Friday, November 27, 2015

Are you threatening me, Master Jedi?

Probably my favorite line in Star Wars. The entire scene immediately prior to the duel between Palpatine and Windu is chilling when you re-watch, knowing more about the lore. After not knowing what the dark side threat had been for all that time, those few Jedi masters went to confront Palpatine by themselves - and likely felt that they had the situation under control. The way Sidious delivers his lines is truly intimidating, and as he slowly rises and reveals his saber he looks calm and in control. He turns his saber on, pointing towards the ground, and just slowly raises it... and you can tell at that moment that even though he has had very few opportunities to use it, he's handling the weapon with an familiar ease and comfortability that shows just how deadly he is with it. There has been at least one instance where I watched Ep III again simply because I wanted to watch him raise his saber in that scene.

And of course, this is all punctuated by the sudden leap and screech that probably causes the Jedi to realize what an incredible mistake they made in confronting him directly. I just wanted to share my thoughts on what I feel was a very powerful scene - not the duel, but the moments right before it. Throughout the films, Palpatine is a calculating and slippery foe who avoids placing himself at risk and plays others like twisted chess pieces. This scene represents the only time that he sets himself as the pivotal point in his plans; there is no backup plan for losing the duel. Palpatine and Windu both exude confidence, but only Palpatine knows who should truly be afraid. He stands and faces four Jedi Masters alone, and kills them without hesitating or even acknowledging them as a threat. I think that is the most badass thing a character has done in any of the movies, both from a conceptual and an applied point of view.


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