Words finally fail: the silent shot reverse shot in Revenge of the Sith

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Revenge of the Sith (2005)
Dir. George Lucas

After 2.75 whole movies Lucas has this bit where things are left unspoken, and it stands out in silent elegance with Anakin and Padme looking at the thought of each other for they are spatially removed, alone in their sad doomed skulls with the city lights below, and the edits slice rather than stitch, so everything comes undone in slow-motion. Revenge of the Sith retroactively affirms the leadup episodes’ jarring weirdness as decisive idiosyncracy for unearthly tragedy, The Phantom Menace in particular by this stage feels like a memory that can’t be real because you don’t remember the sky ever being so blue. There was something there at some point that we thought we could hold onto, it’s just we can’t find it now we’re thinking about it.

It really has to be felt, the way this film makes you feel like you’re up to your waist in the coldest quicksand, sinking fast and sinking more forever. Tragic and full of corrupted emotions, so ends one of the great trilogies in fiction.

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