the Artist’s Right.

        It’s George’s house, and if he wants to renovate rooms every few years, all power to him.

      • Kristopher R

        Yeah, Alex F…that’s not a fact. That is the very defintion of your opinion.

      • Adam M

        I love that so many people are commenting that Lucas owns the films and, therefore, has the right to make changes. I think everyone understands he is not breaking any federal laws. The problem is that his changes suck.

    • bill

      haha

    • Holly

      As someone has said, this is clearly a “counterpoint” piece calculated to push the hot-buttons of the majority opinion to generate web-hits. But let’s give it respect and consider the premise: that the movies we love, and other entertainment, are all just “silly,” and therefore we all need to get a life. Well, this is Entertainment Weekly. So, by the author’s logic, everything on this site is “silly” and we shouldn’t care so much about it. So the reviews that they write are all a waste of time, and I am wasting my time by reading them? I loved the original Star Wars movies in the theatre, they way they were. Now, it is getting very hard to find those movies on DVD to show my kids. People have a valid complaint when there are multiple versions of these movies out now and it is hard to get the originals.

    • AC2280

      Where did you learn how to count?
      Go back to elementary school and learn how to add 1 plus 1.

    • jonny

      my distaste for the fudging isnt from destroying my childhood. its from DESTROYING A GOOD MOVIE! if he wants to fix something, edit the movie correctly. there are too many errors to count without adding needless and, dare i say it, unnecessary and horrible lines.

    • Tim

      Lauren, you’re a girl. You wouldn’t understand. It’s so long because “moving on” is about as easy as going through puberty and growing up.

  • RoeLuv

    I don’t feel he’s ruining my childhood, it just puzzles me that he’s not satisfied with his own masterpiece..that’s all

    • Lauren

      Well, in this same line of thinking, it bugged me when he went back and added cgi to the old movies. I don’t understand the need to alter anything. I think the originals stand as a testimony to what could be done technically at the time. When I see the movies on TV now with the new graphics, I find it terribly distracting. They are clearly out of place. And the idea of trying to change history, no matter how insignificant the effects are, kind of creeps me out.

      • Morgana

        Lauren, I think you hit it on the head–for me at least–when you say that Lucas is trying to change history in some way. That whole idea creeps me out as well. I don’t hate Lucas; I just want to tell him MOVE ON, dude. But apparently he can’t. Maybe if he DID, we could as well. Nobody is forcing him to keep making changes–that’s all him. So it’s not so much US that can’t move on, but HIM.

      • harpier

        My problem with his tinkering is quite as nostalgic. In several cases–the re-releases being foremost among them–the added technology clashes with the original effects style, and every time I see it, it yanks me out of the world he’s creating and disrupts the experience of watching it. It flat out DOESN’T LOOK LIKE IT BELONGS. I can pretend the prequels don’t exist, because they were genuinely crappy storytelling, but I would like a set of IV-VI that isn’t going to distract me with it’s “improvements”.

      • Kate

        Have to agree with your comments…the Original movies were great, and certainly shaped my childhood. When the “new and improved” versions came out, I bought the trilogy on dvd, mostly for the “making of” 4th disc. While I found that disc cool, it also ruined some of the movie magic for me. I discovered I didn’t WANT to know how they did that. Then the movies themselves…I love them…they will always be top 10 in my fav movies. But you can tell instantly where Lucas had “meddled” with the original. And none of the new clips or additions were necessary, esp the singing bar scene in ROTJ. Just a case of “Look what I can do”. Please don’t let him play with Indiana Jones!

      • Robert

        If you don’t like the changes Lucas has made to his films (or perhaps more relevantly, you don’t like the idea of Lucas making these changes) I have a simple solution: don’t buy the films and quit your bitching. You’re welcome.

    • Bruce B

      I totally agree with Roeluv. If it were Coppola or Tarantino tweeking their movies every couple of years there would be more of an uproar. But since SW is science fiction it’s, “look at the little geeks having a tantrum over a silly little movie”.HA HA.

    • Javadude54

      Repackaging existing product = cash flow.

      • Alexs

        around jan 09 i got to see a test shot that mitzubishi had in a trleiar outside a mediocre av store. i put on the glasses and watched the beginning of e4 and the zam chase of e2. if you think it is a waste then you are not a serious fan. of either star wars or 3d movies. wow. it will rock.

    • Regina George

      Thanks for writing this article, it must have taken a lot of time. Although I thought it was rather boring, but that’s because I’m not a huge Star Wars fan.

      • vader1013

        …although i read the article and took the time to comment.

    • Fingerlakes Dave

      And then there’s the being PC part of the whole “Guido shot first” discussion.
      I don’t think anyone would care what he did to the films, as long as the original theatrical releases (warts and all) were released also.
      As for moving on from my childhood: I have. However, Mr. Lucas’ penchant to disrespect his fans never sits well with me.

