Having seen Star Wars Episode III on Thursday, I posted my initial thoughts yesterday as Part I.
Today, I want to add one or two more thoughts.
The central crisis in this epic tragedy involves the small, thin line that divides "The Force" into the Light Side and the Dark Side. Jedi are are powerful in the Force and have chosen the Light Side. Sith are their opposites who have chosen the Dark Side. The question is, what is it that leads Aniken Skywalker, in the end, to choose the Dark Side?
George Lucas has chosen an appropriate and believable (although not particularly well-scripted) explanation. In short, the film tells us that evil is essentially the same as the good; except that the good is twisted around towards oneself instead of directed outwardly towards others.
Anakin loves Padme but dreams that she will die in childbirth. She is willing to accept that result but Aniken cannot imagine life without her. He is tempted by a power offered to him by the Sith lord, a Dark Side power that (and we must recognize that this offer is probably a lie) can keep others alive....at least for a time.
Anakin mistakenly believes that he is motivated by his love for Padme. It is clear, however, that his concern is for himself, not for her. He wants her alive for his own needs and he is willing to sell out his soul to get what he wants.
In his play, "Murder In the Cathedral," T.S. Eliott depicts the spiritual struggle of Thomas a Becket as he considers the various temptations he faces in deciding whether to give in the will of the King or to follow his conscience and defy him....a choice that would lead to his death.
The final tempter appears and describes that, in martyrdom, Beckett will become a Saint who will be venerated by millions. Pilgrims will flock to his burial shrine from all over the world to honor him and pray to him. Miracles will even be done in his name! "This is what you want, isn't it?" the tempter seems to whisper. "Choose death and all of this will be yours!"