**Official** MEDIA reviews of AOTC -- your reactions

Discussion in 'Attack of the Clones' started by jasman, May 2, 2002.

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  1. Jumbo_Fett Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 6, 2002
    star 1
    The thing I don't understand is those that say they just despise the movie and basically say there is nothing good about it. That's where they lose their credibility. Rex Reed throws out that it's as exciting as a flat can of Yoo-Hoo. Sure, I guess that's a witty little blurb, but it's a BS review. I honestly don't know what these people expect.

    And Ebert. He throws out that Yoda doesn't fight. Where did he get this? In ESB Yoda is referred to as a great warrior. It's there. So to go into a movie with the belief that Yoda is a pacifist and then be bent out of shape that he isn't, is stupid.
  2. foxbatkllr Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2001
    star 6
    AL_Skywalker posted this on his own thread earlier which was quickly locked. I personally thought it was extremely well thought out and appreciate the work he put into it, so I'm reposting it here for him.


    Below is a "Review of Reviews" that I originally wrote after seeing AOTC the first time. I have since revised it slightly after having seen AOTC a second and third time. I would appreciate your comments, since I am hoping to submit it to be published. Thank you.

    First of all, a disclaimer that this ?Review of Reviews? does not cover every review of ?Star Wars Episode II: Attack Of The Clones?. It is just a sample of what I consider to be the major early reviews. All best efforts were made to make an accurate representation of the reviews mentioned below based on select quotes and excerpts. I do not make any guarantees that errors were not made in that effort. This ?review of reviews? includes quotes and excerpts from the following:

    [1] Box Office Mojo (an internet box office site) ?Second Star Wars Good, But No Second Coming ? Grade B-? by Jonas Schwartz (circa May 13, 2002)
    [2] Chicago Sun-Times: ?Star Wars ? Episode 2: Attack Of The Clones ** ? by Roger Ebert (May 10, 2002)
    [3] Entertainment Weekly (EW): ?Star Wars: Episode II ? Attack Of The Clones ? Grade C+? by Lisa Schwarzbaum (circa May 13, 2002)
    [4] LA Times: ?When We Last Saw Our Heroes ?? by Kenneth Turan (May 13, 2002)
    [5] NY Times: ?Kicking Up Cosmic Dust? by A. O. Scott (May 10, 2002)
    [6] Hollywood Reporter: ?Star Wars: Episode II ? Attack Of The Clones? by Kirk Honeycutt (May 9, 2002)

    All of these reviews (and, most likely, others as well) have two central themes in common: 1) They are all critical of the acting and dialog in ?Clones?; 2) and they all harken back to the glory days of the original trilogy, particularly the original ?Star Wars? (now officially titled ?Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope? and ?Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back?.

    In both of these central themes, these critics are surprisingly in lock-step. Not consistent as one might expect from the separately reached conclusions of several unique and independent individuals. But rather, the marching-to-the-same-beat that is reminiscent of the clone soldiers in the film. Seemingly capable of independent action and thought ? but all a product of the same mainstream media, all with the same limited scope and vision, all with the exact same covert and sinister mission ? to attempt to undermine and sabotage anything that does not meet the film-making style that has been preordained by the mainstream media and the Hollywood establishment. (I?ll get to that later).

    With regard to the acting, (usually referring to Christensen and/or Portman) they use terms such as: [1]?stilted?, [1] ?deer caught in the headlights?, [2] ?strangely stiff and formal?, [3] ?in a funk?, [3] ?preoccupied?, [4] ?uniformly impassive? [4] ?weighted down?, [4] ?flimsy?, [4] ?underdeveloped?, [5] ?worst line readings of their careers?, [5] ?timid and stiff?, [6] ?unconvincing? and ?abrupt?, [6] ?dull? and ?unmotivated?, [6] ?glacial? (referring to Christopher Lee), [6] ?barely registers?, [6] ?Wooden? and, running out of similar adjectives, falling back on the rather imprecise and simple ? [6] ?bad?.

