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Revenge of the Sith (2005)
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Review Date: May 17, 2005
Director: George Lucas
Writer: George Lucas
Producers: Rick McCallum
Actors:
Hayden Christensen as Anakin
Natalie Portman as Padme
Ewan McGregor as Obi-Wan
Plot:
In part 3 of this six-part series, things are about to get a whole lot darker for rising Jedi Anakin Skywalker, who up until recently, was an all-around good guy, with a touch of negative tendencies. In this go-around, his mind is played upon even further by the dark side’s Lord Sidious, who showcases Anakin some of the cooler bits that he might not have known about the dark side, confusing the young man even more. Or does it? It is in this installment that Anakin finally makes up his mind about which side he wants to sleep with, and needless to say, a certain Darth Vader finally makes his appearance. The next part of this series was released in 1977, entitled STAR WARS: EPISODE IV: A NEW HOPE.
Critique:
My favorite of the three most recent STAR WARS movies, REVENGE OF THE SITH mixes all of the best elements from its predecessors, including impeccably integrated special effects, an astounding sci-fi vision and scope, awesome light-saber battles, a handful of fantastic action sequences – set both in space and on the ground – an epic storyline and fun characters, with a much darker umbrella of thoughts and images, as well as surprisingly potent emotional angles, all of which make this film one of the best all-around space adventures that I’ve seen in years. That said, it should be noted that I am definitely a STAR WARS “fanboy” and that I graded the generally-panned episodes I and II pretty high as well, so take that fanaticism into consideration when reading my overall review. That’s not to say that my critique is worthless, but I definitely don’t see how my thoughts would mean much to someone who is not from the “Star Wars generation” and who doesn’t feel that sense of nostalgia, belonging and to a certain extent, ownership, when discussing this world and its characters (yeah, it’s sad, but true).

In fact, this film was the most nostalgic of all, as it brought into play many of the characters that old-time STAR WARS geeks like myself grew up with, including Chewbacca, the introduction of Luke and Leia, and the man himself…Darth Vader. The rest of the gang is also here and accounted for, including C-3PO, R2-D2, Obi-Wan and Yoda-san. Another cool thing about this installment is that you pretty much know what to expect (that is, if you’re a connoisseur of the STAR WARS universe), so most of the time you’re sitting there, taking it all in, enjoying the moment and what’s to follow. The film starts with the traditional scroll about “A long time ago, in a galaxy, far, far away…” and jumps right into a spectacular space battle that automatically converts your eyes into full wake-up, as a million good-looking images are thrown at you at once. Asses are kicked and the film then slows down into a more story-line approach as the aura around Anakin and his next steps in life, take center stage. I liked how Lucas took his time with Anakin and didn’t just toss him into the dark side at the drop of a hat. I actually felt like the kid was struggling with his emotions, and despite a few so-so moments from actor Hayden Christensen, bought it overall, and ultimately felt really sad and emotional for the guy.

His relationship with Padme is also taken to a more interesting level here, as the love between the two is obvious, but much like real-life relationships, going through changes as they struggle to find themselves within their changing world. The film doesn’t spend too much downtime on this, as action and CGI imagery is all around, keeping things moving and alive at all times. By the time the film plunges head-first into Anakin’s turn to the dark side (I don’t think I’m giving anything away here), I found myself relishing the darker side of the tale, as Christensen’s anger and burgeoning frustration could be felt sitting in the audience. It is right around this point that I actually started to get a little emotional as the struggle of “good vs evil” really took a major swing and shit started to fly across the universe. So by the time Obi-Wan and Padme confronted the changed Anakin, I was about as emotional as I’ve been in any STAR WARS movie (not counting the times I cry upon seeing Jar-Jar Binks in THE PHANTOM MENACE—that’s a different kind of crying), with lines like “I loved you like a brother” and “Anakin, you’re breaking my heart”…breaking my heart! Kudos to Lucas for being able to pull off both a darker (as required) installment to his fantastic sci-fi series, but also for mining it with the emotion needed to further invest audiences into his world of characters.

The film’s final 30 minutes or so are classic in so many senses, as Lucas even goes “poetic” with a sequence that collates Darth Vader’s rise with Padme’s pregnancy and birth. Beautiful. The light-saber battle between Anakin and Obi-Wan is also a doozy, and its outcome, somewhat surprising to me (I kinda knew how it might end, but didn’t see what Lucas did, coming). Other than that, Chewbacca and his wookie clan were underused, but cool to see in the movie, the special effects were brilliant across the board, other than when characters had to jump around and looked like video-game figures, and the score and scene transitions were very cool, as usual. As for the addition of one General Grievous, yet another awesome move by Lucas, as the badass ‘bot truly inspired, particularly when he whipped out his own set of light-sabers and revved things up. A sight to behold. The film’s concluding scenes were also very well handled, and nifty to see for all true STAR WARS fans as Lucas tied things up rather nicely, to the next installment, A NEW HOPE. A lot of people will forgive Lucas for using the bank accounts of this series’ fans as his own personal withdrawal card, because he’s finally hit one of out the ballpark, but I’m not one of those people. I think it still stinks that he is one of the few major filmmakers out there who seems to drain his fans, as opposed to working with them, but that has nothing to do with the fact that the man has created, with this series, one of the best motion picture epics of all-time, and concluded it all (right?), with one of its best and darkest chapters.
(c) 2016 Berge Garabedian
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8:00AM on 11/13/2006

Did we all watch the same movie?

