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PT Thoughts/General Discussion: Attack of the Clones

Discussion in 'Prequel Trilogy' started by Darth Zannah, Nov 13, 2014.

  1. elfdart

    elfdart Jedi Grand Master star 3

    Registered:
    Apr 1, 2001
    I think the part that throws people off is that the actor is just way too pretty to be believable as a dork who has no experience with girls. Surely at some point in his travels some space chick would have polished his lightsaber...

    That said, George Lucas' problem was that he wrote teenagers a little too well. Whether it's American Graffiti or Attack of the Clones, he really does hit the mark when depicting how awkward it is when you're trying win over your first crush and you don't have the tiniest clue of what to say or do -or worse yet, you think you know and then you REALLY make a fool of yourself.

    I enjoyed the "sand, it gets everywhere" scene because despite Christensen being too good-looking to be a believable space virgin, the scene hit home. He's obviously a clingy momma's boy in love with the only other female in his life, tries to make his move and aside from a kiss, gets nowhere in such an obviously romantic setting. The whole scene is constructed to make Anakin look foolish and succeeds. The fact that so many people who watched the scene didn't realize it was meant to be silly amazes me to this day. I mean, the lovey-dovey music stops cold when Padme pulls away*. They couldn't have been more obvious if both actors had turned, looked directly into the camera and winked at the audience.

    * Which is a nod to The Adventures of Don Juan, where the swashbuckling womanizer is about to seduce Lady Catherine as Max Steiner's violins play romantically in the background and she says her husband will be back soon, and Don Juan says "Husband?" as the violins hit the brakes.
     
  2. JFettG

    JFettG Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    Jun 12, 2002
    Re-watched AOTC (First time in years, at least since TFA came out) in the lead up to TROS and was pleasantly surprised by how much more I enjoyed it. Yes it has its flaws, the dialogue and CGI can be real cringey at times, but I didn't realize how well paced it is in general. Also made me enjoy TLJ even more as it shows the hubris and ego of the Jedi and how they almost single-handedly let Palpatine take over.
     
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  3. Panakas_Dawg

    Panakas_Dawg Jedi Grand Master star 5

    Registered:
    Jul 29, 2004
    I love the concurrent running plots. Detective Kenobi was freaking awesome. Anakin was just an awkward, uncomfortable youngster trying to score with The Hot Girl, who was herself awkward in her own ways, really wanting to kiss The Cute Boy.
    We got clones, troopers, shadow government machinations, Mandalorian armor, a Tusken slaughter, and Ani losing his temper in a way we've not seen Jedi before.

    Plus, we got the Geonosis arena, with stands full of lightsabers. Jedis and droids charging at one another. Samuel L Jackson's best lines in the trilogy. That initial battle scene when Yoda arrives with the troops. And Yoda finally getting to shine as a combative, agile Jedi.

    Not a single thing wrong with it in my opinion.
     
  4. Revan-The Prodigal Knight

    Revan-The Prodigal Knight Jedi Youngling

    Registered:
    Jan 5, 2020
    To me its at the very end, at Anakin and Padme's wedding, that really gets to me, John Williams music really hits it home well in my opinion in this scene, you get a scene of aww, but also uneasiness, I think even Padme though in love and wanting to do this, had a look (a slight one), look of should we really have done this, when she looks at Anakin after they kiss as husband and wife for the first time. This scene gives the scenario that the galaxy will never be the same again as it was because of this union.
     
  5. Lulu Mars

    Lulu Mars Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 10, 2005
    I love how quickly the droids' bickering escalates. They barely know each other and within one minute of Padmé and Anakin leaving the ship, Artoo rolls after them with Threepio on his heels screaming "Idiot!" [face_laugh]
     
  6. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 10, 2011
    And it's all because Artoo, the simple little mechanic, understands humans better than Threepio, whose entire programmed function is to understand them. Just about sums it all up.
     
  7. Subtext Mining

    Subtext Mining Jedi Master star 3

    Registered:
    Apr 27, 2016
    Yes, I love this scene. And it's so noteworthy that it's about AI understanding human behavior. And how 3P0 actually doesn't as much as he thinks he does.