    With regard to the dialog, they use obviously similar terms such as: [1] ?stale?, [2] ?flat utilitarian style?, [2] ?more like lawyers than the heroes of a romantic fantasy? [2] ?most basic and weary romantic clichés?, [2] ?banal?, [3] ?not as Wookiee-footed as in ?The Phantom Menace? ? (emphasis added), [3] ?with occasional position-paper statements?, [4] ?flat?, [4] ?pious?, [4] ?predictive?, [4] ?pathetic? [4] ?ransacked from old Harlequin novels?, [5] ?as thick with exposition as an undergraduate history course? [5] ?embarrassing?, [6] ?flat-footed?, and again, [6] ?stilted?.

    While there are some trivial differences amongst these major reviews (some liked Lee?s performance, others did not ? some like McGregor?s ? some did not ? most liked the action sequences ? one of them wa
  3. Curio Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Oct 21, 2001
    star 1
    That is quite superb! Why was his thread closed for gods sake - more lock-happy admins???? That deserves its own thread and shouldn't be buried away in this lengthy reviews thread where it will most likely not be seen by many.

    Al_Skywalker - very nice work.
  4. foxbatkllr Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2001
    star 6
    It was closed because it was a reaction to media reviews. Although it was unique and superb it still was a bit redundant. But I took the liberty of posting it here because I didn't wanna see it get ignored completely.
  5. DarthHomer Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Apr 29, 2000
    star 5
    You know the opening of ANH where it felt like the star destroyer was flying right over the audience's heads?
    Well, the prequels are the star destroyer, and the critics are the audience.
    Think about it . . . :)
  6. KeithFranklin Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 1998
    star 2
    Just so everyone knows RottenTomatoes has posted several reviews (Not new...Just hadnt been put up before) and the meter now stands at 59% ...AOTC needs them to put up one more positive...

    By the way in the counts are like this 73 positive 50 negative...

    If you go by all counts (Includes reviews not posted) they are 102 positive and 52 negative. Why they dont post these I dont know.
  7. Kelyne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 25, 1999
    star 3
    Here are some letters responding too Salons scathing review of AOTC. You will notice the first letter commends the writer. here
  8. augusto Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 6, 2001
    star 4
    Well, the letters are spot on, thanks for the link.
  9. Kelyne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 25, 1999
    star 3
    Here is a incredible link of reviews. here
  10. Ded-Man Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jan 18, 2002
    star 2
    Al_Skywalker, I am completely and utterly in awe.

    Could someone please get a hold of this chap and ask him to submit this as a full-blown editorial to TFN?
  11. foxbatkllr Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2001
    star 6
    Unfortunately AL_Skywalker may have been banned because he was very pissed after his thread was locked. I haven't seen him on since. Look out for him though and then PM him.
  12. Kelyne Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 25, 1999
    star 3
    I don't blame him for being pist. Its one of those rare cases where time, energy and thought that went into the argument....should justify its own thread.

    But I am just a pebble here....
  13. RiggsWolfe Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Mar 3, 2002
    star 2
    The real reason most reviewers bashed AOTC is simple. They move in herds. They also get their panties twisted about certain people in the business and no matter what that person does they'll be attacked. Generally, the more successful a person the more the critics will start to hate them.

    Lucas is one. They hate him. They always will. He could put out something that was the Citizen Kane of its day and they'd tear it apart.

    Another example is John Travolta. He's made some shaky decisions, but still , alot of his movies aren't NEARLY as bad as reviewers claim. Swordfish really had an interesting moral quandry in it.

    Make no mistake, reviewers today have an agenda.
  14. foxbatkllr Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 27, 2001
    star 6
    Ok the criticisms of Travolta are in many cases rather justified...Battlefield Earth anyone? Broken Arrow anyone? Michael anyone?
  15. deltron_zero Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Feb 1, 2002
    star 6
  16. BaronLaw Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 19, 2002
    star 1
    The negative reviews are not, in my view, completely off base.

    The romance was completely unconvincing with a horrible acting performance (for the second straight SW movie) by Natalie Portman. Too much time was spent on scenes with Portman and Hayden rattling off truly embarrasing lines--I actually rolled my eyes at a few points.

    Dex's Diner ? What was that ? A homage to Happy Days in a galaxy far, far away ? Out of place in the Star Wars universe.

    For the record, I enjoyed the movie overall. But, in my opinion, it's the weakest of the all the Star Wars films to date. A thumbs up, but only just. In grade terms, a C+/B-.

