Everyone knows that the Star Wars prequels are infamously divisive entries in the saga. More recently, Star Wars: The Last Jedi has managed to be just as controversial. It’s fitting, then, that TLJ‘s director Rian Johnson has now stepped forward to defend those earlier films and to praise George Lucas’ work on the trilogy.
RPG designer Scott Malthouse asked SW fans to “say one genuinely nice thing about the Star Wars prequels” on Twitter. None other than Johnson replied to the tweet and described the trilogy as a “gorgeous” 7-hour movie for children that explores bold themes as well as championing its incredible filmmaking innovations.
Lucas made a gorgeous 7 hour long movie for children about how entitlement and fear of loss turns good people into fascists, and did it while spearheading nearly every technical sea change in modern filmmaking of the past 30 years.
— Rian Johnson (@rianjohnson) June 29, 2020
Johnson’s tweet is a pretty good summation of what those who support the prequels see in them. They look great, sure, and Lucas pioneered many cutting-edge processes that became the norm in modern cinema. What’s more, though some may complain that they contain childish elements, Lucas clearly intended to gear them towards a family audience, so that’s almost a moot point. In contrast, he still managed to thread some mature concepts and themes into the story, too.
The breadth of responses to Malthouse’s original message show that the prequels do have a lot of fans nowadays. Just like how, while there are those who just didn’t take to Episode VIII, Star Wars: The Last Jedi also has many champions who view it as a work of underrated genius. The debate on the relative merits of either of these topics isn’t going to go away anytime soon, but that’s ok as long as things stay civil and fans appreciate the plusses and negatives of these movies.