Empire Minute 109: Robots Can Be Funny

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Date

June 12th, 2014

Summary

Sparks fly as they duel, Vader gradually forcing Luke backward toward the gantry.

Guests

John Skrzypek

Notes

Film

  • Starts with Leia and Lando retreating into the Falcon and ends with Luke retreating down the gantry.
  • Lando shoots a blaster but no laser bolts come out - there is no visual element.

Podcast

  • More droid comedy in this minute. Robots can be funny. Other droid comedy movies.
  • Another shot of the Falcon's landing gear. Is there more landing gear this time?
  • Bombastic music as the Falcon takes off.
  • Switch to the weird vein / bubble room in the middle of Cloud City. Cloud City's layout:
    • There's the big "up and down" tube that the bubble room is in.
    • Then there's a promontory that sticks out with a fin-shaped building that contains the reactor control room.
    • The lighted tunnel leads to the fin-shaped building.
    • (Alex being told as a kid that the lighted tube spins around in the movie. John loves tubes but does NOT like spinning tubes - they're too much.)
    • Luke gets thrown out the window of the control room and you can see the window is this long shot. Its the little circle on the side of the fin-shaped building.
    • This is the first time that the hosts have ever noticed the window.
    • Luke falls a long way out and down but the fin-shaped building is like a conning tower on a submarine.
    • Luke then climbs back into the Bespin control room.
    • (John would be so fatigued at this point that he would have just surrendered to Vader. By this point Alex would be in a slab of carbonite and Pete would still be back on Dagobah.)
  • Vader seems to hold his breath back in the control room.
  • The platform that Luke fell on to is not that far away; Vader should have pursued him down the ramp.
  • Is Luke trying to find Vader or trying to escape?
  • This is a great fight plan by Vader - there is only one safe way in or out of the building.
  • Vader is not holding back now - he is wailing away at Luke.
  • No music in this second part of the battle.
  • The aerial point-of-view is a classic nautical action movie camera shot.
  • The hosts don't know many nautical terms.
  • There is a lot of lightsaber swinging on a very narrow and fragile looking gantry - although there are safety railings out there. They should be more careful with their lightsabers.
  • Could they use their Force powers to save themselves if the gantry fell? Alex says that Yoda could jump to safety but Luke and Vader could not.
  • Does Anakin still think that he is the chosen one? Yes - Anakin did bring balance to the Force by making sure that there were two of each.
  • What "bringing balance to the Force" actually means.
  • Ben Burtt sound design and spectrum really adds to the drama of this scene.
  • How Ben Burtt and John Williams collaborated in the movies.
 John's Star Wars memories:
 He was born in a tube (most of us were).
 Had some Star Wars toys - are we allowed to talk about toys?
 Han Solo's blaster was his favorite.
 John was always Han Solo when he played Star Wars.
 He thought Luke was kinda whiny.
 This is from when toy guns were allowed to be all black in color.
 The blaster made a proper laser sound.
 Where is the blaster? It must be at his parent's house.
 John grew up on Long Island and often went to a toy store called "Child World".
 Child World went out of business and one day they were driving by and there was clearance sale in the parking lot.
 50-70% off toys.
 John got the four-storey Death Star for like a $1.
 John does faintly remember seeing Star Wars when he was 2-years old.
 Empire was a VHS classic that he watched hundreds of times.

Meta Minute

  • 19:12 podcast episode length.
  • At around the 11:00 mark of the podcast episode John mentions that the hosts have to go on a cruise to learn the relevant nautical terms. The hosts did in fact go on a cruise in January 2017 - however it is not clear how many nautical terms they actually learned.

Quotes

  • John: And I'm John from episodes 106 through 108 of Star Wars Minute.
  • Pete: Give a boxer a droid and he eats for a lifetime.
  • Pete: Always with the tubes, this one.

Link

http://www.starwarsminute.com/2014/06/12/empire-minute-109-robots-can-be-funny/


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