8 reasons to love the ‘Star Wars’ prequels

Julia McKenna defends the prequel trilogy.

“I don’t like sand.”

Whether it be for their wooden dialogue, reliance on special effects, obsession with drawn out scenes of political discourse, or everyone’s favorite comic relief, Jar Jar Binks, the Star Wars prequels have always been ravaged with criticism. 

However, in recent years, many fans have reevaluated the films and gained a new appreciation for them. 

I am a self-proclaimed “Star Wars” geek, and like my fellow millennials/Gen Zers who grew up with the movies, have always loved the prequels. While they do have their flaws, they tell a new story within the Star Wars universe and contain many moments that are iconic to the franchise. 

Plus, Kanye West loves them. 

Here are some reasons why you should love them, too.

Pod racing

It is often agreed that “Episode I: The Phantom Menace” is the worst film of the “Star Wars” prequels, but one of the main reasons it was loved by fans upon initial release was the pod racing scene. Featuring the sport added a new layer to the universe, and George Lucas mixed both digital and practical effects to create a never before seen spectacle.

Across the Stars

While the romance between Anakin Skywalker and Padmé Amidala is often considered to be uncompelling and at times a little creepy, you can’t deny that their love theme is a masterpiece. The romantic score builds to a beautiful love story that harkens back to Shakespearan tragedies.

Ewan Mcgregor as Obi-Wan Kenobi

Alec Guiness left behind tough shoes to fill after his iconic performance as the wise Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi. 

Not only did Ewan McGregor manage to pay homage to Guinness’s portrayal— assuming Guinness’s mannerisms and speech exactly— he brought a new version of the character that audiences loved.

The opening scene of ‘Revenge of the Sith’

Following the negative reception of both its predecessors, “Episode III: Revenge of the Sith” started off strong by opening with a massive space battle in which Anakin and Obi-Wan are tasked to rescue the Chancellor. The camera follows them in a long take as they fly through the action, using breathtaking special effects to give us one of the most captivating battle sequences in all of “Star Wars.”  

Darth Maul

Darth Maul’s presence for most of “The Phantom Menace” is of a mysterious danger that is lurking in the darkness. His minimal screen time throughout the film builds to a final showdown between Maul, Obi-Wan, and Qui-Gon Jinn, during which he reveals his awesome and iconic double-bladed lightsaber. 

While Darth Maul dies at the end of the duel, his character lives on in a compelling journey featured in otherStar Wars” media, and the character is a major figure in the franchise.

The duel on Mustafar

The entire prequel trilogy builds toward Anakin’s turn to the dark side and culminates in a final confrontation between Anakin and Obi-Wan. 

The Master and apprentice, who have become as close as brothers over the course of the films, share heartbreaking moments as they battle over their differing perspectives. 

The duel is spectacularly choreographed and contains exciting set pieces, and it climaxes in a tearful moment that has been endlessly memed online.

Duel of the fates

“Star Wars” would not be what it was without John Williams’ genius score. “Duel of the Fates” is arguably his best and most iconic theme of the franchise, featuring a haunting choir and suspenseful orchestra. It’s played over an epic lightsaber fight at the end of “The Phantom Menace,” and it single-handedly redeems the film in many fans’ eyes.

The Clone Wars

If the previous reasons on this list have not convinced you of the trilogy’s worth, then this should. 

While the prequels have many undeniable flaws, it’s hard to argue against the other “Star Wars” media it produced. 

It’s due to the trilogy that we have “The Clone Wars,” a brilliantly made animated series chronicling the three-year gap between “Episode II: Attack of the Clones” and “Revenge of the Sith.” It adds to the films’ lore and brings new depth to our favorite characters while also introducing us to new ones that the audience also grows to love.

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