My biases going in: 1) I haven't thought much of SW movies since 1980's Empire Strikes Back (Ep. V). The saga has been on a downward slide since those first two phenomenal films. 2) Best performance in The Phantom Menace was provided by Watto. 3) I rather enjoyed the 2003 animated series "Clone Wars" that takes place just prior to this new computer-animated "The Clone Wars" 4) I have very few expectations any more from SW movies, so I'm ready to enjoy whatever they might have to offer.
The plot of The Clone Wars is simple, and inoffensive, focusing on the abduction of Jabba the Hutt's offspring Rotta and the political scheming related to it. Much of the film is devoted to colorful and impressive battle scenes on planet Christophsis as the Clone Wars are now in full swing. I got what I wanted out of this movie: some light SW fun, vivid colorful presentation, some breathtaking battle scenes, and plenty of Clone Troopers.
I liked the stylized animation of the characters. In a way, I was reminded of the marionettes used by Gerry Anderson in his classic 1960s science fiction and secret agent shows.
The BD edition of The Clone Wars looks great on my high-definition screen and contains all the same bonus features included on the 2-disc DVD issued at the same time. All of the bonus features are in HD, too, except the on-screen video commentary version of the film, which is in standard definition. Extra features and commentaries are a big draw for me, and I'm not sure I would have put money out for a bare-bones edition of the film alone, knowing that this TV series pilot will be included in a series or season box set at some point.
I debated waiting for a future box set of the TV series, but enjoyed the visuals in The Clone Wars enough to splurge on this first offering from the new series. If you saw the film in the theatre and did not enjoy it, the extra features are unlikely to change your opinion. But if you were able to accept The Clone Wars as a light episode after Ep. II Attack of the Clones, then this edition with the featurettes and interviews might enrich the experience enough to justify a purchase.
Edit: Amazon.ca doesn't have any detailed specs on the BD edition yet, and didn't accept my product info update, so until they provide more, here is what I have:
Version: U.S.A / Warner / Region A, B, C Aspect ratio: 2.40:1 VC-1 BD-50 / Advanced Profile 3 Running time: 1:38:25 Number of chapters: 45 Subtitles: English SDH / French / Portuguese / Spanish
Dolby TrueHD Audio English 5.1 / Dolby Digital EX Audio English Dolby Digital EX Audio French Dolby Digital EX Audio Portuguese Dolby Digital EX Audio Spanish #Video commentary #Behind the story (HD) The Clone Wars: the untold story (HD) The voices of The Clone Wars (HD) The music score (HD) Gallery #Webisodes Introduction: Star Wars: The Clone Wars (HD) Epic battles (HD) The Clones are coming (HD) Heroes (HD) Villains (HD) Anakin's Padawan (HD) Trailers Launch, Dark and (SD) Video game trailers #Game - The Hologram memory challenge game #DVD Digital CopyRead more ›
Star Wars: The Clone Wars is an all CGI animated Star Wars movie set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. It is located in the same time frame and is part of the Clone Wars animated TV series and chronicles the first meeting between Anakin Skywalker and his new padawan learner Atsoka Tano! And chronicles their efforts along with Master Kenobi to rescue the infant son of Jabba the Hutt and thus prevent the Hutts from joining the Separatist forces. It's one slam bang action filled movie!
Produced in a true 2.4:1 widescreen format, it starts with a bang and doesn't really slow down until the end. It looks superb even on the DVD version and even better on the Bluray version and along with it's TV series cousin; stays true to the quality and production values of the Star Wars franchise. No cheap knock-off this!
The audio is equally as good being in a Dolby True HD 5.1 EX English track for the Bluray plus Dolby Digital 5.1 EX tracks in English, Quebec French, Spanish and Portuguese. All THX certified, not surprising considering that Lucasfilm created the THX format. So just like the live action movies, star fighters wiz past your head, crowd noises pan into the surround channels and with the EX encoding, even the rear channel in a 6.1/7.1 setup comes into it's own. It's very impressive.
Being Lucasfilm, the extras are equally as impressive on the BD. There's a 25 min. piece on both the movie and the TV series, a 10 min piece on the English dubbing and another 10 min. piece on creating the soundtrack plus 25 min. of half a dozen small featurettes and also half-a-dozen deleted scenes. Virtually every thing in high definition and with stereo pro-logic sound. There's not a boring part in the bunch!
So to sum up, I give this movie a 4-1/2 for the extras, 5 for the animation and the sound. And a 4 for the overall plot. If you don't mind animated CGI movies and you like Star Wars, you should really check this movie out. It would also be a good way to check out the Clone Wars TV series as well as they're both very similar and of the same quality.