Star Wars: Episode 2 – Attack of the Clones, 2002 – DVD Review
Posted by LiveFor on July 15, 2008
Running Time: 142 Minutes
After yesterday’s attempt at committing, what felt like, suicide by saying that The Phantom Menace was actually not a bad film, from a certain point of view, I now seem to have a death wish that compelled me to watch the second episode in the prequel Star Wars trilogy; namely Attack of the Clones.
Here, we are now 10 years after the Battle of Naboo and young Anakin Skywalker is coming towards the end of his tutelage under Obi-Wan (or so he feels). Another failed attempt on the life of the now Senator Amidala throws their lives back together again.
The feel of the film is quite lush at the beginning. Full sweeping sets with velvet and leathers in cool creams and deep reds and purples really live up to the pomp and ceremony of Coruscant. Lucas also expands on the city/planet with a great speeder chase and even onto the never before seen planet surface with its gaudy neon lights and clubs (You wanna but some deathsticks?)
And it is at this point in the film that Lucas takes the film in a direction that has not been taken before. The film then gives a big nod to film noir with Obi-Wan going on a Sam Spade style investigation, complete with greasy spoon cafés (his meeting with Dex) and terse conversations with Jango Fett about his recent movements. You could almost imagine the dialogue was directly lifted from a 1940’s serial film starring Humphrey Bogart.
While Kenobi does his best to smoke Gauloises, keep whiskey in his filing cabinet and produce inner soliloquies, Anakin and Padmé embark on the ultimately disastrous love affair that spawns Luke and Leia. One thing for sure is his persistence. On no fewer that four occasions does he crash and burn after his post-teenage attempts at pick-up lines. Most mere mortals would have bailed after the first or second attempt.
What Lucas does, to not too bad a level, is have two parts of one story arc off in different directions to be brought back together again on the insect planet of Geonosis (Starship Troopers anyone?) However, it’s at this point that the two parts start to unravel.
The sudden arrival of all the clones in Storm Trooper outfits beggar’s belief. The god awful puns uttered by C-3PO when his head and body become detached are straight out of a child’s joke book. But what I want to focus on here is the crow-barred attempt to keep the fan-boys drooling.
At the finale, when Dooku (which means “poison” in Japanese, for those in the know) and Yoda face off, Dooku comments, without so much as a nod or a wink to camera, that thier knowledge of the Force can’t be separated, so let’s duel with Lightsabers….Oh. Dear. God! Don’t force it upon us! If you are going to let it happen, let it happen naturally!
But I digress. The fore-shadowing of events yet to come arrive thick and fast enough to keep the fans interested enough to chuckle at their own knowledge. Anakin starting on the slippery slope to the Dark side is all too apparent and is the clear nexus of the film.
And this is where I will make my final point. One of the best things that Lucas, in his infinite wisdom, did was to keep the story going throughout the Clone Wars with the animated series (which I shall watch tonight) as Episode II and Episode III are merely the same story split into two. The same feelings, emotions and all round feel to it suggest this.
So, my dear Live-for-Films colleagues, I am really just in hiatus on this review. I shall keep you posted on my continuing mission in a galaxy far, far away.
I’ll give this 6/10. A slightly disappointing addition, but wonderful to watch…bit like a train wreck.