Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999)

PG   |    |  Action, Adventure, Fantasy


Star Wars: Episode I - The Phantom Menace (1999) Poster

Two Jedi escape a hostile blockade to find allies and come across a young boy who may bring balance to the Force, but the long dormant Sith resurface to claim their original glory.


6.5/10
742,578

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28 April 2021 | SouthwestLover-1996
8
| No matter what, I will always love the Prequel Trilogy
Despite the negative reviews this movie seems to get - I still love it. I've heard others refer to it as the worst SW movie, but I disagree. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion though.

In "The Phantom Menace", we meet Anakin Skywalker, a boy who is clearly guided by his heart and extremely fearful of loss. We meet younger Obi Wan Kenobi, who is rather cynical and very "by the book" like the rest of the arrogant Jedi Council. Even though he was only in one of the movies, Qui Gon Jinn's role is so important as well. He's the father figure Anakin Skywalker needed and didn't truly believe in the dogmatic ways of the Jedi Council. Queen Amidala is a hopeful politician whose boldness even surprised Darth Sidious. Dart Maul doesn't have too many speaking parts, but his character is redeemed later.

TPM also gives us a glimpse of the toxic politics that eventually lead up to the collapse of the galactic republic. Senator Palpatine is also great in this movie - the way he manipulated Queen Amidala & the Trade Federation to further his secret agenda is really quite brilliant. A 14 year old queen crying about the plight of her people is likely to get sympathy from the senate, which is exactly what Palpatine wanted in order depose Valorum and take control as Chancellor. Jar Jar Binks was easily manipulated too (I will not hate on Jar Jar in this review). In Phantom Menace, we can clearly see how inefficient AND corrupt the galactic senate can be - and important plot element of the Prequels. The Pod Race scene was awesome. And say what you will, the Battle on Naboo was pretty cool too!

So many criticize the Prequel movies for being too political - but that's the point. Somehow, a galactic democracy collapsed which gave us the repressive dictatorship we saw in the Original Trilogy (and Rebels). The Phantom Menace is a great starting point for that story. Is it action packed and filled with space battles every minute? No - but it has exciting moments and tells a great story. Some like this movie and some don't - I am a fan who does love this movie and everything it offers.

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Did You Know?

Trivia

Liam Neeson convinced George Lucas to keep a scene where Qui-Gon Jinn puts his hand on Shmi Skywalker's shoulder. Lucas felt this might be out of character for the monk-like Jedi, but Neeson thought there should be an emotional connection between the characters. In an interview with Premiere Magazine, Neeson defended his action, saying, "It may be 'Star Wars', but we've got to have something in there for the adults."


Quotes

Qui-Gon Jinn: Captain.
Republic Cruiser Captain: Yes, sir?
Qui-Gon Jinn: Tell them we wish to board at once.
Republic Cruiser Captain: With all due respect, the ambassadors for the Supreme Chancellor wish to board immediately.
Nute Gunray: Yes, of course. As you know, our blockade is perfectly legal and we'd be happy to receive the ambassadors.


Goofs

A green Landspeeder is visible when Qui-Gon's party enters Mos Espa. It should be floating above the ground, but two of its three wheels are visible, despite two black clad humans standing in front of it, trying to cover up the wheels.


Crazy Credits

Opening crawl: "Turmoil has engulfed the Galactic Republic. The taxation of trade routes to outlying star system is in dispute. Hoping to resolve the matter with a blockade of deadly battleships, the greedy Trade Federation has stopped all shipping to the small planet of Naboo. While the Congress of the Republic endlessly debates this alarming chain of events, the Supreme Chancellor has secretly dispatched two Jedi Knights, the guardians of peace and justice in the galaxy, to settle the conflict..."


Alternate Versions

The 2011 Blu-ray release has significant changes. 1) The Jedi Speed Force has been altered to a more realistic speed effect. 2) Nute Gunray and Rune Haako observing the Jedi fleeing from the droideka on a viewscreen has been changed to a new and wide shot. It also features a new digital effect for the screen itself. 3) The pink tint in the whole movie has been removed to make it more natural. 4) Almost all scenes shows more of the image. 5) The grainy look in some shots have been cleared.

Storyline

Plot Summary


Synopsis (WARNING: Spoilers)


Genres

Action | Adventure | Fantasy | Sci-Fi

Box Office

Budget:

$115,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$64,820,970 23 May 1999

Gross USA:

$474,544,677

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,027,082,707

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