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Henry Buck

Red Letter Media Reviews (Plinkett & Half in the Bag)

421 posts in this topic

I'd like to see someone do something similar but defending the films. I read something in the LA Times the other day where the guy really went into a lot of detail into why the prequels really work on some levels. I don't think I was absolutely convinced, but it was really interesting to hear someone really passionately and thoughtfully talking positively about something that so many other people are ridiculously vitriolic towards.

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Well, the prequels do have some core elements that could have worked really, really well if the films had been created in the sort of environment that the original trilogy was: highly collaborative and somewhat limited in the visual effects department. There's just a lot of crap that gets in the way of those core elements being apparent, and almost all of that is due to Lucas having way too much power in the filmmaking process.

I'll look forward to watching Plinkett's review. ROTS is probably my favorite of the prequels (though TPM feels more like a Star Wars film), but its flaws are many, and I'm sure these videos will do a brilliant job of pointing them out, as usual.

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"[Orson] Welles used special effects to extensively tell a story, and Lucas used a story to extensively tell special effects."

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I'd like to see someone do something similar but defending the films. I read something in the LA Times the other day where the guy really went into a lot of detail into why the prequels really work on some levels. I don't think I was absolutely convinced, but it was really interesting to hear someone really passionately and thoughtfully talking positively about something that so many other people are ridiculously vitriolic towards.

Interesting, Charlie. I'd like to read that. Was it online?

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"[Orson] Welles used special effects to extensively tell a story, and Lucas used a story to extensively tell special effects."

And sell toys and video games. Episode I was a 2.5 hour trailer for "Racer," which was actually a really fun video game.

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Oh indy4, common, we have a project for you...

:lol: Actually I agree with a lot of what he's saying...I believe that while there's a lot wrong with the prequels, there's so much to like about them that I really enjoy watching them. That said, I also disagree with a lot of what he's saying.

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I'd like to see someone do something similar but defending the films. I read something in the LA Times the other day where the guy really went into a lot of detail into why the prequels really work on some levels. I don't think I was absolutely convinced, but it was really interesting to hear someone really passionately and thoughtfully talking positively about something that so many other people are ridiculously vitriolic towards.

Interesting, Charlie. I'd like to read that. Was it online?

Yeah, I can't remember where, it was maybe linked by IMDB's main page?

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I was laughing out loud at points.

"But anyway, he tells the Senate that the Jedi - an organization of monks that have been the guardians of peace and justice for over a thousand generations - have suddenly decided to take over the world! Oh, and I just also happen to look and sound like a monster that wants to take over the world. Don't mind my creepy black cloak, my horribly evil sounding voice, or terrifying face. Also, don't mind the fact that I'm yelling about creating a galactic empire run exclusively by me. No, no, you see, it's the Jedi that are the ones who tried to take over! And that warranted them all being executed by the army that I control by myself without any kind of trial in the courts to prove that what I'm saying is true. Yup, we just killed them all, including the children! And then we burned down their temple, and you're all just gonna have to take my word for it. Trust me, look at my face! Would this face lie to you? You see, I've successfully eliminated the only opposition I might have had to form my own galactic empire. Please continue with the applause. So remember to vote Palpatine in the next election that will never happen, because I said so."

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I love his reviews.

In this one I really liked the part on how the movie is structured, alternating between pointless digital action and dialogue scenes that are all shot the same way. And how he compares it to the new Star Trek. Everything against blue screen :eh:

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Dialogue scenes might have been shot that way as an homage to The Bold and the Beautiful. They are pretty much identical. Both in approach and in content. Lucas is clever, you know.

Karol

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Dialogue scenes might have been shot that way as an homage to The Bold and the Beautiful. They are pretty much identical. Both in approach and in content. Lucas is clever, you know.

Karol

Even Stephanie's stunt double in drag going down the slide on an episode earlier this week wasn't unlike that cheesy Count Dooku stunt with Christopher Lee's head pasted on.

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Finally actually saw it...that was fantastic. Shows how vital film criticism can be.

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I dunno about you guys, but I've been waiting months for this one:

I don't know who he got to do the imitation of the Emperor's voice, but it's spot-on.

He's also got new reviews on KOTCS, The Last Airbender, and . . . others. :blink:

Sweet!

- Uni

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I never understood why people spend an hour and a half watching some guy talk about how much a film we already know sucks sucks instead of maybe going out and watching an actual film that maybe doesn't suck.

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I never understood why people spend an hour and a half watching some guy talk about how much a film we already know sucks sucks instead of maybe going out and watching an actual film that maybe doesn't suck.

1) Because he's hilarious.

2) Because his analysis is actually quite brilliant. In this review, for instance, the way he uses the ending of A New Hope as a prophetic device that foreshadows Lucas's own fall from his early ideals is like a final, unerring condemnation of everything the prequels represent.