      • PEACELOVE

        GUIDO? Are you that dumb?

      • Mike

        Guido the green alien. lol gotta love it!!

    • AT

      That’s kinda what I’ve been thinking. Why not leave well enough alone? Just because you can do something, doesn’t mean you should.

      This new change bothers me, not because it’s “change” but because it doesn’t fit. Silence fits that scene. Silence fits Vader. It doesn’t make sense that he could get the jump on the Emperor and grab him before he realizes what’s happening if he’s yelling “Nooo!”. It doesn’t make sense that Luke doesn’t realize what’s happening. How does he miss Vader yelling “Nooo!”? Some of these changes just don’t make sense, thematically or logically.

      Yes, I realize these are supposed to be a touch silly, but I don’t understand making changes if they take away from the original movie and make the story… change.

  • Krindy

    Um… No.

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  • Ms. Chanandler Bong

    I’ve never seen it, not even the new ones with Natalie Portman. I don’t know why, just haven’t. What I know about Star Wars I’ve learned from other pop culture references…is that weird? Rachel in the Princess Leia bikini!

    • Wha’ever

      The same for me. I know a lot about Star Wars because people can’t seem to be able to shut up about it, but I’ve never seen any movie. Maybe one day, after all, they do look fun.

      • the_girl

        I recently caved and watched Episodes 4, 5, & 6 for the first time. In my humble opinion, they were good – not fantastic, not jaw-dropping, not stellar or mind-blowing or life altering. Just good. Fun and funny, exciting, good. When I turned it off, it was over. Perhaps because I’m seeing them for the first time as an adult, it just didn’t stick with me the same way.
        I read the article because I wanted to know why people hate George Lucas so much. I can understand that if you treasure something, you dont want people to keep messing up something you love. But I also agree with Darren that maybe there are some people who have placed too much importance on these movies. Its seems weird to love a movie so much that you hate the visionary and creator of those movies for having a vision that is different from your own.
        Perhaps I will feel differently after watching the prequel trilogy, which I am in no rush to get to.

      • Alyssa

        ^^^ I am not forcing you, BUT do not believe what OTHER PEOPLE- journalists and whiny fanboys, fan-people have said about the Prequels. They are enjoyable. Its so sick. It has become a ” FAD” to hate on the prequels. They complete the story of Anakin Skywalker and show you how he became Darth Vader, who Padme Amidala is to him. And well obviously Luke and Leia are his children but he didn’t birth them out of that black life suit. The originals are better yes. But the prequels are still enjoyable. Just saying.

  • Jacob

    Well said, Franich!

  • Court

    I’m not much of a Star Wars fan (I grew up with the original trilogy; I enjoy those films and re-watch them yearly, but that’s it), but this article is quite insulting. Firstly, kids are NOT stupid. That is a mistake that Hollywood makes far too often with children’s films. I would actually give credit to Lucas in that regard, at least with the original trilogy. These films were family friendly and beloved by even very young children (my 3-year-old niece just watched them with her father for the very first time and LOVES them!) without being dumbed down or condescending. They’re just fun, but there are still a lot of complex plot elements (politics, the Jedi, family elements, etc.) that don’t talk down to children and are presented in a smart, understandable way.

    Second, EW is a site that champions geekdom, evident by all the Comic-Con coverage. And now we should “grow the hell up”? How about we should be allowed to enjoy what makes us happy, no matter what it is, and not be ridiculed as “childish” simply because we enjoy a movie, television show, or book that is looked down upon as “geeky” by the mainstream public? Wow, I’m just baffled.

    Also, again, as a casual Star Wars fan — Return of the Jedi doesn’t suck. It’s the least of the first three, but far, far better than the second trilogy. Also, Wicket FTW.

    • @Court

      I agree with everything you said.

    • Wha’ever

      I don’t totally agree with you. Because a movie has some depth and is still liked by children doesn’t mean they’re “not stupid”. Just watch a lot of the Disney movies that were released in the 80s-90s now. I know when I did recently I was shocked by all the details, metaphors, the psychology of some characters and the depth of some stories I never understood when I was a child simply because a child is not supposed to have the intellectual bagage to understand them. However, those movies were still made FOR children.
      And, EW columnists are different persons, they’re not supposed to all have the same opinion. The fact that one writes that he finds Star Wars silly doesn’t mean the site as a whole does.

      • Meh

        The difference is, Disney is not tweaking “Beauty and the Beast” (Now, with MORE CGI BEASTLINESS!!!) every 10 years.

      • Mindy

        Although, Disney is re-releasing some of its 90s films in 3D. So, there is that.

