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Turambar
02-18-2004, 12:39 PM
Okay, SW fans, time to rank what you feel are the 5 best & the 5 worst performances of the PT, to date.
the BEST:
1. Liam Neeson. Even though I don't agree with the inclusion of his character which relegated Obi-Wan to a minor player in E1 and took away from his role in discovering and mentoring Anakin, Liam certainly delivered a great performance in that part. Although it probably wasn't intended, Liam's performance projected Qui-Gon to being the main character of E1.
2. Ian McDiarmand. With main characters either getting killed off, or changing actors, Ian's Palpatine has been the one stable role. I think he has done a fantastic job making Palpatine's journey to the top the most interesting story of the prequels, thus far.
3. Tem Morrison. Again, I do not like the fact that this role was put into the prequels. The greatest thing about Boba Fett was the mystery of his origins and who he really is. All of that came to a shattering end by seeing AOTC. That said, though, Temurra was the perfect actor to play this part. I thought his performance was very believable, and especially love the dialogue with Obi-Wan.
4. Christopher Lee. I really love his role as Dooku. Lee has a very dominating screen presence which takes your mind off of the phoniness of the CG backgrounds and characters. He is able to turn the debate with the cartoons into a very believable scene. His discussion with Obi-Wan is wonderful. He finally brings some of that trash talking to the lightsaber duels, making that much better. The more I think about his role, the more I think I should have ranked him at #1.
5. Ewan McGregor in AOTC. Didn't care for his nonperformane in E1, but he really seemed to be the only one really trying to develop their character in this movie.

and now, the WORST
1. Natalie Portman. Can't the director at some point tell her to try breaking the monotone. Add a little inflection, raise the voice, make it look like you're not just reading the line off of a cue card. Oh, and try changing expressions, too. Maybe show some anger, fear, or something other than boredom and apathy with getting this role.
2. Samuel Jackson. same as the above.
3. The dude who played Ric Olie! Your job as a background character is to be forgetable. Ric Olie stood out like a sore thumb. Why did he have so many lines?!
4. Ewan McGregor in TPM. This might have been more due to his being a minor character, but still I wish he had done something to develop his character during the course of the movie.
5. Jake Lloyd. Yippie!!! What are midichlorians? 'nuff said.

Pendo
02-18-2004, 03:59 PM
Best:
Ian McDiarmid 'nuff said! Pure class :)!
Jake Lloyd yes... Jake Lloyd! Leave the poor kid alone. He did a million times better than any other nine year old kids could have done. And as for Yippie and midichlorians, since when did Jake write the script? I will always give Jake Lloyd the respect he deserved for his performance of Anakin in TPM :D!

Worst:
Ewan McGregor Don't get me wrong, I like the dude and thinks he is superb in the PT movies, however he has nothing to act against so he delivers his worst acting performance I've seen (but still good :))
ILM I'm not going to go into a big "I hate CGI rant" (haven't done one of those in months, I might start a thread...), but all the CG characters 'over act'!

PENDO!

Hellboy
02-18-2004, 05:29 PM
I wouldn't say I really dislike any of the performances in the PT but some of the actors work does suffer when delivering some of the below average dialog provided by the script.

Best:
-Ian McDiarmid
-Christopher Lee
-Liam Neeson

Worst:
-Hayden Christensen
-Natalie Portman
-Ralph Brown (Ric Olie)
-Ayesha Darker (Queen Jamilla)
-Hugh Quarshie (Captain Panaka)

stillakid
02-18-2004, 06:22 PM
Okay, SW fans, time to rank what you feel are the 5 best & the 5 worst performances of the PT, to date.
the BEST:
1. Liam Neeson. Even though I don't agree with the inclusion of his character which relegated Obi-Wan to a minor player in E1 and took away from his role in discovering and mentoring Anakin, Liam certainly delivered a great performance in that part. Although it probably wasn't intended, Liam's performance projected Qui-Gon to being the main character of E1.
2. Ian McDiarmand. With main characters either getting killed off, or changing actors, Ian's Palpatine has been the one stable role. I think he has done a fantastic job making Palpatine's journey to the top the most interesting story of the prequels, thus far.
3. Tem Morrison. Again, I do not like the fact that this role was put into the prequels. The greatest thing about Boba Fett was the mystery of his origins and who he really is. All of that came to a shattering end by seeing AOTC. That said, though, Temurra was the perfect actor to play this part. I thought his performance was very believable, and especially love the dialogue with Obi-Wan.
4. Christopher Lee. I really love his role as Dooku. Lee has a very dominating screen presence which takes your mind off of the phoniness of the CG backgrounds and characters. He is able to turn the debate with the cartoons into a very believable scene. His discussion with Obi-Wan is wonderful. He finally brings some of that trash talking to the lightsaber duels, making that much better. The more I think about his role, the more I think I should have ranked him at #1.
5. Ewan McGregor in AOTC. Didn't care for his nonperformane in E1, but he really seemed to be the only one really trying to develop their character in this movie.

