When the trailer was better than the movie

Number 1 – Star Wars, Episode One: The Phantom Menace 

Those of us who were Star Wars fans even before the resurgence in the early 90s lived in a minor, tepid state of anticipation for George Lucas to go back and tell the prequel trilogy. 

This teaser was the first glimpse anyone had really received of the long-awaited Episode One.  And it so tingles with the essence of what made that original trilogy so special. 

–You believe it’s this…boy?
–He was meant to help you.
–Anakin Skywalker, meet Obi-Wan Kenobi. 

It’s just so hard to believe what we got in the end was a shrill Jar Jar, and a space farmboy shouting “yippee!” 

But, oh, that first prequel still had so much potential.  It was a hard core fantasy story, and Lucas deserves numerous accolades not only of the film’s groundbreaking visual effects, but its stab into a deep mythology built up by so many years of fan anticipation.  On its own, it’s great story.  The flaws creep in through the telling. 

Here’s the trailer (and pardon the subtitles).

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2 Responses to “When the trailer was better than the movie”


  1. 1 cft999 January 3, 2009 at 10:42 am

    Lucas letting us down with “Menace” was the precursor to Lucas letting us down with “Indy 4.” He’s a filmmaker who should retire, count his blessings and revel in his legacy. Instead, he gives us “Indy 4” and that “Clones” animated mess.

  2. 2 Travis January 5, 2009 at 2:17 pm

    Lucas is a mystery to me. Way back before MENACE even went before cameras, I read an interview with Frank Darabont where he said he would be the one writing the prequels. Then a month ago I read on Ain’t it Cool News that David Hare was asked to “co-direct” episode one, and write two and three (http://www.aintitcool.com/node/39381)

    For some reason, however, Lucas handled most of the writing chores himself; an odd decision considering his original STAR WARS script got a dialog wash before it went before cameras, and EMPIRE and JEDI were both penned by Lawrence Kasdan (who also penned RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK).

    Handing over the writing chores had led to successful results in those instances, and Lucas seemed to be following suit in the early days before Jar Jar Binks. For some reason, ego or what have you, things changedm and I’ve never really understood it.


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