I wonder: will there ever be a day when Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace will achieve a similar redemption?
In truth, I think both movies didn't get a fair shake because they weren't what fans were expecting after years of anticipation. Will Menace ever get the credit it deserves?
What do you think?"
The Motion Picture had the built-in advantage of featuring the Original Star Trek cast, at least, which made fans want to re-assess it, or like it.
The Phantom Menace has few OT characters (unless you count Yoda and Palpatine..), and so for some OT fans, the desire or willingness to connect with it just isn't there.
I'm an instructor at a college here in Charlotte, and guess what? When this generation talks Star Wars, the films they discuss with enthusiasm are the prequels. The OT, rightly or wrongly, seems to bore many of them. Though they have seen it, they don't prefer it. And they definitely don't attach the golden glow of nostalgia to the films circa 1977 - 1983, but to the works of 1999 - 2005.
Before a work of art can be re-evaluated, someone must be open to the process and possibility of re-evaluation.
Looking around the web, I don't sense a lot of open-ness to that process or possibility, at least as of yet. The time has not yet come, and neither has the inclination, except by a few brave or perhaps foolhardy folks.
A couple of articles mining the virtues of the prequel trilogy have appeared, it's true, and I expect that, over time, they will become more common.
But we haven't arrived, fully, yet at the era of re-examination and rehabilitation.
Ironically, it may come after The Force Awakens. If the audience that grew up with the prequels dislikes that film, or doesn't consider it true Star Wars, expect a backlash, and a full excavation of those things the prequels got right and Abrams got wrong.
And if you don't think this is a possibility, I have four words for you. Star Trek: Into Darkness.
That film fiercely divided fans, pleasing some, irritating the hell out of others.
Begin, these fan wars will?