I could do without the extra "Nadine" story garbage (thankfully there's a lot less in this one than the last), but the rest of it is gold. His perspective on character and story alone could be used to teach seminars on the most effective way to write and direct movies.

- Uni

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He's also got new reviews on KOTCS, The Last Airbender, and . . . others. :blink:

Sweet!

- Uni

I think that was merely a joke to make fun of how much the fans prodded them. I'd certainly like to see those reviews, though...

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Yeah, I can't find any of those on his site (not that I was looking for the last one, of course. . . . :unsure:). It'd be great if he took a shot at Airbender, though. There's a movie dying for one of his treatments.

- Uni

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I never understood why people spend an hour and a half watching some guy talk about how much a film we already know sucks sucks instead of maybe going out and watching an actual film that maybe doesn't suck.

Because he's usually poignant at the sake of being eloquent.

I don't know about you, but I feel like I've watched a lot of my collection of 90 minute movies to death, so it's refreshing to watch fan-made commentaries about them, especially those three in particular that don't really have a welcome place in my collection anymore.

It's also a lot more difficult to make watching a movie that doesn't suck as hilarious as it does critiquing the piss out of a movie that does suck. Now if he could make a commentary that makes an honestly good movie, like The Wizard of Oz or The Godfather look as bad as the prequels, I'd also be all for that. Good luck.

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It just seems redundant given the entire internet has spent the last eleven years pulling the prequels apart. Does he do positive reviews or just negative? Is there a two-hour one on how much The Godfather rocks?

In terms of watching something else, you should try the three fan documentaries on the OT, Star Wars Begins, Building Empire, and Returning To Jedi. They're really well put-together, and have some information/pictures/video that even I wasn't aware of. It's a shame no one really seems to have heard of them (I even linked to them recently here but nada), and they're on Youtube.

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1) Because he's hilarious.

2) Because his analysis is actually quite brilliant. In this review, for instance, the way he uses the ending of A New Hope as a prophetic device that foreshadows Lucas's own fall from his early ideals is like a final, unerring condemnation of everything the prequels represent.

I could do without the extra "Nadine" story garbage (thankfully there's a lot less in this one than the last), but the rest of it is gold. His perspective on character and story alone could be used to teach seminars on the most effective way to write and direct movies.

I agree.

I would like to see a KOTCS review from the guy. That could be interesting because there's lots of potentially awesome material in the film, but the films fails to get to it again and again and again...

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I liked the prequels, and quite frankly don't care what people say otherwise.

But I cannot stand this guy....much like other star wars fans.

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I liked the prequels, and quite frankly don't care what people say otherwise.

I don't understand. Surely people don't say you don't like the prequels.

But I cannot stand this guy....much like other star wars fans.

Do you mean other SW fans can't stand this guy or that you can't stand other SW fans like him?

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He means he can't stand him because he pokes fun at the rubbish PT.

But I cannot stand this guy....much like other star wars fans.

I think he's funny and smart, plus I'm a SW fan. I hate the prequels, though.

Maybe that's the difference.

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I enjoyed the reviews very much. Plinkett didn't just point out the fundamental flaws of the Prequels; he also highlighted the strengths - the succesful story and character mechanics - of the original films.

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Like the rest of us, Plinkett loves to hate the PT. His reviews are funny because we relate, we share his frustration, we shake our fists at Lucas in unison.

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Plinkett (or should I say Red Letter Media) is one of the best reviewers on the web. A lot of people can say that the prequels suck, and a lot of people have, but few can go so into depth about exactly why and present it in a compelling and often (darkly) hilarious way. I would like for him to tackle a good film, just to stretch the proverbial muscles. It is generally easier to point out the flaws than to point out the good.

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I would like for him to tackle a good film, just to stretch the proverbial muscles. It is generally easier to point out the flaws than to point out the good.

This would be interesting. Not to mention that pointing out the flaws in the prequels is like shooting fish in a barrel. But then that's kind of the internet in a nutshell.

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He did Trek '09, gave it a pretty positive review.

True, but he did while acknowledging what the film was.

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I liked the prequels, and quite frankly don't care what people say otherwise.

But I cannot stand this guy....much like other star wars fans.

Other prequel fans, you mean. Most of us are huge Star Wars fans. If he'd made a trilogy more in the true style of Star Wars, people would've enjoyed them more.

He addresses folks like you in his Ep. III review. I don't think he gives much of a rip what you guys think of him, either.

But you're entirely entitled to your opinion on both. No one would argue that.

It just seems redundant given the entire internet has spent the last eleven years pulling the prequels apart.

It might be redundant if the rest of the internet saw what he sees. But he points out fundamental problems--and does so with monumental clarity, precision, and argumentative strength--that I've never heard anyone else articulate. His comparison between the prequels and Citizen Kane, for instance, is brilliant. I've seen both movies any number of times, but never caught the direct reflection not only in the stories but in how Lucas paralleled the specific images.

