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5 Reasons Why Star Wars: The Phantom Menace Is A Genuinely Brilliant Film

Come on, give it one more chance. Last time, we promise.

Not so long ago, in a galaxy not that far, far away... Star Wars: Episode I exploded onto our cinema screens, along with a familiar sweeping orchestral score and scrolling yellow title sequence. The long-awaited movie was a success worldwide, smashing box office records and bringing the popular franchise into the 21st Century. The Phantom Menace marked the beginning of a Star Wars prequel trilogy, one which would introduce, develop and conclude the greatest film series ever created. The brainchild of legendary filmmaker George Lucas, Star Wars Episode I became a global hit and was loved by all. Except, it wasn't. The Phantom Menace may boast an enormous financial success story, but critically the film was deemed a disappointment, a failure - a Death Star sized catastrophe. Fans who were devoted to Star Wars felt cheated by what appeared a dumbed-down, poorly executed and simply low-standard film. In comparison to the might of the original trilogy, with its iconic sequences, memorable characters and cinematic pedigree; The Phantom Menace felt every bit like a childish interpretation of a badly written story. You only have to look at the vast criticism of Episode I to see the film's true legacy. Red Letter Media produced perhaps the best critical evaluation of The Phantom Menace, a hilariously insulting, feature length deconstruction, available to watch online. However, despite the large scale criticism of Episode I, it is possible in hindsight to look back on the 1999 Star Wars prequel and appreciate it for what it truly is. A brilliant film. This may seem a bold statement, even an ill-informed view or misjudged approval, but after careful consideration it is time to cut The Phantom Menace some slack. We have to look past the 3 out of 5 star rating on IMDb, ignore the Rotten grading of Rotten Tomatoes and dispel the rumours that Episode I is an awful movie. Instead, we should focus on the positives and view The Phantom Menace as a much better film than it is popularly perceived as. Take the complimentary viewpoint of legendary film critic Roger Ebert who, upon first viewing, asserted that Star Wars: Episode I was "an astonishing achievement in imaginative filmmaking." With this open mindset, it is possible to explore 5 Reasons Why Star Wars: Episode I Is A Genuinely Brilliant Film...
Contributor
Contributor

I like writing about films and hope you like reading about them too. And watching them, of course.