Here’s my first mini review of my rewatching of the Star Wars movies Episodes 1-6 in 6 days.

I still remember how excited I was for the first prequel before it became released. That disappointment is what is still making me ever so slightly nervous for The Force Awakens. Once bitten twice shy and all that. The thing is, there are some good things about The Phantom Menace, and I think it’s perfectly watchable in places, but it could have been so much better.

There’s too much stuff about taxation and the Trade Federation for starters. That is just boring and a bit confusing. Maybe Lucas felt he had to involve politics in order to chart Palpatine’s rise? I’m not sure. The plot is a bit jumpy too. They go back and forth to Naboo and I sometimes felt I wasn’t sure where we were. It was also lacking a main character. A hero. Who were you really meant to root for? Qui-Gon? Obi-Wan? Anakin? Palpatine?

The plot is just terrible and the script is worse. Liam Neeson and Ewan McGregor really do save the film in my mind, plus Palpatine and Darth Maul.

There are some good bits but there really are so many bad bits. To be quite honest I thought this watching of it was actually worse than the last time I watched it a few years ago. I was hoping it would have held up. It’s just a shame that it wasn’t done better. That’s probably my summary of The Phantom Menace… “It’s a shame”.


• Ewan McGregor / Obi-Wan
• Liam Neeson / Qui Gon Jinn
• Seeing proper light sabre battle skills
• The incredible landscapes and architecture of Naboo
• The Nubian Royal Starship – beautiful, reminds me of Flight of the Navigator (which is a good thing)
• Natalie Portman / Padme
• Ian McDiarmid / Palpatine
• Darth Maul – of course
• There’s a red space pilot guy with a Skeleton face/helmet walking through Tatooine at one point. I don’t know anything about him but he looks pretty badass
• The pod race – some people don’t think like it but I think it’s fun, albeit perhaps a little too long
• Coruscant
• The Duel of the Fates fight and music

• The 8th word that appears in the crawl is ‘taxation’. Not a good start
• Too much boring stuff about trade, taxations and senates
• The Neimoidians. Everything about them. Their racist Japanese accents and the terrible lip synching
• Battle Droids. They look flimsy, they literally quake with fear at one point, their voices are not great and they say “Roger, roger”
• Ewan McGregor’s haircut
• Queen Amidala / Decoy – I really didn’t like the Queen (the decoy). I wasn’t a fan of her stern demeanour and I just got a bit confused by the whole decoy / Padme thing. I’m never quite sure when the Queen is Portman and when it is Kiera Knightley.
• There is some really terrible acting in this movie, particularly from people flying spaceships for some reason
• The poor CGI, particularly the end battle
• Jar Jar Binks – of course. I actually don’t mind the concept of him too much, having a slapstick character, but I hate the execution. His look and his speech are really not good at all
• The line “You-sa in big doo-doo this time”
• Boss Nass (although it’s great having Brian Blessed in a Star Wars)
• Anything involving any Gungans
• Midichlorians – stop explaining stuff, George
• The immaculate conception suggestion
• Anakin actually saying ‘Yippee’. Twice
• The fact that Anakin Skywalker made C3-PO – ridiculous
• Puppet Yoda – his puppet in Empire and ROTJ looked much better
• The bizarre, and very disappointing high-pitched posh English voice of the 3-eyed Kinyenian (or Gran) aliens in the senate – particularly as they have a much more alien like deep voice in Attack of the Clones
• ‘General’ Jar Jar
• Anakin’s normal haircut and his Jedi haircut

I’ll be ranking the movies too but obviously there’s no point doing that now for the first one. Bring on tomorrow though, when I’ll review Episode II.