what an enormous waste. i’ll get the good stuff out of the way first: hearing the opening theme always gives me goose bumps. hearing darth vader breathe for the first time also gave me goose bumps. the special effects were some of the best and most transparent that i’ve ever seen. everything else was a varying degree of awful. lucas’s directing, especially during the many action sequences, was just plain bad. he doesn’t understand subtlety, he doesn’t know how to direct actors, he doesn’t know how to edit or film a good action sequence, he doesn’t know how to choreograph a good fight scene, he…just sucks.
the acting, from top to bottom, was bad. the script (with the exception of the line (roughly) “so this is how liberty dies – with tremendous applause”) was flat, simple and, frankly, piss poor. obviously the story was known beforehand so nothing really held my interest in that respect. that said, for a 140 minute long movie there was a remarkable lack of plot. character or theme development usually take the place of plot in good films which are thin on plot, but that wasn’t the case here. anakin becomes darth vader and that’s about it. thematically it’s pretty much the same old mumbo jumbo – balance, avoid being selfish, the dark side is tempting, etc. all of it was better done in episodes 4 and 5.
the most remarkable thing about the film is that it actually detracts from episodes 4 and 5. watching this film i couldn’t help but feel that the emperor and darth vader lost some of their mysterious, dark allure. they’re both much bigger badasses in the original films. similarly, obi-wan comes off as a whiny, sorta average jedi in episodes 2 and 3. this movie is a great example of exactly why prequels shouldn’t be made. of course, i bought a ticket so i just contributed to the problem, hopefully this review will deter you from doing the same.
oh, and there were more corny and uncomfortably bad moments in this movie than there were in the fast and the furious so…Watched in theater