Star Wars: The Phantom Menace

Approval Rate: 42%

42%Approval ratio

Reviews 50

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  • by


    Wed Dec 23 2009

    Did this film come out already?

  • by


    Wed Dec 23 2009

    Really not a good movie, and an excellent reason for why one person shouldn't have full control over every aspect of a production. If you've got a little while, there is a thoughtful and entertaining 70 minute review posted here that explains in great detail why different aspects of the production were so terrible.

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    Wed Sep 09 2009

    Biggest letdown in movie making history; destroyed the franchise and broke many a heart. I enjoy character driven movies with a plot, I’m not big on special effects so there was nothing about the movie that dazzled me. The magic that was Star Wars was destroyed with this movie.The Pod race bored me to tears. Jake Lloyd and Natalie Portman’s acting was dreadful (and I usually enjoy Natalie Portman). And Jar Jar Binks is the worst character ever. Epic fail, Lucas.

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    Fri Jun 06 2008

    Ja eh der Jar Jar Binx is schon schlecht !!! Aber ich kenn den Film ja nitt !!! Friede sei mit euch !!! Bis dahin !!! Gruß von good old Deutschland !!!

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    Thu Apr 17 2008

    Just one long commercial for a bunch of bad video games.

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    Tue Apr 08 2008

    I only continued to watch this in the overwhelming hope that Jar Jar Binks would die a horrible death,  I was quite disappointed when this horrid idiotic creature continued to live.  Easily the most irritating character in any movie ever.  Aside from that, the movie was only OK.  If it had been the first movie of the series to be released, its doubtful there would be another.

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    Sun Jan 27 2008

    This film reveals how far Lucas has grown intellectually since Episode VI. The prequels are much deeper intellectually but become much more emotionally tepid. The prequels are inherently doomed to be disliked but reveal the originals weren't really that well written either. Neeson does a typically excellent job as the slightly morose Qui Gon Jinn (doesn't he get sick of it?). Seeing fully trained JEDI KNIGHTS in their prime was fun. This was a really bright film, with few dark scenes, even in space. The most child-friendly films of the saga, which got under some peoples skin. Park was amazing, the final fight was my favourite in terms of technique (Park is a martial artist, Neeson an ex-boxer, and McGregor a dancer).

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    Tue Feb 06 2007

    I'm taking a star for Jar-Jar Binks and for the podracing scene talking too long.

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    Tue Mar 14 2006

    defintly the worst of the star wars movies, oh yeah, padme is like 10 years older than Anikan, The younger ones is usually the girl

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    Mon Mar 13 2006

    3 words (Jar Jar Binks).

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    Thu Feb 09 2006

    It was an okay movie. It wasn't the best, and the acting was a little bad.

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    Wed Feb 08 2006

    Dreadful, awful, Dennis The Menace was a better film. Jar-Jar Binks, the spacecraft race, the dialogue, the use of real ethnic accents, the acting, etc. The older I get, the more cliched and derivative this series becomes. The worst of the 6 to boot.

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    Mon Jan 02 2006

    This was disappointing to us Star Wars fans. The plot didn't fit the whole story of Star Wars at all and there were a lot of things that tried to be funny but failed. I liked the action in it though, so it's right on the line between 2 star and 3 star.

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    Fri Aug 12 2005

    you know what screw you if you don't like this movie don't get on the imdb message board and trash this movie

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    Fri Jun 17 2005

    Not nearly as good as the original three films. The first two episodes were singularly disappointing.

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    Tue Jun 14 2005

    It was alright, episodes 2 and 3 were much better though.

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    Thu May 26 2005

    I was never into Star Wars as much as most people, but that doesn't mean I didn't have high expectations for the beginning of the series. Lucas really mucked it up with this one. At first I thought it was cool but looking back over the movie, you just find that it could've been so much better. The Gungans are the most annoying creatures ever, and Jar Jar Binks' attempt at comic relief falls flat on its face. The fight scenes are good, but that's about it. Lucas doesn't show us much of the galaxy, and what he does show isn't very exciting. The planet of Naboo is extremely boring, Tatooine is a desert wasteland we're all too familiar with, and Couresant is kind of a cool place but we hardly see any of it. Also the conflict within the senate from which the future Emperor gains power evolves way too quickly. The acting and fight scenes are decent. Everything else is less than stellar.

