(The Disneycember logo is shown, before showing trailer clips and screenshots from Star Wars: Episode III: Revenge of the Sith)
Doug (vo): So, out of all the Star Wars prequels that came out, this was the one that felt the closest like a Star Wars movie. It opens with Star Destroyers, and a space battle, and lightsabers, and going in and rescuing people, and running through the ship and shooting lasers, and...yeah. This is Star Wars, and it's easy to follow. Once again, the focus is on the simplicity of the character. You understand why Anakin is angry, you understand what he's going through. Now, does that make up for everything? No. It's still, by definition, a pretty bad movie. But this is the first time watching it where I said, "You know what? I'm glad I saw a Star Wars prequel." There's just enough good things and insight and visuals that made me glad that I paid the money to go see it.
Doug (vo): It's a few years later, and Anakin finds out that Amidala is pregnant. This is already big trouble, but it's gonna be even bigger trouble when he has a vision showing that she's probably gonna die at childbirth. But he's becoming more chummy-chummy with Palpatine, as he tells him that the ways of the dark side can actually find a way to save her life. Slowly but surely, Anakin is being won over to that side, as Obi-Wan goes to do more of that political swordfighting nonsense that's in the other films, but it's not as focused on here. The focus is what it should be on: Anakin. And I think most people know what's gonna happen. He's gonna become Darth Vader, things are gonna go wrong, there's gonna be a big separation between him and Obi-Wan.
Doug (vo): But this is the first time it plays out closer to how you may think it's supposed to play out. There's betrayal, there's manipulation, there's big swordfights, there's explosions, there's student against teacher, the ultimate failure.
(Screenshots of the scenes where Anakin first turns to the dark side are shown)
Doug (vo): And yet, there's still so many other dumb scenes, like when Anakin does turn. As everybody says, it's way too fast and out of nowhere. It's one thing to say you wanna learn the dark side to save your loved one, but to kill so many people, to completely switch sides and kill young ones or Younglings or whatever the hell they're called, it's completely out of nowhere and the acting's not strong enough to support it.
(Several more of the film's worlds and other scenes are shown)
Doug (vo): But out of all of them, this is probably the most visual storytelling. You could watch this on mute...oh, hell, I'd almost recommend it...and still get an idea of what's going on. It felt more like we're in the Star Wars universe, like it has a history. The scene at the opera where he's giving the backstory and the mythos, that's one of the best moments I've seen in any Star Wars movie. And everybody, whether they're doing a good job acting or not, look the part. Anakin looks amazing. This is what you would imagine a young, angry Darth Vader would look like. But, yes, like I said before, I make fun of the moments you make fun of, too. Darth Vader shouting "NOOOOO!!", the stupid romantic dialogue that feels so forced, the plot threads that don't add up, I make fun of it all, too. But at the very least, I finally got something that felt a little closer to what these prequels was supposed to be. It is dark, it is brooding, it is gritty, it has big battles and manipulation that you can actually follow this time.
Final thought Edit
Doug (vo): Truth be told, it's a movie I don't mind popping in every once in a while. Do I laugh at the stupid scenes? Sure. And do I still point out all the things that don't make sense? Yeah. But the fight scenes and the cinematography and the way it visually tells its story is really, really interesting. By no means perfect, I don't even really think you can say it's good. But it has good things in it, some of them the best out of any of the Star Wars movies, and it's hard for me not to recommend that. The first one's interesting to watch to see how bad it can be, but you don't really need to see it in order to figure out what's going on here. And the second one is a complete forgettable mess. This is the first one where I felt like I actually learned a little something, or at least, what the intention was. I didn't feel the emotions, but I felt the idea behind the emotions, if that makes sense. It's a tough call. If you want to see the movie to know a little bit more about what was supposed to be going on, it's interesting. But if you want an actual good movie, I still can't say that it is. But at least it was finally feeling like Star Wars, and looking like Star Wars, even if we had to put up with a lot of dumb bullshit. I think you can figure out if this is something you would benefit from, or if it would just piss you off more. And for a while, it seemed like this was the end of the Star Wars movies, but literally and figuratively, a new hope seemed to be in the future.
(The movie's title is shown)