If you rewind the clock back far enough, there was once a time when the Star Wars prequels were widely accepted as – please excuse my french – the absolute f***ing worst.
Indeed, while George Lucas’ sci-fi Prequel Trilogy may’ve looked impressive at the time – the visionary scope was often ambitious and the CGI visual effects were cutting edge – both fans and critics found it hard to stomach many of the prequel saga’s lacklustre missteps.
Specifically, the main complaints bandied about were that the overall characterization felt threadbare, the majority of the dialogue was often more wooden than a furniture radio ad, and that the acting was generally pretty hit-or-miss, too. Long story short: the prequels were loathed when they released back in the day. Oh, but how times have changed, though, right?
Over time, the prequels have slowly but surely grown in popularity. Whether it’s the rose-tinted glasses of nostalgia, or some form of collective revisionist history, or simply just an evolution of our growing appreciation for George Lucas’ Star Wars flicks circa 1999-2005, it’s safe to say that the majority of fans have begun to look back very fondly on some of the most critically maligned entries in the entire sci-fantasy franchise. So, with that in mind, is it fair to say that the same could happen with Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker? Well, I guess it’s possible, no?
According to a recent theory posited over on Screen Rant, Star Wars fans will likely look back on the conclusion of the Skywalker saga with a lot more forgiveness in the coming years than they have done with the Prequel Trilogy from the 90s/00s.
As the outlet explains:
Anyone who has paid any attention to Star Wars since the dawn of the new millennium is well-aware of just how hated the Star Wars prequel trilogy was when it released. The documentary The People vs George Lucas even went as far as to devote a large section of its runtime to the prequel trilogy’s infamy. It should also go without saying that few, if any, characters in cinema history have been subject to a backlash on the level of Jar-Jar Binks’ rejection, which rose to such heights as to have a real-life impact on Jar-Jar actor Ahmed Best.
The Rise of Skywalker is in a different position than the prequels, in that the hate it has received is balanced out by an equally vocal number of defenders that the prequels did not see at first. While far from The Empire Strikes Back levels of acclaim (though that’s another example of a Star Wars movie growing more beloved over time), the comparison between the prequels and The Rise of Skywalker shows the former carried a far greater burden of disdain, and for a much longer span of time until being seen in a more positive light. Furthermore, that also highlights another key point about the reception of The Rise of Skywalker that the prequels did not have to contend with.
They go into a lot more detail as well with their theory and personally, I think it’s a thought-provoking piece that highlights a lot of pertinent comparisons between Episode IX and the Prequel Trilogy. Ultimately, it’s fair to say that both the prequels and Rise Of Skywalker could’ve simply been victims of sky-high expectations on release. It’s just so hard to please everyone, right? Of course, only time will truly tell, but I think it’s likely that Episode IX‘s reputation will indeed improve over time, especially after another generation has grown up with the new Skywalker saga.
But what say you, though? Do you think that the prequels and Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker got a bad rap on release? Or are they still as crappy as you remember them? Avoid the coarse and rough sand in the usual place down below and give us your thoughts.