When it comes to franchises, easily one of the biggest ones out there is "Star Wars". When the first feature film directed by George Lucas debut onto big screens in 1977, it became a massive phenomenon changing the film industry forever and led the way for two sequels to come out thereafter that solidified it as a pop culture icon. With that said though, it's a franchise that is also very controversial. From 1999 to 2005, George Lucas made the prequel trilogy which angered fans with its choices and then from 2015 until 2019, Disney made the sequel trilogy which became even more controversial and brought out the worst in fans. It's sometimes hard to talk about this series nowadays, but I'm gonna do my best when it comes to this film. The film in question is "Star Wars: The Clone Wars", the animated film that came out in 2008 and took place between "Attack of the Clones" and "Revenge of the Sith". This film did lead way for a CG show which I will say was very good. It even got Disney to revive the series for one last season on Disney+. With that said though, this film doesn't show it. This is not a very good animated movie and I'll explain why.
During the midst of the Clone Wars, Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker (Matt Latner) is assigned to be a teacher to a young Jedi named Ashoka Tano (Ashley Eckstein). Although reluctant at first, Anakin grows to respect Ashoka as a Jedi after winning a battle and agrees to be her teacher. Their mission doesn't stop there though as Yoda (Tom Kane) informs the two that the son of Jabba the Hut has been kidnapped and that the two must be sent to the planet he's held captive on to rescue him while Obi-Wan Kenobi (James Arnold Taylor) bides time with Jabba on Tatooine. What they don't know though is that their rescue is a setup by Count Dooku (Christopher Lee) who plans to use his apprentice Ventress (Nika Futterman) to kill Anakin to gain Jabba's respect. What follows from there is a film so boring and monotonous that I don't want to talk more about it.
Like I previously stated, the TV series this film is based on was very good and deserves to be seen by "Star Wars" fans. However, like other bad animated movies based on TV shows, the biggest problem with the film is that it feels like a couple of episodes stitched together to make a feature-length film. Sure enough, that was exactly the case with this film. George Lucas was so impressed with the quality of the pilot episodes that he decided to throw it in theaters to launch the series. That was a mistake and if there's anyone to blame for the film ending up as messy as it did, it's him. My biggest problem with the story is that it is simply boring. There's barely any excitement in this story which is essentially a rescue mission that lacks any suspense or tension. Every battle scene lacks fun or excitement because you know the characters are gonna make it out okay and even the lightsaber fights are just simply unbearable to watch. They go on forever and are just simply dull with the characters sometimes stopping to say some expository dialogue in the middle of them. This isn't a fun action scene, it's just an exercise of one. As far as the animation goes, it's terrible. It shouldn't be surprising though because this animation was meant to be shown on TV and not the big screen. The characters all look like plastic puppets that don't feel convincing or lifelike and the environments of this film are simply appalling. They look like graphics that you would find from a video game on a Nintendo 64 from the 90s. If George Lucas was so impressed with the stories of these episodes, why didn't he get some animators from his big visual effects studios ILM to work on this film? They've clearly worked on animation before and would even go to make their first animated film with "Rango" three years later, I simply don't understand why he didn't ask them to improve the quality of animation in this film. As far as the characters go, they also were not fun. Anakin and Obi-Wan are simply uninteresting and come off as stale, Count Dooku was an exceptionally annoying antagonist in this film that not even Christopher Lee could redeem him, and I also found Ventress irritating as well as she mostly spits out a dialogue about how she'll defeat Skywalker and Kenobi. Our villain ladies and gentlemen. I guess I did kind of like Ashoka though. I could see that she was an eager student and that she did have the potential to be a great Jedi and despite her being annoying some times, I did like her as a character. I also found the robot droids hilarious for how stupid they are so I guess that's another point for this film, but that's not enough to save it. Also, I was not a fan of Kevin Kiner's music. It's not easy taking on the shoes of the legendary John Williams, but his score, unfortunately, didn't deliver in my opinion. It felt unfitting and had some odd moments.
There's not else I can say about "Star Wars: The Clone Wars". It's just not fun. The story is boring and stale, the animation is very clunky and lifeless, and the characters just aren't fun. This is simply a boring animated movie and I don't recommend giving it a watch. There's always lots of debate about what the worst "Star Wars" film is and everyone has a different opinion on it, but the consensus tends to put this film as being one of the worst in the series. I agree with that notion.