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*** Official "STAR WARS EPISODE II ATTACK OF THE CLONES" Review Thread


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#1 of 174 OFFLINE   Steven Simon

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Posted May 12 2002 - 11:23 AM

This thread is now the Official Review Thread for "Star Wars Episode II Attack Of The Clones". Please post all HTF member reviews in this thread. PLEASE USE SPOILER TAGS WHEN WRITING ABOUT HEAVY PLOT POINTS OF THE MOVIE THAT COULD SPOIL IT FOR OTHERS

Any other comments, links to other reviews, or discussion items will be deleted from this thread without warning!

If you need to discuss those type of issues then I have designated an Official Discussion Thread.

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#2 of 174 OFFLINE   Steven Simon

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Posted May 12 2002 - 11:26 AM

I just came back from a screening of AOTC. It was held in the NYC AMC25 on 42nd St. All I can say is George Lucas gave us fans back what we really wanted. This Episode of Star Wars in entrenched in a semi deep story line, and pleases you at almost every step.

The new landscapes kept me goggling almost the entire movie. The Clone Troopers are simply amazing; extremely fluid , and move with such force. The saber scenes are short and to the point throughout the movie, and the grand finally proves to be a Light Saber lovers Nirvana. You really get a sense of the Empire starting to get their claws into the republic at the end of this Episode.

Hayden has the role of Anakin in his back pocket. He nailed it IMHO. Ewan plays a much more relaxed ObiWan, and Padme was the biggest surprise to me. She is a true warrior. She had a quick wit, and moves gracefully. Count Dooku, played by Chistopher Lee, is simply dark and cunning. You get a glimpse of what he can really do in this chapter. There seems to be a long history behind him and all of the master Jedi's.

As he says at the end of the movie to Yoda "This IS far from over". His saber tactics are by far the strongest I have ever seen in Star Wars. Yoda seemed to match him. He dispatched the 2 young Jedi like they weren't even there. IMHO he would kick Darth Maul's ass!!!


The love story is intertwined into much action, and never really slows the film down. I rate this the second best SW ever. Second to ESB. A second viewing might change my opinion Posted Image This film is so textured, and needs to be seen a second time to fully grasp everything that's going on.

I rate this movie a solid Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image 1/2 out of Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image
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#3 of 174 OFFLINE   Scott Leopold

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Posted May 12 2002 - 01:36 PM

I thoroughly agree with Simon except for one minor point--I'd give it a 5 out of 5! I was fortunate enough to see a copy early this morning. This ranks up there with the originals. I'll have to see it a few more times to decide exactly where it ranks. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I was watching it. I thought the love story was quite well done. The acting was wonderful, IMO, and the action...oooooh, the action! As great as everyone else is, Yoda is the master!
Dooku is set up as the baddest Jedi we've ever seen in any of the Star Wars movies. He dispenses two of the most powerful and skilled Jedi without even working up a sweat. And then, in comes Yoda. There's just no contest.


While there are bits and pieces put in to appeal to the kids, they're sparse, and help to lighten the terribly dark mood. And that's a good thing. Episode 3, I feel, will be almost too dark, and I can't wait.


#4 of 174 OFFLINE   Kong Chang

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Posted May 12 2002 - 05:40 PM

I have to agree with everyone! This movie otudoes episode I by leaps and bounds, much better than what I had thought it would end up being. I watched it tonight and I must confess, I am definitely gonna be advocating this one to my friends.

I loved everything about the movie, there were some very funny scenes, (and a few weak ones, but this is a gloating post so we won't talk about those), and a downright fun and glorious action scenes, which is reminiscent of the old Star Wars.

I would say more, but I would be spoiling all the fun.
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#5 of 174 OFFLINE   Gruson

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Posted May 13 2002 - 08:49 AM

Well, I disagree.

I did not like Ep. 2 at all.

Lucas is putting in too much mundane everyday life type stuff. For instance, the sports going on in the background in the cantina scene,,,the other drivers cursing the Jedi when Obi was hanging from the bounty droid,,,the scene with the diner chef,,,and so on. It seems like the new movies are trying to make the Star Wars galaxy too similiar to our own.

