Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones

Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones

4.0 113
Director: George Lucas

Cast: Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Hayden Christensen

     
 

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Whether you love or dislike the latest installment of the Star Wars installment, Episode II: Attack of the Clones, there is no question that Fox and Lucasfilm have done an amazing job in translating this title to DVD. As has widely been mentioned, the image, framed at 2.35:1 and anamorphic (there is a separate disc with a cropped pan-and-scan picture),See more details below

Overview

Whether you love or dislike the latest installment of the Star Wars installment, Episode II: Attack of the Clones, there is no question that Fox and Lucasfilm have done an amazing job in translating this title to DVD. As has widely been mentioned, the image, framed at 2.35:1 and anamorphic (there is a separate disc with a cropped pan-and-scan picture), was taken directly from the digital source, the first for a live action movie (other films have been too, but all others were animated, such as Monsters, Inc.). This direct translation is unquestionably a revelation in how good a picture can look. Colors are impressive in every way, with excellent saturation and fine detail. The darker scenes are solid and show no sign of digital breakdown, something that can harm even the best transfers. The sound, a 5.1 EX Dolby Digital track in English, is also very good, but maybe not quite as aggressive as would be expected. The sound is very clear up front, and there are some uses of the surrounds, but not as often as could have been. Just as with Episode I: The Phantom Menace this is a two disc set, with a commentary on the first disc with George Lucas, producer Rick McCallum, editor Ben Burtt, animation supervisor Rob Coleman, effects artists Pablo Helman, John Knoll, and Ben Snow. The second disc contains all the other supplements, and while they are plentiful, they do tend to lack a little substance. Up front are three documentaries, the first, at 56 long minutes, is called "From Puppets to Pixels" and takes an exhaustive look at the creation of digital characters, in particular, Yoda. The second examines the pre-visualization of the film, from early computer setups to the final product. Finally, "Films Are Not Made, They Escape" discusses in length the sound design of the film. Again, with far too many "talking head" interviews, it says a lot but lacks much interest. While extensive, all three of these are, technical and ultimately, boring. As with the Phantom Menace disc, this one contains 12 featurettes of various subjects originally shown on the Star Wars website. Three additional features on the story line, love story, and action scenes don't amount to much more than fluff pieces. Of greater interest are eight deleted scenes, with optional introductions and a great mockumentary trailer "R2-D2: Beneath the Dome." Finally, along with a "music video" for "Across the Stars" from John Williams are gallery sections, poster art, a brief visual effects reel, theatrical teasers, and trailer, plus 12 television spots. It's a full plate that looks like it will leave you filled, but in the end is somewhat empty. Still, fans of this film, who are a very devoted bunch, will be pleased.

