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View Full Version : What were you expecting when you first walked into the theater in May 1999?



General_Grievous
02-13-2005, 05:59 PM
Were you expecting a dissapointment or a masterpiece?

I was 10 years old when TPM was released, and I was psyched. I had all the figures and books that were out, and I had spoiled the movie for myself already by reading the novel (Jar Jar isn't nearly half as bad on paper). I went in, saw the movie, and it blew my mind. Hell, being 10 and having a more immature mind, Jar Jar didn't even bother me that much. My favorite part was the lightsaber battle, which is still my favorite part today. I pretty much jumped out of my seat when Maul got sliced in half. By the time I got home, it had captivated me.

Since then, I have outgrown it a bit. It is my least favorite Star Wars film, but it is in no way a bad movie to me. Jake Lloyd's acting gets on one's nerves after multiple viewings, and Jar Jar....well, there's nothing about him that hasn't been said already.

But what were your expectations?

Slicker
02-13-2005, 06:15 PM
I got exactly what I expected. I'd known about SW for my entire life but had only been collecting since '96 so I only waited 3 years for a movie but it blew me away. I saw it 3 times opening day and I think something like 19 when it was in main stream theaters not including the then $1 movies. It was nothing anyone had ever seen before and the nearly 20 year wait between movies hyped it up to a point where you could be easily disappointed.

stillakid
02-13-2005, 08:26 PM
I'd like to refute that last statement. ;) In no way did the "hype," media or otherwise, influence the way I was going in to Episode I. As a youngster when Star Wars was just Star Wars and there were only 12 action figures, I grew up with the saga literally influencing the way my life would travel. Aside from minor points here and there, the Star Wars thing was a lot of fun and there was really nothing significant to complain about. It was a good story, well told.

That's pretty much all I expected of The Phantom Menace some 20 years later. No more...no less. Just a story and movie that was equal to and fit comfortably within the universe that had been established. What we got, sad to say, was less. I wasn't looking for more, just something on par with the OT stories. Episode I wasn't even close. Oh, all the hardware and cool "stuff" was up on screen. The superficial didn't disappoint. But the story is the thing. Aside from a select group of diehards, I think that on the whole, a generation that had grown up with the memories of Star Wars let out a collective :ermm: , and went on with their day. Some of us may have gotten to the point of :mad: or just a simple :( . I personally know a lot of people who just :speech: with a :rolleyes: or a :ermm: unlike me who chose to :o about it ad infinitum. Call me :crazed: . I know a lot of fans would prefer I :speech: or :dead: ... but in the end, it doesn't much matter because :beard: is still :greedy: no matter what we think. :kiss: :kiss:

:classic:

Kidhuman
02-13-2005, 09:12 PM
Great use of smilies Stilla....


I expected a good story line and a decent movie. I got what I expected. I loved the saber fight, Darth Maul and Obi, and Qui-Gon. Jake Lloyd and Jar JAr could have been left on the platform when this train tookoff for all I care. Sure they were horrid, but thats life. Overall I enjoyed it.

JON9000
02-13-2005, 09:19 PM
What surprised me was the amount of CGI. The only area where it really didn't work was the droid battle. I also was surprised with the low-brow humor (two poo jokes). I also thought we would see some meaness on Anakin's part.

For the most part, I wasn't surprised by anything else

Rocketboy
02-13-2005, 11:25 PM
I went in expecteding something both new and Star Wars and I got what I wanted.
I didn't expect another OT, because I knew before hand this was going to be something different - a whole new monster.
My only real disappointment? No, not Jar Jar (I kinda liked him) - it was Darth Maul. Sure he looked pretty cool, but he didn't do much of anything. I expected him to be a bit like Vader, at least a little imposing and threatening. He was an action figure. And he just stood there while Obi-Wan cut him in half!

Personally, I think so many people were disappointed with Episode I because it wasn't what they saw in the 70's and 80's. The seven-year-olds that saw Star Wars in 1977 were 29-year-old adults in 1999 and it didn't captivate them as the OT did when they were kids. The wanted something more sophisticated, not a kiddie movie. But they forgot, that's what Star Wars is, a kid's movie. Lighten up, have fun, and enjoy the ride.

