Because I am truly a child of my generation, we went to the midnight show of Revenge of the Sith, even though I'd been seriously disappointed in Phantom Menace & Attack of the Clones. We got there kind of late, around 10:15, at which point most of the seats were already filled -- some people had been there since 3:00. But we got center of the back row, which gave us an unobstructed view.

There were far fewer people in costume this time around -- some sabre fighting in the lobby, but the theatrics were pretty muted. We're all getting a little older I guess. A guy three rows up from us had a baby in a Star Wars onesie on his lap.

Although it's no Empire (what could be), I did enjoy the movie. I liked it far, far better than Phantom or Clones. The racist overtones of the first are mostly gone (though it's a very white future) and the obscure political shenanigans of the second are simplified as the Senator becomes Emperor. There are some really painful clunkers in the dialogue (especially between Anakin and Padme) but R2 and Yoda both get to kick butt. And the Wookie planet is cool too. Visually, there's some amazing stuff in the film -- though Lucas gets awfully carried away with filling in extra droids and life forms and meteors in the background, to the point where it is sometimes distracting from the main action.

You know of course what's going to happen -- and the last 20 minutes of the film are well worth the wait. But the problem of this whole first prequel trilogy is that for the evil character to be interesting and compelling (like Milton's Satan) he has to be complicated -- and the good guys have to be sort of dull. If you grew up on the original trilogy, there's no complication in Darth Vader, no little bit of good. And Obi-Wan Kenobi does some pretty awesome things in the original film (IV). The young Anakin in this prequel trilogy is whiny and arrogant, and Revenge doesn't do a lot to change that. And rather than the Jedis being prissy-good or dull, they're well-meaning and either super competent (Yoda) or sort of bumbling (young Obi-Wan). The tension just isn't really there. Add to that the killer of all romantic tension -- marriage and pregnancy-- and you can see why there are 10 zillion fight scenes in this movie.

Padme ain't no Princess Leia. The poor girl doesn't get to do much of anything in this movie except brush her Pre-Raphaelite hair and worry about her man. And look out for this painting towards the end (with perhaps a dash of the Lady of Shalott mixed in for good measure).

I'll have to see it again to really have a full evaluation. But the experience of another midnight first showing was a lot of fun. Star Wars was such an important part of my life that I can't help but respond when that music plays and words scroll across the screen.