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Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones

2002
 1.0


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 Written by
Jonathan Hales Screenplay
George Lucas Screenplay

 Directed by
George Lucas



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 Release Date
May 15, 2002

 Runtime
2 hours and 22 minutes (142 minutes)

 Cast
Ewan McGregor
  Obi-Wan Kenobi
Natalie Portman
  Padmé Amidala
Hayden Christensen
  Anakin Skywalker
Christopher Lee
  Count Dooku
Samuel L. Jackson
  Mace Windu
Frank Oz
  Yoda (voice)
Ian McDiarmid
  Chancellor Palpatine
Pernilla August
  Shmi Skywalker
Temuera Morrison
  Jango Fett / Clone Troopers
Jimmy Smits
  Senator Bail Organa
Jack Thompson
  Cliegg Lars
Leeanna Walsman
  Zam Wesell
Ahmed Best
  Jar Jar Binks / Achk Med-Beq (voice)
Rose Byrne
  Dormé
Oliver Ford Davies
  Governor Sio Bibble
Ron Falk
  Dexter Jettster (voice)
Jay Laga'aia
  Captain Typho
Andy Secombe
  Watto (voice)
Anthony Daniels
  C-3PO / Dannl Faytonni
Silas Carson
  Viceroy Nute Gunray / Ki-Adi Mundi
Ayesha Dharker
  Queen Jamillia
Daniel Logan
  Boba Fett
Joel Edgerton
  Owen Lars
Bonnie Piesse
  Beru
Anthony Phelan
  Lama Su (voice)
Rena Owen
  Taun We (voice)
Alethea McGrath
  Madame Jocasta Nu
Susie Porter
  Hermione Bagwa / WA-7
Matt Doran
  Elan Sleazebaggano
Alan Ruscoe
  Gilramos Libkath
Matt Sloan
  Plo Koon
Veronica Segura
  Cordé
David Bowers
  Mas Amedda
Steve John Shepherd
  Naboo lieutenant
Bodie Taylor
  Clone Trooper
Matt Rowan
  Senator Orn Free Taa
Steven Boyle
  Senator Ask Aak / Passel Argente
Zachariah Jensen
  Kit Fisto
Alex Knoll
  J.K. Burtola
Phoebe Yiamkiati
  Mari Amithest
Kenny Baker
  R2-D2
Jerome St. John Blake
  Oppo Rancisis
Hassani Shapi
  Eeth Koth
Gin Clarke
  Adi Gallia
Khan Bonfils
  Saesee Tiin
Michaela Cottrell
  Even Piell
Dipika O'Neill Joti
  Depa Billaba
Marton Csokas
  Poggle the Lesser (voice) (uncredited)


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Beyond bad
By Jack Anderson on April 14, 2019
 1

This movie is even worse than The Phantom Menace. There are so many things that I'm not even sure where to start.

BORING POLITICS
All the political stuff is as boring as hell.

CHEESY ROMANCE
All the romance stuff is as cheesy as can be. The writing is so frickin' immature that you'd think it's been written by a 6 year old having no clue of what love is. This is Romeo & Juliet in Space, only horrible.

SUMMARY
I give it 1 out of 10. Beyond bad.


NeoBrowser



The collective fever that characterized the countdown to The Phantom Menace had long since dissipated by the time the first sequel prequel rolled off the ILM production line. Casual spectators, once stung, had decamped en masse to the newly discovered Middle-Earth, leaving George Lucas with just the few million hardcore fans - true believers who, with all the apprehension of parents at a nativity play, willed their defrocked hero back towards respectability.

There are certainly stretches in the patchy Attack Of The Clones when Lucas’ flat-packed dialogue struggles to keep the hecklers quiet – Anakin’s seduction of the former Queen has all the charm of a teenage lunge behind the bike-sheds and none of the feeling – but by the time climactic ‘reel six’ cranks into high gear the saga’s reputation as the godfather of modern sci-fi spectacle is more or less restored. Indeed, when Yoda finally unsheathes his mini-saber and kicks Sith ass the faithful can reliably be found standing on seats hollering as if the outcome was never in doubt. But, as the little Jedi might say, in doubt it was.

Where Episode V fairly zipped around the galaxy with all the breezy confidence of youth, unafraid to travel anywhere, even dark places, the second middle child of the saga is saddled with an altogether heavier burden from which it struggles to escape. Empire hits the ground running on ice planet Hoth, Clones however, has a truly cold start to contend with, aware perhaps that the movie’s most pressing task is to simply atone for the more egregious sins of Episode I. Thus, Jar Jar is quickly sidelined, the upgraded CGI Yoda gets a showcase and those damn Amidala-clones are killed off on page one. On Coruscant we also meet the grown-up ‘Ani’ - okay so he’s a whiny teenager but that’s still a vast improvement on the bowl-haired moppet the world was asked to root for in 1999.

Also more powerful than when last we met is Ewan McGregor’s Obi-Wan, the Jedi who was simply wan in Menace is a much more forceful presence as a full-bearded Master, struggling manfully with the endless exposition and even landing the odd punchline.

As with Empire, the protagonists are separated for the second act: while Obi-Wan is busy uncovering the conspiracy of the Clones, Anakin and Padme turn into colourless clones of Han and Leia in the romance stakes. There are pleasures (Obi-Wan squares off against Jango Fett) and pitfalls (Anakin and Padme have a picnic) in roughly equal measure throughout this flabby middle act but as with Episode I mostly you get a sense of drama that is willed into being, a necessary bridge to Episode III that requires Lucas to traverse territory – romance, politics – he is simply not comfortable in.

Matters improve greatly in the final forty minutes: Christopher Lee’s Count Dooku arrives to provide some much needed gravitas, C-3PO turns up to do his C-3PO thing and Padme puts on a skin-tight white leotard. Best of all, Lucas finally cuts loose. The classic trilogy bristled with seat-of-your-pants filmmaking, our heroes bouncing from cliffhanger to cliffhanger, and in the final section of Episode II – almost four hours into this prequel enterprise - Lucas at last cranks up to this Saturday morning serial pace: from the Tex Avery goofiness of the droid factory, to the Cecil B. De Mille grandeur of the gladiator arena, the action never lets up.

Also in the last reel we finally get to divine something of Lucas’ grand design, with ironic pay-offs for the fans still paying close attention - it is the witless Jar Jar who makes the creation of a clone army possible and Yoda who first leads what will become Stormtroopers into battle. In its own way, the end of Episode II is every bit as dark as the famous end of Episode V.

Unsurprisingly, the least anticipated movie of the saga suffered at the box office – Episode IV raked in more money at the US box office back in 1977 – and remains largely unloved by the fanbase for its emphasis on the central love story but despite no real improvement in dialogue or acting it functions perfectly well as an old fashioned romantic epic, complete with standalone set-pieces, rich political intrigue and a painters’ pallette. Indeed, so indebted is Lucas to David O. Selznick here, ultimately he may have been better served abandoning his own trilogy structure and boiling both Episodes I and II down to a 3-hour Gone With The Wind style classic – an approach that would have at least halved all that damn anticipation.


Verdict - The middle episode that can make a virtue of its bridging role is rare indeed. And where The Empire Strikes Back dazzled with vertiginous cliffhangers, Clones is more typical of the breed, necessary but not vital. However, as we make the awkward journey through Anakin’s teenage trials a sparkling digital print ensures there is still much to marvel at, not least a little green fella who is surprisingly quick on the draw.

3/5

- Colin Kennedy, Empire Magazine



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