Star Wars Revisited 11: Revenge of the Sith

A long time ago… I discovered Star Wars. It would define my life. It’s time to rediscover it.

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Part XI

Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith

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Three years have passed since the events of “Attack of the Clones”. The Clone Wars are winding down and a Republic victory seems assured. In a daring attempt, Dooku and the Separatists kidnap Chancellor Palpatine in the Battle of Coruscant. Anakin and Obi Wan fight their way onto the command ship. Anakin is coerced into killing Count Dooku in cold blood. This begins the downward spiral. Chancellor Palpatine, secretly Darth Sidious, manipulates Anakin to turn against the Jedi and become his Sith apprentice.

The Purge of the Jedi occurs and only a handful are believed to have survived. Master Yoda tries to defeat Sidious and fails. Obi-Wan sets out to kill Anakin and comes close to doing so. Anakin survives and becomes the villainous Darth Vader.

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Ewan McGregor finishes his fine work as Kenobi. He is truly the stand out of the prequel trilogy. There is much talk of giving him an “Old Ben” film set on Tatooine. I hope this happens,

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Hayden Christensen gives the better of his two performances as Anakin Skywalker. As in the previous entry, he is saddled with terrible dialogue… or so it seems. Someone mentioned that I should read every line said by Anakin in II and III and imagine it in the voice of James Earl Jones. Incredibly, every line works perfectly. The problem is that they were writing for Vader, not Anakin.

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A great actress who shows up to cry a bit, then dies of a broken heart. Waste.

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Ian McDiarmid completes his time as Palpatine. We see the kindly chancellor reveal himself as the Evil Emperor. He goes “full cackle” a bit during his Yoda fight scene, but we can forgive that.

It has been 10 years since I saw this. There was a moment where Yoda says goodbye to Chewbacca and jumps into a spaceship and flies away. When this played in ’05, it made me full on cry. It drove home that this was the end. This was THE LAST Star Wars movie I would be seeing in the cinema. I went with a large group of friends, 15 or so. We each had a glass of Skywalker wine from Lucas’ vineyards, and went to the movies. .Luckily for us, it was the best of the prequel trilogy. Some of the flaws of the period still exist, but this mends a lot of fences. When Anakin turns dark, he REALLY turns- kid killing! I just wish they had a better chance to show us the good man he was, and focused less on the tortured soul. The Clone Wars did a lot to flesh him out, and truly elevate the material.

In the end, I will remember the Prequel Era fondly. I do not share the hate, even to Jar jar.

Next:

Rebels

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