If you live in Canada, chances are you love hockey. More specifically, if you live in Toronto, chances are you love the Toronto Maple Leafs. There are millions of ‘casual’ fans out there but I want to focus on the hardcore. The people who bleed blue and white and have been craving playoff hockey for 7 years. The hardcore fans.
There are two types of hardcore fans: The people who plan the parade route after every win and those who simply enjoy it as a game well played and a step forward. Both groups adore the Buds but there is a clear separation between the two. This applies to all sports teams but it also applies… To Star Wars.
To me, Star Wars fans share the same division amongst it’s hardcore fans. There are some people who live and die by the force and others who are simply obsessed with the films. The line between these two groups is fairly fuzze but there is a simple way to determine which side you are on. Just answer this one innocent and uncontroversial question:
DID GREEDO SHOOT FIRST?
Are you angry right now? Or can you look past it?
This is what The People vs George Lucas is all about.
The documentary is about George Lucas’ never ending ‘revisions’ to the original Star Wars trilogy and the backlash against Episodes 1-3. I was born in 1983 so George Lucas really didn’t ‘rape’ my childhood because I didn’t see the films until at least 10 years after they were released. I was absolutely blown away by the films even though ‘I am your father’ was firmly entrenched into our pop culture thus ruining one of the greatest twists of all time. If anything bothered me about the ‘special editions’ and the new trilogy it was the utter disregard for that powerful cinematic moment. It’s not a twist anymore.
The first copy of the Star Wars trilogy I owned was the gold special edition on VHS. So my memory of Star Wars always included Greedo shooting first. I understand that Han Solo isn’t as bad ass as he once was but that’s not in the movie anymore. I don’t know why Lucas decided to change it but I certainly wasn’t stewing about it while practicing with my home made double lightsabre at home. It was Star Wars and I had a home made double lightsabre!
The main debate at the center of the film is whether or not a film belongs to it’s fans once released. Where do you stand? Can an artist still retain the right to change his work after the fact? Unfortunately, fans weren’t given a choice and have been forced to endure countless changes that altered the story.
Personally, I think Mr. Lucas can change the films all he wants. It’s his work and he has that right but I DO think he owes fans a release of the original versions. That’s ORIGINAL George! Han shoots first, Jabba is only seen in Return of the Jedi and Ewoks don’t blink!
Until that happens the collective sound you’ll hear from every fan’s basement will be:
The Star Wars franchise is a merchandising empire and the fact is, people will still consume. The recent blu ray release of the series proves that no matter what he changes, people will still buy the films. Imagine the sales if he would have included a few extra discs containing the original releases.
The truly hardcore fans will probably ban this blog once they read my next statement but I believe in honesty so here goes… I didn’t mind Episode One.
I’m also a fan of the third mostly because I found a way to ignore Hayden Christensen terrible acting. (I won’t mention Attack of the Clones because that movie doesn’t exist.) The one thing about Episode 3 that angered me was how quickly Anakin devotes himself to the Emperor. Just like that? The rest of the film was full of incredible battles and fights that Star Wars fans adore. At the end of the day, Episodes 1-3 were entertaining but I don’t HATE them because they weren’t as good as A New Hope, The Empire Strikes Back & The Return of the Jedi. (And they weren’t)
I will say this, I sympathize with the people who grew up with Star Wars only to have it changed and altered. It’s like watching a trailer and falling in love with a moment only to realize it didn’t make the final cut of the actual film. It’s distracting and disappointing. Add years of devotion to a franchise and you can see why people are angry.
The People vs George Lucas is all about the line between the love of Star Wars and the hatred of George Lucas. (And by hatred I mean adoration)
It doesn’t matter if you’re a casual fan, a hardcore fan or a HARDCORE fan of Star Wars, this was definitely a great documentary full of the references we love because we all love Star Wars.