    Now, his following factory and battle scenes are often maligned but I find them very poignant. What's interesting is that just after having expressed an understanding of human behavior, and being shown up by R2, he now delivers a barrage of lines that are steeped in complex slang, idioms, puns and play on words that a robot shouldn't be able to understand as fully as a human.

    Such as:
    Well, shut me down
    I'm scrap
    It's a nightmare
    Die, Jedi dogs
    This is such a drag
    I'm quite beside myself
    I've had such a peculiar dream.

    And all this after he says "Machines making machines? How perverse."

    There could be a lot of avenues of symbolism one could go down here, but being that this is the advent of the Clone War, I think the most prevalent one points to the use of clones as soldiers; where their basiaclly seen as organic robots. The blurring of the lines between droid and human here with 3P0 denotes the blurring of similar lines with the clones.

    Also in the factory scene we get a very interesting shot of Anakin, rich with foreshadowing of his soon-to-be mechanical arm and his journey towards being "more machine than man".
    [​IMG]

    Unless I'm reading too much I to it. :p
     
    Last edited: Mar 24, 2020
  8. oierem

    oierem Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Great points!
    I have no idea why the droid factory scene has such a bad reputation, to be honest.
     
  9. Lulu Mars

    Lulu Mars Force Ghost star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 10, 2005
    The droid factory scene is fun! [face_party]

    About the droid duo, I have to say that they have the most heartwarming relationship. Threepio gets so easily agitated - he REALLY doesn't work well under pressure - and he always takes his stress out on Artoo, but Artoo usually takes it in stride and even helps his friend get through their hardships.
    I mean sure, he can also lash out sometimes and even seems to enjoy watching Threepio suffer a bit, but in the end, he is ALWAYS there for him, no matter what. He literally picks up the pieces when Threepio has fallen apart and he is happy to do it.
    Which shows that he GETS Threepio. They are both programmed to behave the way they do, so Artoo can't really get Threepio to stop worrying, but he understands why Threepio keeps nagging and insulting him - and seemingly enjoys their bickering - so he accepts it.

    A beautiful bromance if ever there was one!
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2020
  10. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 10, 2011
    I can understand if it doesn't really do anything for you, but I can't understand why it inspires such active derision.

    Near as I can tell it's basically all because "CGI bad."
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2020
  11. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    I like how Anakin and Padme basically go on a vandalization spree.
    They destroy not just the battle droids, or Geonosian warriors, but the mechanic arms, and pretty much everything else in their way.:p
     
  12. Deliveranze

    Deliveranze Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Nov 28, 2015
    I really love how we get to see Anakin's prowness as a warrior in the droid factory scene. Anakin killing the Geonosians is quite brutal, but the combination of him and Padme dodging machinery just adds to the excitement.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2020
  13. oierem

    oierem Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 18, 2009
    You know, now that I think about it, this is Anakin's first action sequence ever! The first time we see how powerful (and yet not all-powerful) he is!

    And I still remember watching the movie for the first time, how emotional was that moment of Padme falling down while her theme plays.

    Seriously, I think adding that sequence was a big improvement on the pacing of the film. I can't imagine the original version working at all.
     
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  14. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 10, 2011
    Well, there was the speeder chase.
     
  15. Jedi_Sith_Smuggler_Droid

    Jedi_Sith_Smuggler_Droid Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2014
    I was hearing on the news about a lack of supplies and medical equipment during the covid-19 pandemic. And now other nations and some rich people are coming forward with help.

    It made me think of the Clone Army. Right now in this real world crisis is some of the items in short supply showed up they'd be used even if their origin was mysterious or outside the law.

    That's like the Clone Army.
     
