2019 saw the finales of two long-running and beloved sagas, and unfortunately for both of them, fans had a very mixed reaction to those finales. The first was Game of Thrones, which ended its eighth season run to disappointing reviews from critics and audiences. Then, later in the year, the Star Wars Skywalker Saga, as it’s called, ended with The Rise of Skywalker, and that also had a disappointing reception from both audiences and critics.
It’s very hard to stick the landing with something like this, but that hasn’t stopped fans from dreaming of something more. Here’s a look at the Darth Maul fan-film that some Star Wars fans say is better than the sequels.
Making the best of the ‘Star Wars’ prequels
As the creators wrote in the description of the fan-film, they were inspired to make this fan-film because of how much they didn’t like the prequel trilogy, which was the first three episodes plot-wise in the Skywalker Saga. The creators weren’t happy with how little screen time that Darth Maul got in the prequels, so they created this fan-film to fix that.
This fan-film took them two years to make, and while Darth Maul doesn’t say a single line at all, it was an effective choice. In The Phantom Menace, Darth Maul was portrayed in a similar way. Instead of showing him talking, the creators of the fan-film chose to just show him doing cool stuff with his lightsaber, which is ultimately one of the reasons why fans love Darth Maul as a character so much.
Better than the ‘Star Wars’ sequels?
The first sequel movie, The Force Awakens, generally had positive reviews from both critics and audiences alike. That said, opinions started to diverge with The Last Jedi, which, while praised by critics, divided fans’ opinions. That’s pretty evident when checking Rotten Tomatoes. Funny enough, in the last sequel movie, The Rise of Skywalker, fans and critics seemed to agree again since most people didn’t think it was that good of a movie.
As a result of these sentiments, some Star Wars fans have even gone so far as to say that this Darth Maul fan-film was better than the sequels. As one user wrote in the YouTube comments, “I’m not saying this is better than Disney, but this is better than Disney.” Obviously, the Star Wars fan base is one of the largest fan bases in the world, so there’s a lot of diversity in opinions. That said, this opinion about the sequels isn’t rare, and it isn’t unjustified either.
Why people don’t like the sequels
Setting aside the racist and misogynistic views that a few fans have, the sequels were ultimately a problematic production that created a lot of issues down the line. J.J. Abrams directed and co-wrote the first sequel movie, and the idea was that the directors for the other two movies in the trilogy would take Abrams’ ideas and do their own thing with them.
However, this disjointed structure where multiple directors had their hands in the trilogy ultimately led to wild shifts and changes that made fans dislike the finale. For example, Abrams was not supposed to direct the finale, but after the original director, Colin Trevorrow, left the project, Disney decided to hire Abrams for the job.
But, due to this disorganized structure, many of the things that director and writer Rian Johnson did in The Last Jedi was undone in the next movie. This sort of thing may never have happened if Disney had set out and wrote the three movies ahead of time so that everything was cohesive. Instead, by going with that looser structure, the final products just ended up disappointing fans in ways that they didn’t know they could be disappointed in.