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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A film of two halves
The second film of the prequel trilogy is a lot better than the first film but it still has a long way to go in order to live up to the original films. The first half of the film is pretty much the on a par with the best of the first film, being slightly dull with a bad script and some terrible acting, particularly on the part of Hayden Christensen who may have had the...
Published on 29 Aug 2007 by T. R. Alexander

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Strong graphics and action but the feeling of excitement isn't quite right
Anakin Skywalker (Christensen) is plagued by nightmares of his mother whilst he attempts to protect Senator Amidala (Portman) with master Obi Wan (McGregor) investigating the assassination attempt on her life.

16 years after Return of the Jedi was released George Lucas returned with The Phantom Menace, arguably the most anticipated film of the 20th century...
Published on 15 Aug 2009 by Stampy


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Strong graphics and action but the feeling of excitement isn't quite right, 15 Aug 2009
By 
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Anakin Skywalker (Christensen) is plagued by nightmares of his mother whilst he attempts to protect Senator Amidala (Portman) with master Obi Wan (McGregor) investigating the assassination attempt on her life.

16 years after Return of the Jedi was released George Lucas returned with The Phantom Menace, arguably the most anticipated film of the 20th century. Quite right to as the Star Wars franchise had generated millions of fans world wide with it's out of the world colossal stories and brilliance. Critics and fans were left in dizziness when a long tongued creature called Jar Jar Binks stepped onto screen followed by an odd looking villain with a doubled ended lightsaber and a rather poor action hero Qui Gon as a leader. Not to mention the plot was all political with the battles oddly insignificant.

Nevertheless that didn't stop fans queuing around the block to see the second episode and in many aspects it seems the legend that is George Lucas sadly did not learn his lesson.

Thankfully that badly spoken Binks is missing for the vast majority but the essence of the plot remains intact as the plot is politically driven and whilst we see perhaps more action and new creatures, it does not prevent the fact this is in reality hardly a reflection of what predeceased it in the late 70's.

Attack of the Clones is what you might call a third party seller. The t-shirt of Manchester United that you don't see in Old Trafford.

It is easy to criticize considering how the previous 3 releases were all bravado and we had no clue what was around the corner. These films are building towards something and there clues are dropped with the eventual outcome easily noticeable. The suspense has disappeared also with the droids easy pickings and the eventual war come the end barely a blip on the radar.

Attack of the clones also seems to have a problem establishing its characters. Anakin is the exception as we know his fate and with Christensen's charm we see his temper bubbling with delicious vigour, even if the romantic scripting wears thin. McGregor's Obi Wan can be too controlling for comfort but the wise sayings of Yoda and Master Windu let the side down as everything feels stated rather than spontaneous and flowing as it should obviously be.

This 2002 release isn't all doom and gloom. There is no denying the effects are spellbinding and the lightsaber duels are as ever exciting. The final showdown with Dooku is good, if strange to see Yoda so lively.

As with all other Star Wars pictures you want to like it, and the idea of life on other galaxies is exciting and the temperature does rise in the second half. It's a let down but given the marvel of the originals there was never any competing. Worthy watch as Revenge of the Sith generates some unanswered questions.

