Something JUST hit me about the Star Wars prequels: ostensibly, the entire plot of them are about Anakin being frustrated with not having enough power to fix all the stuff in his life that stinks. If he could just control enough – say, for example, whether or not people live or die – everything would finally work out and everyone will be happy and everyone will love him. Instead, doing this turns him into the most hated and evil man in the universe, because the actual problem is not that Anakin can't fix problems, but that Anakin is a flawed, small man who has never learned how to exist within the limitations of the life he has.
Now here's the brain-twistingly insane, yet embarrassingly obvious when you actually say it aloud, thing I just realized: THIS IS, VERBATIM, WHAT ACTUALLY HAPPENED TO GEORGE LUCAS WHILE MAKING THESE SAME PREQUELS.
It is well-documented that Lucas has always been very vocal about his frustrations with both the original trilogy and how Hollywood functions. He's yearned for the day he could exhibit his personal vision directly, translating whatever it is he sees in his mind directly to film. Here's the problem: what's in his mind is a schizophrenic mess. He is a good filmmaker in the literal sense: he knows how to get a shot, how to light it and frame it and block it. But it's also well-documented that actors absolutely loathe his directorial style and producers cringe at his scripts. He is a cinematographer, not a storyteller. And he just can't accept that.
So: a strapping young lad with a head full of dreams helps to build an empire by exploiting the self-same system that annoys him so much. When he amasses enough raw power, finally able to exhibit total control over every aspect of his world, he does so; and in that process, he completely ruins what was beautiful about his universe and makes everyone despise him.
Just like Darth Vader. George Lucas IS Anakin Skywalker! And like Vader, Lucas is now a broken man; as a younger, more adventurous lad he did many great things (Powaqqatsi, Monkey Island, Indiana Jones, Labyrinth, Grim Fandango, Maniac Mansion – just off the top of my head). Now? He's a breathless clown encased in machines; a slave to technology, even more frustrated than ever, embittered by his inability to escape karma, lashing out at anyone who criticizes him with ruthless viciousness. Imagine being George Lucas. You can't go ANYWHERE; you get hungry for a Subway run, you can't just show up and order a meatball sub. It takes 19 underlings, a delivery car, a pseudonym, a secure system of communication between all elements in play; that sandwich costs $5000 now and by the time you get it you're not even hungry anymore, it's cold and soggy, someone probably spat in it when they figured out it was for you for “ruining their childhood”, and you hate everything.
The weirdest thing about all this is that neither the character nor his creator seem like they could do anything to stop it in the fake OR real worlds. Art doesn't just imitate life here; they are literally exact copies of one another, with parallels so vast and intricate that it boggles the mind how anyone could be inside it and not see it glaring them in the face.