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - Ed Hulse
Writer-director George Lucas's fifth entry in the Star Wars saga (actually the second, chronologically speaking) is by far the richest since 1980's The Empire Strikes Back. The overall production value and special effects are spectacular -- that's par for the course -- and the narrative thrust and emotional resonance far surpass that of Episode I: The Phantom Menace. It picks up the story ten years after the action in the previous film, as Annakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), now a Padouin apprentice to Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), is impatient to become a full-fledged Jedi knight and find his long-lost mother. Meanwhile, he is assigned to safeguard Senator Padme Amidala (Natalie Portman), the former queen whom he has loved since he was a young boy. Separatist forces led by the sinister Count Dooku (Christopher Lee) threaten the peace of the galaxy, and a full-fledged war seems imminent. Lee offers strong, charismatic villainy with Dooku. It's a trait sorely missing from the previous film, and film buffs will enjoy it as a reference to the cold presence of the late Peter Cushing, Lee's former Hammer Studios costar, in the original film. For the Star Wars universe, Attack of the Clones is a stirring, powerful movie and an important turning point in the saga. It's also a major crowd-pleaser for fans of Yoda and Boba Fett alike. Among the supplemental features on the double-DVD set is a detailed commentary featuring Lucas, producer Rick McCallum, sound editor Ben Burtt, and effects supervisor Rob Cohen. The disc also affords several informative documentaries: "From Puppets to Pixels," describing the evolution of character animation; "State of the Art: The Previsualization of Episode II," including never-before-seen animation effects; and "Films Are Not Released, They Escape." There are also three behind-the-scenes featurettes, a gallery of poster art, and other incidental materials.
All Movie Guide - Karl Williams
Boasting visual effects stunning in their detail and imagination, Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones continues to display both the familiar artistic strengths and weaknesses of director George Lucas. On the plus side, Ewan McGregor's delightful Alec Guinness impersonation is delivered with spot-on technical acuity and an ironic, subtle wink. Add to that the breathtaking vistas of completely digital imagery as seemingly real as anything ever put to film -- particularly eye-popping sequences involving an asteroid chase and a final battle between clone soldiers and droid robots. On the minus, there is bad writing, as evidenced by wooden, even immature dialogue and a dizzyingly complex plot line unlikely to be comprehended by the filmmaker's oft-stated target audience of young kids (a speciously revisionist argument from someone whose work once appealed to the kid in everybody). Lucas' touch with actors is not much more impressive than his screenwriting abilities, particularly in the laughably silly and strained love story unfolding between Anakin (Hayden Christensen, getting an "A" for effort in a whiny, unsympathetic role) and Padme (Natalie Portman, utterly devoid of personality and more robotic by a long shot than either C-3PO or R2-D2). Even the music from composer John Williams lacks the punch and scope of his career-high masterpiece score for The Empire Strikes Back, when he literally crafted a memorably rousing new theme for every one of the film's sequences. Both the best and worst moment is one in which ex-Muppet Yoda, formerly stiff as a two-by-four, comes to dazzling life as a whirling Tasmanian Devil of Jedi light saber-rattling payback. It's an audacious moment of heart-stopping frisson that stands as the prequels' high-water mark -- but it's also a reminder that gone forever are those days long, long ago, in movie theaters far, far away, when such genuine thrills arrived fast and furious.
Variety - Todd McCarthy
George Lucas has reached deep into the trove of his self-generated mythological world to produce a grand entertainment that offers a satisfying balance among the series' epic, narrative, technological and emotional qualities.
New York Post
1/2
On a purely visceral level, "Clones" is a delightfully rousing, eye-popping, crowd-pleasing homage to Saturday-morning serials of the '30s and '40s. Lou Lumenick

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/22/2005
UPC:
0024543055396
Original Release:
2002
Rating:
PG
Source:
20th Century Fox
Region Code:
1
Presentation:
[Full Frame]
Sound:
[Dolby Surround, Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround]
Time:
2:22:00

Special Features

Disc One: Commentary by George Lucas, producer Rick McCallum, sound designer Ben Burtt, ILM animation director Rob Coleman, ILM visual effects supervisors Pablo Helman, John Knoll and Ben Snow; captured and created directly from the digital source; English Dolby 5.1 Surround EX, Spanish Dolby 2.0 Surround, French Dolby 2.0 Surround; English subtitles.
Disc Two: Eight deleted scenes created just for this release, each with introductions from George Lucas, Rick McCallum and Ben Burtt; full-length documentary "From Puppets to Pixels"; documentary "State of the Art: The Previsualization of Episode II"; all-new documentary on sound, "Films Are Not Released; They Escape"; three featurettes about the film's storyline, action scenes, and love story; comprehensive, award-winning, 12-part web documentary series; "Across the Stars" music video featuring John Williams; theatrical teasers and launch trailer, and 12 TV spots; theatrical posters and print campaign from around the world; "R2-D2: Beneath the Dome" mockumentary trailer; never-before-seen production photo gallery with special caption feature; Episode II visual effects breakdown montage; DVD-ROM weblink to exclusive Star Wars content.