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  16. I Are The Internets

    I Are The Internets Chosen One star 9

    Registered:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Hmmmm good point
     
  17. ThePhilistineCritic

    ThePhilistineCritic Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Apr 1, 2020
    Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones suffers from “middle episode syndrome” - the tendency of the second volume in a trilogy to feel incomplete and, as a result of that incompleteness, to fail to satisfy. (A problem George Lucas was able to avoid with The Empire Strikes Back.) Attack of the Clones takes the threadbare strands of plot introduced in Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace and braids them together into what will eventually become the whole cloth for Star Wars: Episode III - Revenge of the Sith. Still, despite several high octane action sequences, this movie, more than any of the others in the entire Star Wars saga, feels orphaned and works considerably better when viewed as part of a greater epic than as a stand-alone production. It’s setup without resolution, tease without consummation.

    Attack of the Clones seeks to fix some of the obvious problems evident in The Phantom Menace. The tone and narrative have become more mature- unlike its predecessor, Attack of the Clones doesn’t evidence the split personality caused by interweaving a complex tale of shadowy corruption with overt pandering to the 7-year-olds in the audience. Jar Jar Binks, the poster child for the latter, has seen his screen time dramatically cut. In fact, the only obvious bit of juvenile silliness involves C-3PO and R2-D2 in the droid factory. 3PO’s pun-riddled dialogue is embarrassing.

    Attack of the Clones is narratively more solid than its predecessor. From a plotting standpoint, the only obvious issue is that too much time elapses between the conclusion of the first big action set piece (the eye popping chase through the busy skyways of Coruscant) and the beginning of the next one (the execution). Important things happen in between- in particular, Anakin’s first real taste of darkness following his mother's death - but there’s too much exposition with too little payoff. The forbidden romance between Anakin and Padmé Amidala, despite being a good idea, is irreparably damaged in its execution. Putting aside the lack of chemistry between actors Natalie Portman and Hayden Christensen (they don’t seem to like one another, let alone be swept along in a torrent of passion neither can control), the dialogue is awful. Not just bad, but embarrassingly bad. George Lucas simply can’t write love scenes and that deficiency hurts Attack of the Clones. Imagine how much more powerful the film could’ve been had Anakin and Padmé spoken to each other like adults rather than hormonally challenged teenagers reading from a Harlequin romance? The most eye rolling segment of dialogue comes as the couple are about to face death. Padmé starts babbling about how desperately she loves Anakin when there’s no evidence whatsoever to support this claim. Still, the film’s end scene, with the two marrying, is touching and nicely understated…and free of speech.

    With Attack of the Clones, Lucas continues to push the visual effects envelope, taking Star Wars to new levels of spectacle. There are times when this is a visually stunning motion picture, and it’s not just the CGI-rich action sequences. The cinematography, by David Tattersall (who filled that role for all three prequels), offers moments of vibrant beauty. The scenes in the Lake Country of Naboo are notable for their widescreen composition and rich colors. Combine these with John Williams’ score and the results are sublime.

    In the end, however, the incompleteness of its narrative dogs Attack of the Clones. Not only is this movie the middle part of a trilogy but being a bridge not to Revenge of the Sith but an entire multi-season television series (Star Wars: The Clone Wars) hampers it. Even when seen in the context of the prequel trilogy, Attack of the Clones feels isolated and incomplete. There’s a huge story chasm between where the characters are in this movie’s final scene and where they are at the opening of Revenge of the Sith.

    Despite bouts of unevenness, Attack of the Clones represents an improvement over The Phantom Menace. With fewer story elements targeted at younger children, a more satisfying plot, and a darker tone, the film offers an experience that, although not on par with the best Star Wars films, at least engages more fully than its predecessor. The visual effects-bedecked action scenes are Attack of the Clones’ crown jewels and the movie is worth seeing for them alone. The second part of the prequel trilogy may not have been sufficient to win back all the goodwill lost as a result of The Phantom Menace but it moved the Star Wars series back on the tracks, allowing George Lucas to reassert his mastery over this far far away galaxy in Revenge of the Sith.

    Grade: C-
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2020
  18. Jedi_Sith_Smuggler_Droid

    Jedi_Sith_Smuggler_Droid Jedi Master star 4

    Registered:
    Mar 13, 2014
    Did you write this review yourself or find it in a book?
     