His editing skills are phenomenal. And his general approach is also just plain friggin' funny. Not just the slow, dumbed-down delivery, but his insights as well. “Ladies and gentlemen, if you’ve ever wondered how a war would be run by disorganized hippies . . . here it is.” ROTFLMAO ROTFLMAO ROTFLMAO

Then there's the fact that some of us simply never get tired of pulling the prequels apart. . . .

Does he do positive reviews or just negative? Is there a two-hour one on how much The Godfather rocks?

You could say his presentation of the original trilogy, as well as Citizen Kane, counts as a positive review of those works. He uses their exceptionalism as a sharp conrast to the prequels' bumbling failures. But he has done positive reviews in their own right as well. Check out his take on the newest Star Trek film, in which he shows:

a) How well J.J. Abrams did with what was given to him

b) How TPM remains one of the great movies in the series

c) Why the "trilogy" within the series did well (though also what their shortcomings were)

d) Why pretty much the rest of the series--and the TNG films in particular--blew it

That's the thing about Plinkett, see: if he didn't understand what makes a great film great, he couldn't recognize what makes a bad film suck. That he does the latter so well shows how sharp he is with the former. He may play an idiot, but it takes a smart man to do that as well as he does.

And ultimately, some of us just love a good roast. Roger Ebert's four-star reviews are eloquent and passionately drawn, but they're not nearly as much fun as his reviews for terrible movies. He's got two books devoted solely to the films he's raked hard (I Hated, Hated, Hated This Movie and Your Movie Sucks) which are pure literary gold.

- Uni

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He did Trek '09, gave it a pretty positive review.

True, but he did while acknowledging what the film was.

Which is a very dumb, loud, blinding action movie. The whole exploring space and meeting aliens thing wouldn't work out for the modern audiences, I guess. Everyone has to fight, shoot, strangle, blow up and die. Star Trek in name only.

I got the feeling in the review than while he acknowledged the entertainment and the general slickness of the movie, he also felt as Star Trek it was shit. It's another in a long line of reboots and remakes of old properties for stupid people willing to shell out 10+ bucks to see...fighting, shooting, strangling, blowing up and death. As long as it's got a recognizable brand name, Michael Bay style filmmaking, pounding MV-ish music and complete over-dependence on computers, you're set.

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In terms of watching something else, you should try the three fan documentaries on the OT, Star Wars Begins, Building Empire, and Returning To Jedi. They're really well put-together, and have some information/pictures/video that even I wasn't aware of. It's a shame no one really seems to have heard of them (I even linked to them recently here but nada), and they're on Youtube.

I found them over at Topless Robot days before you posted them here, but didn't really feel like posting them here. They are excellent, but they are two completely different types of fan film. All together.

Jambe Davdar's films are documentaries that concentrate on the technical and historical aspects of the films, with emphasis on behind the scenes footage, interviews and voiceovers, and occasionally showing footage of scenes that were cut, such as Biggs and Luke at Anchorhead or the captured wampas in Echo Base. He very rarely mentions the character or storyline aspects of the film, even though he could shower us with in-universe factoids of who's who during all the down time. His movies are largely objective and opinion-free. And they are excellent.

Plinkett's are all opinion. Anyone who hates his videos is just trying to get people to ignore the large pink elephant in the corner.

Which is a very dumb, loud, blinding action movie. The whole exploring space and meeting aliens thing wouldn't work out for the modern audiences, I guess. Everyone has to fight, shoot, strangle, blow up and die. Star Trek in name only.

I got the feeling in the review than while he acknowledged the entertainment and the general slickness of the movie, he also felt as Star Trek it was shit. It's another in a long line of reboots and remakes of old properties for stupid people willing to shell out 10+ bucks to see...fighting, shooting, strangling, blowing up and death. As long as it's got a recognizable brand name, Michael Bay style filmmaking, pounding MV-ish music and complete over-dependence on computers, you're set.

Did it ever occur to you that while you get a gleeful hard-on from bashing Star Trek 2009, that Star Trek II -- largely considered the greatest of all Star Trek films -- is also just that: fighting, shooting, strangling, blowing up and death.

No exploring space. No new aliens (except the kinds that dig into your ear).

We got exploring space in 1979. We got meeting aliens in 1979. It was widely panned.

Then we got Star Trek II, its run-and-gun sequel. Star Trek III used the same basic formula to continue the story. IV had some fun.

Then we got exploring space in and meeting aliens in 1987. It was the greatest of all Star Trek films and remains a classic to this very day a complete and utter disaster.

Save your exploring space and meeting aliens for the Star Trek TV shows. Oh I'm sorry, too bad there aren't any. Enterprise -- exploring space and meeting aliens -- took care of that.

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They are excellent, but they are two completely different types of fan film. All together.

Everybody: "They are excellent, but they are two completely different types of fan film."

Then we got exploring space in and meeting aliens in 1987. It was the greatest of all Star Trek films and remains a classic to this very day a complete and utter disaster.

You said everything well, but this was masterfully put.

- Uni

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