JetsAndHeels
02-13-2005, 11:31 PM
I was expecting a whole lot out of Darth Maul. I remember him being one of the prominent characters leading up to the release of the film. I was certainly not dissappointed with the lightsaber battles, but I did think there would be more screentime for him, since he was one of the main villains....
However I thought it was a decent movie. It was good to see a Star Wars film back on the big screen.

stillakid
02-14-2005, 12:42 AM
Personally, I think so many people were disappointed with Episode I because it wasn't what they saw in the 70's and 80's. The seven-year-olds that saw Star Wars in 1977 were 29-year-old adults in 1999 and it didn't captivate them as the OT did when they were kids. The wanted something more sophisticated, not a kiddie movie. But they forgot, that's what Star Wars is, a kid's movie. Lighten up, have fun, and enjoy the ride.


Didn't I just get done saying that this wasn't the case? :confused: How can a kid tell us oldsters what we were thinking when we saw the OT and the PT? Kiddie movie or not, the OT was a good story well told. The PT was a bad story told not well. A great story is ageless.

Joshkj
02-14-2005, 12:51 AM
Y does everyone hate Jar Jar, gosh, anyways i was 10 too, and i loved it, i actually ssaw it like 3 or 4 times on thhe first day

2-1B
02-14-2005, 10:39 AM
I expected to see a decent movie and overall I did enjoy it quite a bit. However, I went into it already knowing that Episode 2 would pick up a decade later and I was already more interested in getting to the sequel because I wasn't big on the 10 year gap between stories.

Rocketboy
02-14-2005, 11:20 AM
Didn't I just get done saying that this wasn't the case? :confused: I don't know, I skipped your post.

But that's what I believe and I'm sticking to it.

stillakid
02-14-2005, 11:37 AM
But that's what I believe and I'm sticking to it.


So you're saying that ANH, ESB, and ROTJ are all badly written and executed "kiddie films" that adults back then didn't get, just like adults of today don't get the Prequels?

jedi master sal
02-14-2005, 03:54 PM
I was expecting quite alot. I had been hyped up on Star Wars for years with the modern toys being out. The prospect of a new movie really got my juices flowing. I can say that the waiting in line for tickets was fun as well as waiting in line for getting into the movie itself, but from the moment I saw the Radiant VII on screen I knew I wasn't going to like it. Tried as I might during that first night there wasn't too much that was of redeeming quiality to me, with exception to the lightsaber duel between Maul/Obi.

Since then I've grown to appreciate it and have accepted it's place in Star Wars lore. Though I still hold to my guns when I say that AOTC should have been the first prequel. Hmm, this way we'd still have another movie to go, instead of ROTS being the last one.

Ah well, Menace is okay now to me, but still remains my least favorite of the 5 out there at this point. And I don't think ROTS is goig to disappoint. IF it somehow does, I don't think it would on the level of TPM.

I do think I allowed my being an adult influence the way I view the movie for the first time. I didn't make that mistake with AOTC and was THRILLED by it. (Just watched it again over the weekend).

Ji'dai
02-14-2005, 04:51 PM
My expectations for Episode I were the same for any film I go see. I try to go in with an open mind and let it do it's thing. TPM just left me with a kind of hollow feeling when I left. It was nice to be back in the Star Wars universe again, but I think Lucas' story-telling abilities have atrophied over the years. AOTC was a definite improvement IMO. Unfortunately, since Episode II is built upon Episode I's weak plot foundation, the story flaws carry through with each successive film. Of course the worse offense is changing the Original Trilogy so it meshes with these prequels. It's a sacrilege.

Jar Jar didn't bother me too much, but I was disappointed with the scatalogical humor - it has it's place in South Park and Austin Powers, but I don't want to see it in Star Wars. I really didn't have a problem with Jake Lloyd's performance either. I really enjoyed Williams score, especially the choral track. In fact, it was so inspiring that I ran while listening to it in my walkman for several weeks.

