I saw Episode III!

Last night, I attended the charity advance screening of Episode III in San Francisco. It was raising money for the Koret Family House. Details can be found here. I attended the benefit screenings of Episodes I and II as well, and had a great time each time. I think this is a fantastic example of charity… there are plenty of guys like me who like the idea of giving to charity, and might make a $500 donation to something like the Koret house, but who are basically too lazy to get off our butts and get around to it. So this gives us a kick in the pants, because hey, it’s STAR WARS, and everyone’s a winner. Kudos to George Lucas.

I’ll write up a smallish review of the movie itself, but first, a few comments about the event itself:
-There were lots of people around in full-on star wars costume, including lots of storm troopers, some clone troopers, some speeder bike troopers, a queen amidala, a 3PO, an emperor, a full-on Jabba’s-slave-Leia (who seemed to be with Han Solo), and lots of random imperial guys, X-wing-pilots, etc. I think the deal was that they volunteered to help out, stood around in their stuffy costumes for a few hours, and then got to see the movie. Good times.
-Various luminaries were there. At least, as far as bay area luminaries go. I personally shook Gavin Newsome’s hand and told him he was right about the gay marriage thing
-There was a party afterwards, with tons of X-box’s set up with the ROTS video game, lots of free food (not very good this year, actually), and a charity auction. The auction included some really gorgeous replica props, which (not surprisingly) fetched several thousand dollars each. But then there was a Darth Tater (the Darth Vader Mr. Potato Head) signed by Hayden Christensen. OK, that’s cool. But it’s still something you can buy at K-Mart for $20, but signed. It was purchased for… SIXTEEN HUNDRED DOLLARS. By whom? By ice princess Kristy Yamaguchi, that’s who. After that, there was a movie poster signed by 7 members of the cast and crew, including George, Rick McCallum, Samuel L Jackson, etc. Again, $20 at K-Mart, but signed. It was purchased for… SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLARS! The guy who was bidding for it was standing right next to me, and I think he might have been one of the Google guys. Also auctioned was a life sized origami Jabba the Hutt, except that it wasn’t actually there, so we couldn’t see it.

As for the movie itself, here’s a spoiler-free review…

I liked it. A lot. If the previous two moview have proven anything, it’s that George Lucas can create amazing visuals and exciting action sequences, but that he sometimes includes heinously awful things which nearly ruin the experience. Well, the visuals and action were just as good, and there was nothing heinously awful, and there were some really amazing and exciting dramatic moments. So basically, take the best half hour of Episodes I and II, and make a movie that’s almost always that good, better in a few instances, and only rarely worse.

There a few things that fell flat, felt rushed, or felt shoved in to satisfy continuity, which kept it from being the Amazing Masterpiece one might have hoped for, but it was definitely a great time, and I can’t wait to see it again with a huge, excited audience.
I’ll happily answer (in spoiler boxes where appropriate) any questions anyone has. (After all, part of the point of paying $500 to see a movie early is to bask in the glory of having seen it when no one else has :slight_smile: )
Oh, and if anyone else has seen it, I have two questions:

  1. What was the deal with the scene where Bail Organa landed, then the soldiers said “you should leave”, then a previously unknown jedi kid showed up, then they killed the kid, then Organa left? I would have expected them to arrest him or something, and I have no idea who that kid was

  2. What were Padme’s last words? They sounded profound, but I couldn’t understand them

That’s an awesome way to benefit a charity.

And thanks for the advance word. My hopes are pretty high for this one, and it sounds like it lacks the sand-in-the-vaseline features that marred the last three movies.

I don’t like sand. It’s coarse and rough and irritating and it gets in the Vaseline.

Presumably, the clone troopers only have orders to take down the Jedis. Bail’s a pretty high-profile senator, so if Palpatine wants the “transition” to move smoothly with the cooperation of the Senate, he can’t just start arresting them willy-nilly. Oh, and the Jedi kid was George’s son Jett.

“Obi-Wan…there…is good in him. I know there is…still…”

if her lines are the same as in the book… i’m not sure how the spoiler thing goes.

I knew I could count on someone here to pick that one up for me. :smiley:

Great. I don’t like that at all. If you are watching the movies in order (I, II, etc.), it stupidly gives away too much of the plot and turn of the last movie. Another bit of glurge if you ask me, this time with real drawback to other parts of the films.

I’m listening!

What evah!

Not listening!

Not listening!

Not listening!