5/10
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Schizophrenic film., 9 Jun 2005
By A Customer
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Early reviews gave this film four / five stars. A classic case of getting caught up in the release hype surrounding a film. Released in 2002, many people were fawning over Attack Of The Clones as if it was the classic return to form from Lucas that many had hoped for.
Viewed several years on, it's an adequate set-up to Episode III :Revenge Of The Sith. This is a schizophrenic film; the first 25 minutes is played like a lurid video game, with non-convincing CGI shots of Coruscant that belongs in some action ride at Universal Studios / Disney World.
(Jumping out of speeder cars and 'free-falling' after bounty hunters? Not only does it look unrealistic, it's just plain daft to watch.)
The latter half remains a superb vision of the Clone Wars, all hell breaking loose on Geonosis, this time with breath-taking CGI that renders the earlier half of the film rubbish by comparison.
The film is again bogged down by the completely awful Jar-Jar Binks. Just an awful CGI creation. At least the Ewoks served a purpose! Binks is pure CGI hell. The thing moves awkwardly, talks infuriatingly and is such a gratingly useless waste of space, the viewer quickly loses patience and interest during every scene in which he appears! George, WHY did you inflict this awful creation on us?!
Lucas may well release dozens of different 'Special Editions' in the future. However, the only way he'll redeem himself from the dark side of Industrial Light And Magic is if Jar Jar Binks is completely re-jiggged. Disastrous amphibian. Overall this film is patchy. Brilliant in the last 45 mins. 6/10
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Chapter 2 - a vast improvement, 4 Jun 2009
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This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
The Phantom Menace was a dreadful beginning to the Star Wars saga, but thankfully some of the damage is repaired in this far better second act. It's still nowhwere near in the same league as the original trilogy, but is still a very enjoyable film. Far darker than any of the original films, and far more 'adult' (it seems that George Lucas was trying to make the films more 'grown-up' but sadly this has the effect of losing some of that magical innocence and escapism that the older movies had), the plot is terribly confusing and muddled with far too much political intrigue and forgettable characters. Ewen McGregor continues to do a very bad impression of Alec Guiness and not for a sceond do I ever believe he is the same person, Hayden Christianson looks mean and moody but does little else and Natalie Portman looks very attractive...but does little else. Old favourites R2D2 and C3PO are pushed into the background in these prequels and don't really contribute a great deal, and the other performances are pretty unremarkable, even the great Christopher Lee looks awkward. Only Ian McDiarmid as Palpatine is worth speaking about (in fact his is probably the best performance in all of the Star Wars movies, and he really ups the precedings every time he appears). The special effects are stunning, still far too much CGI but it's used rather more effectively this time, in fact Attack of the Clones is probably the best looking of all the Star Wars movies with an incredible array of alien planets on display that look truly breathtaking. In conclusion, Attack of the Clones is a visual feast and has some great action scenes, and is much much better than the silly cartoon travesty that was The Phantom Menace, but is still ultimately lacking that old fashioned magic and great characters that the original trilogy had.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A film of two halves, 29 Aug 2007
By 
T. R. Alexander (East Anglia, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
The second film of the prequel trilogy is a lot better than the first film but it still has a long way to go in order to live up to the original films. The first half of the film is pretty much the on a par with the best of the first film, being slightly dull with a bad script and some terrible acting, particularly on the part of Hayden Christensen who may have had the physical presence to play Anakin Skywalker but has the acting ability of a piece of wood.

To be honest though Attack of the Clones does show a lot of improvement from The Phantom Menace especially in the second half of the film which is entertaining and actually feels like Star Wars for the first time in the prequels. Also the CGI is less cartoony than the first but there are still to many forced `comedy' moments and a slight disregard for continuity that annoys the hardened fans. Despite this you can tell that there has been some attempt to listen to the fans to as there are quite a few thing included that they had been asking for after the first film, including more lightsaber fights and back-story for one of the most popular characters from the original films Boba Fett. Although still quite bad in places and not a patch on the originals, Attack of the Clones is still a step in the right direction.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Getting there, 12 Sep 2004
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
As someone who was brought up on Star Wars from a long legacy of family hand-me-downs (including some now very valuable action figures!), the series seems to show the development of the male psyche if anything (you wanna be Luke Skywalker and rotj is your favourite film until you hit puberty, then you wanna be Han Solo and empire is your favourite). When I first saw Star Wars Episode I at the age of 12, I was just excited at the fact it was Star Wars, then I realized on repeat viewings the immenses weaknesses in the film. Episode II is a dramatic improvement, with Jar Jar Binks happily sidelined and instead C3PO and R2D2 back in the classic roles of entertainers and storytellers. The romance does seem to be sped up too much, but the deleted scene where Anakin visits Padme's family massively clarifies the plot, making me wonder why it was taken out in the first place. The special effects definitely make this film entertaining, but the plot is actually very intricate and while no Godfather (this is a children's film, remember!) it beats the tedious Lord of the Rings saga (both boring in book and film format).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Annekin = typical teenager, 28 Dec 2013
By 
Tim (far far away) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Annekin S (or however you spell it) is your typical lanky teenager; all arrogance and hormones, stays out late and obsessed with getting his end away. Not sure if that was intentional or if the actor is just like that.