and now, the WORST
1. Natalie Portman. Can't the director at some point tell her to try breaking the monotone. Add a little inflection, raise the voice, make it look like you're not just reading the line off of a cue card. Oh, and try changing expressions, too. Maybe show some anger, fear, or something other than boredom and apathy with getting this role.
2. Samuel Jackson. same as the above.
3. The dude who played Ric Olie! Your job as a background character is to be forgetable. Ric Olie stood out like a sore thumb. Why did he have so many lines?!
4. Ewan McGregor in TPM. This might have been more due to his being a minor character, but still I wish he had done something to develop his character during the course of the movie.
5. Jake Lloyd. Yippie!!! What are midichlorians? 'nuff said.


I'll agree with just about all of your comments except for Liam. He was as dry and monotone as Natalie. For such a big character, it was a terribly humdrum performance. He can do better.

And yes, there are other kid actors who could have (and would have) done far better than Jake did. Eric Lloyd being one of them (at the time). Jake was a terrifically awful choice to play anything beyond a bit part. Yes, the writing for the character was terrible as well. Add that to the way that the character of early-Anakin was drawn in such bad way and it all adds up to one big mess.

B'Omarr Monkey
02-18-2004, 07:54 PM
My reply just vanished into the ether while I was still typing it.

If it reappears, forgive any redundancy.

The PT wasted a lot of good actors with skimpy roles and often inane dialogue. I like Ewan McGregor in just about anything, but often felt, especially in TPM, that he'd rather be anywhere else.

THE BEST:

1. IAN MCDIARMID - Makes Palpatine both sleazy and likeable, and brings a sense of dignity and fun to the role.

2. WATTO - Only Gollum rivals this CGI character. I completely bought him and thought he was one of the most fleshed out characters in the PT. His eyes during that moment of realization that he's talking to Anakin in AOTC is perfect.

3. PERNILA AUGUST - Brought much more to her role than had been provided for her. Completely wasted in AOTC.

4. NATALIE PORTMAN - Moments of flat delivery aside, Amidala remains my favorite character in the PT, so there must be something to her performance that I'm getting that others aren't.

5. CHRISTOPHER LEE - Another actor whom I almost always like. The only detriment was that he didn't have more to do.

I also liked KEIRA KNIGHTLEY, simply because everyone forgot they weren't watching Natalie Portman during her scenes. I kept thinking this poor actress is playing half the role and nobody is noticing. It makes me glad her career has taken off like a rocket.

THE WORST:

1. JAKE LLOYD - Manniken Skywalker.

2. RALPH BROWN - I didn't have a problem with him during the escape from Naboo, but his performance during the final space battle was noticibly bad.

3. WARWICK DAVIS - Over the top in Watto's box. Weird antics as a little guy trying to keep his mask on as Wald.

4. MARGARET TOWNER - Jira, the "my corns are acting up, Annie." woman. It's probably not her fault that she was given dialogue from a Ma and Pa Kettle movie.

5. DANIEL LOGAN - That "heh-heh-heh" in the asteroid belt completely unsold me on him.

2-1B
02-18-2004, 11:27 PM
BEST
-Hayden Christensen
-Ewan McGregor (better in AOTC)
-Liam Neeson
-Natalie Portman (better in AOTC)
-Ian McDiarmid
-Temuera Morrison

WORST
-Jake Lloyd (sorry little buddy, I don't totally hate your performance but you do belong on my list. They should have found Hayden 3 years earlier and had him play TPM Anakin at an older age)
-Hugh Quarshie
-Ralph Brown
-ANTHONY DANIELS

Mr. JabbaJohnL
02-19-2004, 07:01 PM
Christopher Lee and Ian McDiarmid are, IMO, some of the best actors in the films. So is Ewan McGregor, but not as much as them. I don't particularly hate any of the acting, except Natalie Portman in some places.

JediTricks
02-19-2004, 10:03 PM
Just from your lists, here's my thoughts:

Best: Liam Neeson - He was intentionally portrayed as the main character of Ep 1 in the film and the final draft screenplay. I don't think he did all that great, it felt quite off at times.

Best: Christopher Lee - Was he acting? Seems like every role I've ever seen him in. ;)

Best: Ewan McGregor - It came and went in both films I thought, but I would list him on my "best" list.

Worst: Natalie Portman - I thought she was pretty darn good in TPM, but awful in AOTC. She'd probably be in my best list for Ep1.

