March 3rd, 2012

Party Like It's 1999

I had promised Skylar that we would go see a movie last night, as a mutual reward for our having made it through a whole school week with her mother out of town. There were many acceptable options at our disposal, including serious films that were up for Oscars and the latest tween-friendly fare. I was surprised when she insisted that it had to be The Phantom Menace or nothing and even more surprised when she immersed herself in that picture with total abandon.

Mind you, she did have a fixation on Revenge of the Sith when it came out. But that was a long time ago and she is now at an age when I thought the boyishness of the Star Wars series might put her off. On the contrary, she seemed enthralled by the very scenes that captivated my inner ten-year-old and, indeed, identified as strongly with Anakin's character as with the obvious choice of Padmé Amidala.

It may be the case that her recent forays into the world of fan fiction, capped off with an essay for her Literature class on a non-fiction study of the subject, sufficiently interested her in the underlying structure of the Star Wars universe that she was able to see The Phantom Menace in an especially positive light. Or perhaps her experiences with jujitsu and learning to jump horses, together with her teenage attitude, conspired to activate the side of her that has favored tales of epic struggle since her pre-school days.

Either way, she had a great time. And that made me able to enjoy myself to an unusual degree, even though I was tripping out on the fact that my only previous viewing of the film was with her mother and her when she was a baby at the Sony Metreon in San Francisco. I mean, the pod race has to be one of the best chase scenes ever filled, so that was bound to thrill me in 3D. But with all the negative press the film has gotten over the years, it was nice to be able to appreciate its strengths -- great costumes and even better looking cityscapes -- rather than focus on its weaknesses.