Otherwise...same old, same old. You've seen it all before and either blindly worship everything named starwars or you over 20 and consider it overworked and lame relying on comp graphics and weakly scripted.

Really funny thing is the MASSIVE plot hole, in that every effort by the Jedi simply accelerates the 'wrong' outcome (no matter how fancy their baton twirling). The galactic war starts in anyway. DUH !! and I thought Jedi were supposed to be good guys.

2 stars for a couple of decent scenes: nice alien bar, and the alien machanic thingy with buzzy wings and insects around it.
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4.0 out of 5 stars This is more like it ..., 17 Sep 2003
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This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
After three years of waiting for the follow-up to The Phantom Menace, Attack of the Clones had a lot deliver. Happily, it does just this, although the fanbase still can't quite unite behind Lucas and where he is taking the pre-trilogy. As with all the other Star Wars films, this is aimed at a young audience, far younger than most of the commentators appear to be (myself included). As such, there has been a lot of material written on the failings of the film - the clunky, plot devise romance or the over-the-top use of CGI effects instead of location shooting. On one level, this film continues to deliver on the poetry themes that Lucas mentioned on the Episode I disk. His recurring theme of the choices made by one generation set against the actions of those who follow is played out skilfully - i.e. Anakin chooses to go and rescue his mother, just as Luke chose to rescue Han and Leia in The Empire Strikes Back. Both choices end in disaster, although for different reasons. Look closely at the unfolding saga and it is already replete with mirrored incidents, where characters find themselves in comparable situations and only their choices or the outcome set them apart. Other examples become clear; both Anakin and Luke leave Tatooine but Anakin chooses to go, while Luke is left with no reason to stay. Both take part in climactic space battles while still novices, although Anakin is there by accident while Luke chooses to fight. Luke looses his hand in a duel with the man he will later defeat and Anakin - well, we'll have to wait and see what he chooses to do to Darth Tyrannous in Episode III. It's possible that on one level this saga is about the different choices of two generations.

Over-analysis aside, I'll remind myself of an earlier point - this is a kids movie. On this second level, it surely can't fail. The whole thing looks fantastic from start to finish, sounds fantastic and is diverting enough to keep most kids (although probably only the boys) quiet for two hours. This story moves faster than The Phantom Menace, with more chases, more humour and bigger battles. There is a calm section in the middle, punctuated only with a major fight and chase sequence as Obi-Wan squares off against a familiar looking adversary. Yet the final conflict on the plains of Geonosis is stunning work and worth the wait, showcasing just how far CGI has been developed in recent years.

While none of this is classic Star Wars in style, it is also fair to remind ourselves that it was never going to be. Film making skills and techniques have moved on since the early eighties when Return of the Jedi was released. The things that made the original Star Wars what is was are still there, lurking behind the glossy special effects - the good versus evil plot, the cheesy dialogue, the fantasy settings. Comparing the new trilogy with the old is like comparing the James Bond films Die Another Day (2002) and Octopussy (1983), only to then act indignant that they look and feel different. What can we honestly expect? And let's be clear - can we really criticise Attack of the Clones for being effects heavy? As children, did any of us really care that Return of the Jedi was probably the most effects-dense film ever made? I suspect not. In fact, of course we didn't! We loved it! George Lucas knows his audience. If there's a problem, may be it's that the audience is yet to be comfortable with itself.