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    Wed May 04 2005

    Other than Darth Maul, it sucked. From the explanation of the Jedi force to Jar Jar Binks this movie could not be any worse.

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    Thu Apr 28 2005

    A slow opening to the Star Wars saga but still vital to the overall story.

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    Sun Oct 03 2004

    SCI-FI movies don't wash with the missus, so I had to wait for the kids to grow up to rent it under the guise of family movie time. Missus was asleep within the first half hour. My 10 year old boy tired of it 3/4 the way through. But me and my 8-year old girl dug it. Having seen the first three (now being called IV, V, and VI) many years ago, I liked how the characters we all know quite well, really started out. Who would have guessed Darth Vader would start out as a nerdy little kid? While for the most part (in Star Wars standards), the movie was widely panned, I thought it was just fine. It had lots of action and the special effects have improved vastly from the first iterations, though good for its day, now look like Revell models on strings. The light saber fight between Qui-Gon and Darth Maul was suberb -- better than anything in any of the Matrices. Even the much-maligned Jar-Jar (Or as my daughter used to call him, Booty Man) was comic relief. I think there may have be... Read more

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    Sat Aug 14 2004

    it was good and well done, except for the hellish Jar JAr Binx and his horrific and tormenting behavior. Maul should've killed him instead of Que Gon Jin.

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    Fri Jun 25 2004

    I wish there was a rating lower than terrible.....

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    Sat Dec 20 2003

    I vaguely remember seeing this, and I vividly remember the bad taste afterward, as though I had eaten a whole box of Twinkies.

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    Wed Nov 26 2003

    The Star Wars franchise strikes back with a vengenance with The Phantom Menace. Featuring a young Obi-Wan and his trainer, they fight a new enemy named the Trade Federation. The special effects are amazing from the space battles, droid battles and the pod racing. Humor is provided from the amusing Jar-Jar Binks. Characters are well fleshed-out and have memorable dialogue. A great ending and a great movie overall. Second in the Star Wars franchise only to Attack of the Clones.

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    Sun Sep 07 2003

    I thought this movie was so great when I saw it on the first day. Then I went home and watched the other Star Wars films, and I realized this paled in comparison. Sure, it has some beautiful scenery, and it gets a 2 for the Pods. But where was the story? The movie lacked the wonder and awe from the previous three. The Anakin kid was horrible, and I refuse to believe that a kid can just fly a ship that he has no knowledge in piloting, ans save the day. George hit a misstep on this one. Lucky II was a little better, but I'm putting my money on III.

  • by


    Fri Jul 25 2003

    George Lucas should be horsewhipped in public for this. The only redeeming thing was the lightsaber duel at the end. That Jar Jar binks thing....well I am not even gonna go there. Where did hell did they find little Darth Vader. This kid shouldn't do Kool-Aid commercials, much less a major motion picture with such a cult following. This movies was dumbed down, and the special effects had the past looking more futuristic than when we get to the first movies, set AFTER these movies. George just wanted to show off his computers and all, and did nothing to remain true to the original vision of his work, much less his fans. He killed off Darth Maul, but the accident prone Gunjan lives to fight (and annoy) another day. Also, I don't care WHAT anyone says, there are enthnic characterizations in this movie. (The trade federation villians sound Chinese), the cheating bazzar operator/slave owner resembles a Middle Eastern person, the Gunjan leader resembleds a fat, African cheiftain, etc... Read more

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    Tue Jun 24 2003

    I would've been really depressed after seeing this movie if I actually cared. Probably someone born after 1985 might think this is high art, since crappy movies were the norm by then, but thinking it don't make it so. Lucas should give the money back for this one.Did noone see the stark resemblance in plot to the first movie? I'm supposed to believe a 6-year old can fight in a space battle? You mean Darth Vader grown up and chasing Luke down the Death Star trench doesn't have a flash of deja vu and say, hmm.. maybe I'm not gonna win this after all...this reminds me of when I was a kid... Darth Maul came and went, but Jar Jar wouldn't go away. I couldn't make heads or tails out of the murky political subplot. It sucked even more than Howard the Duck

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    Fri Apr 04 2003

    What the hell happened? George takes 15 years off from the saga and loses all touch with the original concept. Where is this going? Even after seeing Clones, I still don't know why he's taking this route. I think *I* could write it better.

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    Wed Mar 19 2003

    Sucked. This movie completly ruined the franchise. Darth Maul was the only cool character and they killed him off. What were they thinking?

