Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith
The various plot threads of the prequels come crashing together to form the foundation of the original trilogy. A New Hope starts in a dark place. The “hope” is that, after years of universal subjugation by the Empire, there’s finally a chance someone can put an end to their evil. Since that’s where the next movie starts, it was clear from the onset that the prequel trilogy would end darkly and depressingly.
Palpatine wins control of the Senate. He successfully converts Anakin to Darth Vader. The Empire is born. The youngling Jedis are murdered. Padme dies. Obi thinks he “kills” his best friend. The babies, Luke and Leia, are separated and sent away, essentially orphans. This is not a happy ending. The Jedis lost. Obi lost, and we’d not see him again until decades later as “Old Ben.”
It’s heartbreaking watching the death of Padme and Anakin’s reaction when Palpatine lies to him, saying it was Anakin’s fault she died. The battle between Obi and Anakin was also heartbreaking. These guys had been friends, trainer and trainee, and, as Obi said, “brothers.” It was painful watching them tear each other apart.
Beyond the tragedy, Revenge of the Sith was quite action packed. Anakin versus Dooku. Mace Windu versus Palpatine. Obi versus Grievous, the new cyborg villain who wields 4 lightsabers in his battle against Obi! Yoda versus Palpatine. Obi versus Anakin. So many battles, so much action, so much excitement to watch.
Audiences expected the lightsaber duel between Obi-Wan and Anakin but may not have expected how vicious it would be. Obi literally cuts Anakin apart and leaves him for dead. A full-on battle between Palpatine and Yoda, though? It took me by surprise at least. The most powerful villain against the most powerful good guy. It was amazing to see these two in an epic battle with no canes, just absolute peak fighting. The problem for each was that they were too evenly matched. Though Yoda retreated, there was no clear victor.
The coolest scene of the movie, however, was the betrayal of the clone troopers. That’s a hard pick, choosing the “coolest” scene of the movie. There are many to pick from. Many. However, the utter brutality the clone troopers exhibit as they slaughter their unsuspecting Jedi allies after Palpatine issues Order 66 is riveting. Order 66 was their signal to basically turn evil. It sealed the fate of not only the Jedi but the entire old regime. Palpatine was in charge now, emperor. He had his right hand in Vader. With the turning of the clones, he had his army. Nothing was left to oppose his reign of terror, his iron grip on the entire galaxy. Nothing, that is, until a new hope came along in the form of Luke Skywalker and the Rebellion.
It took a while for the prequel trilogy to churn out a movie that most people liked, but Revenge of the Sith did that. Finally. Yes, there’s the eternally hated and memed “nooooooo” scene where Hayden’s acting abilities were once again called into question as he transformed fully into Vader, but the rest of the movie was solid.
Much like Attack of the Clones, Revenge of the Sith was still battling perception problems due to the issues with the first two movies. Unlike Attack of the Clones, though, this one completed its task. Granted, the entire prequel trilogy catches a lot of hate, but when people do take the time to discuss the merits of this entry separately, it is often spoken of as the decent movie that it is. Unless you bring up that “noooo” scene, that is.
That tragic ending, the dismal sadness, is what makes this Star Wars entry good. For the next trilogy to make sense, the ending was needed and expected, but it was nonetheless exciting to watch. Finishing on such a down note, with such sadness, viewers are almost compelled to hit play on A New Hope to get some happiness, some closure. Anything that compels you to watch A New Hope again should be considered a win.
Star Wars: Revenge of the Sith – The Rise of Vader Finally Turned the Prequels Around
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Acting - 8.5/108.5/10
- Music - 10/1010/10
- Production - 9.5/109.5/10
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