  19. ThePhilistineCritic

    ThePhilistineCritic Jedi Padawan star 1

    Registered:
    Apr 1, 2020
    I wrote it a few years ago, shortly before the release of The Force Awakens.
     
  20. Christus Regnet

    Christus Regnet Jedi Knight star 3

    Registered:
    Mar 10, 2016
    I agree, it is a good addition, and full of great symbolism. I've heard Lucas talking about this that Anakin is sort of chasing Padme down into hell to save her foreshadowing the next film, and that it's drawing more allusions to Metropolis (like Coruscant, et al), and I've also heard him mention that the disassembling of C3P0 is continuing motif in the saga, of people being disassembled emotionally, spiritually, in this case physically, and trying to put themselves back together again. I love assembly line scenes in sci fi movies. They must be fun to put together.
     
  21. cratylus

    cratylus Jedi Grand Master star 4

    Registered:
    May 9, 2001
    Thanks for pointing out that this is a pattern. The fact that it's a pattern makes it a lot better. Despite Artoo having a better sense of what to do, this segment shows Threepio displaying a really rich grasp of human language, and engaging with the notion of dreams twice.
     
  22. Deliveranze

    Deliveranze Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Nov 28, 2015
    One thing that does confuse me is how in TCW, the corporations claim neutrality when in AOTC, Obi-Wan reveals to Palpatine, the Jedi, and several senators that "the Trade Federation is picking up a delivery of droids and the Commerce Guilds are pledging their armies." And then Bail says, "the Commerce Guilds are preparing for war, there can be no doubt about that." From the dialogue here, it seems that the corporations have clearly chosen a side in the war.
     
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  23. Emperor McClane

    Emperor McClane Jedi Youngling star 1

    Registered:
    Nov 21, 2019
    Rewatched AOTC not too long ago, to prepare for my re-run of clone wars, before watching the Final season.
    Enjoyed it as usual, the title screams 50s B-Movie and it has also the charm of that. I love the Obi-Wan Story arc, enjoyed the Padme -Anakin arc more than I remembered. Goosebumps when Anakin gets angry with the Tuskens, very powerful scene.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2020
  24. The_Phantom_Calamari

    The_Phantom_Calamari Force Ghost star 5

    Registered:
    Nov 10, 2011
    In an earlier draft, a couple of the groups at the meeting make it clear that they will support the Confederacy, but only while maintaining a public pretense of neutrality, just as in TCW:

    SHU MAI, the Commerce Guild Representative, stands.

    SHU MAI

    The Commerce Guilds do not at this time wish to become openly involved. But we shall support you in secret – and look forward to doing business with you.

    There are chuckles around the table. COUNT DOOKU smiles.

    COUNT DOOKU

    That is all we ask.

    SAN HILL, the banker, stands.

    SAN HILL

    The Intergalactic Banking Clan will support you wholeheartedly, but only in a non-exclusive arrangement.


    My guess would be that Lucas dropped this exposition because he thought it complicated things in a way which wasn't necessary for the plot of the films. But when he was able to expand on the story for TCW, he returned to this original notion of the corporations profiting off both sides of the war.

    The result is that there are some slight incongruities like that in the dialogue in Episode II. To be fair, it's not as if what Obi-Wan and Bail are saying is false. It's just not the public position of the corporations. And TCW establishes that it is known among many in the Republic leadership, though unable to be be officially proven, that the corporations' neutrality is a sham.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2020
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  25. ConservativeJedi321

    ConservativeJedi321 Force Ghost star 6

    Registered:
    Mar 19, 2016
    It is also notable that having the entire Banking System and many key trading and commerce organizations that control a significant portion of the Republic Economy openly secede probably wouldn't be the healthiest thing for the system. Even if the Republic suspects they have a predisposition towards the CIS they have every incentive to turn a blind eye as long as they are willing to put up the pretense of neutrality, because if they do officially leave it would probably cripple the Republic.
    This idea is hinted at strongly in the Season 6 Clovis arc where the Senators are literally freaking out at the prospect that the CIS could take control of the banks.
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2020