I suppose the most ominous thing was when the film's premiere quickly approached, Lucas began to backpedal about Episode I. Initial reviews from critics were mixed, and he rushed to explain that it may not appeal to older audiences or those who grew up with the first trilogy. I think he became aware only too late that he had made just an average movie. Being a successful independent filmmaker has it's advantages, notably creative control, but sometimes an auteur needs constructive feedback or the involvement of others during the creative process. His producer, Rick McCallum, seems like a yes man to me. But maybe Lucas just doesn't listen to his production team's feedback. Although he definitely responded to the general negative impression Jar Jar made by downsizing that character in Episode II; and to the outcry over racial stereotypes by casting more Hispanic and black actors.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
02-14-2005, 06:27 PM
The only Hispanic actor in the prequels (that I know) is Cordé - many people think that Jango, the clones, and Typho were Hispanic, but they're Maori.

Anyway, I was 9 when it came out (I have both you guys beat!) and I was expecting something great. I thought it was great. I still think it's really good, but I don't like Jar Jar or poo poo (avoid anything repeated) as much. In the broader sense of the Saga after seeing AOTC, I now appreciate Jar Jar a lot more, as he's just some dumb guy who is easily manipulated by others, and likes to please. However, that only makes me like him a little bit more.

The only real thing that was somewhat of a letdown was the lack of Darth Maul. I mean, he was on everything (he even replaced Vader on the cardbacks!) and was worked up into this totally awesome guy. He has more lines in that one commercial than in the entire movie! He was a wasted opportunity IMO, he should have been with Darth Sidious more and equally creepy.

I don't know, but I still like TPM and AOTC as much as the OT. Call me crazy!

General_Grievous
02-14-2005, 06:58 PM
I forgot to mention about the lack of Maul. I thought that they'd be doing more with him. If there's one character I wish they brought back for Episode 2, it's Darth Maul. (He should have escaped after he knocked Obi into the pit. Obi and Anakin could have hunted him in the beginning of AOTC). Either that or Keira Knightley's character Sabe!:D

El Chuxter
02-14-2005, 07:16 PM
I only went in to see a preview for Meet Joe Black, and they didn't show it. Man, was I ever mad!! :mad:

Slicker
02-14-2005, 07:31 PM
I don't know, but I still like TPM and AOTC as much as the OT. Call me crazy!Um...Ok, crazy.:crazed:

Rocketboy
02-14-2005, 11:27 PM
So you're saying that ANH, ESB, and ROTJ are all badly written and executed "kiddie films" that adults back then didn't get, just like adults of today don't get the Prequels?:confused: I never said anything about them being "badly written and executed." Please don't put words into my mouth.

Responding to your question: I think they are all fairly well written kiddie films that could have used some spiffing up in terms of dialogue. The acting in all 5 movies is pretty bad (even Empire has some bad acting moments, IMO), but that doesn't stop me from enjoying each and every one of them.

The 'Xir
02-15-2005, 04:10 PM
I only went in to see a preview for Meet Joe Black, and they didn't show it. Man, was I ever mad!! :mad:


lol LOFL!!! Good one Chux!

For me, I was just planning on going in to see a Fun movie!!! I mean I absolutely luuuuuuuuuuuuuv SW and had been waiting like alot of people for some 16years since RotJ to experience it again in theaters! So just the pure joy of going was enough for me! Obviously there were things that I wanted to see, and some I expected to see, but for the most part I was a die hard :beard: butt kisser and totally trusted the prequels were in good hands as far as story concerns! I absolutely love TPM and it is still my favorite of the two prequels!
'Cause AtoC is where my questioning of Lucas really came into play! I am a Huge Boba Fett fan and one of the things I did expect to see, was a reference to Boba's Description in the ESB novel! He is introduced as," a bounty hunter wearing an armor covered space suit much like that worn by an ancient race of warriors defeated by the Jedi Knights during the Clone Wars"! Well what we got instead was a single warrior/bounty hunter who sold his outfits look and his DNA to create an army of clones wearing similar looking armor that are fighting on the same side as the Jedi at the start of the Clone Wars! Turns out Boba just got hand-me-downs I guess! :ermm: :confused: :dis:

