“Sith” isn’t the best time I’ve ever had at the movies, but I enjoyed myself quite a lot. If that’s the right word for it: as many early reviews and a minimal knowledge of the timeline of the Star Wars universe might suggest, it’s actually a pretty dark film in places. I saw someone saying that they’d take any child to see it who had also been comfortable with Return of the King. No way. The violence in ROTK is too intense in many places for a very young child, but this is something completely different. It’s not just specific scary bits, but an entire story about how the good guys lose.
On the Star Wars charts, I’d actually rate it right under “Empire” and “New Hope” in terms of the overall satisfactions it delivers. As many early reviews have noted, it’s got some absolutely cringe-worthy dialogue in the middle, and the romantic material is toxic. I was actually wincing in pain at how bad it is in places. That’s the “Ewok” of this film, the element that really drags it down, but the romance doesn’t get as much screen time as those little hairballs did. The plot also creaks and groans in a few parts in terms of the effort necessary to get all the players into the proper locations for the grand finale, but the pay-off is big. Some of it really feels right in terms of those images you had in your head way back in 1977 when you tried to imagine the backstory of these characters.
There’s still a few geeky loose ends that I’m puzzling over, but nothing that the creative labors of continuity freaks couldn’t sort out reasonably easily. I’ll leave those for a week or two. But if you’re at all interested in this film, I’d say yes, yes, it’s worth seeing, and worth seeing reasonably soon. I don’t think it will disappoint anyone who likes “Star Wars”, though it won’t redeem “Star Wars” for those who have never liked it.