orfeas’s review published on Letterboxd:
Revisiting the Galaxy Far Away 2017
Yeah, I decided to rename my Star Wars marathon to something that sounds cool to rip-off Jude.
This film is definitely the best prequel, but that REALLY isn't saying much.
So is it good? Not really... I mean, it's fine, it's not horrible, but if you really think that this is a flawless masterpiece or the best Star Wars film, I'm sorry, I just can't take you seriously.
The movie starts off with the cheesiest and worst opening crawl in the saga.
And then we cut to a spaceship battle scene, and that scene is actually pretty cool! I actually really like it. There are many fun action scenes in this movie tbh. Right off the bat, the vfx here are very improved. In fact, the vfx on the first scene are legitimately great. But throughout the rest of the movie, the vfx can get pretty bad.
Then Obi-Wan and Anakin enter the enemy spaceship and they save Palpatine from Count Dooku, who is still incredibly underused by the way. This movie just has so much lost potential in general. This movie could've been a legit masterpiece and the best Star Wars movie (well, on second thought, it couldn't have been, cause it would be impossible to make a sequel to the previous films a masterpiece, but whatever). The movie could've been so deep but the themes just feel so hamfisted and forced at times, with characters straight up saying what they are. It could've been so emotionally impactful, but we don't care about these characters and Lucas just fails at making the actors or the script express real emotion. Rarely do we ever feel the tragedy. But anyway, back to the scene.
The jedi fight Dooku and let me tell you, most lightsaber duels here suck. Some are good, but some are horrible. The Mace Windu VS. Palpatine fight, for example, was laughably bad. It just looked like none of the two actors even wanted to be in the scene (once again, throughout the movie, SLJ just looks like he regrets signing his contract). I mean, that scene had the potential to be the best scene of the prequels. And that's what I keep coming back to: lost potential. This trilogy is full of it. So let me just abandon the scene-by-scene analysis that for some reason I started using and let's talk about the three worst things about this movie: The Acting, The Writing, and the Direction.
The 3 most important aspects of a film, one could argue.
Granted, the acting here is much improved. Hayden Christensen is much better in this than he was in AotC, but he's still really bad. Ewan McGregor, again, tried to give the best performance he could, and his accent is again perfection. I already talked about SLJ. Natalie Portman is much better here, but again, she was horrible at moments. The guy who played The Emperor (I'm too lazy to look up his name) was fine. In general, there's a lot of overacting in this.
The direction here was very cheesy, I'm not gonna go in depth, but I did not like the directing. Notably, there were some awful zoom-ins and once again some really bizarre transitions.
Now, the script.
George Lucas is not a good screenwriter. He's certainly very good at coming up with ideas and concepts, but turning them to a full screenplay? Not so much. He's not good at writing a screenplay alone. Just look at all his filmography: most of the films he's written he co-wrote, except for the Prequels, which had shit screenplays, and the original Star Wars. But as for Star Wars, he himself has admitted that he had a lot of ideas for that movie but found it hard to turn them into one cohesive screenplay, so he used the Monomyth formula to help him with that. So, let's take a look at the screenplay:
The dialogue here is horrendous, for the most part. Some of the dialogue and acting were as bad as in the previous ones. However, the dialogue was pretty great during the Darth Plagueis the Wise part, which was probably the best scene in the movie. That scene did a great job developing the themes.
But for the rest of the film, the themes are very clumsily developed. And it's a shame, because this movie could've actually been quite deep. In general, the script would work 100 times better if the previous films actually developed the characters and their relationships and we actually cared for them.
Now, this whole thing might sound like I hated the film, and I didn't completely despise it, although I did dislike it quite a bit. There were parts (apart from the ones already mentioned) I liked, such as some of the cinematography (although some of it was shit), most action scenes, the pacing, some of the direction/story, the score (which I don't think was as good as in the previous ones), the final shot, Order 66, some other scenes, and a lot of what the film was going for, even though it often aimed too high. Even the script was miles better than in the previous ones, some of it was actually quite smartly written.
This is not a horrible movie. It's pretty great compared to the other prequels. But it suffers from many of their problems. The concept is great, but the execution is clumsy and sometimes straight-up horrible. And it's a little too long.
If you were to watch a Star Wars prequel, this should definitely be it, it's miles better than Phantom Menace or Attack of the Clones and I totally recommend it if you're having a Star Wars marathon or something. But if you don't really care about Star Wars,I don't think it's worth checking out.
It's not a good movie, but it's enjoyable if you're a Star Wars fan.
And the "NNNOOOOO" scene might be the worst moment in Star Wars history.
Probably 4 or 5/10???
YES I'M FINALLY DONE WITH THE PREQUELS! NOW ONTO THE GOOD ONES!