Star Wars, Episode I: The Phantom Menace (Widescreen Edition)
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Begin your STAR WARS DVD collection with STAR WARS: Episode 1 THE PHANTOM MENACE. Packed with over six hours of additional material, including exclusive documentaries and never-before-seen deleted scenes, this 2-disc set provides the perfect showcase for the incredible detail and breathtaking scope of George Lucas's first episode in the mythic STAR WARS saga.
"I have a bad feeling about this," says the young Obi-Wan Kenobi (played by Ewan McGregor) in Star Wars: Episode I, The Phantom Menace as he steps off a spaceship and into the most anticipated cinematic event... well, ever. He might as well be speaking for the legions of fans of the original episodes in the Star Wars saga who can't help but secretly ask themselves: Sure, this is Star Wars, but is it my Star Wars? The original elevated moviegoers' expectations so high that it would have been impossible for any subsequent film to meet them. And as with all the Star Wars movies, The Phantom Menace features inexplicable plot twists, a fistful of loose threads, and some cheek-chewing dialogue. Han Solo's swagger is sorely missed, as is the pervading menace of heavy-breathing Darth Vader. There is still way too much quasi-mystical mumbo jumbo, and some of what was fresh about Star Wars 22 years earlier feels formulaic. Yet there's much to admire. The special effects are stupendous; three worlds are populated with a mélange of creatures, flora, and horizons rendered in absolute detail. The action and battle scenes are breathtaking in their complexity. And one particular sequence of the film--the adrenaline-infused pod race through the Tatooine desert--makes the chariot race in Ben-Hur look like a Sunday stroll through the park.
Among the host of new characters, there are a few familiar walk-ons. We witness the first meeting between R2-D2 and C-3PO, Jabba the Hutt looks younger and slimmer (but not young and slim), and Yoda is as crabby as ever. Natalie Portman's stately Queen Amidala sports hairdos that make Princess Leia look dowdy and wields a mean laser. We never bond with Jedi Knight Qui-Gon Jinn (Liam Neeson), and Obi-Wan's day is yet to come. Jar Jar Binks, a cross between a Muppet, a frog, and a hippie, provides many of the movie's lighter moments, while Sith Lord Darth Maul is a formidable force. Baby-faced Anakin Skywalker (Jake Lloyd) looks too young and innocent to command the powers of the Force or wield a lightsaber (much less transmute into the future Darth Vader), but his boyish exuberance wins over skeptics.
Near the end of the movie, Palpatine, the new leader of the Republic, may be speaking for fans eagerly awaiting Episode II when he pats young Anakin on the head and says, "We will watch your career with great interest." Indeed! --Tod NelsonSee all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
Overall - better then I remembered and worse all at once, the DVD had some awesome special features though.
Summary: that start of the Star Wars series. Don't think I need to sumarize this one. See Anikin Skywalker as a kid, see young Obi-Wan, see Jar-Jar and a pod race.
The good: the effects are awesome. It's Star Wars, sure it's not the best Star Wars but it's still better then 90% of the movies that come out. Darth Maul rocks. Young Obi-Wan is awesome. The pod race is pretty cool. Seeing Corusant for the first time was sweet. The battles are great.
The bad: Darth Maul dies too easily (now not as easy as Dukoo or General Grevious). The pod race is cool but long. Kids can't act and Anakin is no exception. The budding love between Amidala and Anakin is creepy. Jar-Jar annoyed me. I much prefered 3P0 for comedic releif. He wouldn't have been that bad if they didn't have to slip him into every scene.
The ugly: Midicloriens and the virgin birth of Darth Vader. WTF?!? I can overlook Jar-Jar, but not the scientific explanation for The Force. Why not leave it mystical like it was. Why not leave every viewer with that faint hope that The Force does exist and if they just try enough they can use it. Why rationalize it. Argh I hated that, and still do and always will.
Overall: worth seeing if you are a Star Wars fan. There was no way in hell no matter how good it could have been that it would live up to the original series. Some people will love it, some will hate it, but its still Star Wars and it's still a good time.
Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed the previous 3 movies (as a child). And, for all of its delusions of grandeur, Phantom does work very well as a children's movie. The characters are amazingly two-dimensional, and the one seemingly ambiguous character is obviously the evil emperor of the previous movies. There's a Satan/Frankenstein hybrid named Darth something-or-other who tries to fill the Vader void, but hopelessly fails. Maybe he needed to have that Nazi helmet thing going..
The Thing-Fish character, Jar-Jar Binks is (as everyone knows) so annoying that I'm not going to waste my time or yours by going into it. The young man who played Anakin really needed some instruction. Considering that there were so many capable adults involved with this thing that were awful, it's silly and needlessly cruel to criticize Jake Lloyd's callow performance. Hell, Haley Joel Osment would have stalled with such poor direction.
I recently rented this leviathan the other night, just to see if it really is as bad as I remember it. Indeed, it's worse. Even John Williams' score lacks the Wagnerian passion of the previous movies.Read more ›
"We'll watch your future with great interest!"
- Chancellor Palpatine to Anakin Skywalker
Most recent customer reviews
I ordered this movie because I can't find my copy - I have the whole set of Star Wars movies. My granddaughters wanted to watch the series before going to the movie theatre to see... Read morePublished 25 days ago by Avid Reader
there is something wrong with the disc,,,have to skip a chapter cause it won't play..Published 7 months ago by Guy Martin
love the cd .
this is one of my favourite cd beside the original Star war set ( the first hope,,Empire strike back, Return of the Jedi, ) tare the best, this is very good ,... Read more
My natural life, occurring everywhere out of nothing containment, helper, they have to be formatted like the menu space ship and buildings and menu or it causes technical... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Chenthura balasubramaniam
I know that the original Star Wars films had their weaknesses but this film is just horrible. One interesting reaction to how bad this film is is the screening of the film to all... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Nikonfan74
Bought for my special need son as the previous one he had has lots of scratches already. He likes this movie. Service is good. Pa king and DVD are excellent.Published 18 months ago by neneng46
Well... i am about an old fashion guy. I prefer the three last chapters. They were made when I was young. Less special effects, more good acting.Published 22 months ago by Martin Pitchon
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