    BaronLaw
  17. admiral jimmy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 1999
    star 4
    RT has moved up to 59%... very strange
  18. Sergeant_Steiner Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    May 4, 2002
    star 1
    RT's decision not to include the vast majority of reviews from overseas means the current score of 59% is a rather parochial view of AOTC.

    The reaction to this film has been far more negative in the US than elsewhere and yet the overall score is still only 1% below fresh. If the score included reviews from overseas I think the score would be in the high 60s. T

    I recently watched Castaway a film the majority of US Critics seemed to love(86%) and I have to say the pacing problems in AOTC are nothing compared to Castaway which was a yawn from start to finish.

  19. admiral jimmy Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Nov 14, 1999
    star 4
    There are no "pacing problems" in AOTC !!!

    And here in Austria I haven´t seen a positive review so far...
  20. jpmaxted Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    Mar 27, 2002
    LOL, Jane Horowitz in the Washington Post takes a swipe at AOTC in her Spirit review:

    "Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron" tries awkwardly to be evenhanded near the end, but its sympathies and sense of sadness are clear, despite the child-friendly happy ending. Still, more happens in the 82 minutes of "Spirit" than, dare we say, in all 142 of "Attack of the Clones."
  21. episodenone Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Jun 13, 2001
    star 4
    up


    after TFN.net posted a rex reed review last week - i wrote a well-articulated and polite letter back to him - and told him to think before he speaks.

    read on:
    it is a true shame that you used a line like this "lining Mr. Lucas? pockets with enough revenue to rebuild the World Trade Center." in your review. it will now, and forever be taboo to use 9/11 as a reference for a movie critic, or anyone for that matter, when referring to a movie for entertainment.
    you should strongly consider apologizing for such a statement.
    it goes along with a very negative review that, unfortunately, this is precisely why so many people i know have no interest in your opinions.
    you have to remember to gear your review to it's appropriate target audience.
    you failed to mention any of AotC stronger points that were loved by all the people at the 3 different shows i attended.
    why would you feel so jaded to attack this movie so vigorously, i do not know. however, you do anyone who feels your reviews are worthwhile a great disservice by your inability to take all moviegoers into account when issuing a review so terribly one-sided.
    thus, in the future, try to remember your youth and what people enjoy going to escapist movies for, and try less to be the reason why some of us want to escape.
    what a disappointment you are.

    [face_smile]
  22. Shelley Jedi Youngling

    Member Since:
    Sep 9, 2001
    star 5
    it is a true shame that you used a line like this "lining Mr. Lucas? pockets with enough revenue to rebuild the World Trade Center." in your review. it will now, and forever be taboo to use 9/11 as a reference for a movie critic, or anyone for that matter, when referring to a movie for entertainment.

    Rex Reed actually said that?

    He should be ashamed of himself, and he should apologize. In fact, I imagine that if he'd made that offensive comment about any other blockbuster movie (especially the newly sainted Spiderman), he would have been forced to apologize by whichever newspapers run his column. But since that comment was about AOTC, which the media has a grudge against, it was perfectly fine.
  23. JediHPDrummer Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 23, 2002
    star 3
    Hey Hey what sup Guys. I ust wanted to post up a great review by one of the cinescape reviewers. It's awesome because he speaks the truth!

    The bulk of reviews, both by fans and by journalists, have decided that STAR WARS: EPISODE II - ATTACK OF THE CLONES is far superior to the misguided antics of EPSIODE I and yet still not as good as the classic trilogy that we all know and love. While the first part of that statement is definitely true, can we be so sure about the second part?

    I don?t think so.


    It isn?t fair for us to compare the STAR WARS of today with the STAR WARS of yesteryear, and here?s why: we aren?t really comparing PHANTOM MENACE and CLONES to HOPE and EMPIRE. Rather, we?re comparing PHANTOM MENACE and CLONES to our memories of HOPE and EMPIRE.


    And memories can never be judged accurately.


    Sure, you?re a STAR WARS fanatic. If you weren?t, you wouldn?t be reading this review. It?s a week after the movie came out, and there have been hundreds of reviews for the film published, but still you?re reading yet another review? therefore you must, like me, be a fanatic.


