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Star Wars Episode II: Attack of The Clones
Buy the DVD  Barnes & Noble.com
Buy the VHSBarnes & Noble.com
Genre:SciFi
Year:2002
Rating:PG
Length:2h 22mins
Country:USA
Cast:George Lucas, Ewan McGregor, Natalie Portman, Hayden Christensen
Credits:Written and Directed by: George Lucas
Music by John Williams

Writer-director George Lucas's fifth entry in the Star Wars saga (actually the second, chronologically speaking) is by far the richest since 1980's The Empire Strikes Back. The overall production value and special effects are spectacular -- that's par for the course -- and the narrative thrust and emotional resonance far surpass that of Episode I: The Phantom Menace. It picks up the story ten years after the action in the previous film, as Annakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen), now a Padouin apprentice to Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor), is impatient to become a full-fledged Jedi knight and find his long-lost mother. Meanwhile, he is assigned to safeguard Senator Padme Amidala (Natalie Portman), the former queen whom he has loved since he was a young boy. Separatist forces led by the sinister Count Dooku (Christopher Lee) threaten the peace of the galaxy, and a full-fledged war seems imminent. Lee offers strong, charismatic villainy with Dooku. It's a trait sorely missing from the previous film, and film buffs will enjoy it as a reference to the cold presence of the late Peter Cushing, Lee's former Hammer Studios costar, in the original film. For the Star Wars universe, Attack of the Clones is a stirring, powerful movie and an important turning point in the saga. It's also a major crowd-pleaser for fans of Yoda and Boba Fett alike. Among the supplemental features on the double-DVD set is a detailed commentary featuring Lucas, producer Rick McCallum, sound editor Ben Burtt, and effects supervisor Rob Cohen. The disc also affords several informative documentaries: "From Puppets to Pixels," describing the evolution of character animation; "State of the Art: The Previsualization of Episode II," including never-before-seen animation effects; and "Films Are Not Released, They Escape." There are also three behind-the-scenes featurettes, a gallery of poster art, and other incidental materials. Ed Hulse

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