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    Wed Mar 19 2003

    IF you're one of the few people who haven't seen this by now . . . . you may want to consider keeping it that way. This movie was painfully commercialized and obviously catered to the younger generation, which in itself is not bad, but it was just too much! Other than the obvious Jar-Jar problem (I almost feel as we deserve a public apolgogy from Mr Lucas for that), there was that horrible sports-announcing thing at the Pod Race. It's not nearly as complex and interwoven as the "original" series (Episodes 4-6). I personally didn't go for it, I don't personally know anyone who did, but if you think you can handle it, by all means watch it.

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    Tue Feb 25 2003

    I wanted to believe this was a great movie so badly, that I deluded myself after seeing it the first time. I actually trained my brain to drown out Jar Jar's babble, and young Anikan's cheesy pickup lines. I concentrated on the special effects. I convinced myself that bad acting was good acting, but I could only hold up the charade for so long. The act finally came to an end when I saw it a second time. My eyes were opened. George Lucas isn't infalable. This isn't a good movie!

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    Tue Jan 21 2003

    the perfect introduction to the Satr wars saga! the lightsaber duel between Qui-Gon Jinn, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and darth Maul was great so was the pod racer scene!

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    Tue Jan 14 2003

    This movie was a big letdown in my eyes and is by far the worst of the series. Jake Lloyd is terrible as young Anakin and Jar Jar just is not only not funny, but somewhat obnoxious as well. Those two aside, the cast as a whole just doesn't seem to have much chemistry, and some scenes are just completely wooden. The action scenes with Darth Maul were fantastic and those scenes along with the music really saved the movie from being incredibly boring. I think part of the reason for the amount of bad acting is that the actors spend so much time in front of a blue screen...Lucas seems to have sacrificed the acting and replaced it with flashy effects.

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    Fri Dec 20 2002

    Palpatine is the Phantom Menace,he is the genius, I said this in 1999 when everyone was bitching about how weak the movie was and that Darth Maul was cool but got killed off. In 1977 George Lucas said he did the middle part of his saga first because it was the area that was the most actioned oriented and the most likely to be a hit, well he was right and made alot of money and gained loads of respect as a filmaker. now with the new star wars films he is able to tell more of the events that lead up to what happened in the first three movies, and these events are not as exciting from the action oriented standpoint. these films are important in that without all the political stuff in them none of the action in the first three movies would have happened. the focal point of the new films is the downfall of the republic and the rise of the empire, and alot of that takes place in the senate not the battlefield. one thing i can say about the phantom menace is that it only makes me want to k... Read more

  • by


    Thu Nov 21 2002

    good but not great. will probably go down as the least favorite of the "prequels" and the least favorite of the entire series. however it did have it's moments and there were no ewoks(at least jar jar could speak somewhat) in my mind two things stand out, the pod race(some of the best use of sound ever in a movie) and the darth maul/obiwan duel. say what you want about the matrix fight scenes but what ray park and ewen mcgregor did was unbelivable with only miminal special effects. i only wish was it had been longer(one on one) i got the sense of two guys just going at it all out.(which they did) however it seemed very real. nothing was sped up. wicked scene. best duel of the series so far. i saw this film about eight times in the theatre mostly just to watch that one scene over and over but stil wanting more. also the music was great as always especally duel of the fates which is to the prequels what the imperial march is to the original flims.

  • by


    Wed Nov 06 2002

    Just a step below the first three SW films, but still very good. Of course, I agree with most people when I say that Jar Jar Binks should have been at the very most a minor character. Also, the most charismatic person in the whole film--Darth Maul--is seen very little considering the effect he had on the outcome. The special effects are naturally a knockout, and no one does that as good as George Lucas. However, I wish he would cut down on all that computer generated stuff. What made the first three films so good was the heart and humanity and all that computer stuff takes the "human-ness" away from it.

  • by


    Sat Oct 26 2002

    Sorry, but after 3 great Star Wars movies, this one is just poor. Jake Lloyd (Annakin) leads the race with his 3 facial expressions, followed closely by Jar-Jar Binks and a pod-race that goes on far too long. Following that, computer generated effects that obviously are computer generated, and a villian who was born to be evil (I mean honestly, could you see a member of Darth Maul's species as a Librarian?!). Luckily the following 'Attack of the Clones' made up for all the mistakes in this one.

