STAR WARS: ATTACK OF THE CLONES - Looking Back At 5 Things That Worked And 5 That Didn't

Widely considered the worst Star Wars movie (at least until The Rise of Skywalker came along, Attack of the Clones is a movie that has it's good and bad points, and it's those we're looking at today...

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The Star Wars franchise returned to the big screen in 2015 with The Force Awakens, though this Galaxy Far, Far Away has since found greater success on television than in theaters. The future of the franchise on the big screen now feels somewhat uncertain, though a handful of projects are in various stages of development. 

None of them have definitive release dates, unfortunately, and it seems Lucasfilm is currently on expanding this franchise through Disney+ instead (which has proved to be no bad thing thus far).

To fill that Star Wars shaped void in your lives, we're now taking a look back at the Skywalker Saga, and this time, we're taking a look back at what did and didn't work in Attack of the Clones. Considered the worst instalment of the franchise by many fans, it definitely had its good and bad moments, and this could end up changing how you view George Lucas' second prequel. 

So, to check this one out, all you guys need to do is click the "Next" button down below...

Did Work: The Battle Of Geonosis

Geonosis

While Attack of the Clones’ final battle certainly had its fair share of issues (we’ll get to those a little later), it was hard not to get a kick out of seeing the Jedi Order out in full force, especially after they spent the entirety of The Phantom Menace sitting around and, well, talking.

This was the kind of scene most Star Wars fans had always fantasised about, and while it was a little tough to believe the heroes would have a major problem taking out cannon fodder like Battle Droids, Yoda’s arrival with the Clone army to save the day was undeniably awesome and led to some solid battle sequences.

Sure, this fight didn’t quite rival the opening of The Empire Strikes Back – Lucas definitely missed a great opportunity to recapture that feel – but it was still pretty good.

Didn't Work: C-3PO, Bumbling Comedy Sidekick

Pio

C-3PO is a beloved Star Wars icon but, honestly, it was hard not to hate him after his forced role in The Battle Of Geonosis. There was absolutely no need for any sort of comedy during the final act (the silly one liner shared between characters like Anakin and Padme were cringe-worthy enough), never mind an entire subplot devoted to Threepio’s disembodied head.

As you may recall, that was inadvertently placed on the body of a Battle Droid, and "hilarity" ensued.

For some reason, he had no control over said body and ended up frantically apologising for his actions during this fight, but it never once came across as even mildly amusing. It was just stupid, and turned C-3PO into comic relief, a role he deserved so much more than here. 

Did Work: Anakin's Dark Side

nakin

With Attack of the Clones taking place a decade after the events of The Phantom Menace, a new actor needed to be found to take on the role of Anakin Skywalker. Enter Hayden Christensen, a relative unknown minus the acting skills or likeability Mark Hamill had utilised to turn Luke into a beloved icon years earlier.  

His wooden performance was hit-and-miss throughout this movie, though a great character moment came when the young Jedi slaughtered the Tusken Raiders responsible for killing his mother.

While Anakin’s arrogance and frustration were frequently hinted at, this gave us a glimpse of the darkness dwelling inside the man who would one day become one of the most feared figures in the Galaxy. Plus, as much as we give Christensen grief, he didn't have the best material to work with, and definitely did his best.

Didn't Work: Too Much Tatooine

Annie32

Returning to Tatooine in The Phantom Menace (after it had already been featured in both A New Hope and Return of the Jedi) was an inevitable pitfall of exploring Anakin Skywalker’s childhood, but Lucas’ decision to return there in Attack of the Clones was a frustrating one.

Had less time been spent on the political dealings of the Senate in the last movie, the death of Anakin’s mother and introduction of Owen Lars could have been handled there, but it just ended up feeling forced in Attack of the Clones, and not really a diversion we needed. 

A big part of that came down to the fact that what drew Anakin back home were clichéd visions he had while dreaming, not to mention Lucas probably remembering that he needed to find a way to reunite C-3PO and R2-D2...simply put, there were better ways to handle all of this.

Did Work: The Clone Army

Clones

At first, it appeared as if the clones this movie was named after answered that age-old question of where the Empire got all those Stormtroopers from. Of course, it’s since been revealed – and this is still the case in the post-Expanded Universe continuity – that the clones were pretty much long gone by the time A New Hope rolled around.

