Brain poot: the PT shoulda been black-and-white

Discussion in 'Science Fiction & Fantasy' started by Gaith, Jan 22, 2010.

  1. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    Why on Earth should the Star Wars prequels have been in black and white, you ask? Well, here's a few reasons...


    1. The visuals/tech would have better blended with the OT. Even the most restrained modern filmmaker would have had a hard time not making the tech in the PT look more advanced than that of the OT. And GL is hardly that most restrained filmmaker. But the primitive aura of b&w could have helped keep the OT and its seventies haircuts looking fresh.

    2. The ANH beginning would remain spectacular. A b&w trilogy would also preserve the "wow" moment of ANH's first shot. In-universe linear viewing would have shown ships and space battles up to that point, but never in color.

    3. It could allow for more violence. GL obviously invented those hideously lame battle droids to avoid having the noble Jedi carving up living beings right and left. But if it'd all been b&w, that wouldn't have been nearly as gory or shocking. See: the b&w portion of the dojo fight in Kill Bill 1.

    4. It would have been educational. Too many younguns these days turn their noses up at b&w. Heck, even I did back in the day. This would have compelled them to see and enjoy b&w films from an early age.

    5. It could have encouraged more focus on story, dialogue, etc. How many hundreds of hours were spent on choosing the various colors of the trilogy? Hours that could have been used coming up with decent scripts. Less color-filled eye candy to show off could have forced GL to craft the best possible film, not special-effects showcase.

    6. It would have been better suited to the dark tale generally. B&w film can have a nightmarish quality to it (Psycho, The White Ribbon, the dvd version of The Mist). Anakin's tragic fall to evil would have been well served by the format.


    Sure, there would have been downsides. The art direction, (along with John Williams' work) is the only truly exceptional aspect of the trilogy, and much of its flavor (and thus merchandising potential) would have been lost in grayscale. (Padme's rainbow dress...:techman:) And while the PT we got hardly fits in visually with the OT, it would still have been odd for the universe to suddenly develop color halfway through. Finally, so long as we're dreaming, we could just say the PT should have had better stories, scripts, etc. and leave it at that.

    Still, for the above reasons, I think a well-done PT might have been truly awesome. It would certainly have been a bold and thought-provoking move...
     
  2. Mr Light

    Mr Light Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Dec 7, 1999
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I think taking away the colors would really have ruined the visual beauty of the PT.
     
  3. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Location:
    I said out, dammit!
    I'm officially adding "brain poot" to my lexicon. :lol:
     
  4. Nardpuncher

    Nardpuncher Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2003
    Location:
    Taipei
    What does brain poot mean?

    If it means taking a crazy idea to fix something that had much much bigger problems then I guess I know.
     
  5. 23skidoo

    23skidoo Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2002
    Location:
    Fifth Circle of Hell
    And, frankly, that's all it had.

    I will agree with Point #4 though. For the sake of the future preservation of decades of movies made in Black and White, we need to get more of the young generation to understand they deserve to be not only watched, but preserved. (I'm expecting the colorization debate to return soon, around the same time someone pushes for 3-D versions of Citizen Kane and Casablanca).

    Alex
     
  6. sojourner

    sojourner Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2008
    Location:
    A Long Time Ago...
    If it were black and white how would you tell the good lightsabres from the bad ones?;)
     
  7. O'Dib

    O'Dib Commodore Commodore

    Joined:
    May 14, 2005
    Location:
    Mr. Brody's still
    Oooh, black, white and red!
     
  8. Forbin

    Forbin Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Location:
    I said out, dammit!
    A nun slitting her wrists?
     
  9. 137th Gebirg

    137th Gebirg Vice Admiral Premium Member

    Joined:
    Aug 31, 2000
    Location:
    Who is John Galt?
    Sideous' List? Nah. Doesn't have the same ring to it. :evil:
     
  10. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    The same way Gramps and Granny told the good swords from the bad ones in old swashbuckling movies! :p
     
  11. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ireland.
    Doubt it. Even in black and white ratings are ratings, no? The key to more violence is robots like the droids, which Lucas could brutally savagely cut to pieces and get away with even in his current cartoon.

    False dichotomy that. They had plenty of time to write good scripts, they just didn't. And lots of time would be needed for the visuals of a B&W film - it'd be eye-candy spectacle just as much in greyscale really.
    Seriously people go see The White Ribbon while you can. Git!

    Well done, yes. Black and white? We can find the answer to that pretty much by watching the movies in greyscale. Sure they might have lit it differently to better suit black and white but I don't think any other changes necessarily would have happened (though now I'm tempted to watch the movies in black and white and see what I think, really.)

    Bingo.
    Just bring back classic films that did use 3-D. Like Hitchcock's Dial M for Murder. Not the best example maybe because it's a converted stage play and this feels painfully obvious (not really Avatar spectacle) but I'd like to see it.
     
  12. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    Tarantino got away with more violence (the film was re-rated R instead of NC-17) in Kill Bill Vol. 1 by converting a sequence from color into black and white. So there's actually some logic to that thought.
     
  13. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ireland.
    Oh. Well, colour me stupid, I had no idea about that.
     
  14. Harvey

    Harvey Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2005
    Location:
    Los Angeles, California
    Color the MPAA stupid, maybe. I have no idea why black and white is considered less violent than color. It makes about as much sense as, well, honestly, everything else the MPAA does...
     
  15. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ireland.
    Well, that's what I thought - any censorship system would be rigorously logical about the level of violence, whether you're black and white, sepia, technicolour, psychedelically shifting colours, or regular toned. Cartoons maybe might have more leinency but that's different. That's how I'd run it, which probably says more about me than anything else. I don't suppose black and white gets away with more nudity too? (Doubt that...)
     
  16. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    ^^ It's a question of gore. Oddly enough, I'm with the MPAA on this one. Grayscale blood is much less realistic, and therefore a good deal less disturbing, then full-color blood.

    Disagree. Yes, the lighting would be different, but so would the shots, very possibly the editing, quite likely the look of the whole thing; indeed, the whole aesthetic would be different. See, for instance, the shot in Notorious featured at 7:48 of this Siskel and Ebert clip. If they'd been shooting that in color, the bit with the shadows probably wouldn't have occurred to them to shoot. Ergo, setting your computer monitor to b&w doesn't achieve the same effect.

    That said, if you do give that a try, let us know how it goes! :)
     
  17. Kegg

    Kegg Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2009
    Location:
    Ireland.
    Funny you should say that. The Clone Wars did Notorious, and the final scene is the scene from that movie beat for beat for beat that crosses the line from homage to lawsuit worthy probably.

    I know. That's why I said the lighting would be different. That's the only thing I'd be certain that would change. Doesn't mean better scripts or different SFX, just different lighting.

    Sure! I might put up a 'best of' sampling on youtube, where it can go as unwatched as my incomprehensibly boring handful of audio/visual pieces.
     
  18. RoJoHen

    RoJoHen Awesome Premium Member

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2000
    Location:
    QC, IL, USA
    Star Wars meets Sin City. Or 300. Not sure which would be worse.
     
  19. Gaith

    Gaith Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    No knock on Sin City, but it isn't b&w, it's a color/third way, and one that wouldn't work too well outside youtube mashups. A b&w PT would have to be all grayscale or nothing.
     
  20. Temis the Vorta

    Temis the Vorta Fleet Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 1999
    Location:
    Tatoinne
    The stunning visuals and John Williams' music are the ONLY good things about the PT and you want to take one of them away? Fie! I say, fie upon you! :rommie: