Kudos to the Game designers for recognizing that this should have been a great battle. At least I will always have my memories of the video games version of the fight. The truth is I wanted every saber Battle in this movie to be an epic one. I mean this is when the eradication of the Jedi occurs and frankly I would have like to have seen them go down with a bit more of a fight. The montage scene is SO WATERED DOWN that it's hard to feel bad for these characters as they are dying. Even the battle between Yoda and the emperor ends in a way that does not make sense in my opinion. Yoda should not have lost to the emperor, the emperor should have defeated Yoda. Yoda loses a fight in which he appears to strike the final blow and then runs away! I was really unsatisfied with the end of that fight and the image below is one of my most hated memories in the trilogy.
In the Image above they portray Yoda as a scared child running for his life when the fact is he held his own against Sidious and for some reason gave up the fight. Based on this outcome he decides he has to go into exile. I don't see how they came to this conclusion. It's something that I will likely never be able to wrap my head around.
It occurs to me that they may have made these fights the way they did in order to keep from upstaging the final fight between Anakin and Obi Wan, which is an epic duel between master and Padawan - however even that had it's flaws.WHAT? Where have we ever been told that a Saber duel is over once someone has the high ground??? This just seemed like such an odd thing for Obi Wan to say at this point. "Don't make me do this..." or "You can't defeat me, Anakin!" Anything but "The geography decrees this fight is over!" It really took away from the moment. This is one of the single most important moments in all six movies, and they preface it with that? It was again, a great disappointment. Then we come to Obi Wan's monologue once the fight is actually over:
Obi Wan: "You were the chosen one! It was said that you would destroy the Sith, not join them. You were to bring balance to the force, not leave it in darkness! You were my brother, Anakin. I loved you."The words here were right on in my opinion - but the delivery wasn't. Anakin betrayed the republic, he betrayed the Jedi Order, he betrayed Padme, but worst of all, he betrayed Obi Wan. Yes, Obi Wan would be hurt, but he really should have been angrier than he was. The gravity of this defeat was what I felt was in order for the defeat of Yoda. Obi Wan should have allowed himself a moment of anger, if for nothing else to express just how much the betrayal weighed on him. A betrayal that has Obi Wan momentarily losing control. Now with all this said - I STILL LOVE THIS MOVIE. Hayden Christensen turns in the performance I thought was really appropriate, depicting the fall of a Jedi and the apprehensive transformation into Darth Vader. Ian McDermott again is great at portraying the Dark Lord of the Sith, and my only complaint is that we did not get to see more of him actively manipulating things around him. The Saber duel between Anakin and Obi Wan is delightful, if not choppy. They even take a moment to explain why C3PO doesn't remember any of the events of the prequel trilogy, a classy move in my opinion. Finally, we get the moment the entire Trilogy is leading up to. The reveal of Darth Vader as the incarnation of evil that we have known for the previous thirty years. What would I have done differently? Lots of things, many of which I have already stated. I would have pretty much eliminated Padme's character until she was absolutely necessary near the end. I would have made Yoda's defeat brutal and unquestionable. I would have filled the film with tons of epic saber battles that would have had Klingons singing tales of their majesty even in a completely different universe. I would have made the eradication of the Jedi and brutal and disturbing image that would be difficult to forget. And I would have made sure that we all felt the scar that Anakin leaves on Obi Wan's heart by his betrayal. There you have it - my feelings on why these movies were not great - but you know what - it is still Star Wars. And Bad Star Wars is absolutely better than no Star Wars, in my opinion. now we look forward to the next Chapter in the films and hope that Mr. Abrams does a better job that this trilogy, but respects what has come before him over attempting to recreate the universe as a whole. Star Wars is ingrained in popular culture, in my childhood memories and in my heart of hearts. May the stories live on - and May the Force be with them. If you missed parts I & II you can see them by clicking the links below: Part One Part Two