There is a special place in film history inhabited by the Star Wars prequels. It was a time when CGI had advanced to a level deemed acceptable by George Lucas. It had been sixteen years since the last Star Wars film, and he was finally ready to share the first three episodes of the saga with fans. It was also an opportunity to influence a new generation of fans who would grow up with the internet and create countless memes inspired by clunky dialogue.
While the prequels were ridiculed by fans of the originals, loved by millennial kids, and met with confusion from new Star Wars fans, there is no doubt they provided some of the most quotable and goofiest lines in cinema history.
“Hello there!” “General Kenobi!” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
The release of Disney + ‘s Obi-Wan Kenobi has everyone feeling nostalgic, and this is arguably the Jedi Master’s most famous line. Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) arrives at Utapau, looking for General Grievous (the cyborg with a chronic cough), and surprises him with a polite greeting for someone he is about to fight.
The line has become the main way Star Wars fans greet each other, and of course, the only acceptable response to a “hello there” is “General Kenobi.” If you respond with anything other than this, the following words you will likely hear are “so uncivilized.”
“Power … unlimited power!” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
This one comes from Chancellor Palpatine, aka Darth Sidious (Ian McDiarmid), and is preceded by a heartfelt plea of ”please do not kill me, I’m too weak.” Ever the skilled actor, Palpatine suddenly regained strength and blasted Mace Windu with force lightning from his fingertips while yelling, “powerrrrr… UNLIMITED powerrrrr!”
This is one of many examples of George Lucas’s inability to be subtle. The dialogue literally describes what is going on in the scene and seems like a strange thing to say while frying someone with said unlimited power. It’s damn funny, though.
“I do not like sand … it’s rough, and of course, and irritating, and it gets everywhere.” – ‘Episode II: Attack of The Clones’ (2002)
This, dear fans, is Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) trying to be romantic. Picture a beautiful lakeside retreat with the mesmerizing Queen of Naboo by your side… and you start talking about sand. Anakin follows this up by assuring Padme (Natalie Portman) that she is not like sand but “everything soft and smooth.”
Cute or cringe? It’s definitely goofy but is one of Anakin’s better pick-up lines: even though serenading is not his strong suit, he does get the girl in the end. He just really hates sand.
“This is getting out of hand … now there are two of them!” – ‘Episode I: The Phantom Menace’ (1999)
The Neimoidians got the rough end of the deal in the prequel saga, and Nute Gunray started to realize this when on a galactic FaceTime with Darth Sidious and his then apprentice Darth Maul. Working with one Sith lord was always going to be a risk, but two? Is that legal?
Nute Gunray and Rune Haako were a formidable duo in the prequels, providing comic relief with their indeterminate accents and cowardly proclamations. Perhaps a contender for the second goofiest Neimoidian quote is, “She can not do that! Shoot her… or something.” Classic Nute.
“Hello, boyos!” – ‘Episode I: The Phantom Menace’ (1999)
Jar Jar Binks (Ahmed Best) is either a disaster or a masterpiece, depending on who you ask, but he has some pretty funny lines among his questionable dialogue. Walking into a chamber full of droids, the Gungan greets them with an enthusiastic “hello boyos!”
It’s cute, it’s silly, and “ex-squeeze me,” but it’s goofy. While some people wish they could erase Jar Jar from their collective memories, “yousa” better lay off him because he’s actually pretty loyal to Padme and co.
“Not to worry, we are still flying half a ship.” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
This is another Kenobi classic, aimed at Anakin just before the pair crash-land on Coruscant, returning from rescuing Chancellor Palpatine. The scene has it all – Anakin is trying to quell R2-D2’s panicked chittering, some faux looks of concern from Palpatine, and Obi-Wan is thinking up the next bit of sass to offer Anakin.
Never one to disappoint, Obi-Wan dubs their precarious crash “another happy landing.” You can not be sure if Anakin turned to the dark side because of Palpatine’s influence or because he was just fed up with Obi-Wan’s witty retorts.
“From my point of view, the Jedi are evil.” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
Anakin makes his opinions known in the middle of a lightsaber fight with Obi-Wan on the lava planet Mustafar. Obi-Wan exclaims: “Chancellor Palpatine is evil!” to which Anakin responds, “from my point of view, the Jedi are evil!” From my point of view?
Another classic example of clunky and obvious dialogue from George Lucas, Anakin’s rather measured response, is out of place amidst a battle of life and death. There are too many quotes in this scene alone that warrant a giggle, with “I have the high ground” coming in a close second.
“Now, this is podracing!” – ‘Episode I: The Phantom Menace ‘(1999)
Before Anakin Skywalker went off the deep end, he was a cute little kid who was freakishly good at piloting the craft. Way back in Episode I, fans witness young Ani’s skill for podracing. He then gets some real-life experience when he blatantly ignores Qui-Gon Jinn’s warnings to hide and instead commandeers a starship to join in the battle.
Young Ani had some real goofy lines, including “I’ll try spinning, that’s a good trick,” but this is probably the cutest and most memorable. And, of course, Anakin Skywalker became an exceptional pilot.
“Sith Lords are our specialty!” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
Another Obi-Wan classic uttered in reassurance to Chancellor Palpatine’s “you’re no match for him, he’s a Sith Lord,” referring to Count Dooku. Of course, the scene is also another classic Palpatine fake-out since he is also a Sith lord and Count Dooku is his apprentice.
This line is hilarious because out of everyone standing in the room, Obi-Wan is the only one who isn’t a Sith Lord or does not become one. Perhaps they were not his specialty after all.
“This is where the fun begins.” – ‘Episode III: Revenge of The Sith’ (2005)
This Anakin Skywalker one-liner features in the opening battle of Episode III and sets a precedent for cringe-worthy lines in the rest of the film. Anakin and Obi-Wan are on a mission to rescue Chancellor Palpatine but must get past General Grievous and his battalion of droids first.
It’s nice to see that somewhere within that corrupted soul is still the little Ani who loves flying ships and shooting bad guys. However, the line could be interpreted as a morbid bit of foreshadowing for what was to come – the birth of Darth Vader.
KEEP READING: ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ Embraces the Prequels in More Ways Than One