As a DVD package, this is a virtual repeat of The Phantom Menace format but for some reason it feels to be a bit lacking in comparison. The fantastic documentary made for Episode I is replaced with an in depth look at the creation of digital characters, specifically Yoda. While this is interesting, the gloss is taken away by the fact that, Lucas aside, most of the contributions to the disk and the commentary seem to be from the effects team who point out how much of what you're looking at isn't really there. Where space ships are concerned, this is fine but the cyber-reality has stretched so far into the acting realm there are many shots where what you thought was an actor is revealed to be no more than pixels (e.g. ALL the Clone Troopers are CGI. Not one costume was made). The fact you'd never noticed before is testament to the skill of the graphics artists, but the power of the illusion was in the not knowing it was an illusion. It is obvious that the Star Wars films are now more akin to animated features, like Toy Story, but with the odd live element dropped in afterwards. The 2nd disk does damage the enjoyment of the film by revealing too much of the computer trickery, which seems to be a shame. For Episode III, can we have a little more talk about the plot and the characters and a little less about how clever those effects guys are? There is more creative talent at play here than just the graphics. Let's hear about it!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Almost but not quite, 20 Sep 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Attack of the Clones is a huge improvement on The Phantom Menace but unfortunately still shares some of the flaws that plagued its predecessor. But at its core it is very much a Star Wars film, George Lucas successfully recaptured that magic thankfully.
The first hour of the movie is fantastic, right from the opening scene of Senator Amidala's ship landing on Coruscant which just took my breath away to the chase scene and climax in the bar, it's Star Wars at its best. The acting was much improved with Hayden Christensen doing a fine job as Anakin... Shame about the romance though, that was utter pants! Why exactly do they love each other???
The script was well done for the most part. The injection of some much needed one line humour (mostly from Obi-Wan) was desperately needed after the wooden script of Episode I. McGregor does a great job throughout the film and makes Obi-Wan far and away the best character in the movie.
However, the last 30 minutes or so are a jumbled mess just like TPM. It all starts going wrong in the Conveyor Belt scene (totally pointless) and snowballs from there. The arena scene starts ok but drags on so long I just wanted it to end halfway through. Then the big land battle starts and it's just too much to take in. George Lucas made this same mistake in Episode I with 3 or 4 different climatic storylines running concurrently. It's nowhere near as bad this time but I would have preferred a slightly more toned down, shorter ending.
The final duel is less spectacular than the 3 way fight in TPM but what it lacks in flips, sommersaults and basic "wow factor" it makes up for with tension and style, mostly from Christopher Lee who is a terrific bad guy! And of course, Yoda's little impression of a gremlin on speed brings the house down every time!
Overall, it's a highly entertainining movie and on my first viewing I absolutely loved it. The electric atmosphere in the cinema greatly enhanced my enjoyment and I thought the film was near flawless. It totally drew me in and I was wrapped up in this mythical fantasy world for two hours, the real world didn't exist, which is exactly what this type of film is trying to achieve. But on my second viewing in a near empty cinema I did see many flaws that had not been so noticeable the first time around and hence the reason why I give it 4 stars.
Still, Attack of the Clones is a worthy addition to the Star Wars saga. I was very worried George Lucas had lost his magic touch, but this film shows that he's still got it in spades (for the most part). Roll on Episode III....
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars great release and best one of the prequels so far, 29 Sep 2004
By 
When i first saw attck of the clones i really enjoyed it and thought it was better than phantom menace it is good to see how the lead up to the clone wars paned out i was really pleased when they finally got to show us how r2 and 3po got together for their historic partnership it was also interesting to see anikins anger come out as we know that will lead him to the dark side and the rest is as you say history i also thought the first battle of the clone war was very exciting hope the next film can be as good.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Better than Episode I, but that's not hard., 27 July 2014
This review is from: Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones [DVD] [2002] (DVD)
Much better than the dreadful Episode 1: The Phantom Menace, but still a vapid entry into the Star Wars franchise. This second movie of the trilogy only just about touches on the start of the fabled "Clone Wars" when in fact what George Lucas should have done was have the wars as the backdrop to this movie and show it in all its glory. Hayden Christenson takes over as the now teenage Anakin Skywalker, and instead of a hero to root for, making the eventual downfall all that more tragic, Anakin is played as a sulky, unlikeable, petulant little boy who contributes to some of the most cringeworthy dialogue known to man (Check out the scene in the house on Naboo with Padme to see what I mean) Each character has a dreadful habit of starting any dialogue by addressing the other by name, as if to remind the audience who is who. People just don't talk like that. Ewan McGregor looks almost embarrassed to be Obi-Wan Kenobi, now sporting a mullet and beard that both change length and bushiness frequently throughout the movie. There's no real bad guy to hiss at either, as Christopher Lee's "Count Dooku" only shows up towards the end, and as good as the veteran Lee is, the character isn't terribly memorable. John Williams rang in his score for this one, as it feels half-hearted. Great special effects, but not much else.
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