FBMR - Star Wars: Episode I
Film-Buff Movie Reviews


Being the STAR WARS enthusiast that I am, I have a very particular vision about these movies. That means that I do agree and don't agree with many of the elements of these movies. This new instalment, the first chapter in the saga, is no exception. I liked a lot of things in this movie, but also disliked certain things. I found the story a little weak, but I'm hoping that it will start to make more sense when Episode II and III come out. It's important to remember that, unlike the first STAR WARS movie which can stand alone as a self-contained film, this first chapter is only the first part of a three-part story. George Lucas, in the 70s, wasn't sure that STAR WARS would be a success, so he made STAR WARS as self-contained as he could in case he would be able to make the others that he had in mind. When he made THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK he knew that he was going to add yet another instalment with RETURN OF THE JEDI, so he was able to leave the story open. Knowing that Episode II and III will be following, he was able to make this film as an introduction rather than a complete work.

The story follows the Jedi Knights, Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson) and Obi- Wan Kenobi (Ewan MacGregor) as they try to protect Queen Amidala (Natalie Portman) from the Trade Federation's invasion army. On their way to appeal their case to the Senate, they are forced to land on a remote where they meet an intriguing young boy named Anakin Skywalker.

The things I liked the most in this film were the usage of the lightsabers. These weapons are more developed, and when used by young and trained Jedi Knights we see just how powerful they can be, deflecting, redirecting, cutting through metal, as so on. The duels between the Jedi Knights and Darth Maul are far quicker, and much more interesting that all of the previous lightsaber duels in the earlier films. The choreography is phenomenal. I also liked the way the Jedi used their mind tricks and the power of moving objects. These things made up for what the movie lacked.

My dislikes out-number my likes, unfortunately. I didn't like Jar Jar Binks. I found him extremely annoying, and I now tune him out completely when I watch this movie over and over again. The pod race was a little disappointing too. It looked like I was watching someone playing a video game. Although I don't mind it as much as I did the first time I saw it. A lot of what happened in this movie was also achieved by chance. When Anakin goes up into space in a fighter, it's ridiculous that he doesn't get shot down. All that he does up there is accidental.

My enjoyment of this film will hopefully increase as more secrets are revealed in the next two chapters of this saga.