I'm still trying to figure out what happened to George's directing chops between 1976 and 1997 when Episode I cameras began rolling. The guy got pretty terrific performances out of the casts of the original movie as well as American Graffiti,
then by the time the prequels rolled around a little over two decades later it seems the man forgot almost everything he knew about crafting likable, exciting characters that the audience could relate to.
Compare Richard Dreyfuss in 1973 to Liam Neeson in 1997 or Natalie Portman in 2003. It's almost as if two completely different men were directing those movies but....nope. Same dude in button-up shirts and flannel.