Greetings again. Penning this review is none other than your friendly neighborhood science-fiction guru, Trehern. And what Star Wars saga would be complete without the Clone Wars? Episode II of the six-part Star Wars story is the breakout of the Clone Wars (first made mention of in A New Hope) and, in my opinion, the first of the new trilogy (1999-2005) to actually tie in events that would affect the Star Wars galaxy for decades to come.
However, do not consider this a sub-standard film. There are some points where the movie gets really good. First, Obi-Wan’s side mission gives us a glimpse of how Kenobi of the old trilogy (1977-1983) would have thought and what adventures he had when he was young. Ewan McGregor, somewhat lacking in Episode I, finally finds his place and portrays the Jedi Knight as wise, calm and adventurous, just like the Obi-Wan Kenobi of earlier decades. Second, the politics of the universe get evermore turbulent as the Senate of the Republic hits critical mass. As I mentioned above, the Supreme Chancellor has gained more and more persuasion in the Senate; and with growing trouble with the Separatists (defined later in this review), the Senate votes him emergency powers that Palpatine claims he will lay down when the danger has been subdued. With these powers, Palpatine orders the creation of a Grand Army of the Republic, using clones from the planet of Kamino (investigated by Obi-Wan while these events occur on Coruscant). The Separatists have a huge druid army supplied by none other than the Trade Federation (one of the few minor characters to be featured in all three of the new trilogy movies was Nute Gunray, Viceroy of the Trade Federation. How does he get in and Darth Maul not?).
Characters and Events That Should Have Been Portrayed Deeper in Episode I
So One Can Understand Them In Episode II1. Darth Sidious: After Episode I was released, Lucas tried to fool the public by saying Darth Sidious and Senator Palpatine had no connection whatsoever. In actuality, as a young thirteen-year-old, I saw through his lies and easily realized that Palpatine and Sidious are one and the same, and the plan to begin a war within the Republic would leave it weak enough for him to take power. Does it work? YES. Should we have known his plan from the beginning? YES. Would it have made a darker and more in-depth film? ABSOLUTELY.
2. Mace Windu: One of the coolest Jedi Masters, Mace Windu (Samuel L. Jackson) is the tough guy of the Jedi Council. People claim he was the toughest with a lightsaber and the most “in your face” Jedi of the saga; I agree. Although, why wasn’t he featured more than just a talking head in Episode I? What makes him so firm of mind and greatly feared? Thank goodness he got some action in the Clone Wars. Who’s to thank for the purple lightsaber? Me, brother…me.
3. Clones: No mention at all in Episode I. No mention of technology or Kaminoans (?) or side effects or even plans. In Episode II, the Kaminoans claim the order for the clones was made by a Jedi Master by the name of Sifo-Dyas, but Kenobi explains that he was murdered almost ten years ago, the exact time as the events in Episode I. Did we know of this Sifo-Dyas and his clone orders? NO. Should we have? YES. My speculation can only determine that Sifo-Dyas’ death occurred after the Battle of Naboo and Palpatine/Sidious himself, under the dead Jedi’s name, ordered the clones. Since Kamino is outside the Outer Rim, who are they to know of these events?
5. Count Dooku (Darth Tyranus): Played by the monotone and lackluster Christopher Lee (Saruman, Scaramanger), Dooku is the new apprentice of Darth Sidious, carries a limp lightsaber (take that as you will) and heads the Separatist movement. They call him a political idealist, as was Qui-Gon Jinn, and he was one of the twenty to leave the Jedi Order. Now he’s evil. How did we miss all this information? He should have been featured in Episode I, at least briefly, perhaps arguing against the Council in some scene. But then again, his character could have been eliminated altogether and replaced with a certain someone named Darth “The Enforcer” Maul. Donning ancient Sith robes and finally gaining high power in his master’s favor, Maul could have easily led the Separatist army against the Republic. That way, Anakin and Obi-Wan could have faced him as a team in honor of Qui-Gon. Wait, wait…I think that may have been too deep for Lucas.
6. The Padmé-Anakin Love Story: Quick fix: Make Anakin 14-something instead of 10 in Episode I. A 10-year old hooking up with a 14-year old? Eww? (Actually? Fist bump. - Trehern, 2013) This way, the two lovers would be the same age and we would see young love bloom and eventually suffer throughout the trilogy. (Refer to the Episode I review to read my thoughts on an older Annie). Other than that, the film was very good (Eh, it was only "okay"... - Trehern, 2013). The Clone Wars turned out pretty awesome, although when I first saw A New Hope, I thought it was the Jedi vs. the Clones, but I guess this works. You also start to see the birth of the Galactic Empire (i.e. Clone-Stormtrooper armor, Star Destroyers, plans for the Death Star).