I just watched Star Wars: Episode I--The Phantom Menace. And I have decided that I like it very much. I'm not saying it isn't slow-starting, unwieldy, confusing or that Jar Jar Binks was a good idea (because that kind of creature in a sleeveless flared pantsuit was simply ill-conceived) but there are good things about it--at least 10 (see below). Why would I go against popular opinion like this and even put it in writing? Because Star Wars, baby, I'm in. I am all in.
Top 10 Good Things About The Phantom Menace that Make it Worth Enduring the Insufferable Jar Jar Binks:
10. First glimpse of double-bladed lightsaber. Hello? Cool? Uh yes. I should say so.
9. Inspiration for, quite possibly, the geekiest sentence I have ever written (see above).
8. Little boy actor who plays Anakin Skywalker (as opposed to Hayden Christiansen who plays big boy Anakin Skywalker) does a good job.
7. Finding out that Anakin Skywalker made C-3PO. I totally thought I saw a glimmer of recognition on Darth Vader's face in Star Wars.
6. Darth Maul--good villain. Horns! Super scary.
5. Finding out that I have and ocd-ish chant hang-up with the name Senator Palpatine. Palpatine. Palpatine. Palpatine.
4. Galaxy-changing introductions: "Obi-Wan meet Anakin Skywalker," "R2, this is C-3PO." etc.
3. Finding out that Darth Vader has more midi-chlorians in his blood than Yoda--because I love when they use real science in movies.
2. The thought-provoking questions it raises that I can think about when I'm bored: Would it have been better to leave Anakin with his mom or did he deserve a chance? Is the prophecy about restoring balance to the force really about restoring evil balance rather than good balance? Was Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson) foolish to insist that Anakin be trained. . . and was Obi Wan the wiser (though younger) of the two because he initially sided with the Jedi Council who thought Anakin's future was cloudy? Or was Qui-Gon truly a visionary and the fate of the galaxy really rested upon Anakin's choices? I just don't know the answers to these questions.
1. The suggestion that Anakin Skywalker, who will become Darth Vader, Lord of the Sith, was an immaculate conception. Hello? Cool? Uh, yes. I should say so.
Gulp. I'm so excited for Episode III and at this point, if it sucks, I'm just going down with the ship.