    And as a fanatic, you?ve seen the original trilogy more times than can be counted? unless you have bothered to actually count them, in which case you?re not just a fanatic, you?re a raving lunatic.


    Because you?ve seen them so many times, and you?ve memorized your favorite lines, you?re tempted to think you know them and can judge them objectively? but this just isn?t
    Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) and Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Chistensen) in ATTACK OF THE CLONES
    © and TM 2002 Lucasfilm Ltd.
    true.




    Suppose you?re seeing JEDI for the first time? Ewoks? I was still in grade school when JEDI came out, and while I wasn?t a big Ewok fan, it?s not like they annoyed me. They were just fine. But now try to imagine if, last Thursday, you?d gone to the theater and watched JEDI for the first time ever. That?d be really annoying, huh?


    OK, so Ewoks aren?t as bad as Jar Jar Binks, but they?re pretty damn close. Imagine if Ewoks spoke English like Jar Jar? you?d want to strangle the little jerks.


    What about that little guy who sits on Jabba?s throne and cackles like an idiot. When I watch that guy he doesn?t bother me one bit, because I remember him being funny to me when I saw it the first time. But if I?d never seen that guy before, and then he showed up in CLONES, it would have been like, ?What was Lucas thinking??


    And it?s not just JEDI. Take the background aliens in the famous cantina scene from the first movie. Or Lobot?s headgear in EMPIRE. Let?s face it: not all aliens can be as cool as Admiral Ackbar.


    Look, my point isn?t to slam on the old school STAR WARS, because I?m as big a fan of those films as the next geek. My point is that we should give these new ones some leniency. They have to face up to a true legend. We aren?t really comparing them to the other films - we?re comparing them to our childhoods.


    So, my review of the film: Was it a better film than EPISODE I? Definitely!


    Was it a better film than any of the originals? I don?t know. Let me wait a generation. When my future kids have grown up, I?ll ask them.
  24. DakSpacerunner Jedi Padawan

    Member Since:
    May 2, 2002
    I just want to reiterate what was said earlier about Roger Ebert. Incredible! He gave TPM 3.5/4 stars and thumbs up, and AOTC 2/4 stars and thumbs down!! He said AOTC had flat dialogue, but in most people's opinions it had far superior dialogue to TPM. I encourage you all to go to the chicage sun-times website and read BOTH reviews. I have no problem with someone criticizing a movie I liked, but at least be consistent.
  25. KeithFranklin Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jul 22, 1998
    star 2
    I just got back from seeing AOTC for the 6th time. I took my 7 and 4 year old sons, a 6 year old neighbor and my niece and nephew 9 and 11. My kids watched it for the 5th time my niece and nephew 2nd time and the neighbor 1st time.

    We all walked out and even after all of these showings we all love it. It is are favorite of all the Star Wars.

    Now since it was my 6th time I decided to time a few things because of what the media has said.

    Here we go
    12 minutes of romantic scenes between Anakin and Padme. (I include the following as romantic scenes: Freighter conversation, Terrace conversation and kiss, picnic, dinner and fire, moments before arena).

    Some media types have said the first hour is boring. Well I timed things that went on. The beginning attempt on Padme was the first 2 minutes. The attempt on padme and chase took 10 minutes and 3 additional minutes in the club hunting down Zam.

    35 minutes later (50 minutes into the film) is when AOTC kicks into overdrive with Obi-Wan trying to capture Jango and it is a roller coaster the rest of the way. During those 35 minutes we have most of the romance, Obi-Wan hunting down Jango, the disclosure of the clones.

    I cant believe that people find this boring.

    *******************
    RottenTomatoes.Com update...
    RT has been slowly adding positive reviews and now is only 2 positive reviews away from AOTC being Fresh again. I predict it will happen after this weekend (Prior to this weekend this would have helped the most with the B.O. after this weekend most people will have scene AOTC). They have posted 75 of the 105 positive reviews on the site to the tomatoemeter and 52 of the 54 of the negative. They still dont list the following positive reviews: Wired Magazine, People Magazine, The New Yorker. They also have a few rottens for reviews I thought were positive overall (Like the 2nd CNN review)
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