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Related Subjects

Cast & Crew

Performance Credits
Ewan McGregor Obi-Wan Kenobi
Natalie Portman Padmé Amidala
Hayden Christensen Anakin Skywalker
Christopher Lee Count Dooku
Samuel L. Jackson Mace Windu
Frank Oz Yoda
Ian McDiarmid Supreme Chancellor Palpatine
Pernilla August Shmi Skywalker
Temuera Morrison Jango Fett
Jimmy Smits Bail Organa
Jack Thompson Cliegg Lars
Leeanna Walsman Zam Wesell
Ahmed Best Achk Med-Beq,Jar Jar Binks
Rose Byrne Dormé
Oliver Ford Davies Sio Bibble
Ron Falk Dexter Jettster
Jay Lagai'aia Captain Typho
Andrew Secombe Watto
Anthony Daniels C-3PO
Kenny Baker R2-D2
Silas Carson Ki-Adi-Mundi,Nute Gunray
Daniel Logan Boba Fett
Graeme Blundell Ruwee Naberrie
David Bowers Mas Amedda
Ayesha Dharker Ayesha Dharker
Matt Doran Elan Sleazebaggano
Joel Edgerton Owen Lars
Claudia Karvan Sola Naberrie
Alethea McGrath Jocasta Nu
Trisha Noble Jobal Naberrie
Rena Owen Taun We
Anthony Phelan Lama Su
Susie Porter Hermione Bagwa
Matt Sloan Plo Koon
Steve John Shepherd Naboo Lieutenant

Technical Credits
George Lucas Director,Executive Producer,Original Story,Screenwriter
Trisha Biggar Costumes/Costume Designer
Gavin Bocquet Production Designer
Paul "Salty" Brincat Sound/Sound Designer
Ben Burtt Editor,Sound/Sound Designer
Ian Gracie Art Director
Robin Gurland Casting
Jonathan Hales Screenwriter
Phil Harvey Art Director
Fred Hole Art Director
Industrial Light & Magic Animator
Jonathan Lee Art Director
Rick McCallum Producer
Michelle McGahey Art Director
James McTeigue Asst. Director
David Tattersall Cinematographer
Peter Walpole Set Decoration/Design
John Williams [composer] Score Composer

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Scene Index

Side #1 --
1. Opening Logos [:24]
2. Attack of the Clones [1:27]
3. Return to Coruscant [1:27]
4. Chancellor's Meeting [1:27]
5. Old Friends [:46]
6. Assassins [:46]
7. Speeder Chase [:46]
8. Into the Club [1:45]
9. New Assignments [2:34]
10. Traveling Incognito [:02]
11. Dex's Diner [3:28]
12. Jedi Archives [3:50]
13. "Encouraged to Love" [:14]
14. Yoda and the Younglings [7:00]
15. Return to Naboo [3:13]
16. Audience with the Queen [4:07]
17. Kamino Arrival [:49]
18. Meeting Lama Su [1:47]
19. Stolen Kiss [2:14]
20. Inspecting the Clones [1:02]
21. Teasing a Senator [1:14]
22. Jango's Apartment [:20]
23. Forbidden Love [2:00]
24. Obi-Wan's Report [:59]
25. Nightmare [1:31]
26. Obi-Wan Vs. Jango [1:15]
27. Back to Tatooine [1:49]
28. Asteroid Chase [:24]
29. Lars' Homestead [1:22]
30. Anakin's Search [1:59]
31. Dooku's Separatist Plot [2:30]
32. Tusken Camp [:22]
33. Out of Range [2:17]
34. "You're Not All-Powerful" [3:43]
35. Enemies Revealed [:13]
36. Obi-Wan Captive [1:58]
37. Emergency Powers [1:49]
38. Droid Factory [:06]
39. Love Pledge [2:49]
40. The Arena [:06]
41. "This Party is Over" [2:35]
42. Yoda's Cavalry [:07]
43. Clone War [3:28]
44. War Room [1:18]
45. Duel With Dooku [2:42]
46. Master Yoda [1:22]
47. "Well Done, Lord Tyranus" [2:19]
48. "Begun, the Clone War Has" [:05]
49. Secret Union [3:51]
50. End Credits [:44]

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