Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace (1999)
Ah yes, the first of the three prequels to my favorite movies of all time, Star Wars. now, unlike what fans say, this movie didn't ruin my childhood, but it did leave me disappointed, and was the only Star Wars film I actually disliked.
Two Jedi, Master Qui-Gon Jinn, and Padawan Obi-Wan Kenobi are aboard a Trade Fedaration Ship, and are passed by as ambassadors on the ship in order to meet with Viceroy Gunray. Darth Sidious, Dark Lord of the Sith, plans an invasion on Naboo and Gunray orders to kill the two Jedi upon their arrival, though. So the two have to escape the ship. Obi-Wan and Qui-Gon land on naboo and sadly meet with one of the movie's biggest problems: Jar Jar Binks, a native outcast. Now, this character is possibly one of the main reasons people hate this movie, including me. Jar Jar is annoying as heck, and it's obvious he's only there for comic relief. The annoying Gungan known as Jar Jar shows the two Jedi the way to an underwater Gungan settlement. I'm sorry, but this movie is just too boring, I'm going to speed up the plot explaining. Later, they must travel to Coruscant, but while they are traveling to the planet, their ship's hyperdrive recieves damage so they must land on a nearby planet, Tatooine. On the planet, they meet young Anakin Skywalker. Stuff happens, and they take Anakin with him as Qui-Gon senses the Force is strong in this boy, and he may be the Chosen One said to bring balance to the Force. Later, a Battle of Naboo begins and then Qui-Gon and Obi-Wan must duel Sidious' apprentice, Darth Maul, one of the only good things this movie had to offer. It's too bad Maul dies in this movie (I don't care if he returns in the Expanded Universe of Star Wars, he still technically died. But of course, right before Obi-Wan cuts the Sith Lord that is Darth Maul in half, Qui-Gon was stabbed by Darth Maul's duel-bladed Lightsaber (Which was awesome by the way). With his last dying breaths of words to his Padawan, Obi-Wan, he tells Obi-Wan to train Anakin in the ways of a Jedi, as Anakin is the Chosen One.
Okay, this movie was a flop for most fans of Star Wars, and I found myself disappointed, hoping Episodes II and III would be improvements (But I digress, we'll talk about those Episodes in later reviews). I found myself thinking that Darth Maul basically saved the movie.
Some of the only things I liked were Darth Maul, Qui-Gon, the music, the Podrace was actually decent. But other than that, the movie was just disappointing compared to the original three movies: Episodes IV, V, and VI.
I'd rate this movie a 4.5/10. It would be higher if Jar Jar was just taken out and if Darth Maul wasn't immediately killed off, as he was one of the most interesting characters, yet George Lucas kills him off so soon.