Worst: Sam Jackson - Yuppers! I think the director might be to blame for this though.

Worst: Jake Lloyd - Another one I agree on, though like Samuel L, I think it's the director who caused this, not the actor.

Worst: Hayden Christensen - Hell yeah! This one would absolutely be on my list, and I'd blame the actor, director, and casting people for it. His performance as teen-angst Anakin made me want to leave the theater.

Worst: Ayesha Darker (Queen Jamilla) - this one did stand out as one of the weaker background character performances, but she wasn't memorable enough to make my list.

Worst: Hugh Quarshie (Captain Panaka) - I would not agree with this one, I thought Quarshie played the character exactly as the screenplay felt he would be played.

Best: Watto (and his voice actor Andrew Secombe) - I would agree, but only for his TPM performance, the character's cameo in AOTC didn't cut it for me. I think his voice acting brought more depth and humanity to the character than the screenplay gave, which is the sign of a good performance.

Worst: Daniel Logan - Baby Fett stunk, I hated this character's performance so much!!! Definitely on my worst list.


An addition to my "Best" list would have to be...
- Best: Ron Falk (aka Dexter Jettster) - I thought this character delivered a pretty good, memorable performance with CGI that fit the bill quite well.

And 2 additions to my "Worst" list would have to be...

- Worst: Jay Laga'aia (aka Captain Typho) - his opening lines in the film were so mind-numbingly awful that I hope it wasn't his best take because otherwise he's a terrible actor.

- Worst: Leanna Walsman (aka Zam Wesell) - she was awful even without the horrible, last-minute CGI additions. This performance was not just wooden, but painfully wooden, as if someone with no talent at all was trying to force the performance out of their behind or something. She didn't move or speak right, and so much of the beginning of the film pivots around her character.

2-1B
02-19-2004, 11:11 PM
JT, how can we be polar opposites in our opinions of Hayden yet DEAD ON in our evals of Ronny Falk as Dex ? :D

And what did you think of Ralph Brown as Ric Olie ? I'm asking because he seems to draw much of the same fire that Quarshie does. And since you differ on Quarshie, I'd be curious to hear your view of Brown.

Aside from Ric Olie, I really like Ralph Brown: especially in Wayne's World 2 :crazed:

stillakid
02-20-2004, 11:27 AM
JT, how can we be polar opposites in our opinions of Hayden yet DEAD ON in our evals of Ronny Falk as Dex ? :D


I'm with JT on this one. I'd chalk the difference up to the fact that George "directed" (or didn't :rolleyes: ) Hayden while Ronny's "performance" had a lot of help from the animators. Plus Dex's role was quick and to the point while Hayden had plenty of screentime to screw up. :D

JediTricks
02-20-2004, 04:58 PM
No idea why Caesar, but I blame you. ;)

I see what you're saying about Ralph Brown, but I thought he did alright, neither great nor memorably bad. I've seen him in other stuff, so I'd say the casting director didn't really get a good beat off of the character from the screenplay, which is why he doesn't read the same to me. In the end battle of TPM, the film was badly re-edited so no performance is complete, I can't really say "oh, he's awful!" because we're missing the 2nd half of nearly every line IIRC.

B'Omarr Monkey
02-20-2004, 09:10 PM
I actually liked Hayden. I just thought that his character was a complete jerk all around and very unlikeable. I never understood what Padme saw in him. She doesn't really seem like the type to see him as a challenge to heal, or to be bothered with someone who needed it. She's got bigger fish to fry.

I also felt like the Jedi should have booted him out of the order already.

Kidhuman
02-22-2004, 03:24 PM
Best

Ewan McGregor
Ian Mcdirmid
Liam Neeson
Christoher Lee

Worst
Captain Typho - sounded like he was always yelling. Needed to tone his voice down some
Ric Olie
Jake Lloyd - I will agree, it wasn't all him
Samuel L. Jackson - He isnt the " sit there and make decisions type person. He would of been much better as another character in this trilogy.

Nuetral
Natalie Portman - acting off of Haydens whines and stuff is hard. Having to change emotion is quite difficult in mid scene.
Hayden - the more I watch AOTC, the better I think he did. A yearago, he would of topped the list of worst.

Lowly Bantha Cleaner
02-25-2004, 10:22 PM
Strong Performances:

Christopher Lee (see Peter Cushing & Alec Guinness in my OT acting post)
Ian McDiarmid (see above)
Ewan McGregor (one of the best actors around)
Pernila August (Shmi, although a small role, was wonderfully acted)
Liam Neeson (thought he did an excellent job nuturing young Anakin in Ep1)

Weak Perfomances:
Jake Lloyd (I cringe at the a lot of the dialouge and his delivery like "chescu Selbuba" :cry: ) Yes, he was a young guy but Lucas could have done much better:

Hayden Christensen I don't think he is as bad as many make him out to be, but his dramatic dialouge was delivered poorly, a la his predecssor Mark Hamill.

