I am going to state this from the beginning; this is my least favorite Star Wars movie but when it first came out it was my second or third favorite. As time passed from its initial release its faults became more apparent and its shiny parts became duller to the point that I no longer saw them. I will say that now I can view everything that it truly is a good movie with a few bad spots. Lets just say Star Wars movies are like pizza there isn’t a bad one and I have had pizza that was worse than AotC could ever be viewed.
What didn’t work
Dialog: this is the root of every problem in AotC. Related would be the development of Anakin and Padme’s relationship however I believe with proper dialog I think this would not have been bad. Much of the dialog is telling us things that we should be able to see instead. Anakin telling us how great Obi-Wan is as a master would have been better shown. Perhaps open the movie with them working together well. The chase Obi-wan and Anakin participate in could have done a better job of them cooperating and Obi-Wan being a mentor with the better dialog and interaction. Instead Obi-wan acts like Anakin is a child that needs minding and Anakin acts as though he HAS to just do things or his abilities aren’t recognized. The development of Anakin and Padme’s relationship uneven while parts are great they veer off into uncomfortable territory. The much maligned sand scene actually is pretty great however the scene with fireplace is terrible and could have been so much better. I could give more examples of where the dialog failed the story but that’s been overdone (Almost everything with C3PO).
The only other thing that doesn’t work is the lack of continuity between AotC and ANH. After Anakin and Padme decide to leave Tatoonie I would have like to have seen Owen try to convince Anakin to stay and not get involved, the Jedi are idealistic fools on a hopeless crusade.
Anakin’s talent with the force was highlighted well, he seemed to be better than everyone else with exception of Yoda. He is also cocky about his abilities which to me matches well with Vader’s opinion of himself. Obi-wan’s entire storyline was great and if anything could have been expanded. I found the acting to be as good as the material presented unfortunately Hayden and Natalie’s performance suffered because of the poorly done scenes however MOST of their work is great. Yoda teaching the younglings scene was fantastic and the interaction with Obi-wan and the other masters fit with how we saw them. The story and plot are quite good in themselves and though and despite it being the longest run time for any Star Wars movie it feels shorter.
The lightsaber battles were very good. Obi-wan vs Dooku was great as it showed Anakin’s rashness was a weakness and Obi-wan’s methods had there place. One thing about the movie that the book did better was Anakin vs Dooku. The movie was not as dynamic as the book made the battle seem and Anakin seemed more of a badass in the book but it was still good. However the best was Yoda vs Dooku. I have heard people complaining of how Yoda fought with a lightsaber but because its so unexpected is why I love it. When the battle is over and Yoda goes back to his walking stick… that is just pure awesome.
I wish the Jedi council had raised Anakin to a Knight but basically a be with Padme and leave us or give that up and stay, with Anakin choosing Padme. Palpatine could have then asked Anakin to be his personal Jedi and represent him on the council with no vote. Thereby putting Anakin in the hands of the Sith Lord but allowing him to continue to work with Obi-wan. This would have set up the next film nicely. I still like this movie even though I can see its faults and missed opportunities.