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    Mon Sep 16 2002

    Face it people; this IS the Worst of the SW series. It's not that bad, but it's not that good, either. Actually, 'tis slightly racist, between the "yellow peril"-accented Neimoidians and the pidgin-speaking Gungans. And Jar Jar and Boss Nass are very annoying characters. And a lot of the acting here is flat and wooden. And the plot needed some work, suffering under the oppressive weight of "Overly Lauded Cutting Edge Special Effects." Otherwise, the movie was good, just still not as good as the rest of the Star Wars -- not by a long shot.

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    Sun May 12 2002

    Definately the worst of the Star Wars series in my opinion. The story is difficult to follow and Jar Jar is just annoying to say it plainly. Anakin also gets annoying with his 2 year old-like personality. Considering it is a Star Wars movie and there are pretty good effects, it is OK overall.

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    Wed Apr 03 2002

    cool visual effects, i can't wait fo da next one

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    Sun Nov 11 2001

    I am not even a Star Wars fan and I absolutely love this movie. I don't understand why people dislike this movie for the simple fact that it has a lot of special effects. I think it enchanced the movie and made things look more realistic myself. And the original Star Wars films probably would have had more computer-generized special effects back then if they had the technology to do so. I have to admit, the acting's not that great...especially with the little boy who plays Anakin. But that by no means prevented me from enjoying the movie...I don't go to see movies to judge people on their acting skills. The only big distraction was Jar Jar Binks...he was just plain annoying. To see the movie in theaters was breath-taking. During the pod racing scenes I got goosebumps...the rumble and roar in the theaters was incredible. People can bad-mouth this movie as long as they want, but they can't deny that the lightsaber battle at the end is one of the coolest scenes they have ever saw in a mov... Read more

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    Mon Oct 22 2001

    Top notch entertainment aimed at children. Not as much fun for adults weened on the original films, BUT, the passion and detail are still there. Good choice of actors, maintain the standard of the original trilogy. Good on visuals lost on plot, script etc.

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    Thu Aug 16 2001

    great! I love Star Wars!

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    Fri Jul 13 2001

    Never have I been so disappointed in anything in my entire life. George Lucas robbed me of my sense of adventure in trade for some petty computer-generated special effects. When I watch or even think about the original trilogy I feel empty inside. Thanks George.

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    Tue Jul 03 2001

    This film was good at the theaters. my favorite scenes were the Podracing Scene and the battle with Darth Maul.

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    Sat Apr 14 2001

    Star Wars: The Phantom Meanace is the first of the new trilogy that George Lucas has come out with. It is in fact a badly made film with annoying characters and no plot or storyline whatsoever. The acting was terrible, and you can't ask an 8-year old boy to take the role of a role that a 30-year old man took 25 years ago.

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    Thu Mar 15 2001

    I loved the action packed and the cool special effects.

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    Sat Mar 10 2001

    It's Star Wars! Phantom Menace could've been Jar Jar Binks humming the theme from Love Boat for 2 hours and I still would've given it a 5. I don't know a single person that only paid to see Phantom Menace once. Most paid to see it 3-7 times. I myself would never reveal how many times I paid to see it in the theater, because I'd be setting myself up as the biggest loser on earth. Let's just say I saw it in the theater somewhere between 1 and 26 times. Do the math yourself.

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    Thu Jan 18 2001

    Racist? PUH-LEEZE! OK, I got that out. It seems that people either hated or loved TPM. It may not be the best of Star Wars saga but it does enough to move the story forward. It is easy to overlook that the movie is laying the framework for the soon-to-be Emperor to throw the Star Wars galaxy into chaos by taking total control. The whole Trade Federation debacle was nothing more than a puppet show to achieve that goal, thus the "Phantom Menace". There is nothing more to it. Of course our Emperor will need help assimilating the galaxy and that's where Darth Maul comes into play-until his timely end, anyways. So enter young Anakin Skywalker. We are also introduced to his future mentor Obi Wan Kenobi along with his master Qui Gon Jinn. We get to meet Anakin's mother (a future source of conflict I'm sure) and his future love Queen Amidala. So basically that is the gist of the movie in a nutshell. Could it have been told better? Perhaps. Was there a need for Jar Jar Binks? Probab... Read more

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    Fri Jan 12 2001

    All I got to say- Darth Maul. This guy is the tightest Sith there is. He has a double lightsabre. Is that enough?