Friday, May 31, 2013

Revenge Of The Rant

It's been a good long while since I had a nice Star Wars rant, but I just watched Revenge of the Sith again, and I'm SO MAD at George Lucas, you guys! He's totally incompetent!

We're supposed to be sad and shocked by the extermination of the Jedi Order. Except he has given us not ONE reason why we should see this as a loss to the galaxy at large! They're incompetents, hypocrites, and ineffectual to boot! Master Yoda gets his ass kicked by the Emperor, and Obi-Wan doesn't finish the job offing Vader! The Jedi executed by Order 66 didn't sense a thing in the Force! One defeat, and Obi-Wan and Yoda go hide instead of keeping on fighting! Their whole prophecy of "The One Who Will Bring Balance to the Force" is totally misinterpreted, from what it means to who actually is The Chosen One.  (Oh, Yoda graciously drops that the prophecy may have been "misread" HALFWAY INTO THE LAST MOVIE.)  And, you know, Palpatine wasn't entirely lying when he said the Jedi were plotting to overthrow the Senate, because they were (in the interests of "stability" and "temporarily).  Mace Windu, also, totally went un-Jedi when he threatened extrajudicial killing of Palpatine because he was too dangerous alive.  This is actually one thing I think was intentional, as a callback to Anakin killing Dooku.  But that still leaves us with a Jedi Master we're supposed to be rooting for teetering on the edge of the Dark Side! 

And this makes you realize that, actually, if you think back to the original trilogy, Obi-Wan and Yoda are WRONG ABOUT THE WHOLE THING! They want Luke not to go off and save Han and Leia, not to try to redeem his father but instead kill him, and insist there is nothing left of Anakin, only Vader. And in each and every case, THEY'RE WRONG! Why am I supposed to be upset that this order is dismantled again?  Really, the whole point of the movie seems to be to destroy a beloved puppet-guru and make him a stupid-ass CGI frog with grammar issues.  

Now, if one were willing to give Lucas credit, one could say that he actually does want us to see that the old Jedi Order was a failed institution, and that Luke following his heart and going against Obi-Wan and Yoda to find success shows that his Order will be a better one.  And then one could credit him with having that idea in 19dicketydoo and following thru with it as a subtext in 19/20whatever.  One could, but I won't, because George Lucas has given us not one scintilla of a reason to give him that credit.  This is the man who maintains that the Star Wars saga is the story of Anakin and always was.  Anakin, a petulant moron whose "specialness" is never once shown, but instead repeatedly told.  This is also the man who thought Jar-Jar Binks was a great idea.  

Also, the sheer incompetence of the script, not just dialogue ("Hold me. Hold me like you did by the lake on Naboo, when there was only our love!") or plot-wise, but simple CHRONOLOGICAL CONTINUITY is astounding. Characters know information in one scene that is only provided in following scenes! For instance, Yoda calls Palpatine "the emperor" BEFORE PALPATINE DECLARES THE DISSOLUTION OF THE REPUBLIC AND THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE EMPIRE! Padme runs off to Mustafar over the objections of her security detail because the fighting is over BEFORE ANAKIN IS ORDERED BY PALPATINE TO DEACTIVATE THE DRONE ARMIES!!!! GLARCHEN;OHN;IUAHNJ

There's so much more stupidity, too.  Yoda just declares that Luke should be "with his family," which means Owen and Beru Lars. You know, the stepbrother and his wife that Anakin met exactly ONCE and wasn't particularly friendly towards that time, either. And he just assumes they'll be willing to take a baby it! They do, but how on earth (or Tatooine) do you just presume something like that?  Not to mention that sending a baby you're trying to hide to the father you're trying to hide him from's home planet with the name intact is stupid to begin with. 

This is really getting nitpicky but my dudgeon is up, Padme's ship makes absolutely no sense dimensionally. It has several rooms and corridors, but if you actually look at it from the outside, THERE IS NO WAY YOU CAN FIT THEM IN THERE!!!! 
Add in that ships seem to not have hyperdrives providing faster-than-light travel, but apparently straight-up wormholes that allow instantaneous travel from Coruscant to Mustafar. 

Oh, and, there's this, too: When that blue guy who is Palpatine's assistant calls Bail Organa, OBI-WAN AND YODA ARE SITTING RIGHT THERE!!!! Yet Blue Guy fails to register that two WANTED JEDI are flying straight for Coruscant on a Senator's ship!!!!

So, NEWSFLASH: the "best" of the Star Wars prequel trilogy is utter and complete Hutt shit.  Damnit, Disney, the new movies better be a lot flippin' better than this!    

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Bourgeois Art Gallery

As I noticed that Google Art has added several collections since the last edition of Bourgeois Art Gallery, I decided to browse the galleries and add to my "collection." 

End of the Year by Higashiyama Kaii

This is the "soft darkness" of winter that I love so much.  Makes me want to curl up by the fire and drink hot chocolate. 

Oirase Ravine (Autumn) by Okuda Genso

It's hard not to look at this picture.  It is on fire!  But in it I see a melding of Eastern and Western landscape painting, with less of the abstraction and austerity of traditional Japanese landscape that sometimes leaves me cold. 

Pervasive Verdure by Higashiyama Kaii

From the fire to mist. Just yesterday, during my dog-walk, I had the experience this painting suggests: when you're walking on a cool, gray spring day, and the green is almost overwhelming.  

Himeji Castle by Okumura Togyu

There's just something about the white that appeals.  It's a painting of negative space.  

Last Evening of the Year by Oscar Bluemner

This is the exact opposite of Kaii's "End of the Year."  Instead of softness and coziness, there's something sinister and apocalyptic about this winter scene.  That red sky isominous.  This isn't the last evening of the year, it is the last evening period.  Very disturbing. 

Old Canal Port by Oscar Bluemner

I just like the bold blocks of color. 

The Star by Kitano Tsunetomi

What struck me about this is the title, because the star I saw at first wasn't the literal starlight of a summer's evening, but a movie star.  Painted in 1939, I see a screen idol glowing the way silver nitrate film glows.  This is Jean Harlow, not Sirius, to me. 

Incense Container in the Form of a Puppy


Dogs by Hashimoto Kansetsu

While the incense container is a cuddly puppy, this is a nobler beast.  Look at his dignity, his regalness. This is a dog of breeding and refinement. 

Lidded Jewelery Box

I love boxes.  Something about containing, setting aside, hiding away something special that connects to me.  I especially enjoy boxes like this, a treasure box that is itself a treasure.

Tea Set

I'm not one much for tea, but I am one much for Deco.  The geometry of it pleases me.  And the brightness of silver seems to be the ideal medium for it.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Thursday, May 02, 2013

God, I'm Good!

First, I aced yesterday's science quiz, and now I've aced a religion one!  I've got all my bases covered.

Wednesday, May 01, 2013