Elan Sleazebaggano Probably never sold a deathstick in his life due to his poor delivery.

Ric Ole His reaction to R2's bravery is one of the cheesiest parts of the PT

Anthony Daniels Maybe he would have delivered better in EP1 if he was in his old "suit" actually acting out the part.

The Niemodians: Were they scripted to sound like constipated Asians? (and constipated Asians should be insulted everywhere)

JediTricks
02-27-2004, 08:55 PM
Gotta agree with you on Neimoidians and Elan, those 2 totally missed the mark for my tastes.

jjreason
02-28-2004, 08:33 AM
My problems with the prequels lie less in the actors and their performances than they do with the dialogue (and sometimes the direction).

I think GL "settles" quite often, for what he gets. I don't think he's big on making the actors work to hard. He'd rather be back in the studio going over the finalized effects shots.

Colloquialisms drive me batty. "That's gotta hurt!" Are you kidding me? The OT doesn't suffer from this, likely because the directors for ESB and ROJ wouldn't stand for it. I think they felt they had a more serious story to tell. The prequels seem very tongue in cheek to me; I really hope the dark undertones from ESB are back with a vengeance for the final chapter.

JediTricks
02-29-2004, 08:27 PM
One of my least-favorite colloquialisms was "What? Are you brain dead?!?", that one bothered me so much, and it's one of the FIRST lines in the dang film!

Lucas doesn't like doing more than 1 take, and when he does, his only new direction is usually "faster, more intense" supposedly. In ANH, he'd settle on any 1 take, but in the prequels he's tried to edit individual performances from different takes into 1 shot which doesn't work because these people aren't really acting off what they're getting, so it feels artificial, rightfully so.

mabudonicus
03-02-2004, 01:24 PM
I actually liked Ric Olie, he was like a guy from a hardware store commercial or the "fun guy" character from an old war movie, I thought he was sorta closest of any actor to the OT, IMO
Elan- totally agree, for the few seconds he existed I couldn't stand him, made Jar Jar seem alright, which should be impossible.....

True, too, it really is more the fault of the dialogue... the OT dialogue wasn't totally sarcastic (han being the exception pretty much, and leia by association) which is what makes much of the PT dialogue dumb; that stupid "whatever" style which already makes the PT appear more dated than the OT...
That's why I liked ric olie, I guess, he was, well, earnest in a way that the smirking obi wan, anakin, qui-gon, mace windu, padme (still such a silly name) and everyone else were.... that petti-ness got real old real fast, in the OT such things were more of a bluster, you can't tell in the cynical hollow charaters of the PT as they are written and portrayed

JediTricks
03-03-2004, 08:11 PM
Ooh, dr_evazan22's post in E1 reminded me of another performance that really grates on my nerves, Kitster is mega super annoying! I'd like to see that character's mouth glued shut.

Devo
03-19-2004, 07:58 AM
I trust no one will mind if I resurrect this thread.

Liam Neeson and Christopher Lee are the only decent performances in the prequels and even thats miraculous considering what a useless director and screenplay writer Lucas is.

Everyone else delivers career-worst performances. Portman, McGregor, Sam Jackson to name 3 are in fact good actors but they are embarrassingly poor in these films. I don't really blame them.

And there really is no such thing as a good performance from a CGI character with the sole exception of Gollum in LOTR.

I admit that I am unrelentingly critical of all aspects of the prequels but I think by any standards the acting is sh**. This is where someone would say to me 'but so was the acting in the originals'....not to this extent my friends, in absolutely no way to this extent.

Darkness Shroud
03-20-2004, 10:24 AM
The one thing that gets my goat (his name is george) every time i watch "Attack of the clone's" is Ewan Mcgreagors hair! Obviously they are post production scenes shot when Ewan cut his hair, but just look when he and Anakin are in the turbo lift. At the begining Its flatter than road kill! When he gets out of the lift its in great shape! I've noticed his hair and beard like this in the movie here and there. Surely Lucasfilms Technology could have drawn it better than wigging Ewan up? Other than that i like the performances by the cast. Hayden Christensen did a good job. :) :crazed:

CropDuster
03-28-2004, 12:31 AM
The cast were probably all competent enough actors, I think that they just needed a script and a director...

stillakid
03-28-2004, 11:20 AM
The cast were probably all competent enough actors, I think that they just needed a script and a director...


Some real sets might have helped as well. :)