Star Wars: The Clone Wars

I hate the hot weather. It’s so damn counterproductive. It’s muggy as hell here, so I’m going to try to make sense in this review, but don’t count on it. If the writing goes a bit doolally, please try and ignore it and be concerned for my mental health.Oh, and since I consider this film a personal attack on many levels, I would skip it if you don’t like reading…

Star Wars: The Clone Wars (2008)

I normally use this paragraph to profess what a big fan I am of a well-established franchise- it happens a lot, I’m a fan of lots of things. However, the Star Wars films (at least the original trilogy) were an integral part of my childhood. I would watch them over and over again until I knew pretty much every line. The prequels were another matter, but we’ll save that argument for another time.

“Master, Stinky is really sick. He’s turning every shade of green except the one he’s supposed to be.”

Jabba the Hutt’s son (!) has been kidnapped and the Jedi Council send Anakin Skywalker (Matt Lanter) to find him. Along the way, Anakin reluctantly picks up a Padawan learner by the name of Ahsoka (Ashley Eckstein). The plot is utterly retarded. It reads more like bad fan-fiction than the official 7th Star Wars film. The period of time during the Clone Wars seems rich and full of good story opportunities, so I’m not sure why they went for the uber-hackneyed plot of a kidnapping. The film started off badly by fucking with the classic Star Wars hallmarks. We get a bastardised version of the famous John Williams score and instead of the iconic opening scrawl, we have some cheesy narration. It was horrible. On the other hand, all the voice actors are fine, but I have a really problem with the characters. A new paragraph kinda problem…

I hated the relationship between Anakin and Ahsoka. They have a really forced (no pun intended) back and forth which irritated the living piss out of me. He remarks that she’s “snippy” and so calls her “Snips”, she teases him about his last name so he becomes “Sky Guy”. So we’re left with a joy vacuum every single time the two are on screen together, which is a lot. Also we have Jabba’s son present through most of it who is referred to as “Stinky” (Sigh).

It’s not fun taking the piss out of something like The Clone Wars, as it is clearly aimed at younger children. My point is, why dumb it down for a younger audience? The original trilogy wasn’t dumbed down and was still accessible to children and adults alike. Every single time Lucas has dumbed things down for the little kiddies (i.e. Ewoks, Jar Jar Binks…) it has always let the film down in some way. Children aren’t stupid and babying them isn’t going to help their first steps into a wider cinematic world…

I’m not kidding when I say that nearly every character was irritating. The battle droids, C-3PO and even Yoda lost their gloss after a while. The most annoying character by far was Jabba’s uncle (!) Ziro, who is a purple, gay version of Jabba with the voice of Truman Capote (y’know- for kids!). Every single second he is on screen made me want to crucify myself.

“Great (!) Rolling death balls.”

The last (and final, I promise!) problem I have is the animation style. I loved the Genndy Tartakovsky Clone Wars cartoons but this is something else. The animation is cheap and soulless, which in the era of Pixar films like Wall-E and Ratatouille will not do. I do think that if the film had a good story or dialogue they would have overcome this, but if you’ve paid any attention to the above, you’ll know this is not the case. This is not Star Wars to me, this is an extended trailer for the bound-to-be-awful upcoming CGI Clone Wars TV series. In fact, if you listen carefully at the start and ignore the awful remixed theme I’m pretty sure you’ll hear the sound of a cash register ringing and George Lucas rubbing his ill-gotten money all over his stupid, white beard.

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