The only thing I can hope for now, is that Boba brings back the warriors his father used to belong to(I'd assume the Mandalorians) and fights against the Jedi and possibly the Wookies(hence the wookie pelts on his belt) during the Clone War events in RotS! pllllllzzzzzzzzzzzzzzee! Maybe Sidious/Dooku hires Fett to take his warriors and subjegate(sp) the wookie planet(as it was said the Empire did to Chewbaccas home planet) but loses to the Jedi :nerv: That would be so killer! But I know..it's not going to happen! :dis: DAMN :beard: !!! grrrrrrr

Ji'dai
02-15-2005, 05:03 PM
The only Hispanic actor in the prequels (that I know) is Cordé - many people think that Jango, the clones, and Typho were Hispanic, but they're Maori.

I was thinking of Jimmy Smits being cast as Bail Organa. Lucas usually hires unknowns but after the Episode I racial furor I think he made an attempt to diversify the cast by hiring a well-known Hispanic actor for this role.

El Chuxter
02-15-2005, 05:38 PM
Xir, if Lucas sticks with the EU stories he green-lit in between AOTC and ROTS, we probably will see very little of Boba (if we see him at all). Dooku really doesn't like Boba Fett, and has sent both Durge and Grievous to take care of him.

Of course, Palpatine (and, later, Vader) don't seem to have too much of a problem with him, so you never know.

Mr. JabbaJohnL
02-15-2005, 05:42 PM
I was thinking of Jimmy Smits being cast as Bail Organa. Lucas usually hires unknowns but after the Episode I racial furor I think he made an attempt to diversify the cast by hiring a well-known Hispanic actor for this role.
Jimmy Smits is Hispanic? Didn't know that. Oh well, I doubt it had anything to do with racism.

Turambar
02-15-2005, 08:31 PM
I remember the uncertainty going into the theater that day. Keep the expectations low, hope for something that feels right. Trust Lucas. Although there were a few collective groans from the audience, I was just so excited to see a new star wars movie that I made my self love it.
I saw The Phantom Mess over and over, bought merchandise, and watched the special editions. The more I watched it the more I began to see things that didn't add up. Under closer examination those things made absolutely no sense and even went against what great writers and directors had put into star wars years before. I went through the same cycle with Attack of the Clowns before I realised that I just didn't like these films. Then I learned how little Lucas had to do with making the trilogy I enjoyed, and how he later altered them into inferior versions.
Anyway, I gave up all of that prequel crap for what it is. I have no interest in it. I recently got bootleg dvds of the star wars trilogy and watched them for the first time in many years and WOW what great movies. I really couldn't remember not watching the special edition versions, and these flowed so much better.
Now I'm content as a fan of star wars. I don't enjoy or have any interest in the prequels despite forcing myself to love'em for a few years.

OC47150
02-16-2005, 01:36 PM
I remember the uncertainty going into the theater that day. Keep the expectations low, hope for something that feels right. Trust Lucas. Although there were a few collective groans from the audience, I was just so excited to see a new star wars movie that I made my self love it.
I saw The Phantom Mess over and over, bought merchandise, and watched the special editions. The more I watched it the more I began to see things that didn't add up. Under closer examination those things made absolutely no sense and even went against what great writers and directors had put into star wars years before. I went through the same cycle with Attack of the Clowns before I realised that I just didn't like these films. Then I learned how little Lucas had to do with making the trilogy I enjoyed, and how he later altered them into inferior versions.
Anyway, I gave up all of that prequel crap for what it is. I have no interest in it. I recently got bootleg dvds of the star wars trilogy and watched them for the first time in many years and WOW what great movies. I really couldn't remember not watching the special edition versions, and these flowed so much better.
Now I'm content as a fan of star wars. I don't enjoy or have any interest in the prequels despite forcing myself to love'em for a few years.

I've had conversations with people who feel the same way you do, Turambar. I tell them the prequels will make more sense after ROTS is released. It's all like a big puzzle and the last piece will be in place.

