Upon my most recent Star Wars marathon and the writing of these reviews, I always thought that it was this film that I liked the least, but it’s a bit of a toss up now between The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones. The former because it adds very little to the Star Wars mythos, this one because it was just a missed opportunity. While it served it’s purpose of starting the Clone Wars, it was interwoven with this ham-fisted love story, in a desperate attempt to have two of our characters make the babies they’re supposed to to tie in with the original trilogy.
Anakin and Padme’s wooden love story aside, which is difficult because drives so much of the film, Attack of the Clones focuses on the continuing problems plaguing the Galactic Republic. It’s not just the Trade Federation any more, its the Banking Clan and the Techno Union, they all want out and are willing to go to war to do so. With tensions building, Obi-Wan Kenobi investigates a plot to kill Senator Amidala which unveils many more plots and secrets that have been in the making for the last ten years.
As with The Phantom Menace there isn’t much to praise in this film. The acting abilities of Ewan McGregor, Ian McDiarmid and Christopher Lee were drowned out by the again poor character development and general lack of direction from George Lucas. The dialogue from most characters was poorly thought out but it was delivered to the best of the actors abilities. Character was again, left behind for visuals and general plot.
The visuals are interesting in this film, it is good to see that the Naboo sets were still used despite a lot of the other sets and destinations being digitally rendered for the most part. The prequel trilogy films do not deliver the same lived-in feel that the original films and subsequent newer Star Wars films have tried to re-create. This comes at the sacrifice of real world settings for the advancement of visual effects and putting Industrial Light and Magic at the fore-front of the industry. Which, while I feel is a very good thing it did cause a lot of problems for fans of Star Wars.
Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones is more of the same when viewing the films in chronological order. This film has a main character but unfortunately, it’s the wrong one. While yes it charts the path of Anakin Skywalker from fear, to anger, to hate, to suffering and sets up for his fall to the dark side, it focused too much on him. Obi-Wan’s mission leading to the formation of the Clone Army and the beginning of the war was much more important to the story. This film falls short of its potential.
Star Wars: Attack of the Clones: Below Average