The new Rogue One: A Star Wars Story trailer came out yesterday and I know people from many generations–from tweens to octogenarians–are excited to see the newest installment in the Star Wars story. After watching, I am giddy with excitement and have started to gander on various ticket sites to try and pre-order my midnight ticket. The movie is filled with some of the biggest names in Hollywood, like Forest Whitaker (Last King of Scotland) and Felicity Jones (Theory of Everything). There is just one problem that I can’t get over.
That problem is technology.
For the life of me, I just can’t get over the fact that in every Star Wars movie, including episode 7, the technology just gets increasingly better. I understand why this is the case, but it makes me feel mixed about the series as a whole.
The reason that the technology in Episodes 4-6 are inferior of course stems from the fact that the movies were made in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Technology at that time was far inferior than the likes of today and George Lucas was left using miniature models of the ships and creating lasers guns that appeared to be very inefficient; somehow no Storm Trooper could ever hit its mark. Lightsaber fights were much more dull in the original films and no one had a lightsaber with more than one blade (Darth Maul had a dual headed saber in the past and Kylo Ren has one that has essentially three blades).
The other facet of the series technology-wise that has perpetually irritated me is how in Episode III, R2-D2 can fly around, but in Episode 4 he sometimes seems immobile (watch at 0:29). Again, I understand the rationale, but it doesn’t make it okay. If you want to see more about how George Lucas created the visual effects from the original film, check out this documentary. There is no one wonder that many kids who see those three films come out preferring the far inferior story lines of Episodes I-III better, purely because of visual effects. Kids have it all these days.
What I’m really getting at with all of this is that there needs to be a reimagining of Star Wars Episodes 4-6. The updated visual effects would make the film fit much better with the new, updated films. It would mean that you would have to update the cast for the films, but, of course, like any nerd, I have been thinking about that as well. Gary Oldman would kill it as Obi-Wan Kenobi; Jennifer Lawrence would be a wonderful Princess Leia and I believe that Chris Pratt has shown that he can hold the role of space smuggler and would fit the bill as a great Han Solo.
Now, the odds of this happening are slim to none, but if Disney really wants to do justice to one of the greatest movie trilogies of all time, they need to consider remaking the films to appear more current to the younger audiences.
I also know that this article will receive some criticism from various people in the community who believe that a classic is a classic is a classic (shout out to the Math Dept. and the properties of the reflexive theory). Purists insist that you cannot tarnish the original film by updating it with CGI and advanced visual effects. But, they did make a second, remarkably more Hollywood Ocean’s Eleven that did okay.
To them, I say that it is important to pay respect to the original, but there is always room to make things better. If the creation team stays true to the story that George Lucas wrote so many years ago, I believe that Star Wars Episode 4 has A NEW HOPE.