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Customer Review

13 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A pleasing surprise: stylised animation suits the Star Wars universe, 27 Aug. 2008
This review is from: Star Wars - The Clone Wars [Blu-ray] [2008] [Region Free] (Blu-ray)
After the disappointment of Eps2 and 3, the Clone Wars goes a long way towards rekindling the excitement I've always associated with Star Wars. It returns to the non-stop action rollercoaster feel of the Luke Skywalker days, where the heroes gallop across the galaxy from one hot spot to the next, light-sabres blazing and blasters, err, blasting.

The style of animation takes some getting used to: it's nothing like a realistic or slick as Pixar, so you won't be seeing images like those in the feature-length Beowulf or Final Fantasy films. Instead it merges the Star Ward universe with some mange/anime styles to create a different, 2D experience. Where this works especially well is with the giant space cruisers (every bit as onimous as the models in Ep1, I feel), and with some truly moody and evocotive shots set under Tatootine's twin suns.
The flaws in the Clone Wars are similar to those which plagued the recent live-action trilogy: too much of a good thing. Some of the action is ridiculously over-fast which robs the Jedi fights of the grace and majesty they deserve. And where a droid army faces a clone army there's just too much firepower -- the overall themes can be drowned in a blizzard of blaster fire.

However, there's also an awful lot to love in the Clone Wars. Anakin comes over as a more developed character in this installment than he did in the three prequels; he faces a real challenge in a female Sith warrior; and a younger Padewan Jedi joins him to bulk out the cast for the transfer to a long-running TV series. The clones themselves take on characteristics too -- there's a lovely sequence which shows them all with different hair cuts/colours, so they can tell each other apart...
The well-known voices really jazz up the soundtrack (as does the revised theme music), although I felt that the majority of the vocals were very well delivered, and didn't conflict with my memory of how Obi-Wan, ofr instance, should sound.

The Clone Wars doesn't add a great deal to the Star Wars mythology. It's not ground-breaking scfi-fi, nor particularly inventive animation. However, it does help to round out a big gap in the history of the series, and lets us finally see the Jedi and the Republic in their time of maximum power. It's a very entertaining romp for the family, although adults who aren't Star Wars fans may struggle to understand what exactly the thrill is for the rest of us...
7/10
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