Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones
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The STAR WARS saga continues on DVD with Episode II Attack of the Clones. Anakin Skywalker has grown into an accomplished Jedi apprentice, and he faces his most difficult challenge yet as he must choose between his Jedi duty and forbidden love. Relive the adventure the way it was meant to be seen in spectacular digital clarity, including the climactic Clone War battle and Jedi Master Yoda in the ultimate lightsaber duel. Experience this 2-disc set that features over six hours of bonus materials, and see how Episode II unlocks the secrets of the entire STAR WARS saga.
Star Wars: Episode II, Attack of the Clones is a superior DVD, repeating many of the elements that made its predecessor, Episode I, The Phantom Menace, so good. The picture and sound are spectacular, helped immensely by the fact that the film was shot entirely in digital, making this the first live-action direct digital-to-digital DVD transfer. This version of the film was the one shown in digital-projection theaters; there are subtle differences from the standard theatrical version, such as showing Anakin's right hand in the final scene. Again, there's a commentary track compiled from various people, including George Lucas (why can't he pronounce the names he created?), producer Rick McCallum, editor Ben Burtt, ILM animation director Rob Coleman, and three visual effects supervisors discussing how the film was made and offering teasers to Episode III.
On the second disc are eight deleted scenes with optional introductions. Most interesting are a scene of Padme addressing the Senate to oppose the creation of a Republic army, and some bits with her family and home on Naboo, but it's probably telling that, unlike with Phantom Menace, none of the deleted scenes was incorporated into the film on the DVD. Three substantial documentaries on digital characters, animatics, and creating sound elements are complemented by three insubstantial featurettes, a recycled but interesting 12-part Web documentary, and various other items that should keep fans busy while they wait for Episode III. --David Horiuchi
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There is sadly no such leitmotif in SW I or II. It is kind of surprising that none is pursued, because they were there to be had. Skywalker being torn from his mother by the Jedi, and his Oedipal pursuit of her is a pretty good start. Sadly it is a line not followed. She is dead and Luke is sad, but he never turns his resentment toward the Jedi who could legitimately be blamed for her continued misery and demise. It did seem a little lame that they had to leave her behind in I. I thought that they might have pursued it after watching I because Luke really is at a vulnerable age as the psychoanalysts would see it. The big theme that could bind the trilogy together is the issue of duty vs. desire, i.e Luke having to make a choice between love and destiny. But Luke is cast as a whining child, resenting his calling, wah, wah, wah. He never learns the lesson of the pitfalls in both, because he gets the girl. I'm afraid Luke doesn't get an A in the First Noble Truth in this one. If Lukas wants us to leave the theater feeling good that someone can have both a good time and save the universe too, he is short changing our intelligence. Oh, by the way, George, what iis the deal about Amadala giving up her crown? I thought that you were born to it. Dropping her station makes us lose the theme of unattainable perfection that was part of I, turning Amadala int a plain Jane in II.
I don't know, maybe the denoument is somewhere in the third film. The speculation might be that Senator Palpatine finally shows himself as the evil emperor, and somehow Amadala is killed in the struggle between him and the Jedi. Luke blames his Jedi buddies, turning to the dark side. Obi-Wan is exiled because of the turn of events and Amadala's two kids are separated. The one becoming a senator, the other a farmboy daydreamer. There will be no apotheosis; Mr. Lucas will have to remind us of the trilogy that he made 25 years ago.
Out of all of this, I figured out why Lucas hasn't graced us with a DVD version of the originals, though. If he took the chance and gave us NH, ESB and RotJ, we wouldn't pay money to see AotC.
There is no doubt that all 5 flms are one great shootem up, and technological marvels of special effects. AotC is a terific film if you want to duck laser blasts and see a space melodrama. Where it fails is in the absence of the infusion of genius that was transfused into the orignal trilogy and left us craving for more for a quarter of a century.
Excellent movie and excellent quality DVD. Order this one with the comfort of knowing you are getting a good product.