Movie Plot – Star Wars II: Attack of the Clones (2002): Ten years after first meeting, Anakin Skywalker shares a forbidden romance with Padmé Amidala, while Obi-Wan Kenobi investigates an assassination attempt on the senator and discovers a secret clone army created for the Jedi.
Director: George Lucas
Writers: George Lucas, Jonathan Hales
Cast: Hayden Christensen, Natalie Portman, Ewan McGregor, Christopher Lee, Samuel L. Jackson
Attack of the Clones
George Lucas had to put up with a lot of criticism when a new ‘Star Wars’ movie finally hit theaters in 1999. Of course, expectations were unrealistically high and it was virtually impossible to replicate the impact that the original ‘Star Wars’ films made on viewers.
The sequel, “Star Wars Episode II: The Attack of the Clones,” does offer less Jar Jar Binks. Still, the film lacks the infectious energy and characters of the original trilogy, and is still flawed in its portrayal of the young Anakin Skywalker aka Darth Vader.
Star Wars: Attack of the Clones II used to be my least favorite film of the franchise. Now that I’ve rewatched it, it’s still in that spot. The movie gets worse by every rewatch.
More focus on Jedi’s
George Lucas has clearly taken some of the criticism of “Episode I” to heart. For example, “star players” like Obi-Wan and Yoda get significantly more to do while the role of the irritating Jar-Jar is kept to a minimum.
One of the more enjoyable additions is Samuel L. Jackson as Jedi Mace Windu. This one he really gets into the action, with a funky purple lightsaber.
Obi-Wan’s journey was pretty interesting in Attack of The Clones. It’s pretty obvious why he’s one of the favorites of Star Wars fans.
Natalie Portman has a much more vivid role in Attack of the Clones. She, as Senator (Padmé) Amidala, gets involved in a romance with Anakin. This would have been punishable in the previous volume given the age difference. She laughs a lot, goes out with Anakin a few times, and even turns into an action heroine in the final act of the film.
Unfortunately, the person with whom Padmé experiences her romance is such a whiny and uncharming individual. It’s hard to say whether it’s because of the actor (Hayden Christensen), the script, or the direction. Personally, I think it’s a combination of both. The acting is very cringy at times. On top of that, the lines he had were written looed like one for an amateur play.
Still, Christensen has shown in other films that he can act quite nicely. But here he comes across as a little kid who doesn’t get his way instead of a powerful (apprentice) Jedi in whom the dark side starts to rise too much.
The anger he expresses immediately after the death of a loved one is convincing, though. This is one includes one of the most memorable scenes of this film though.
Some cool stuff
Early in the film, there is already a very entertaining chase with “speeders” in very crowded airspace. Not only is this an exciting sequence, the interaction between the somewhat brash Anakin and cautious Obi-Wan is also entertaining.
Another fun part is the confrontation between Obi-Wan and Jango Fett. Then there is also the chase of it, using seismic bombs. As a result, Obi-Wan uses a similar disappearing act to Han Solo in the original Star Wars. That was kind of fun to watch.
But Lucas has saved the best for last, with great battles with monsters and Jedi knights in a coliseum and a personal confrontation between Yoda and the film’s villain.
Star Wars II: Attack of the Clones is my least favorite Star Wars film. However, it does have its great moments!