AOTC did not feel like Star Wars to me at all.

There was no emotion to it. The lightsaber battle at the end was nothing like the Maul battle in Ep. 1. No drama what so ever.

No memorial scenes or dialogue either.

Thumbs down, way down.

What the hell was with the C3P0/battle droid head comedy???!?! Just stupid.

#6 of 174 OFFLINE   Doug R

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Posted May 13 2002 - 12:50 PM

heh, there was drama in the Maul duel? I must have missed it. Especially when not one word was spoken the entire time.

I'm 29 so I was 5 when Star Wars came out. I saw it then, then saw the others... many... many times. I disliked Phantom Menace. It does some things right and many things wrong.

With that said, I disagree with Gruson, Episode 2 is much more like the original trilogy than Phantom Menace. There is plenty of drama in the lightsaber duel; in my opinion it's better than the Menace duel.

Slamming it for having sports stuff on the screens (one of which is an already established sport, Pod Racing) seems a bit extreme. That's like criticizing Phantom Menace for having gambling and pod racing since it's too much like a sport. It had worse problems than that

I enjoyed Episode 2's C3PO humor. People keep calling him the Jar Jar of Episode 2 but you gotta be kidding. C3PO had plenty of quirky lines in the original trilogy.. it fit his character and it was just enough to be funny yet not annoying.

Episode 2 is worthy of the Star Wars name. I actually want to see it more than once (Phantom Menace is hard for me to sit through) and I believe any fan similar to me (Love original trilogy, had a hard time stomaching parts of TPM) will feel the same way.

#7 of 174 OFFLINE   Quentin

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Posted May 14 2002 - 06:20 AM

I will go on record to say I also think this film comes MUCH closer to recapturing the Star Wars magic. I'd give it 3 1/2 stars and rank it just behind ESB and ANH.

The FX are amazing, and I found the action to be VERY exciting and compelling.

Unfortunately, it seems like Lucas is dead set on delivering a LOT more information in this trilogy than he did in the original. In 4-6, we learned about the SW history, politics, etc. through glimpses of things and hints. We got the love story between Leia and Han through bickering and disguised flirtation.

In this trilogy (this film was no exception), we get SO much information through talking heads. Exposition and explanations galore. That's bad writing.

And the love story?...Sure, the acting is stiff in ALL the SW films, right? But, when you have characters delivering sappy lines on top of some clunky acting it makes for a bad scene. So, no, I didn't much care for the way this film deals with the Padme/Anakin relationship.

That said, I plan on re-seeing this film often! It's great fun and definitely took me back to the original SW feeling!

#8 of 174 OFFLINE   Jeff Keene

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Posted May 14 2002 - 07:57 AM

I thought it was terrific. It won't have the special feeling that ANH and Empire have for me, because I'm not a kid anymore. But I feel that it rank right up there with those two films in terms of quality.

He slowed down and told a story this time, and it helps tremendously. I was very critical of Episode I at the time, and this blows it away. I was very impressed.

#9 of 174 OFFLINE   Angsty

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Posted May 15 2002 - 05:10 AM

Ohmigosh, omigosh, omigosh, I LOVED it!!

Just got back home after the midnight screening, and I have to tell you: I had a big grin on my face the whole drive home Posted Image (I still have it as I write this Posted Image )

Loved the action, loved the scenery. Anakin's dialogue wasn't wooden and stilted as I had read...[girly mode] and those gorgeous long eyelashes...[/girly mode] Posted Image

I'm still trying to digest it all, but this one goes up there, close to Empire as my favourite movie in the series.

In closing, all I can say is: Yoda RULEZ!!