Okay first the positives, definitely best of the prequels and has lots of action.

And here we go with the negatives *deep breath*! The characterisations were extremely poor with Anakin going from having a bit of a sulk to killing children with no interim emotional development.

George Lucas although having directed some great movies becomes more and more like a kid who runs to his parents shrieking "Look what I can do!!!" specifically in regard to the extreme amounts of CGI in this movie.
Okay first the positives, definitely best of the prequels and has lots of action.

And here we go with the negatives *deep breath*! The characterisations were extremely poor with Anakin going from having a bit of a sulk to killing children with no interim emotional development.

George Lucas although having directed some great movies becomes more and more like a kid who runs to his parents shrieking "Look what I can do!!!" specifically in regard to the extreme amounts of CGI in this movie. Yes I understand that alot of shots would have been not have been practical to pull off, but the shots that were he still CGI-ed the tar out've of them.

The action setpieces whilst primarily well done are misjudged, the attack on the Jedi Academy should've been shot and been one of the action mainstays of the movie!

Hayden Christensen's acting range hasn't improved since the second one either, with his rendition of conflicted being that of three year old throwing a tantrum, a big one. Then again his version of Darth Vader is definitely one you could envision squealing "Nooooooooooo".

Dark? No way, dark is Jacob's Ladder. Dark is Candyman, compared to this dark is The Care Bears. Constantly having Artoo whistling "uh oh" and having Chewbacca swinging about with the Tarzan yodel? Scratch the comparison to the Care Bears, it should've been the Gummi Bears. If an immature young man throwing a tantrum because he can't get his own way is dark, I'm steering well clear of high schools.

I am honestly shocked at how highly this is rated. I have nothing against Star Wars nor did I have anything against making new ones, well not until I saw how poorly done they would be. But to have this movie score higher than all three Lord of the Rings, Gladiator, The Matrix, Shrek and American Beauty. Two options present themselves, this particular theater was serving hallucinogenic popcorn or a bias so heavy it threatens to destabilize Earths orbit and send us spinning off to that "Galaxy far far away"!
Your Reply:



3:24AM on 08/01/2006
Took me a while to post my thoughts, but here they are, and I'll pretty much be repeating what most Star Wars fanboys have said.

This is definitely the best of the prequels, pulling my senses and emotions in a million different directions. I didn't expect this film to be as emotionally compelling as it was, but man...it's a doozy. Wallabe said it perfectly--this film has a perfect mixture of spectacle and drama, whereas the first two films were both unbalanced in those aspects. Does it
Took me a while to post my thoughts, but here they are, and I'll pretty much be repeating what most Star Wars fanboys have said.

This is definitely the best of the prequels, pulling my senses and emotions in a million different directions. I didn't expect this film to be as emotionally compelling as it was, but man...it's a doozy. Wallabe said it perfectly--this film has a perfect mixture of spectacle and drama, whereas the first two films were both unbalanced in those aspects. Does it compare to the originals? I think it does, but I don't necessarily think it outshines them. They set such a tremendously high bar, but Lucas did at least rise to that bar with this chapter.
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2:19PM on 01/16/2006

Wow!

This is the last or 3rd (whichever works) installment of the STAR WARS series. This installment following THE PHANTOM MENACE 9/10 and ATTACK OF THE CLONES 9/10 and leading up to A NEW HOPE 10/10, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK 9/10, and RETURN OF THE JEDI 9/10. That's right, if you read my rating for this one and just read my rating for Episode IV, you'll find out they are both the best installments of the series. Let me go on. As a lot of people say and that I agree on, Episode I had too much action
This is the last or 3rd (whichever works) installment of the STAR WARS series. This installment following THE PHANTOM MENACE 9/10 and ATTACK OF THE CLONES 9/10 and leading up to A NEW HOPE 10/10, THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK 9/10, and RETURN OF THE JEDI 9/10. That's right, if you read my rating for this one and just read my rating for Episode IV, you'll find out they are both the best installments of the series. Let me go on. As a lot of people say and that I agree on, Episode I had too much action and not enough drama and Episode II had to much drama and not enough action. This movie had the perfect amount of both. I loved the scenes with Christensen and Portman (who didn't look all that pretty surprisingly) and of course the action scenes were awesome. The beginning space dogfight sequence was slick and never looked better. The lightsabre fights were always the best (Two words dude: General Grievous), and like I mention before, the space sequences. The final fight between Anakin and Obi-Wan was completely awesome and there were some heart touching moments. The special effects were slick with all the wookies, clone troopers, space fights, etc. The music was awesome (just like it always is), and the acting was 100% dead on great acting. This is probably the best STAR WARS movie out there and I found myself clapping at the end of the movie.
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12:05PM on 01/15/2006
Alright, this movie is darker than Empire Strikes Back (though not by much); this movie has got dark written all over it, from the music to the story to the cinematography. While the scene where Anakin makes the transition to the dark side could've been better, the rest of the movie truly delivers in everything Star Wars. From the opening space battle sequence to the numerous light sabre fights, it's a kickass ride throughout with lots of twists and turns - and questions answered as to what
Alright, this movie is darker than Empire Strikes Back (though not by much); this movie has got dark written all over it, from the music to the story to the cinematography. While the scene where Anakin makes the transition to the dark side could've been better, the rest of the movie truly delivers in everything Star Wars. From the opening space battle sequence to the numerous light sabre fights, it's a kickass ride throughout with lots of twists and turns - and questions answered as to what happens to the characters (and most importantly how), the empire and basically the story itself.

