Mathematically it works like this, take any actor/actress’s innate acting ability and call this “a.”
To determine how well an actor will do in a given role you then multiply “a” by quality of script “s” and quality of direction “d” given the formula: (a)(s)(d) = quality of performance.
Collectively “s” and “d” can be reduced, in Lucas’s case, to the Lucas factor “L.” So for Episode III we have this:
(Innate quality of actor) times (Lucas factor) = Episode III performance <<<<<< (Innate quality of actor) or, (a)(L) = EIII <<< a
Lucas just can’t write, Lucas just can’t direct.
Hayden Christenson just can’t act, he can’t even mimic acting. He was the anti-actor, what he did was so far opposite acting had anyone in the movie acted well and ended up touching Christenson they would have destroyed each other in a flash of gamma rays expanding perpendicular to the velocity of the origional anit-actor and actor vectors. Thank goodness for Portman that she couldn’t act either, otherwise those painfully portrayed “hugging” scenes would have been deadly for both her and Christenson and Lucas.
I should state outright that Ep. III is the best of the new trilogy, but how could it not be? Two hours of a little dog running around in circles would be better than Ep. I and Ep. II. But Episode III is seriously flawed. First off, does every Jedi HAVE to do flips? Is that some inherent essence of being a Jedi/Sith is being able to do a flip in the air with your lightsaber? I think it must be because EVERYBODY does flips. This seems to be an Ep III phenomenon. I don’t remember all this flipping in Episode I or II, and certainly not in the later movies.
My next beef is with the Jedi Council. They are so stupid. Lucas has a real problem because he portrays the Jedi as both immensely wise and also intensely stupid. The Council could not even see the most basic of traps, the most rudimentary of double crosses, and the most easily guessable guises. But then we are still suppose to believe they are the galaxy elite. Perhaps if the galaxy is filled with George Lucas’s, this would be the case. Also the fact that all the council was taken out by regular Storm Troopers is shockingly pathetic. So apparently, a battleship with the power to destroy entire planets is insignificant to the power of the Force, but the Force is insignificant compared to the power of 3 Clone Troopers standing behind you with riffles. This was big time lame. One more of my many complaints, why are we subjected to battles that we already know the outcome of? Obi vs. General Grievous (don’t get me started on the names), gee I wonder who will win? Yoda vs. The Emperor, again this was a real nail bitter, who would win? Who would die and not be seen in subsequent movies? The prequels offered nothing to the mythos of Star Wars. There were no unique characters, there were no surprises, there was no spark of imagination. Lucas has lost it.
Also what was up with Darth Vader’s voice? I understand that James Earl Jones doesn’t want his name attached to this steaming pile, but could Lucas have gotten someone that at least sounded REMOTELY like James Earl Jones? There are distant and timeless tribes in the Amazon Basis untouched by Western Culture that can produce a better James Earl Jones/Darth Vader voice than whoever they cast to do this Vader.
The action sequences were great. I saw dialog as something to get the audience mad so they get pumped up hard in time for the next action sequence. If you go to EpIII thinking, “Action movie” you will be happy, but Star Wars is so much more than action sequences. At least I think it is. Now I am afraid. I am afraid Star Wars exists in some kind of idealized state in the back of my hazy memories. It is like that time in college when Dave downloaded a He-man episode and I realized how HORRIBLE that show was despite remembering it was awesome. Is Star Wars a similar case? I just don’t know! I am scared to watch the original trilogy now. I am afraid that Lucas has always been this horrible overrated hack, but I just didn’t know any better back then. What if, as some critics have said, Episode III is the second best Star Wars movie? Doesn’t that scare anyone but me? Doesn’t that make you loose sleep, or wake up screaming? Am I the only one that fears the limitations of memory and the effects of nostalgia? What if Revenge of the Sith is better than A New Hope and Return of the Jedi? What would become of my worldview then?
All in all Episode III was a decent first draft of a movie.