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#10 of 174 OFFLINE   Nick Sievers

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Posted May 15 2002 - 05:26 AM

.
Top 10 Film Lists: 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004
Film Lists: 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005

#11 of 174 OFFLINE   Nate Nelson

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Posted May 15 2002 - 08:34 AM

I just saw this last night for our employee sneek and I must agree with nearly everybody here. The movie is flat out BADASS. Lucas has definitly 'redeemed' himeself Posted Image EP1 wasn't horrible, but there are many parts that I just don't like. I loved every single minute of EP2 and that is not a lie. I agree boba had some corny lines, but his part was so small in this one its easily over-looked.

And who are these people dis-in' on 3po?! I loved his role, he was hilarious! It was nice to see R2 and 3P0 back in action Posted Image Hayden did a great job, much better than I was expecting. It was awsome to see him and obi-wan interact and to get the feeling of conflict between them....

I really loved the the line obi-wan said as he and anakin entered the bar:

"Why do I get the feeling you're going to be the death of me?"


oh boy I can't wait until EP3 now! Sheesh, what am I talkin' about, I need to see EP2 again Posted Image

#12 of 174 OFFLINE   Allan Petersen

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Posted May 15 2002 - 01:22 PM

Just came back from the midnight screening at the local cinema.

I really like this one. I was hesitant due to the slight disappointment I felt after watching Ep. 1. Thankfully this one kept up a good pace.

The effects were stunning and I really like that the designers are returning to the beat-up spaceships from the original trilogy (They aren't quite there yet, though). Only a few effects were visibly off.

Jar-Jar was (*shudder*) likeable in this one and the bar-owner Dexter Jettster was just fine. They didn't get a lot of screentime though. Neither did Jimmy Smits, unfortunately. I can't disagree with the posts above. The actors probably did the best with what they had.

My favourite part?
Yoda fighting Dooku. Could have been crap, but it was worth the price of admission just to see that one scene! Too cool for words Posted Image

This one gets my Posted Image.

Posted Image

#13 of 174 OFFLINE   Michael Dueppen

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Posted May 15 2002 - 01:31 PM

I just came back from the midnight premiere (I watched TPM right before it and was reminded just how disappointing I thought it was).
I absolutely loved AOTC. Especially the last hour of almost nonstop action.
I thought that the love story was well integrated into the flow of the movie. I was especially afraid that this might go wrong. I still like the 'Han, I love you' - 'I know' approach a lot better than this soap opera style but it wasn't annoying to me.
I did like most of the acting (especially for a Star Wars movie). I was really afraid of Christensen's Anakin but I'm glad to say that I liked what he did.
The whole movie does have a really strong CGI look. We're obviously still quite a bit away from photorealistic CGI. It reminded me of the PC game Wing Commander. Computer generated backgrounds with actors in them (obviously a lot better but still...). But this didn't bother me at all because I think the effects worked to further the movie which is okay with me.
The sound was awesome. The last hour is one big demo scene imo.
I didn't like the arcade game Padme scene, slightly disliked the 3PO head thing and the movie didn't have the last bit of Star Wars feel to me.
I'd rate this Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image 1/2 out of Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image . I still like ANH and ESB better (both 5/5) but I liked AOTC quite a bit better than ROTJ (3,5/5) and TPM (2,5/5).
And yes, Yoda rules Posted Image
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#14 of 174 OFFLINE   Jeff_Shafer

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Posted May 15 2002 - 01:41 PM

I saw this last night in Sydney. I have to say I'm a bit conflicted over how good it was. There were definitely some problems, like the daytime soap script and acting (at times), lots of cliches, and some similarities to other films (like the Blade Runner look, or the Sound of Music). However, in the end, I think that the film feels much more like a Star Wars film than TPM and there are some real kick-ass moments. The battle scene at the end was great and it left me looking forward to Ep III, whereas at the end of Ep. I I was just happy to be rid of Jar Jar (Whose role is much better this time) I didn't mind the C3P0 humor, because it wasn't y see it again soon to try and absorb it all. If I had to rank it with the other films, definately above TPM, probably better than ROTJ, but behind ANH and ESB.

Easter Egg
I'm sure this has been mentioned somewhere, but in the bar scene, Anthony Daniels (out of the C3P0 suit) is one of the background characters.

