Star Wars Distillations, Part 1: The Prequels

A few weeks back, I shared what I called a “Movie QR Code” for Blade Runner, that I’d made. After posting that, I thought about some of the other movies I wanted to do, thinking that maybe I’d get some interesting prints made for my office. Being a kid of the 80s, by far the most-influential films in my life have to be the Star Wars films, so I started with them. 

For the first installment, I did the much-anticipated but ultimately-disappointing prequels. However, to make it interesting, I’ve annotated the films as you can clearly recognize acts and scenes within the movie if you’re familiar with the plot. (If you click on an image, it will open larger. Also, forgive my handwriting).

First, we have The Phantom Menace.

Next up is Attack of the Clones.

And, finally, Revenge of the Sith.

Blade Runner, Distilled

I recently rewatched one of my favorite movies, Blade Runner, after reading Chris Noessel’s series about the UI/UX experience within the film at his excellent site, Sci-fi Interfaces. It had been a few years since I’d last watched it and this was my first time to view it in 4K. The film is sumptuous and the UHD transfer is magnificent.

In fact, my only complaint about Ridley Scott’s masterpiece is that it doesn’t actually feature anyone running on blades. 

A lot of articles have been written about this film. Besides the aforementioned critiques of the various technology-human interactions (cybernetics) in the film, essays have been written on the “Tears in the Rain” soliloquy,  the cutting-edge (at the time) score by Vangelis, the impact of the design on the science fiction genre and even the choice of typography.

So, that said, there’s not a lot to talk about when it comes to the film that hasn’t been covered by more-insightful and better writers than myself. But I wanted to show my appreciation for this film somehow, so I started thinking. Then I remembered that several years ago, I’d built an app that would take a film, distill it down to its individual frames as color-averaged pixels and spit out a image file of these, allowing you to view the color environment of the movie in one distinct image.

So, dusting off my code from my GitHub repository (very rough code, might I add), I fired it up in Visual Studio, re-familiarized myself with how it worked, and built a Blade Runner image. As I recall, I first built this process before I learned about Movie Barcodes, which is a similar process that arranges each frame in a vertical sequence, so I guess maybe these are “movie QR codes”?

At any rate, here’s the QR code for Blade Runner:

Blade Runner

And, just for fun, here’s the sequel, Blade Runner 2049:

Blade Runner 2049