    • JS

      Completely agree with you!

    • amj

      @Court…at first read I was actually kind of pleased with this article but after reading your comment, I might have changed my mind. I was 6 when my mom first took me to see Star Wars and I loved it and as a 40 year old adult I think I have seen it about 100 times. And, I still love it! That and Empire Strikes Back of course. And, I do want to say that George Lucas did give me a serious appreciation for Sci-fi and a strong need to be “good”. Both are good to have. (Although I never admitted to being a sci-fi fan until Netflix told me I was…). So, thanks for the comments, they are spot on although I still agree with a few points in this article as well.

    • Sol

      @Court – sorry, you’re way wrong. I was a very bright child – skipped a grade – was reading like crazy before I even started school – but, I was also INCREDIBLY stupid, just like ALL kids. Stupid, obviously, in the sense that they don’t and can’t possibly know that much about the world around them – and when it comes to entertainment especially, simply haven’t experienced enough reference points to make intelligent decisions on what makes good art/entertainment.

      I am quite certain that is what the author of this (very true) article meant – obviously kids can be smart, like I was, but in a lot of ways they are inevitably and unavoidably stupid.

      • Ryan

        Naive and stupid aren’t interchangeable. Please don’t justify the author’s laziness in word choice.

    • Steve

      I always thought “Jedi” did suck, then one day I watched it and skipped over every scene with the Ewoks, and the entire Han/Leia part of the story. That left about a 40 minute movie, telling the story of Luke, Vader, and the Emperor. And THAT was a good 40-minute movie.

  • miss k

    I have a funny feeling I’m going to be reading this article 10 years from now except it’ll be about Harry Potter.

    • katy

      Well put. Probably after Rowling caves and writes a series about the Marauders.

    • Michael

      No. Because Harry Potter has deeper-rooted themes of good and evil, and friendship, and love than Star Wars’ vague “message” of “the force.” (No, I am not bagging on SW; I grew up loving it too. I’m just saying that there is more to HP than there is to SW).

      • Mephysto

        Funny, cause I rather watch the Holy Trilogy over and over again then the Harry Potter films.. They were just too dull in my opinion.. Better then the crappy LOTR movies though..

      • Stuckonbandaidsbecausebandaidsstuckonme

        ^ Why can’t we just love ALL THE MOVIES…
        and y soul just whimpered….
        LOTR AND HARRY POTTER WERE BORING? Since when?

      • googliezoo

        I think it’s apples and oranges, though. The Harry Potter films I find impossible to judge based solely on their own merit because the source material is so complex and rich. The films will always pale in comparison to the novels. Star wars has no such constraints.

      • Crystal Marc

        B.S. I don’t get why everyone has to defend the ridiculous love of Harry Potter by claiming it has this intense and complex depth. It’s not any deeper than any other popular children’s book or movie (including Star Wars). Stop pretending that it is just to defend the fact that so many adults enjoy it! Scholars can make anything sound like it has depth and meaning beyond the basic story and characters; Harry Potter isn’t special in that regard.

      • Michael

        Um, LotR, being the best of them all, was certainly not boring. Neither was Harry Potter. Nor is Star Wars. They each may be different things, but boring is certainly not an adjective that can describe any of the three. They each are have their merits, and all can be enjoyed; the endless bickering over which is better/best is really pointless, because they’re just three different pieces of artful entertainment that everyone is going to have different opinions about. We all can like them all or not, whatever. But to say that LotR and HP don’t have complex depth is stripping the source material, the books, of something that just IS inherently there, especially with Lord of the Rings. Tolkien was a scholar, and years of research and learning went into those books, despite their being fiction. The movies Peter Jackson, I feel, greatly respected that, and made them comparably delightful. With Harry Potter, while it is not quite to the level of LotR, it does indeed have more than just “childish entertainment” value, and to say otherwise is just simply not true. You must not have read them. As far as their movies, true they don’t quite live up… but I have to say, the final movie, 7 pt. 2 was pretty freakin’ fantastic, and definitely lived up to, and exceeded my own expectations; everyone is entitled to his/her own opinion. And Star Wars, is a bit of the apples and oranges thing, because it does exist solely in the movie realm, and movies simply are a different art form; they are not quite capable of reaching that connection with their audience in the way that books can. Not to say that they can’t be powerful and have a lasting impact on culture and such, but books allow for deeper character development, I feel. But the emotional punch that movies can pack can certainly be just as powerful.

  • Joe

    Even as an adult I happen to love fruit snacks.

  • VHS

    LucasFilm loves making money off of these properties, so why not just release the Theatrical version? Is that really too much to ask? It has nothing to do with “growing up.” It has to do with the disappointment three classic films will soon be lost.

