I met my buddy Pat in the early 90’s when I was a sophomore in high school. He was a ‘Nam vet, living in a dilapidated old apartment in a crummy small-town on Florida’s west coast. The units were pretty run down, with cars, young bare-footed ill-watched children running about, and the various kind of yard detritus one might suspect. I guess he’d taken a shine to me because I was intrigued by him working on various cars, boats, and the fact that he’d sneak my 16 year old self beers, just to have someone to chat with.
Also, Pat was in the midst of a nasty divorce. Sometimes these things happen when you decide to cohabitate with a cocktail waitress 20 years your younger, but such is life. She’d taken him for nearly everything (which wasn’t much to begin with), leaving Pat almost completely broken hearted. Almost…because she left him Moose, a white poodle-ish dog of questionable lineage. Moose was great, Pat would take him to bars, dye him green for St. Patrick’s Day, and they were always inseparable. If Pat was working on a derelict boat while sucking down a Parliament and mainlining Busch Light in the 90 degree heat, Moose was right there with him, all day long.
About 3 months after the divorce, Pat’s ex called, demanding the return of a beloved childhood stuffed animal, a small unicorn. Evidently, her father had given it to her, he’d recently passed, and she realized it was the only remaining item she’d forgotten to abscond with. I’m sitting there witnessing the phone conversation, wondering what the hell she’s b*tching about, when Pat closes the call with “Fine you worthless whore, I’m going out of town but will be back in a month, you can collect your f*cking unicorn then.” Slam. Pat looked at me and a devilish smile crossed his crocked teeth.
After explaining the call, he leaves the kitchen to fish through some dusty closet boxes and retrieves the plushy unicorn. “MOOSE!” he calls, and Moose comes running, per command. Eyes wide and tail-wagging, Moose sits and awaits master’s command. “Moose, here’s your unicorn!” and Pat tosses it down to the runt dog, who eyes it for a moment. It may be fair to mention at this point that Moose is not neutered. He then proceeds to doggy f*ck the ever living hell out of that unicorn like the antidote was lodged somewhere in its fluffy soul.
Word travels fast in shitty communities and soon “Moose, go get your unicorn!” was the favored saying. Damn near everyone would pass by and mutter those words, only to have the poodle run inside, get the stuffed love toy, and proceed to befoul that thing like nobody’s business.
A month passes and poor Unicorn was looking haggard, missing an eye, and all dignity. B*tch Cocktail Waitress finally pulls up one muggy Florida day in her Chevy Celebrity to collect her prized possession. After some unpleasant words exchanged, she demands her Unicorn.
A small crowd had gathered and Pat’s moment had arrived. Finally, after losing everything, it was time to mutter the sweetest words of redemption I’d ever previously, or ever will hear again:
Seriously though, this could be the best of these prequels, actually.
If only because it does have some legit gravitas added to the story and the characters. It doesn’t matter if the dialogue is almost transparent, because this allows us to focus on some pretty harrowing visuals. The last segment feels like it’s something out of a nightmare, with that lava planet, those dark red tones, the destruction of the Jedi Temple, the birth of the Empire. It all feels right. It took two and a half movies to arrive, but it finally feels like Star Wars.
Needless to say there’s a few things that don’t work, like the brainless romance dialogue, and the chemistry between the characters is almost non-existent, not to mention the robotic way they deliver their lines, but these are small distractions that don’t ruin the final product…much.
With that said however, I think I’m done.
Don’t get me wrong, I still like Star Wars, but after the prequels I feel like I just got beat up with a toy light-saber for seven hours. It’s going to take a lot for me to regain my faith in this franchise.
Thank you all for following me during this intense marathon, and I hope you all enjoyed it.