Thursday, 26 November 2015

Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace [#movie #review]

by George Lucas

Star Wars
Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones

Fear is the path to the Dark Side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.
Yoda

Turmoil has engulfed the Galactic Republic. The taxation of trade routes to outlying star systems is in dispute. Hoping to resolve the matter with a blockade of deadly battleships, the greedy Trade Federation has stopped all shipping to the small planet of Naboo. While the congress of the Republic endlessly debates this alarming chain of events, the Supreme Chancellor has secretly dispatched two Jedi Knights, the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy, to settle the conflict.... [From the opening crawl]

A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away... Black screen, the music starts, and ... wow !!! It 's always a great emotion! :)
When I saw this movie the first time I liked it pretty much. Of course, not as much as the old ones, but that's obvious. Now, 14 years later, I have maybe some more criticism to do, but overall my comment is positive: I liked the characters, the settings, fights, battles, even the plot (apart from some details which I'll discuss later), and especially the emotions.
I really like Queen Amidala, she's a young woman (very young, I think Natalie Portman at the time was 19!) elected leader of a kingdom, she's brave, she's smart, she cares, she's truly a remarkable person. Not to mention her official clothes! Too beautiful, so complex, with those impossible hairstyles, and such a special makeup.
Queen Amidala in one of her usual outfit.
Another new character introduced in this trilogy is Jar Jar Binks, the most hated by all Star Warsfans. I honestly didn't remember he being so hateful, but I must admit that now, re-watching the movie, I found him extremely irritating! He's obviously been put out there just for the sole purpose of being a caricature, he's constantly put in situations where he shouldn't be so he can make trouble, and then what? Make us laugh? Well I only feel irritated!
We also see some characters that we already know from the old trilogy, some put there just for this purpose, so fans can recognize them, like Jabba the Hutt and 3PO, others have more important roles, like Yoda, R2D2 and of course Obi-Wan Kenobi, here in a young version, still an Jedi apprentice, played by a very charming Ewan McGregor.
Ewan Mcgregor as Obu-Wan Kenobi
Despite the criticisms about this movie, I think no one can deny that Jedi Knights still retain considerable appeal. For those who don't know them they're a scary mystery, who knows them also knows that being against them means certain death, even if they have an army and the Jedi are only two. In short, I don't know if it's the love that I have for this franchise since I can't be objective when it comes to Star Wars, but if there are Jedi I'll surely think they're phenomenal characters! But I can't deny that I didn't like, not now and not the first time, the midi-chlorians explanation: I think it's an unnecessary and a bit anti-romantic attempt to scientify the essence of the Jedi.
Anyway, you can't talk about Jedi if you don't also talk about the Force and its Dark Side. In this first episode we meet Darth Sidious and his apprentice Darth Maul. I liked the scene where he meets Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon, and the music becomes immediately urgent, but always the classic Star Wars theme.
Darth Maul

Now I'm going to watch the other 5 movies, while waiting for Episode VII! I'm so excited!

Master Yoda

Quotes

I have a bad feeling about this.
Obi-Wan Kenobi

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