Star Wars Prequels: A Good Foundation for the New Trilogy

I’ve never had a spot on the anti-Star Wars prequels bandwagon.  When The Phantom Menace came out in 1999, I was 14 and a huge Star Wars fan.  I was too young at the time to go to a midnight showing, so I had to wait all day to see the film that evening, and I could not sit still.  By the time the 20th Century Fox fanfare started playing, I was in tears, and stayed that way through most of the film.  I remember everyone in the theater enjoying it immensely, laughing and cheering throughout, and I saw it again two days later.  Needless to say, I’m a Star Wars fanboy, and while my 28 viewings of the Star Wars saga films in the theater are not anything close to a record, it’s safe to say that I was in no way disappointed by the prequels.

With the announcement that Disney and Lucasfilm will be making (at minimum) Episodes VII-IX, many people have found themselves revisiting that last Star Wars films that were released, giving the internet new justification for one of its favorite pastimes: prequel bashing.  Many of these have been presented as “Lessons J.J. Abrams Can Learn from the Prequels” containing a list of grievances against the film.  IGN recently featured an article of this type, and I want to address some of its complaints.  I’m going to do my best to set aside my fanboyism because I truly feel that Episodes I-III are great films, and have been unfairly maligned in the last 14 years.
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