Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones is the second installment of The Skywalker Saga and continues the story of Anakin Skywalkers tragic turn to the dark side as he becomes the greatest villain in cinematic history, Darth Vader.
The film came out in 2002, three years after the release of Episode I – The Phantom Menace which was panned at the time by critics and fans alike. Maybe this second installment could improve on the first film’s shortcomings…?
Oh, how I wish that were the case… Let’s take a look at some of the major plot points in Attack of the Clones and see how they hold up in 2021.
Ten Years Later…
Attack of the Clones takes place ten years after The Phantom Menace and this is one of the only good parts of this film. One of my major issues with The Phantom Menace is I felt that some of the characters (especially Anakin and Padmé) started off way too young.
In this film, we get to see the characters aged up which is really nice. Especially in the case of Obi-Wan Kenobi who was seen as a Padawan in Episode I. Now he is a full Jedi knight and has been training Anakin as his own Padawan for the past 10 years.
Padmé is now a Senator in the Galactic Senate after finishing her second term as Queen of Naboo. However, this doesn’t make her any less of a target as the whole film revolves around Anakin protecting her from a mysterious figure. Just kidding it’s just the Viceroy from Episode I who hired Count Dooku, who hired Boba Fett’s dad Jango Fett, who hired Zam Wesell. Okay, maybe it is a little confusing.
Anakin and Obi-Wan’s Relationship
Obi-Wan and Anakin’s relationship is another one of the highlights of the film. The two have playful banter with each other throughout the film, however, we also get to see the start of Anakin’s animosity for his master.
Obi-Wan often gets made at Anakin when he does something against his orders, even if it ends up working out. Anakin is upset because he feels that Obi-Wan underestimates him. Anakin also thinks that he is much more powerful than Obi-Wan which is probably true however this strengthens the tension between the two.
It was really cool to see the two not get along in this film as it sets up their tragic breakup Revenge of the Sith. Anakin’s cockiness honestly makes sense in this scenario. Being called “the chosen one” since age ten is probably quite the ego boost.
Attack of the Clones Delivers Epic Star Wars Action
Attack of the Clones is probably one of the most action-packed films in the Star Wars franchise. Yoda vs Count Dooku was probably one of the coolest moments in Star Wars history as fans had yet to see the legendary Jedi in a lightsaber duel since his introduction in Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back. The moment is especially special as we have yet to see Master Yoda in a lightsaber duel in live-action since.
The film also has the famous Battle of Geonosis which features an epic showdown between dozens of Jedi and the Separatist’s droid army. Of course, most importantly is the reveal of Mace Windu’s purple lightsaber. It was an awesome moment as a kid and is an awesome moment now.
The clone troopers look really weird in this film, however. It was a weird choice to have them animated throughout the entire film. I can understand if it were scenes where there are hundreds of them in the frame, however, in scenes where there were just a few they were still animated. They look incredibly out of place next to the other characters even for 2002 standards.
Alright, that is about all of the praise I have for Attack of the Clones, let’s fully dive into the problems with the film on page 2: