Bil’s rating (out of 5): BB.5.
USA, 2005. Lucasfilm, Mestiere Cinema, Pandora Films, Santa International Film Productions Co. Ltd., CTV Services. Screenplay by George Lucas. Cinematography by David Tattersall. Produced by Rick McCallum. Music by John Williams. Production Design by Gavin Bocquet. Costume Design by Trisha Biggar. Film Editing by Roger Barton, Ben Burtt.
Following their rescue of Chancellor Palpatine from the separatist Droid army, headstrong Annakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) finds himself wavering between his devotion to the Jedi and his growing fondness for the Chancellor’s admonishment. Meanwhile, his secretly wedded wife Padmé (Natalie Portman) is pregnant with their child and worried about their future (and sitting around doing nothing, I might add). Obi-Wan Kenobi travels the galaxy on the Jedi council’s orders in the hopes of capturing the Droid army’s leader and putting an end to the war between the Republic and the Separatists, but is the focus on rooting out the evil where it should be? It seems that the presence of the Dark Side is looming, and council leaders Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) and Yoda need to solve its whereabouts in order to restore balance to the galaxy. Lucas keeps his audience far too ahead of the game (even for a prequel) and never manages to generate much interest from the story, alternating between scenes of endless babble dialogue and loud, complicated battleship fights in outer space. The visual effects are stupendous, as are the sets and costumes, but the acting and direction are B-movie quality disguised by the immense budget for fancy gadgetry (and for my money, Attack Of The Clones was a lot prettier and better plotted). The most enjoyable aspect of this movie, really, is seeing how the filmmaking team tries to match the older movies by giving the male leads those magnificent, shaggy Bay City Rollers hairdos that Luke Skywalker and Han Solo once sported. Basement-living dweebs who refer to the original Star Wars film colloquially as “Episode IV” or “A New Hope” will probably find their eyes welling up with tears when Annakin finally (after three long goddamn movies) becomes Darth Vader, while the rest of us simply endure the numbing boredom before we can go home and throw Empire Strikes Back on.
Academy Award Nomination: Best Makeup