#15 of 174 OFFLINE   Scott Weinberg

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Posted May 15 2002 - 02:50 PM

OK, here's my oft-delayed review. Thanks to all who asked me about it! It's nice to know that there are a few people out there who like my stuff!

Star Wars Episode 2: Attack of the Clones - Posted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted ImagePosted Image out of 5 stars

Reviewing the latest entry in the world’s most popular movie series is almost an exercise in pointlessness; one critic is unlikely to sway anyone towards or away from a movie event this mammoth, and even those who were irritated and annoyed by the earlier chapter are still waiting with bated breath for the newest installment.

You’ll find as many articulate and varying opinions of the “new” Star Wars movies as you’d find bounty hunters in a Mos Eisley cantina, and I represent just one of those voices. Many have bemoaned a trite screenplay (a seemingly unfair complaint in an outer space fairy tale), wooden acting performances and an over-reliance on CGI wizardry (I’d rather have an overabundance of gee-whiz effects than not enough, particularly in a film that takes place in a “galaxy far, far away”), but those seems like rather grinchy attitudes for judging the Star Wars movies.

The immortal “original trilogy” contained more than its share of overbaked lines of dialogue, stiff acting performances and FX that bordered on self-parody, yet nobody seems to bash the superlative Empire Strikes Back for its flaws. (And yes, ESB does have some flaws!) While Attack of the Clones is by no means a perfect movie, it more than fits in with its Star Wars brethren, and it’s one of the most sensational movies I’ve seen in a long time. (“Sensational” as in it repeatedly jarred and tickled my senses, and not just as a synonym for “Great Movie!”) Those who felt that Episode 1: The Phantom Menace was an affront to the Star Wars legacy should be suitably impressed with this new entry, while those who actually enjoyed Part 1 (like myself) will be pleased to see that the ‘finer points’ of that movie have been improved upon considerably in Attack of the Clones.

Picking up ten years after the first chapter, Attack of the Clones depicts a universe on the edge of a dangerous revolution. Former Queen Padme Amidala is narrowly avoiding the attention of some nefarious assassins when old friends Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin Skywalker appear on the scene. Padme is meant to participate in a crucial Senate vote, and there are hidden adversaries who will stop at nothing to bend the Senate’s will to their evil intent. In an effort to protect the beautiful and brave Senator, Anakin is given his first true assignment: escort Padme back to her painfully gorgeous planet of Naboo, while Obi-Wan sets out to discover the source of the government insurrections.

Anyone familiar with the Star Wars universe is well aware that the vile Senator Palpatine is the puppet-master behind the devious machinations, but Attack of the Clones has a great time introducing several new players to the saga. From shape-shifting assassin Zam Wesell to a stunningly powerful Jedi Master named Dooku to the ultra-cool Jango Fett, Lucas and company have taken steps to ensure there are enough baddies to sneer at. If The Phantom Menace was about introducing heroes, this chapter is about newly-discovered villains.

Yet there is a romantic sweetness at the center of Attack of the Clones that’s been absent from all the previous Star Wars adventures. Sure, we all wanted Han Solo and Princess Leia to get together, but that relationship never really approached anything resmbling a true ‘romance’. As Anakin and Padme spend time together on her picturesque home planet, a romantic connection starts to blossom, and it helps invest an emotional interest that’s generally been lacking since The Empire Strikes Back.

OK, Hayden Chistensen may not be the next Laurence Olivier, but he hardly deserves the critical lambasting he’s been receiving up to this point. Christensen is a bit tough to warm up to, what with his cocksure arrogance and impatient complaining, but I think the actor pulls off precisely what Lucas intended; you care for him because he’s a hero, but his underlying intensity and discontent make for a character you don’t entirely trust. If a few of the more ‘sweet’ moments come off as jarring or unrealistic, maybe that’s because they were meant to. Keep in mind that we are watching what is essentially a ‘mythological history’. I for one quite enjoyed the entire ‘romance subplot’, because A) Lucas is wise enough to never allow Anakin to become a ‘puppy dog’ and B) Natalie Portman is easy to fall in love with.

