Tuesday, May 17, 2005
Only a Sith is so foolishly touchy.
So Tony Scott liked Revenge of the Sith, which I'm cautiously optimistic about. (In fact, he says it's better than Star Wars...) But the always-humorless Professor Bainbridge thinks Lucas has violated continuity by having Obi Wan say "Only a Sith thinks in absolutes." Scott notes this is an anti-Bush jab, coming as it does, after Skywalker uses Bush's "with us or against us" formulation. Bainbridge notes later points in the story where Obi Wan or Yoda think in terms of absolutes, and then writes:
The whole point was that both the Jedi and the Sith had fallen into a trap of believing absolutes, with Luke's task being to restore balance to the Force. The clear implication was that the Force had a yin-yang aspect, which both the Sith and Jedi had lost sight of. The core story arc thus was to be Luke's restoration of that balance despite opposition from both the remnants of the Jedi and the Emperor.Except, of course, that Obi-Wan and the rest of the Jedi fall into the trap of believing in absolutes afterSkywalker goes nuts and kills all the Jedis; it's Skywalker's fall from grace that pushes the force out of balance to begin with. Hate Lucas for putting a Bush reference in there all you want (if you accept that A. O. Scott is reading this correctly); as he's already abundantly demonstrated (Greedo shoots first!) he doesn't care much what you think. But come on; "betrayed his own creation?" Professor Bainbridge, you'd make a terrible continuity editor.
In choosing to put those words in Obi-Wan's mouth - "Only a Sith thinks in absolutes" - Lucas did more than just play to Hollywood left-liberalism. He betrayed his own creation.