Star Wars: The Clone Wars Reviews
Star Wars Clone Wars takes place in between after Star Wars Episode II Attack of the Clones and before Star Wars Episode III Revenge of the Sith, when Anakin is a new Jedi Knight and has been given a new Padawan named Ahsoka Tano by Master Yoda. While this happens, Jabba the hutts son was kidnapped and the Jedi are being framed by Dooku and his assassin Ventress for the kidnap.
To think they got rid of Hayden Christensen, Ewan Mcgregor, and Frank Oz was a bit of a disappointment to me in this film, but overall, these new actors did decent jobs, Tom Kane did a surprisingly good Yoda and Nika Futterman did a creepily good Ventress, and is hands down one of the creepiest star wars characters. Also the return of Samuel L. Jackson, Anthony Daniels, and Christopher Lee were good surprises especially having Lee return as Dooku who is still just as good as he was in Episode II. But other than that, theres nothing really left to talk about about the voice actors except for they were decent renditions.
Now the animation is surprisingly decent for a film like this but the problem is that the animation does look stiff at times, but the animation looks incredible in the action scenes and they're close to being just as good as the prequels action, including the lightsaber battles and blaster fights, especially the beginning fight on Christophsis, and the music is very well done and sounds close to John Williams music and makes the battles feel just as grand and big.
I will admit doing an animated Star Wars film is a strange idea and only having a couple of the actors from the past films, I find kind of strange, and even now, I still find it kind of strange, but it is somewhat enjoyable, its a guilty pleasure to me. but it does drag on at a somewhat slow and boring pace. The film may not be fantastic and is definitely the worst of the Star Wars Saga, it did lead to something awesome.
The Clone Wars (or SW:TCW, as I like to call it) is supposedly designed to be an intro to the upcoming TV series. As such, it's an almost entirely pointless exercise. For starters, the events of the film serve as little more than an accessory to the overall Clone Wars plotline. It seems someone has kidnapped Jabba the Hutt's kid, Rotta the... Huttlet. The Jedi Council, needing safe passage through Hutt-controlled space to battle the separatists, send Anakin Skywalker (Matt Lanter) and his new padawan Ahsoka (Ashley Eckstein, in a shameless attempt to lure the tween girl crowd over to the dark side) and a squad of clone troopers to rescue the kid. The separatists, led by Count Dooku (Christopher Lee), have similar plans, leading to a showdown between the two Jedi, Dooku and his apprentice Asajj Ventress (Nika Futterman) and plenty of cannon fodder droids and clones.
Shades of Skorzeny rescuing Mussolini, yes? Okay, maybe not, but even if the plot isn't all that galvanizing, it would be perfectly serviceable as a foreword to a narrative about the war itself if not for the way Lucas and company continue to drizzle urine over any lingering goodwill fans of the franchise might still possess. The animation is lifeless (especially after Tartakovsky's efforts), the voice acting stiff (though Lanter actually gets Anakin through the whole movie with nary a whine), but it's the new characters that really screw the pooch. Not only are we treated to the nauseatingly precious Rotta (he farts! No one ever told me Lucas was a comedian!) and "Padawana Montana" (unlike the heavily armored Anakin, Obi-Wan, and assorted troops, Ahsoka marches into battle in a tube top/miniskirt combo), but we're also introduced to Jabba's uncle, Ziro the Hutt.
I might have been able to overlook asinine horsecrap like Ahsoka calling Anakin "Sky Guy" or his referring to her as "Snips" in return, but Ziro is an abomination. My complaint isn't that he speaks English (the horror!), but that he's basically Jar Jar in Hutt form, albeit deliberately effeminate in manner and talking like a cross between Truman Capote and Hoodoo from "Lidsville." The whole thing feels like a continuation of Lucas' experiments to see how much human excrement his dwindling supporters will eat before finally saying "ENOUGH!" and moving on to adult pursuits.
I should know. I'm not going to lie and say my anti-Lucas gland kicked into gear way back in '83 (primarily because I was just 12-months-old and couldn't even use the potty, let alone analyze a film). No, it took The Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones to get those juices flowing freely (although, it should be noted that Revenge of the Sith FINALLY restored some balance to the force). There are still plenty of Star Wars fans out there (I'm hanging on by a thread), however, and now that he's truly super-duper rich, Lucas' only source of amusement seems to be in devising new methods to drive us off in disgust. Star Wars: The Clone Wars will go a long way in helping his cause.
Laughing through his beard all the way to the bank, George Lucas continues to milk Star Wars fans? wallets with the rough, ruthless efficiency of Vader himself. Flat and heartless, this animated atrocity is simply a videogame you can?t play.
I did quite like the trailers for The Clone Wars as, despite it being CGI, it seemed to revel in looking very much like a 'toon'. And I have always thought that Star Wars would be better suited to animation (the 'prequels' are more or less that anyway as Lucas seems to be in love with CGI!)
Unfortunately, The Clone Wars very much encapsulates what is depressing about CGI animation. Cold, clinical and boring with lifeless characters.
Yes the set pieces are quite impressive but so is looking out the window at a thunder storm! Is it too much to ask for a half-way interesting story as well?
Characterisation was completely flat, as was the voice 'talent' as it spouted the risible dialogue - with annoyingly mannered accents (mostly what Americans think is a convincing English accent).
And NO-ONE has facial expressions beyond mild surprise! Surely there has been some progress in CGI over the years. As the characters pointed and waved their arms and nodded, shook and bobbed their heads in a desperate act to over-compensate for the total lack of facial expressions they felt like marginally less wooden Gerry Anderson puppets. And I have to say, an episode of Thunderbirds or Captain Scarlet is infinitely preferable to this monumental bore.