Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones ★★★★★

went from a one star to a five, this movie is fucking amazing.

the set design, cinematography, costume design is some of the most gorgeous in all of Star Wars, PERIOD.

the scene with Anakin's mom is one of the most emotionally-heartbreaking Star Wars scenes, PERIOD.

the chase between Obi Wan and Jango Fett in the asteroid ring is one of the most thrilling scenes in Star Wars, PERIOD.

the stunted 40s style romance with Anakin and Padme is the foreboding and tragic dynamics of all Star Wars, PERIOD.

John Williams composes some of his best work in all of fucking Star Wars, PERIOD.

the ending battle is some of the best Star Wars action (IT LASTS FOR 40 MINUTES), PERIOD.

this is one of the best Star Wars movies, PERIOD.

a wild larger than life pastiche of western/film noir/political thriller/WWII romance/ever-present space opera serial tropes, Attack of the Clones is a pure delight. it's heavier than the previous stage-setting of The Phantom Menace, introducing us to the first telltale steps of Anakin's descent into the Dark Side, while also making sure that we as an audience stay emotionally-connected with his plight.

George Lucas seamlessly juggles his lighter thrill ride fare with heavier, darker character beats; it's insane that in the same movie where there's a cyberpunk freefalling chase scene thrill ride in the beginning i also legitimately sympathize with a protagonist who massacres an entire scavenger village (including women and children!). none of Anakin's actions feels forced, and Hayden Christensen gives off a perfect performance as an emotionally-stunted teenager with the lack of any sort of fatherly guidance.

there's a very resonant emotional core here in his story and his romance with Padme, and the way George weaves it to play perfectly off of Obi-Wan's space noir adventure is nothing short of genius.

the intrigue and the passion all leads up to the transcendent final 40 minutes, a pure extravaganza of Star Wars action setpiece at its very fucking best.

it's insane how maligned this is. i'm also insane for giving this one star without having rewatched it in over 10 years. i'm a fucking IDIOT.

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