Ewan McGregor easily offers the finest performance in the film. Acting as a surrogate father to the impetuous Anakin, his Obi-Wan gets most of the film’s best moments, and McGregor is a fine enough actor to make lines like “Anakin, you’ll be the death of me” humorous instead of cornball. Portman is also much more accessible than in Episode 1, and this time around she’s given much more to do than parade about in elaborate costumes and Kabuki makeup. Any actor who’s performed to nothing but ‘bluescreens’ will tell you how painfully difficult it can be, but these two have their characters down pat by now and center all the CGI mayhem with an all-too-necessary core of humanity. Conversely, actors like Chistensen and the generally fantastic Sam Jackson seem perpetually constrained by having to perform in an empty room.

While the burgeoning love affair between Anakin and Padme is the backbone for the full-length tale (which will conclude in three years with Episode III), Attack of the Clones features a ton of stand-alone sequences that will thrill and delight the Star Wars faithful. A mercurial space race through the crowded streets of Coruscant kicks things off, and along the way we get numerous battles, chases, escapes and explosions. As in all the Star Wars adventures, we are spirited off to one otherworldly landscape after another, and the result is nearly exhausting.

Avoiding the ‘three movies at once’ style of editing employed in most of the Star Wars flicks, Lucas wisely allows his numerous plot threads to weave into one astonishing finale, during which you’ll have to stop cheering long enough to appreciate the few great surprises. One of our old favorites displays some heretofore unseen fighting prowess, a brief mention of the villain's ultimate plan brought a brief chill to my spine, and the irrepressable droid duo of R2-D2 and C-3PO has its inception in the most manic of places: an all-out arena battle sequence that makes the adventures of Maximus in Gladiator look like a walk in the park.

On the whole, the screenplay (by Lucas and Jonathan Hales) delivers a phenomenal adventure story, intercut with a tentative love affair and the nefarious governmental exchanges that capably bridge Episode 1 to its inevitable conclusion. Yes, there are a handful of uncomfortable moments, but (again) occasionally stilted dialogue is nothing new to this sci-fi series. Complaining that a film this entertaining has a few clunkers in the script is akin to sending back a delicious steak because the corn is a little underdone. Star Wars is not Hamlet, nor should it be.

This is the kind of movie that you can rate on the ‘seesaw’ scale. On one side you can place everything that’s wrong with it: a handful of screenplay howlers, a few wooden deliveries by a young actor, Lucas’s consistent disability at directing human beings, etc. On the other side of this seesaw, you can plop everything that’s RIGHT with Attack of the Clones. All the amazing chases and superlative sound effects, the clever references to future events, the reappearance of characters we love, and the sheer non-stop spectacle of it all. Look at it that way, and I’m picturing a seesaw ride being shared by Jabba the Hutt and a particularly skinny Jawa. Simply put, the ‘good stuff’ in Attack of the Clones so outweighs the bad…that the bad is hardly worth mentioning.

Attack of the Clones is a deliriously fun time at the movies. The special effects are simply unsurpassed in quality, and more than one scene will leave your jaw dangling. Those who grew up on the wildly popular Star Wars films will appreciate the attention to detail and the few early-history surprises, while newcomers will simply adore the visual splendor and rapid-fire action scenes.

It’s clear that George Lucas will never earn another Best Picture nomination for this series, but so what? As far as summer-time escapism, big-budget crowd-pleasers, and “popcorn flicks” that DON’T require you to ‘leave your brain at the door’ go, Attack of the Clones is an excellent movie, over 2 hours of the most fun I’ve had at the movies in a long time. Get your lightsabers ready; it’s going to be a busy summer.

#16 of 174 OFFLINE   David Judah

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Posted May 15 2002 - 05:51 PM

I enjoyed TPM because it was a Star Wars movie. I enjoyed AOTC, not only because it was a Star Wars movie, but also because it was just plain good summer action fun.

