I bought the Star Wars: Clone Wars DVD this weekend and shared 69 minutes of cartoon craziness with my kids on Saturday evening. This is apparently the first of two volumes of Clone Wars, which bridges the Star Wars timeline between Episode II and Episode III. The classic space battle between good and evil left me with a number of thoughts.
First, and foremost, the style was decidedly Samurai Jack. Which was a REALLY good thing, since it’s one of the best animation styles ever created, in my opinion. The action was crisp, energetic, and entertaining. Rarely does something I see on the screen make my heart thump, but Clone Wars did.
Second, the action. Holy CRAP! It was brilliantly executed, and beautifully choreographed. The light sabre duels (undoubtedly the highlight of any Star Wars experience) were spectacular. While some of the flying vehicle scenes were a little cartoon corny, they didn’t detract from the movie at all, instead adding an extra layer of texture.
While the action and visuals were stellar, it’s interesting that the whole story was character driven, featuring an older, less flexible Obi Wan and a moody, arrogant Anakin constantly at odds with each other and trying to keep a grip on the many-layered nature of their father-son/master-student/best friend relationship. Mace Windu finally gets to show us why he’s so high up on the council, and we’re introduced to two of a new kind of enemy – Asajj Ventress and General Grievous.
I’m going to stop there and let you experience the magic of discovery yourself. If you’re like me, a Star Wars fan but not a ravenous one, you’ve got to see it. It’ll set the stage for the third movie. The second volume apparently fleshes this out a bit more but I don’t know much more about them.
I liked Clone Wars so much I almost found myself wishing the movies had been made in this animation style instead of live action.