Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace

1999, Action/Fantasy, 2h 13m

233 Reviews 250,000+ Ratings

What to know

critics consensus

Burdened by exposition and populated with stock characters, The Phantom Menace gets the Star Wars prequels off to a bumpy -- albeit visually dazzling -- start. Read critic reviews

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Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace Videos

Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace Photos

Movie Info

Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) is a young apprentice Jedi knight under the tutelage of Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson) ; Anakin Skywalker (Jake Lloyd), who will later father Luke Skywalker and become known as Darth Vader, is just a 9-year-old boy. When the Trade Federation cuts off all routes to the planet Naboo, Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan are assigned to settle the matter.

Cast & Crew

Liam Neeson
Qui-Gon Jinn
Ewan McGregor
Obi-Wan Kenobi
Natalie Portman
Queen Amidala, Padmé Naberrie
Jake Lloyd
Anakin Skywalker
Pernilla August
Shmi Skywalker
Frank Oz
Master Yoda
Voice
Ian McDiarmid
Senator Palpatine, Supreme Chancellor Palpatine
Hugh Quarshie
Captain Panaka
Ahmed Best
Jar Jar Binks, Senator
Voice
Ray Park
Darth Maul
Peter Serafinowicz
Darth Maul
Voice
Terence Stamp
Chancellor Finis Valorum
Brian Blessed
Boss Nass
Voice
Silas Carson
Nute Gunray, Radiant VII Pilot, Ki-Adi-Mundi, Lott Dod
George Lucas
Executive Producer
John Williams
Original Music
David Tattersall
Cinematographer
Ben Burtt
Film Editor
Gavin Bocquet
Production Designer
Phil Harvey
Art Direction
Fred Hole
Art Direction
John King
Art Direction
Rod McLean
Art Direction
Peter Russell
Art Direction
Peter Walpole
Set Decoration
Trisha Biggar
Costume Designer
Mark Coulier
Special Makeup Effects
Paul Engelen
Key Makeup Artist
Sarah Love
Hair Stylist
Show all Cast & Crew

Critic Reviews for Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace

Audience Reviews for Star Wars: Episode I -- The Phantom Menace

  • Jul 20, 2020
    Watching this thing years later, I can finally say, this is not a good movie. I liked it well enough as a kid as a charming little adventure, but as an adult it's kind of a hard watch. I don't know that I was ever bored by anything, but it's wildly inconsistent and just not well put together. The writing is bad, the directing is awkward, and the CGI is about on par with a PlayStation 1 cutscene, if not worse. On top of that, it's really just not necessary. What do we learn from this movie for the overall Star Wars mythos? Basically how Sidious rose to the status of chancellor. Even that is more of a background thing for all the other weird crap happening, and probably could just have been put in the opening scroll of the next film. So it's a bad film, and at times it's pretty cringey. But I'd be lying if I said it wasn't at times an entertaining film. Not always for the right reasons, but it's got some fun stuff. I still like the podracing scene, and that final fight is as good as it was back in the day with some stellar choreography. It's got it's moments, I'll defend it a little bit, but overall it's pretty cringey and pointless.
    Michael M Super Reviewer
  • Dec 29, 2019
    This is a terrible, terrible movie. I'm amazed that A) Lucas made a film like this, knowing how beloved the franchise was, and B) that the franchise remained so beloved after this had come out... It introduced Maul though, who is my favourite Star Wars character. So points on that one.
    Gimly M Super Reviewer
  • Jun 22, 2016
    Darth Maul, double bladed lightsaber, what could go wrong with this film?! Oh yeah, comic relief Jar Jar Binks and a Tatooine pod race that went about 7-10 minutes too long. It is unfortunate that they wasted arguably the 2nd best villain of the entire franchise in the first abysmal film. About 3 minutes into Jar Jar Binks' screen time you know that the script has a long way to go to dig itself out of that hole.
    Patrick W Super Reviewer
  • Mar 26, 2016
    A technical achievement in visual effects, makeup, art direction and score that is muddled by a lackluster script and poor acting. The fight scenes, while impressive and tons of fun, lack depth and emotion, and the characters feel like the SparkNotes version of much better characters.
    Matthew M Super Reviewer

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