There is alot going on in this movie and it only slows down a few times. We are introduced to some new players in the game of political intrigue and some others who we first became acquainted with in Episodes 4-6. Lucas did a very good job, IMO, of balancing the story with its many characters and setting up what should be a fantastic conclusion to the first three episodes.

I thought the dialog was much improved over TPM(thanks Jonathan Hales, I suppose), the plot was thicker, and the acting was solid. There are alot of little details that I'm sure I missed, but will be able to catch upon repeat viewings(I'm going to see it twice on Thursday, as well).

I agree with Ron that George Lucas and Star Wars are back and it should be enjoyed by Star Wars geeks and regular summer movie goers alike.

DJ

P.S. Oh yeah, and there was no edge enhancement.Posted Image
Lecktor: Then how did you catch me?
Graham: You had disadvantages.
Lecktor: What disadvantages?
Graham: You're insane.

#17 of 174 OFFLINE   Frank Anderson

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Posted May 15 2002 - 06:56 PM

Interesting.

Talk about CGI overload. I still don’t know if that’s a good thing. AOTC took me from incredible highs to some extreme lows. There were times when I thought Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman were bored with their roles. Were they reading from cue cards to get their lines? After a while I just put it off to me not being use to Christensen’s style of acting I guess. The battle scene with the 100+ Jedi was cool. Many times I wish I could have slowed the action to take it all in. I guess when I get it on DVD I just might.

Yoda’s fight scene… nice. His “style” reminded me of something else but I just can’t put my finger on what yet. The audience laughed when they saw him get ready to start. I don’t know if that was the reaction Lucas was hoping for. (Throughout the whole movie everyone was very quiet and there were only a few outbursts of laughter during the show. When it was over everyone got up and just walked out. Not a whole lot of excited talking) C3-PO was funny and I am not disappointed with his role. I am very pleased Jar-Jar only had limited screen time. I don’t remember the original three movies having such in-depth plot lines. If you don’t pay attention you may get lost. However, to me it makes it a more interesting movie. It was real nice to be able to reminisce with some of the sights included. Seeing Luke’s home and the raiders was pretty neat. Since this episode was ten years from the first can we expect to see 9 or 10-year-old versions of Luke and Leia? Would be nice. I really can’t wait to see how Lucas ties everything together in episode III. Overall I enjoyed the movie. Just for the nostalgia, sights and sounds it gets a solid
Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image Posted Image out of 5


#18 of 174 OFFLINE   Jeff Kleist

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Posted May 15 2002 - 07:04 PM

Actually, I spotted some haloing on the film prints, as well as video noise

hundreds of lightsabers, greatest film ever. Screw Citizen Kane. Kane has nary a lightsaber in it.

1.5 hours of great setup, 40minutes of intense orgasm. Yoda and the initial saber rush almost required an ummm, cleanup crew Posted Image

#19 of 174 OFFLINE   Steven Simon

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Posted May 15 2002 - 07:18 PM

Also just got back from my second screening. It was better the second time guys. As I have said above, this movie is so textured, and you see more and more on second viewing. Also the sound FX seemed better to me the second time around. Better theater most likely...
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#20 of 174 OFFLINE   AJ Johnson

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Posted May 15 2002 - 07:24 PM

Sigh..what can I say...I gave it a 2nd chance.

Good points:

Obi-Wan...great character development.

Yoda's duel with Dooku was great and brought that old feeling back for about 3 minutes but it couldn't save the movie.

Anakin's slaughter of the Tusken Raiders and his reaction.

Bad points:

CGI overload and a lot of it looks cartoony as hell.

That 1st hour was the most boring hour in Star Wars history...that love story was hell to sit through.

Mace Windu is still a nobody, no character development whatsoever.

Dooku/Jango Fett...see above.

Battle scene got too repetitive. Things blowing up and stupid droids getting slaughtered for 10-15 minutes was overkill.

One-on-one lightsaber battles were over before they got started.

It only felt like a Star Wars movie during the final 10 minutes.

** out of ***** stars....it's down there with TPM
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