Star Wars Revenge of the SithBatman Begins

Star Wars - Batman Begins

Blazing Jedi

Are Batman and Vader twins separated at birth, or worse? I am Darth's raging doppelganger envy. This and other mysteries herein revealed.

::: The Hang’d Man

It starts—as so many adventures do—in the joss-scented warmth of a local hemp shop, abundant with legal tobacco-smoking accessories made in China. A hemp shop like you’d find in any American town. Our feckless Hero is Tad Breezy, an unemployed housepainter. He browses innocently over the wares. The doorbell chimes. In a silent moment Tad is accosted by a tall stranger dressed (duh) all in black, polka music blaring from earphones dangling at his shoulders.

“Blue Flower?” queries the dark man. Pause. ”This shit’ll fuck you up, friend.” His voice a deep soothing lilt, not Scottish . . . ? With these words the stranger vanishes as one often sees in the movies. The camera goes in close to ”Blue Flower in Tad’s hand” only to cut away with the stranger silently, mysteriously gone.

Back at home (mom’s and dad’s basement or over a kindly old lady’s garage) Tad throws wide his windows. From beneath his lonely cot he draws a mangy tote bag and from within the bag a gleaming hand-blown bong.

“Ex-cali-bong.” He is hushed and reverent as he crushes the petals of the Blue Flower and blazes a fourth-level mondo-gagger. Bold is he. It is the boldness of boredom. Broke and on the dole. Ain’t been laid in six months and prospects are thinning. Anything to get high.

And now, reader, we cut to the famous chase. You see, our hero, more than anything, loves the movies. Who, indeed, does not?

Comes a voice in the haze: What do you ask of the Blue Flower?

Tad Breezy: Are You God?

The Voice: No, you moron. Godard. Although I don’t mind the diminutive. Is that all?

TB: (taking a thoughtful moment to think of his next question, correctly sensing that his host may grow testy) Why, O Godard, do the last three Star Wars movies suck so much?

GD: Which three do you mean? Technically all six are the last three, n’est-ce pas?

TB: Huh?

GD: Every story has a beginning, a middle, and an end, but not necessarily in that order.

TB: Am I supposed to understand what that means?

GD: You possess the answer to your own question. Employer la force . . .

Breezy comes to over a time lapse sequence. He has been out longer than Gance’s Napoleon (fully restored version). Galvanized by his vision, a terse exegesis is born, and the second-most tantalizing mystery of the cinema is unraveled at last—and that right soon!

  1. The originally filmed episodes of Star Wars were driven by a wide contingent of human characters. Characters, good or evil, that a movie-goer could care about. The alien life forms, the storm troopers, Jabba and his monkey, the Satanic little sand munchkins, really right down to the last extra—everyone on screen is endowed with humanity. This changes in the later episodes, where the cast of thousands and, most pointedly, almost all of the bad guys have become flat and inhuman or altogether robotic.
  2. The later-filmed episodes also erase humanity from the mystical-magical Force. As discovered in the first-filmed episodes, the Force is a spiritual energy channeled by a concentration of intention and is thus accessible to anyone. But with the appearance of young Anakin in Episode One we learn that the Force is really a compound in the blood. The Force is in the blood!
  3. This leads to an inescapable conclusion. The Jedi are Nazis. The Jedi seek to breed a pure source of the Force and unite the world under a single bloodline. A single law. A Reich, if you will. In this light the dehumanization of characters in the latter films is clear. For the plans of the Jedi to work, their enemy must be depicted, by means of a grand propaganda, as inhuman and pure evil. 
  4. And just as the archetypal movie bad guy gives away the key to foil his plot, Revenge of the Sith can’t help but sell out its own vision. As the moviecloses, Yoda winks to Obi Wan that he may commune with the slain Jedi Master Qui-Gon Jinn, who has found the secret of immortality. The reader is urged to remember that the Star Wars series is a story of the distant past and invited with glee to shell out $11.95 to see Jinn’s reincarnation here and now as Ra’s Al Ghul in Batman Begins. Continuing in the Jedi tradition, Al Ghul’s League of Shadows seeks to find The One and manipulate The World Order. And in the spirit of karma, Jinn/Al Ghul again finds his downfall in an emotionally damaged perpetual mourner. That’s right . . .
  5. Batman and Vader are One. Try the following recipe: take a tender, marginal tween-age boy, kill off his parents, and marinade in an alienated youth of international or inter-planetary education. Throughout, sprinkle fresh reminders of the life of burden and duty that awaits. It is important the kiddy have no fun at all. A savory social confusion is catalyzed by the boy’s best friend and the only one who really understands him; a grinning, lascivious and much older man—call him Alfred, Lord Sidious—always in the wings to lend a hand. Finally, toss and dress him in a natty black helmet, black cape, black booties, and all-purpose utility belt. Smells like guano. Tastes even better. Vaderations in the final dish show just how thoroughly a perfectly good cut of meat can be twisted into a dark proportion.

Tad Breezy had enjoyed a voluptuous psychotropic epiphany. Not one to squander a free shamanic trip, he fumbled again for his bong and put a holy huff onto the resin and stem remaining in the now cool Pyrex bowl. This time he was blasted for the entire length of Berlin Alexanderplatz (director’s cut). We cannot tell of the volatile material—which divulges the secret to cinema’s number one mystery (yes, yes it is 2001: A Space Odyssey,already)—revealed to Tad on this fantastic trip. Truth is, you probably wouldn’t get it anyway, unless you are a Greek comedian. Nonetheless we relate this enticing snippet to tie up our story . . .

GD: So, you are satisfied by your final solution to the Star Wars question?

TB: Well, I suppose I am not so apt to say the latter three suck as much as all six are evil.

GD: Evil to him that thinks evil of it.

TB: Wha?

GD: An old French proverb. Let me ask you this, Tad, as you’ve sorted it all out. What would you do, in poor Batman’s boots, at the end of Batman Begins? Would you let Al Ghul die? Or, to put it into your own terms, Tad, would you let a Nazi die or save him? Would you let Hitler die, Tad, or save him if you could?

TB: I dunno. Does he have any weed? :::

The Hang’d Man last wrote for Metaphilm on The Wizard of Oz.

Posted by: editor on Jun 27, 2005 | 12:14 am

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