Director: George Lucas
Cast: Ewan McGregor, Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman, Ian McDiarmid, Samuel L. Jackson, Christopher Lee, Frank Oz
Screenplay: George Lucas, Jonathan Hales
142 mins. Rated PG for sustained sequences of sci-fi action/violence.
- Academy Award Nominee: Best Visual Effects
Happy Star Wars Day, and May the Fourth Be With You. Today we will look back on Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones, from director George Lucas (American Graffiti, THX 1138).
Ten years after the events of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen, Jumper, Vanishing on 7th Street) and his master Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor, Trainspotting, Mortdecai) have been called to Coruscant to protect the former Queen, Senator Padme Amidala (Natalie Portman, V for Vendetta, Knight of Cups) against those who wish to assassinate her. As Anakin and Padme grow closer, Obi-Wan finds himself getting closer to the truth as he encounters the sinister Count Dooku (Christopher Lee, The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, Dark Shadows) and an army of clone troops trained to be an Army of the Republic.
The second in George Lucas’ prequel trilogy fixes a lot of the problems that the first film had, though not all. I love the tone of the film as it shifts from mystery to romance to war to fantasy and back to mystery. The tonal shifts keep the film invigorated and interesting. McGregor and Portman turn in excellent work as Kenobi and Amidala, as do Ian McDiarmid (Sleepy Hollow, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels) as Chancellor Palpatine and Samuel L. Jackson (Pulp Fiction, Avengers: Age of Ultron) as the Jedi Master Mace Windu. New character Count Dooku is excellent and terrifying.
Hayden Christensen is a better Anakin than Jake Lloyd, but not by much. He is by far the biggest problem here.
As always, George Lucas presents us a stunning vision of his galaxy. The film is stitched together nicely and is beautifully scored. There are a lot to love here. Now the aging of the special effects is noticeable here and could have been avoided with a more practical touch. I miss the look of the original films, but I can deal with it.
Attack of the Clones is a fantastic Star Wars event. It has a few detractors, but it is lovely nonetheless.
-Kyle A. Goethe
For my review of Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, click here.