Now, some have argued that Lucas’ decision to use them here was just a lazy way of assembling an army for the good guys, but he did actually reference this period during the events of Episode IV.

That aside, though, and there’s no denying that they were still pretty cool. The visual alone of this massive army was a sight to behold, while the fact that we were all left to wonder how and why they would seemingly end up on the side of the Empire made for a compelling talking point.

Didn't Work: Anakin And Padme's Time On Naboo

Annie324

Putting aside the fact that it was kind of creepy for Padme to fall in love with Anakin after the relationship they’d had when he was a child, every scene Hayden Christensen and Natalie Portman shared in Attack of the Clones was still a chore to endure for the most part.

Their lack of chemistry aside, the dialogue these two shared was excruciating to listen to – "So have you, grown more beautiful… for a senator, I mean." – and every second the movie spent on their budding love story was time which could have been better spent elsewhere.

Things got so cheesy at one point that we were just a scene or two away from them holding hands and skipping through a field of daisies together, and this wasn't a smart way to get fans to invest in the relationship of the duo who would one day be parents to Luke and Leia.

Did Work: Anakin's Relationship With Obi-Wan

An

With no more Qui-Gon Jinn to root for, the focus of Attack of the Clones became the relationship between Obi-Wan Kenobi and Anakin. There was some intriguing tension between them, but it was also clear to see that a friendship had developed between the Master and Apprentice.

For fans of Obi-Wan, it was particularly satisfying to see him transition from the Padawan we spent time with in The Phantom Menace to the Jedi Knight we met a wizened version of in A New Hope, while it was hard not to watch any scene these two were involved in together without looking for foreshadowing about the inevitable breakdown of their relationship.

It’s a shame that they were split up for so much of the movie, and Lucas could have done more to tease the future, but The Clone Wars would later flesh things out between them. 

Didn't Work: Jango Fett's Demise

Mons

Having Jango Fett be the basis for the clones was an interesting decision, even if it ultimately had very little in the way of a major pay off. There really wasn’t much of a need for either him or his son to be thrown into Attack of the Clones if we’re being honest, but it was still pretty cool to get at least a glimpse of Boba’s origin story.

After all, the scene in which he cradles his father’s helmet – head? – is arguably one of the most iconic pieces of imagery in the Star Wars prequels, and provided some insight into his past.

What wasn’t quite so cool was the way Jango was dealt with. After very nearly taking Obi-Wan Kenobi out earlier in the movie, he’s swiftly beheaded by Mace Windu in one of the most underwhelming "fight" scenes in this entire franchise. What a waste of a potentially great character. 

Did Work: Yoda Vs. Count Dooku

ZYoda

Well, who knew Yoda ever had this in him?

Obi-Wan and Anakin’s battle against Count Dooku was certainly entertaining, but they were outmatched by the experienced Jedi turned Sith. Enter Yoda. Displaying his incredible strength through his use of the Force, the pint-sized Star Wars icon surprised us all by revealing his incredible lightsaber skills in an epic fight sequence which it was clear to see the majority of Attack of the Clones’ CGI budget went into making a reality.

It’s a little strange how the already ancient Jedi Master went from this to the sickly version we met in The Empire Strikes Back (perhaps the isolation was the cause of it), but that aside, this remains one of the coolest, least divisive lightsaber battles in the Star Wars franchise.

Didn't Work: Colosseum Battle

Mons

We mentioned earlier that The Battle Of Geonosis had its issues, and like C-3PO’s not so hilarious misadventure, the early scenes set within the Colosseum when Obi-Wan, Anakin, and Padme were sentenced to death were a real misfire in a lot of different ways. 

Full of questionable special effects, this cartoonish sequence was clearly an attempt by Lucas to recapture the magic of any number of classic movies set in Ancient Rome, but he failed miserably and ended up delivering another disappointing final battle (like the Gungans vs. those Battle Droids).

Whether it was the eye roll worthy one liners or Anakin taking a giant CGI beast like a bull in a rodeo, very little worked here until the Jedi Order thankfully made their presence felt.

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