Star Wars: Episode II
Attack of the Clones

PG
Entertainment: +4
Acceptability: -1/2

Twenty-five years have passed since the original STAR WARS forever blended and changed the special effects and motion picture industry, but the imaginative universe of George Lucas still captivates both faithful fans and new viewers. Three years after the release of STAR WARS: Episode I The Phantom Menace, Lucas injects more changes by presenting the first feature-length film for the computer age. All the camera work, editing and, in a few theaters around the world, projection of STAR WARS: Episode II Attack of the Clones is done with digital equipment. In the on-going history of the story, ten years have passed since the young Anakin Skywalker (Hayden Christensen) was discovered on the planet Tatooine and taken as an apprentice to the Jedi knight Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor). Queen Padm Amidala (Natalie Portman) has yielded her democratic royalty and become the influential Senator Amidala of Naboo in the government chambers of the Republic. But some planets are aligning with the separatist movement of the Trades Federation. Threats on Padms life lead the Jedi Council to assign Obi-Wan and the now adult Anakin to protect the Senator. Investigation into the threats leads Obi-Wan to the skilled assassin Jango Fett (Temeura Morrison) and an army of genetically enhanced clones, apparently ordered by a former Jedi. Meanwhile, keeping a close eye on Padm re-ignites Anakins friendship with the young woman and cause him to question the Jedi rules against love. But love takes a back seat to action as the Federations army of droids marches against the Republic. Political intrigue, secret alliances, exciting chases, battles large and small, and a computer-generated Yoda (voice of Frank Oz) showing his mastery of the light-saber will capture a new generation of viewers.

While previous episodes have commented on religious aspects of the Jedi and their use of the Force, CLONES treats the Force as an accepted belief or confines the comments to Jedi. However, Anakin uses his power to show off on occasion. Some relations to real historical events can be seen as the Supreme Chancellor Palpatine (Ian McDiarmid) uses the separatist movement threat to gain martial powers, much like Hitler did in the German government of the 1930s. Hints of Anakins evil future are seen in his rebellious attitude toward some of the Jedi teachings and frustration with Obi-Wans lack of recognition of his skills. When a nomadic tribe kills his mother, Anakin also admits killing the entire tribe, including women and children in vengeful anger. In fact, light-sabers flash frequently throughout the action-packed story in numerous battles. Although bloodless, fights include arms and legs being cut off, as well as a graphic beheading with the helmeted head rolling on the ground. Tense moments abound as the heroes face danger from impersonal factory machinery as well as deadly beasts in a Coliseum-type arena. Although the exciting action-adventure refrains from sexual content and vulgar language the frequent and sometimes graphic violence in ATTACK OF THE CLONES prevents positive endorsement.

Preview Reviewer: Paul Bicking
Distributor: 20th Century Fox, 10201 W. Pico Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90035

Summary
Crude Language: Once - Mild
Obscene Language: None
Profanity: None
Violence: Many times Moderate and severe (explosions, dead bodies, vehicle crashes, arms/legs/head sliced off with light-sabers, shootings, punches, kicking, implied massacre, machine crushing threat, electric shocks, creature eats herder, hits w/ pole, body trampled by beast, army battles)
Sexual Intercourse: None
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: Few times (caressing touch, lingering kiss, playful rolling on ground)
Drug Abuse: Drinking intoxicants in bar scene and offered cigarette referred to as death weed
Other: Arrogance seen as flaw, student frustrated with lack of recognition, comment that compassion is central to Jedi teaching but forbidden to love, comment that mind of child is wonderful - imaginative, man comments that people should be made to agree, couple decides cant live lie with secret love, man admits killing women and children in vengeful anger at mothers death, comment that winning battle is not victory just start of war
Running Time: 142 minutes
Intended Audience: Ages 10 and older

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