I really bought into Anakin's struggles to decide what is right and what is wrong. Hayden Christenson really steps up as the conflicted Skywalker as he portrays love, hatred, fear, and of course his transformation to the all-powerful Darth Vader. And I've said it before, and I'll say it again - Ewan McGregor was the perfect choice to portray the younger Obi-Wan Kenobi. And between the two leads, you can sense their camaraderie and respect for each other at the beginning and the eventual destruction of their mentor-apprentice relationship.

And Anakin's eventual demise has a lot to do with the Clone Wars and the characters influencing it: the Jedi, Chancellor Palpatine, and the cool General Grievous - and his awesome fight versus Obi-Wan all make for an exciting adventure. Hell, the opening rescue sequence is enough to get you excited of what's ahead because of all the FX, quick action and there's even a few laughs through some cynism.

But all the action, light sabre duels, and Clone Wars sequences are overshadowed by Anakin's demise. The fate of the Jedi, Padme, Yoda, and Anakin's relationships with friends and loved ones is borderline depressing and dark - which is what it's supposed to be. And I must say, it is really well done. I didn't care for his transition to the dark side scene, but more on the effect his change had on those relationships. I'm not saying everybody was crying 'cuz we knew what was coming - it just was sad to watch.

This is definitely the best of the three prequels with George Lucas connecting it all beautifully. With the excellent cast handling the story of Anakin's fate - along with the clone war backdrop - perfectly, this redeems the Star Wars legacy (though, I personally don't think there was anything wrong with it in the first place - but I've heard fans' complaints for the last six years). It falls just shy of Empire Strikes Back (9/10) and A New hope (10/10), but is definitely a kindred spirit.
Your Reply:



11:34PM on 01/11/2006
I have to say I initially liked it when I saw it in theaters (I would rate it a 7), but looking back on it on DVD, it seems overly long and the dialogue is just awful. Hayden Christansen is just wooden and the movie tries too hard to pull heartstrings and it was just boring.

I also say that John Williams's final "Star Wars" score is much too bombastic and doesn't utilize a lot of original themes (there's prominent themes borrowed from the previous five films). A little subtlety would've been
I have to say I initially liked it when I saw it in theaters (I would rate it a 7), but looking back on it on DVD, it seems overly long and the dialogue is just awful. Hayden Christansen is just wooden and the movie tries too hard to pull heartstrings and it was just boring.

I also say that John Williams's final "Star Wars" score is much too bombastic and doesn't utilize a lot of original themes (there's prominent themes borrowed from the previous five films). A little subtlety would've been more effective.

Still, the movie has its merits. The special effects are great and there are a few scenes that work (mainly at the end of the film). Not that I'm forcing my opinion down other people's throats, I just think the film is incredibly overrated.
Your Reply:



8:14AM on 12/15/2005

Better than most

I liked this Episode almost as much as I liked "Empire", and with "Empire" being one of the best Sci-fi movies ever made....you do the math
I liked this Episode almost as much as I liked "Empire", and with "Empire" being one of the best Sci-fi movies ever made....you do the math
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10:22AM on 07/25/2005

ah, much better

There's so much that can be said about this movie, and the prequel movies in general that i won't even get into it. Instead, i'll give a very simple review. Simply put, its the best of the three newer movies, by far, but still not on par with the three originals. Sith has the best fx, best story, best pacing, and the best acting (though still hella stiff). The most disappointing thing for me was the final battle between Annikan and Obi-Wan, its good but not as exciting as i think it could and
There's so much that can be said about this movie, and the prequel movies in general that i won't even get into it. Instead, i'll give a very simple review. Simply put, its the best of the three newer movies, by far, but still not on par with the three originals. Sith has the best fx, best story, best pacing, and the best acting (though still hella stiff). The most disappointing thing for me was the final battle between Annikan and Obi-Wan, its good but not as exciting as i think it could and should have been. For example, the fight from Phantom Menace against Darth Maul was totally super frick'n awesome and exciting, i was expecting something even better than that but what i got was something less with an ending that was too abrupt. Overall, it was better than good. Go see it, as if you weren't going to already.

Misc Thoughts

- having the high ground matters to a Jedi?
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