Star Wars Episode II: Attack Of The Clones was released 15 years ago today in US cinemas. It still feels like yesterday. I remember going to the toy shop buying the figures even before the movie was released and then going to the cinema and being totally amazed at what I saw – an amazing chapter of the saga! It’s a great day to celebrate. So I think it’s a fitting occasion to make some comments about the movie and return to some points where it was criticized.
– People often blame Jar Jar for giving emergency powers to the Chancellor but they forget who are really are the people to blame in that. Jar Jar may have proposed to give the emergency powers to Palpatine but in the end it’s the senators who voted yes, they share the blame even more than him.
– The Padmé-Anakin scenes have been a target of criticism, sometimes considered as cheesy but they were key scenes to Anakin’s story. Without them, the story would have ended here, he would have never become Darth Vader. It’s his relationship with Padmé that for the big part leads him to the darkside. It’s a destructive relationship they have. The way both Padmé and Anakin behaved in these scenes reflects their characters. Anakin was raised in the Jedi Temple, taught that he couldn’t love so obviously he couldn’t know how to address Padmé, he could only be clumsy in his moves, it was his first time. And let’s not forget that he was in his late teenage years during the movie, and how teens usually are? They are whiny and Anakin was exactly this whiny kid, it was made on purpose. For Padmé, she was a senator, she wasn’t allowed to have a relationship with a Jedi so it was difficult for her.
– Jango Fett proved he was more badass than his son Boba ever was.
– The movie showed how Palpatine manipulated the entire galaxy to get it where he wanted, and how he controlled everything. Slowly leading the Republic to the dictatorship it becomes in ROTS.
– We were introduced to a brand new villain – Count Dooku! There are so many great things about this character – his attitude, his lightsaber quite unique and his fighting skills are also impressive! The duel he got with Yoda was one of the best and definitely remains in the top 10 of the saga, simply breathtaking. It started by the two of them showing their abilities with the Force and then going in with the lightsabers. This line from Dooku remains stuck in my mind: “It is obvious that this contest cannot be decided by our knowledge of the Force… but by our skills with a lightsaber.”
– The battle of Geonosis! It was a brilliant way to start the clone wars, epic on every level! We saw an army of Jedi fighting, that was huge and at the same time, it showed that the Jedi were not invicible, they’re peacekeepers, not warriors! It was the beginning of the end for them. The arrival of the clones in the arena was beyond epic as well, it’s one of these classic scenes of the saga. It paved the way for what we saw in The Clone Wars tv series.
– Like every Star Wars movies, it was a pleasure for the eyes! It has outstanding visuals. The visuals are always important in this saga, a lot is said there, they tell a story and sometimes it’s even more important than the dialogues. And like every Star Wars movies it combined both practical effects and special effects, pushing the boundaries of CGI with Yoda for example. Movies today have the visuals they have because of what was accomplished with Star Wars!
– I can’t not mention Mace Windu. He unleashed his badassery in this movie, he slayed that battle of Geonosis, first with his arrival and then by killing Jango Fett like a boss. Samuel L. Jackson had asked George Lucas if he could have a purple lightsaber because it’s his favorite color and he got it! Mace is the only Jedi to have this color and it definitely suits him and adds to the character.
– The cast – a multi-talented cast! They all delivered great performances. Hayden Christensen surely had the most difficult job. Anakin wasn’t an easy character to play, he was quite complex and not every actor could have conveyed on screen the torment Anakin felt like Hayden did brilliantly. About, Ewan McGregor when I look at his performance, he is the ultimate Obi-Wan, and seeing Alec Guinness in the Original Trilogy is like seeing an old version of McGregor. I think it speaks volumes on how great he was for the role. Another actor I want to mention is Ian McDiarmid who plays Palpatine. He played very well that manipulative politician and his visual expressions tell their own story.
– Now I want to finish with poetry. Star Wars is poetry and the movies rhyme with one another. It goes back to what I said earlier, the visuals tell their own story. And this video is very representative of this, there is a lot of shots from AOTC in it: