May marks the 40th anniversary of “Star Wars: A New Hope,” but it also has another, less joyful milestone: the 15th anniversary of “Attack of the Clones,” which was (to our disappointment) released to a theater near you on May 16, 2002.
But maybe it’s not as bad as everyone says it is or as bad as I remember it. Maybe it’s secretly the best prequel. I hadn’t seen it in a long time, so who am I to judge? Turns out, I was right.
I took a stab at re-watching “Attack of the Clones” with the intention of giving it the benefit of the doubt, but it just made me feel like I was getting stabbed in the eyes (and the heart). “Attack of the Clones” is a soulless, disjointed parade of clichés that took everything anyone loved about the “Star Wars” franchise and hid it behind wooden dialogue, junky visual effects, galaxy politics no one cares about, and forgettable characters who don’t matter. At least “Phantom Menace” had a cool villain in Darth Maul and sweet Sebulba.
The movie is so unwatchable — save for Ewan McGregor’s welcome presence, for which he should win some kind of peace prize — that it literally took me weeks to watch it. I could only bear it in 20-30 minute intervals. At a painful and unnecessary 2 hours and 22 minutes, “Attack of the Clones” makes watching the depressing ending of “Rogue One” on repeat sound appealing.
Here’s why “Attack of the Clones” is the worst movie in the “Star Wars” franchise:
While the script is dumbed down, ridden with cheesy one-liners and sentences that are not authentic for any living creature the has a mouth, it’s still hard to follow.
There is so much plot that it’s actually completely plotless. In having too many storylines and new characters, the point of the movie — to showcase Anakin’s eventual turn to the dark side — gets completely lost.
One of those plot lines? Anakin and Padmé’s love story, which is just as forced as it is uninteresting. It’s also terribly portrayed by future Oscar winner Natalie Portman.