The People vs George Lucas (2010) Directed by Alexandre O. Philippe.
That this film exists is testament alone to the influence that film-maker George Lucas has had in the thirty-five years since the release of Star Wars. The aim of this documentary is to study the relationship between fans of Star Wars and it’s creator in the most microscopic of detail.
Combining footage of fan-made films from YouTube with interviews with everyone from comedians to the man himself, Alexandre O. Philippe’s film barely pauses for breath as it takes us through an auditory onslaught of everything that’s right and wrong with Star Wars and goes some way to trying to explain why those prequel films ended up being as bad as they were. In many ways, this is a love story and like any good love story, there’s trouble a good deal and strife along the way.
For anyone that bought into Star Wars in the late 70’s and early 80’s and followed that interest right though to the late 90’s and the release of ‘The Phantom Menace’, this film was made for you. No altered pixel is left unexamined as O. Philippe studies and compares everything from the cinematic abomination that was Jar-Jar Binks, to the constant tinkering and updating by Lucas on his classic and much loved original trilogy.
What’s ultimately most pleasing though is that this is never a witch hunt. There’s as much room for praise for Lucas as there is for anger and frustration towards him. Whatever your opinion of the man, there’s no denying how far and wide his influence has spread and what’s interesting is how well it continues to thrive and expand despite how many feel about the quality of his more recent output. Alexandre O. Philippe’s film succeeds because doesn’t just point the finger at Lucas, it also turns a mirror on the people that built him up to be the business magnate that he is today. It’s a clever documentary and deserves credit for it’s balance and fairness. 4.5/5