Overthinking It: Over-Sized Movie Construction

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love movies. I have no problem suspending my disbelief, overlooking problems, and just enjoying myself, but every now and then while watching something an idea will pop into my head, and I just gotta write it down. Which leads to this episode of “Over-Thinking It”.

I watched Star Wars the other day, and I noticed something I’ve always known: those Imperials make things big! Too Big! I have a similar issue with the Jaegers of Pacific Rim; sure they were super cool, but were they cost effective?

There is a scene in Pacific Rim where Striker Eureka shoots the rockets in its chest and takes out the Kaiju that broke through the defense wall in Sydney. The chest cannon was REALLY effective. I couldn’t help but wonder how much more effective a fleet of trucks, boats, or planes armed with them would be instead of an undeniably awesome, but only moderately successful giant robot. Giant robots punching giant monsters in the face makes for a great movie, but there is that pesky voice in my head that asks, are giant robots the most effective use of resources.

Same with Snoke’s ship in Star Wars: The Last Jedi. That ship is unimaginably huge. According to the dimensions I found online it is over 60km wide and 13km in length. Of course we can’t forget about the Death Stars, the first one (from the original movie) was about 150km in diameter. That is (very roughly) approx 1.767 million cubic kilometers!! How much was poured into the construction of these ships? The intimidation factor is awesome, sure, but do you wanna look impressive, or do you want to be effective? Would not a truly massive fleet of Star Destroyers been more useful? It took a couple of squadrons of small fighters to take out the Death Star, the number of Star Destroyers an equivalent use of resources could have made would have laughed at, and then quickly destroyed them. In fact, we saw that exact scenario in the final movie of the Saga. Poe Dameron and his fighters were toast until the civilian fleet showed up.

Of course, during the movies these thoughts only flash through my head. I’m usually too in the moment to let anything really distract me from enjoying it, but after a viewing or 2, I start to think of the inefficient use of resources that over-sized construction represents.