    • LM

      Exactly. The major problem here is that the original movies, in their COMPLETE original form – you know, the one that everyone fell in love with – are hard to find these days and would be lost forever if Lucas had his way. He is willy-nilly destroying a historical artifact. Fans had to lobby really hard to get Lucas to release the original, un-retouched versions on DVD. Now, once again, the ONLY versions available on Blu-Ray are the silly re-tinkered-with versions. How do you not understand why people are upset about that?

      • Morgana

        I agree with everything you say. When I want to watch the original STAR WARS, I want just that–the original; not the crappy retooled one.

      • Avi

        The real problem in my mind is that Lucas is changing the mythology of the series. People have loved his movies for decades, going so far as to follow Jediism as a religion, by changing the mythology every few years it just says to me that you don’t take that devotion seriously. I don’t know any other film that randomly changes details decades after the fact. Adding previously deleted scenes? Fine. Adding Hayden Christiansen to a movie that was made before he was born? Not ok.

      • jared

        I saw a documentary at the Cleveland International Film Festival this year, and afterwards the filmmaker discussed this VERY topic and used Star Wars as an example. The National Film Registry has a very well- protected original print of Star Wars with the original opening locked away in a vault for this very reason. It is a piece of its time and should be respected as such. It was not made in 2011, 2004, or even 1997, but 1977, and should remain as it was as a piece of American Filmmaking History.

      • jared

        BTW: Empire Strikes Back is ALSO in the National Film Registry. You know what isn’t? ROTJ.

      • Lyndsey

        Please tell me you did not just refer to Star Wars as a historical artifact??!! I love it as much as anyone but we’re not talking about Gilgamesh, Beowulf, or Shakespeare. Historical artifacts are things like Hammurabi’s Code, the Pyramids at Giza, the original copy of the Constitution, the Crown Jewels, anything stored in the Vatican Archives…things that possess truly significant historical value. I’m sorry but no movie from the 70′s can be put in that same category. That is just beyond ridiculous!

      • Lyndsey

        Avi, anyone who is so deluded that they would make a religion out of a movie has problems far beyond any changes Lucas could ever possibly make to his movies!!! No one should have to pander to a fanatical sect!

      • Danno

        @Lyndsey – Yeah because basing a religion on a movie is way more absurd than basing it on a book.

      • Lyndsey

        Danno do you know anything about religious history? Probably not or you’d know how absolutely asinine that comment is!

      • Just Someone

        Hayden christenson was 2 or 3 when Jedi came out-just sayin’

  • Joe

    Return of the Jedi is not nearly as good as the two that came before it, but it is in no way an awful movie. There’s a lot of good moments in that film.

    It’s not really about Lucas ruining my childhood or whatever (I’m only 23 anyways, but I was and still am a huge fan of Star Wars, mostly because of Empire), but I don’t understand why he would mess with something that a lot of people cherish in its original form. I also think it’s pretty insulting to say kids are stupid. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being upset with Lucas for dumbing down movies that I love. Although I don’t get nearly as carried away with it as other people.

  • Facepalm.

    Kids are not stupid, they are a heck of a lot smarter than you think. It’s only when you treat them like they are stupid that they start to live down to their potential. Same thing happened to Star Wars, George just started to treat it like it was stupid.

  • LOL

    America loves crap. Fast Five is way better than Star Wars!

    • CA

      and we thank you for proving that you love crap as well by always posting that Fast Five is a superior movie to every other movie ever made.

      • LOL

        Fast Five is the Citizen Kane of Car/Heist movies. Star Wars is the Citizen Kane of crap movies.

      • Meh

        Oh, LOL, don’t ever change. I know you don’t mean what you say….but don’t ever stop sayin’ it, my sarcastic, Fast Five lovin’ friend.

  • LOL

    United States Citizens love poop!

    • Factchecker

      The get the F out.

    • pastafarian

      Get the O out. America love pop! The fizzy kind.

      • Magnitude

        pop POP!!!

  • WeakSauce

    Lucas failed by altering the originals with the 1st re-release! Greedo did NOT need to shoot 1st!!!

    • Heather P

      I agree. I watch the clip with Darth Vadar “yelling” Noooo! this morning. I didn’t really feel that it detracted much from the momemt.

      Greedo shooting first was just wrong. When he first tinkered with it in 1997 everybody in the theater was looking at each other in disbelief. “Did I just see what I thought I saw?”

  • Wayne

    “George Lucas raped my childhood”……The stupidest comment I have ever read in my life.

    • Sue1

      Yes it is, but sadly many fans stupidly feel that way. I’m not happy about some of the changes, but I accept Lucas’ right to do whatever he wants to what he created. I hope someday he realizes how much the fans would love to have access to the original versions, but I have survived without them.

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