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savafan
05-18-2005, 02:26 PM
I hope that title is accurate enough. In my opinion, this is another ridiculous accusation. Star Wars has always parallelled real life, and this being the prequel, we pretty much already knew what was going to happen. Did they think that after all these years Lucas would now decide that Palpatine isn't such a bad guy, and that episodes 4-6 were just dreams that Anakin had?

http://www.usatoday.com/life/movies/news/2005-05-17-sith-politics_x.htm

By César G. Soriano, USA TODAY
Since early screenings of Episode III: Revenge of the Sith began last month, film critics, commentators and Internet bloggers have been debating whether filmmaker George Lucas is comparing President Bush and the Iraq war to the Dark Side of the Force. The conservative film site Pabaah.com has called for a boycott. The topic even made NBC's Today show.

Lucas said Sunday at the Cannes Film Festival that the movie was written before the Iraq war. "We were just funding Saddam Hussein and giving him weapons of mass destruction," he said, adding, "The parallels between Vietnam and what we're doing in Iraq now are unbelievable."

Still, some see echoes of Bush in the film.

In one scene, Anakin Skywalker/Darth Vader tells his onetime mentor, Obi-Wan Kenobi, "If you're not with me, you're my enemy." The line is seen as a reference to Bush's post-Sept. 11 threat "Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists."

The White House declined to comment on the controversy.

Josh Griffin, a self-described "conservative Star Wars fan," says he cringed when he heard the dialogue at a recent advance screening of Sith. "Star Wars is meant to be a children's movie ... not to be a political statement about someone's liberal ideology."

Even a perception of bias could hurt a film's bottom line, some say. The crucial summer moviegoing season usually makes up 40% of a year's box office revenue; this year, ticket sales are down 7% from 2004.

"If people feel Lucas is pushing a parallel between the Galactic Empire and present-day America, I think people will be turned off," says filmmaker Jason Apuzzo, co-editor of the conservative film blog Libertas (libertyfilmfestival.com/libertas).

But others applaud Lucas for taking a stand.

"As a liberal and a Democrat, it was comforting," says Slant magazine film critic Ed Gonzalez. "Star Wars is created by real people, starring real people, so it's inevitable it will reflect real-life issues," even if it is sci-fi fantasy.

Freelance writer Craig Winneker, who accused Sith of bias on the webzine Tech Central Station, says he nonetheless loved the film. "I'm not going to hold a grudge against the movie or base my opinion on world events because of something Yoda says."

Political spoilers

People who have seen early screenings of Star Wars, Episode III: Revenge of the Sith are noting parallels to the Bush administration:

• Sith plot: Seeking to strengthen security during wartime, Chancellor Palpatine persuades the Senate to give up civil liberties and elect him emperor for life. "So this is how liberty dies — to thunderous applause," Senator Amidala laments.

• Bush plot: Seeking to strengthen security after the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, President Bush urged legislators to pass the Patriot Act, which opponents say infringes on civil liberties.

• Sith's war: Palpatine starts a war to divert attention from his true political motives.

• Bush's war: Bush persuades Congress to go to war with Iraq based on evidence that has now been largely dismissed.

registerthis
05-18-2005, 02:33 PM
So they call for a boycott because they don't agree with an implied message in its dialogue?

this culture of stifling dissent and non-conformist opinions that has developed recently is just baffling to me.

I particularly love the line from the self-professed conservative Star Wars fan, about how it's supposed to be a children's movie. Star Wars never was, nor is it, intended to be a film for children. The fact that many children inevitably like it is beside the point.

KittyDuran
05-18-2005, 02:38 PM
I particularly love the line from the self-professed conservative Star Wars fan, about how it's supposed to be a children's movie. Star Wars never was, nor is it, intended to be a film for children. The fact that many children inevitably like it is beside the point. That got me as well, I NEVER looked at Star Wars that way for any of the episodes...

Ravenlord
05-18-2005, 02:40 PM
gotta love that liberal backlash...and then the conservative backlash...then the liberal backlash :explode:

Unassisted
05-18-2005, 02:42 PM
The Star Wars saga as an allegory can be (and has been) interpreted many ways. While I wouldn't be surprised if George Lucas was tweaking the nose of the political establishment, you'll never get him to admit it.

Jaycint
05-18-2005, 02:54 PM
Wow, I think everybody is way too sensitive lately. Seems like people will look for hidden messages and meanings in just about anything now.

westofyou
05-18-2005, 03:11 PM
Wow, I think everybody is way too sensitive lately. Seems like people will look for hidden messages and meanings in just about anything now.

Subtext is a powerful tool. But there are common themes in human history that have occured and been played out in literature and theater long before the Democrats and Republicans started playing cultural tetherball.

RANDY IN INDY
05-18-2005, 03:51 PM
I'll take it for what it is. Entertainment. If George Lucas has alterior designs, so what? Why do some have a problem with it? He has a right to his opinions, same as the rest of us. Doesn't make them any more important than anyone else's. I'll go see the movie, be entertained, :starwars:and enjoy it. Then I'll more than likely forget about it pretty quickly. :sleep:

Come to think of it, maybe Dave Miley has been trying to send us some sort of subtext when he makes out his lineups this season. :fineprint

Jaycint
05-18-2005, 03:55 PM
Subtext is a powerful tool. But there are common themes in human history that have occured and been played out in literture and theater long before the Democrats and Republicans started playing cultural tetherball.

Oh I don't doubt that it exists and is used. I guess my main point is that people seem to get riled up about it too easily.

Rojo
05-18-2005, 04:19 PM
I rented Phantom and Attack recently just to get caught up on the politics of "Star Wars". Basically, the first sound-and-fury of those two movies amounted to A) Palpatine getting elected Chancellor and B) consolidating his power and getting authorization for the clone army.

deltachi8
05-18-2005, 04:22 PM
As a conservative leaning type guy, i cringe everytime i read a conservative say something silly like this. Its a freakin monie, folks, relax.

Wonder why I cant stomach following politics anymore.

Johnny Footstool
05-18-2005, 05:34 PM
This reminds me of the controversy over "The Two Towers." People accused the movie studio of exploiting the Sept. 11th destruction of the World Trade Center. Nevermind that the books were written decades before 9-11-01...

Falls City Beer
05-18-2005, 05:42 PM
Subtext is a powerful tool. But there are common themes in human history that have occured and been played out in literature and theater long before the Democrats and Republicans started playing cultural tetherball.

Everything, everything, everything is political. Everything.

KronoRed
05-18-2005, 06:03 PM
Oh come on...

I don't like Bush but this is insane.

RedsBaron
05-18-2005, 07:46 PM
Silly controversy.

MrCinatit
05-18-2005, 09:33 PM
when i read about this conservative group, or this liberal group, crying about something in such a way, my mind can only drift toward the McCarthism Era. i think few of us have warm fuzzies for that particular period.

Johnny Footstool
05-19-2005, 05:14 AM
I just saw the movie, and you'd have to really stretch to find any sort of anti-Bush political statement in it. IMO, Mr. Cesar Soriano is just trying to cook up some controversy where none exists.