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PostPosted: Sun Nov 19, 2017 12:09 am 
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Anybody have any thoughts on the newly-anounced Star Wars trilogy, headed by Rian Johnson?

Here are my initial reactions to the announcement....

Will the new trilogy include any characters, planets, or familiar things from previous Star Wars movies, if so which ones?

Kathy Kennedy referred to the new trilogy as a "blank canvas", so it appears that Rian Johnson was given the trilogy without any serious negotiation or ground rules as to the nature of the plot or format of the new films - that being said, I wonder if there are any specific characteristics or style of the original preceding movies that would need to somehow be incorporated in the new movies to establish a sense of Starwars-y-ness. I did notice that Rian Johnson mentioned that Star Wars represents a modern mythology, so perhaps one of the understood rules is that the new trilogy must continue on with the essence of mythology that was a major part of the basis of the original movies. Along that line of thinking, I wonder how would mythology be defined?

Will George Lucas provide a reaction to the announcement of the new trilogy, and if so what will it be? I would imagine that he will likely be interviewed sometime around the release of The Last Jedi, after he has seen this new movie, and that his reaction to the announcement of the new trilogy will likely be a reflection of what he thought of The Last Jedi. Of course, there's always the possibility that Lucas may not want to participate in such an interview, but it's going to be pretty hard for him to avoid commenting on it. I'm guessing that Rian Johnson would hold Lucas' criticism in the highest regard, whether positive, negative, or a mixture, but who knows?

Why do movies always seem to come in groups of 3? Why not 4?

Could the new trilogy possibly follow some dramatically different format?

How will the new trilogy incorporate CGI and other forms of techniques, such as puppets or people dressed up in alien/robot suits.

Will the new trilogy make reference to current cultural trends?

Will the new trilogy dare to address specific religious topics or relevant political issues as did Lucas' original 6 films?

Will the new trilogy continue in the tradition of science fiction literature that calls out new futuristic technologies that may possibly be within humankind's reach? The cell phone, for example, followed very closely by the model of Star Trek's "communicator".

How strongly will the new trilogy be influenced for the purpose to sell tickets, versus for the purpose to just make interesting movies and good literature.

Will the movies dare to upset any particular fan base in order to push the envelope in other ways that may be beneficial?


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PostPosted: Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:23 pm 
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So much to unpack here, but I have a couple thoughts:

One of the strengths of SF in general is you can take a kernel of a character or a tossed-off mention of a long-ago war or planet or struggle or whatever and spin a whole story out of it, and since it's sourced from the original(s) it can stand on its own merit rather than just being like "oh there are a bunch of green and yellow people on this planet we've never mentioned and they work in the Force Factory". So I think it'll be like that. I have a persistent visual image of this that's hard to explain but I hope it makes sense: An image of a planet floating in space, suddenly it zooms way way way way in until you're looking at someone's face. It zooms in even more right into their eye and suddenly you're in space again zooming toward another planet. THAT'S where the story starts. Connected, but not connected, but totally whole on its own two legs. Or four or fifty-nine or whatever Andy Serkis wants to do with it.

As for trilogies, most of our stories in the current time have three acts: A setup, a conflict, a resolution. In Shakespeare's it was typically five. I really think that's it. I mean, if you have a sprawling epic story to tell, do it in more. But really, the defining fictional piece of the 20th Century is probably The Lord of The Rings, which of course is not a trilogy but was split up into three books by the publisher due to postwar paper shortages. So maybe it's just another accident of history.

One of my favorite three-book epics (Stephenson's Baroque Cycle, which he went out of his way not to call a trilogy) was first released as three big hardcovers, but was also split into the "books" inside the books, resulting in eight paperbacks (the middle book is just two separate stories). I think this particular instance dilutes it somewhat as the middle two (or one) are interleaved (or as the author says "con-fused", appropriately, as it's titled "The Confusion") between each other, which works because they're contemporaneous but happening all over the world. This isn't really related at all but I think it's interesting.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:37 am 
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While on the subject of acts, this article on classic chiastic structuring in Star Wars is a very fun, recommended, though admittedly speculative, read.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:31 am 
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I got most of the way through the piece until I found a passage that's so utterly incorrect for a significant portion of the first six films that I had to stop. I'd tell you why but you know.


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:36 am 
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It’s been too long since I read it. What’s so utterly incorrect?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 21, 2017 10:07 am 
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The Campbell stuff. It's partially true but not fully that the series is based on The Monomyth.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 25, 2017 5:01 pm 
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Interesting. What is The Monomyth, by the way?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 26, 2017 6:26 pm 
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Some light reading for you. (Two links there)


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:08 pm 
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Spare yourself and stick with Star Wars. Campbell is the worst kind of fool, a Kingmaker.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 5:45 pm 
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I think his research is pretty fascinating and definitely widespread, though work based explicitly and consciously off it is sort of missing the point.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:28 am 
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Justin wrote:
I think his research is pretty fascinating and definitely widespread, though work based explicitly and consciously off it is sort of missing the point.


Bingo.


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2017 8:50 am 
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Fascination is like curiosity, a passive non-response.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 03, 2017 9:42 am 
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Neil_Leach wrote:
Fascination is like curiosity, a passive non-response.


But objectively true to the individual


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:03 am 
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I've read most of Campbell's work over the years and I'm with Justin on this.

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PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 7:31 am 
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Rocco wrote:
But objectively true to the individual

That would be subjective, not objective and "true" is hardly a word that is appropriate in a discussion of Campbell.
Campbell belongs with Alan Watts, Richard Alpert, Sam Keen, R.D. Laing and others who have gained credibility by
making themselves arbiters of precisely calibrated worldviews. The root of their popularity is often an appeal to
self empowerment, self actualization, or some other variety of self infatuation. It's America, baby, we do
that stuff better than anybody. Just look at our President.

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