Darth on DVD

by December Lambeth on May 23, 2007

in DVD Reviews 

  • Title: Star Wars – Episode III: Revenge of the Sith
  • IMDB: link

star-wars-revenge-of-the-sith-dvdThe story is the best of the three, but the script is extremely poor and requiring the cast to act against a blue screen with X marks the spots or animated creatures; creates bad techniques, unconvincing character relationships and poor acting. “Let your cast act Lucas!” When your cast includes Natalie Portman, who has proven her ability to show compassion and emotion in films like Where the Heart Is and Closer, and Hayden Christensen, who has surpassed many young talent in such films as Life as a House and Shattered Glass, how can you get a complete void of acting abilities from two very talented individuals?

A major part of Anakin’s (Hayden Christensen) transformation to the dark side has to do with his deep love for his wife Padme (Natalie Portman) and their unborn children, but no where does the audience see this strong emotional bond between the two characters.

The two main characters came across as sad and uncommitted. Padme has become nothing more than window dressing, only a few short screen moments of worry and dismay for Anakin. And Anakin’s whole purpose for his dark transformation is unconvincing and his relationship between Obi-Wan (Ewan McGregor) stifled and unnatural.

Then there is the ever talented Samual L. Jackson and Ewan McGregor, who do a much better job than their younger coworkers, but their true abilities still stiffened by set conditions. Kudos to Ewan McGregor for owning his role as Obi-Wan Kenobi; out of the entire cast he seems to be the most in touch with his character and is most convincing.

The casts abilities to carry key moments in the film are lost to either complete unemotional or detached reactions and a touch of campiness. The moment of awe, when Vader is born and the mask is darned is turned into only a moment of aggravation and disappointment. I expected lights, smoke, strong emotions, something; I expected a great deal more than what was there.

Even though Lucas had three films to tell his story of Anakin’s journey to the dark side and the take over by chancellor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) and the evil empire, it felt rushed. It’s almost as if Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones were just fluff films and the heart of the story was all shoved into Revenge of the Sith.

Even the battles were tiresome and uninspiring at times. We’ve already seen Yoda do his thing, but Lucas gives us an almost exact replica of the fight scene from Attack of the Clones. The ending, wow, he even screwed that up. Unless you have lived in some hole all your life, you already know what happens to Padme and the twins, why give us some odd uncomfortable drawn out moment at the end of the film reiterating where they end up. It should have ended with the birth of Darth Vader–cut to black–The End.

Now that I have completely torn this moment in history apart, I should make some effort to point out its redeeming qualities. Revenge of the Sith is a much darker film, definitely the most brutal of the six, but you had to expect that. A Jedi would have to do some pretty crazy stuff to turn to the dark side and Anakin does just that when it comes to killing off all the Jedi. There is a scene at the Jedi temple where he is confronted with slaughtering the Younglings, there isn’t any direct scenes shown, but you get the idea.

Best scene hands down, Anakin’s and Obi-Wan’s lava battle, it’s truly jaw dropping and extremely tense. That moment in the film adds an extra popcorn to my final score; it completes the adventure.

I can’t discard the qualities Revenge of the Sith has, but I can’t forgive George Lucas in his loss of ability in making a brilliant story and idea transform to the big screen. Lucas got too big for his britches, wanting complete control over everything and not taking suggestions; it just proves throwing money at something doesn’t necessarily make it better.

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