The 'Xir
02-17-2005, 11:34 AM
Xir, if Lucas sticks with the EU stories he green-lit in between AOTC and ROTS, we probably will see very little of Boba (if we see him at all). Dooku really doesn't like Boba Fett, and has sent both Durge and Grievous to take care of him.

Of course, Palpatine (and, later, Vader) don't seem to have too much of a problem with him, so you never know.


I haven't read alot of the books, comics and other EU stuff that's come out during the prequels and I guess that's what bothers me so much about all of this! 'Cause for us original fans who saw all three movies in theatres and grew up watching the OT our entire lives, there were only 3 important references to the clone wars involving the OT(in movies or books). Leias' line, "General Kenobi, years ago you served my father in the clone wars". Luke and Bens' exchange, "you fought in the clone wars?". "Yes I was once a Jedi Knight same as your Father". and then the description of Boba Fett in the novel of ESB as I stated before, ...wearing an armoured covered space suit, much like that of an ancient race of warriors defeated by the Jedi Knights during the clone wars.

Except Leia's reference about her mother in the past in RotJ(which isn't a direct clone wars reference) these three things were the only things we original fnas had to go by, in order for our understanding of what the Clone Wars were and/or consisted of! SO I'm ****ed because you would think that Lucas would stick with these as a general or basic outline for the PT! Obviously he has with only Leia's message for help! Luke and Bens exchange is murky and can't be shown for obvious reasons and Bobas description obviously isn't going to come to pass! But, think about what I wrote of how RotS could have gone down! It makes perfect sense why Boba has wookie pelts over his shoulder if he had scalped them during the subjegation of Kashyyyk! Chewbacca gets captured along with other wookies during the battle, The Jedi do push back(defeat) Boba's warriors(which would allow Kashyyyk to remain a rebellion sympathizing planet at the time of ANH!). And this all might allow for a small scene in RotS that shows a young Han Solo(maybe about 14, maybe a first year cadet in the stormtrooper academy) helping Chewie and friends escape! These all side stories obviously, intertwining through Ben and Anakins adventures! :dis: :(

Bel-Cam Jos
02-22-2005, 09:45 PM
Great question, BTW! What I expected was the back story, the "how did this begin?" aspect. Realizing that stories need to build up the characters and plots, even though the "story" had already been introduced in the OT, I expected it to be a little slow. I also knew that filling in three films (6+ hours on screen) would also take time, so I was cautiously excited. And it was great. I did not think that seeing the Lucasfilm logo and the "A long time ago,..." line would get to me, but I cheered with the rest of the audience (and I NEVER make noise during any movies). I was in costume (in fact, my avatar is me on 5/19/99 after my second showing). It was great.

Turambar
02-24-2005, 11:07 AM
I've had conversations with people who feel the same way you do, Turambar. I tell them the prequels will make more sense after ROTS is released. It's all like a big puzzle and the last piece will be in place.

I understand what you're saying. We don't know for sure if anything will be made more clear.
But, another problem I see is each OT movie stood alone as classic films. Even though ESB ended with a huge cliffhanger, it is still considered the best. I (among many) just don't see anywhere near the quality in these prequels.
I really wanted to see the backstory alluded to by the OT. Anakin & Obi-Wan's friendship. Maybe yoda training Obi-wan in E1. Clone wars with mandalorians. Anakin as a large man, great pilot, and cunning warrior, whose tragic fall from greatness would take place over the course of the trilogy -- instead of starting with a kid who grows into a punk and eventually does the obvious by becoming a sith -- never was friends with obi-wan who was never instructed by yoda. And sticking one bobafett type in just for some meaningless action sequences! that turned my stomach. It would have been awesome to see the mandalorian supercommandos contracted during the clone wars to fight the jedi. oh well, I was happy with my unaltered trilogy before, and I will always be.

Jayspawn
02-25-2005, 10:32 AM
I had no expectations when I went into Episode I. Only what I saw in the previews. But I'll tell you that I DID expect a different movie than the Original Trilogy films. I excected a slower movie to set up all 6 films. Its not an easy film to make. There is no Stormtroopers, or X-Wing Fighters -only a very few younger characters of the Original Trilogy and thats it. I wasnt dissapointed at all.