It's really quite straightforward, my young padawan. If a quadratic equation with real-number coefficients has a negative discriminant, then the two solutions to the equation are complex conjugates of each other.
Of course it doesn't last: the reunion of Anakin and Padme sadly requires them to talk to each other, and the sound of their romance is still the thud and clunk of cinema's worst dialogue ever. But almost as if he's become self-aware, Lucas limits the yakking as much as he can here to focus instead on a visually delicious adventure, cramming script and screen with mad set-pieces and kaleidoscopic eye candy (all those establishing wide shots are sexier than ever). When he does slow things down it's to detail Anakin's fall to the dark side, and as with the previous prequels this is by far Revenge Of The Sith's most interesting and successful aspect.
It's hard to tell if George Lucas intended Anakin's radicalisation as a comment on modern-day international politics - "From my point of view, the Jedi are evil!" is as ham-fisted a way of putting it as you'd expect - but the grooming of a young, impressionable man by a charismatic leader to an extreme, misguided cause certainly strikes a chord watching the film now. Whatever, it's chillingly good fun to watch, not least during the 'Tragedy Of Darth Plagueis' scene. Palpatine sells Anakin a promise so tempting that he chooses to ignore the story's loose ends and disclaimers (was Palpatine Plagueis' apprentice? Did Plagueis - or Palpatine - create Anakin? WE NEED MORE PREQUELS!), and Ian McDiarmid sells it just as well. This is what Star Wars does best: half-told myths and legends, the fight for the soul, the temptation of power; it's no exaggeration to claim this as the highlight of the entire prequel trilogy.
And then it's all over, but not before one final, atrociously ill-judged "NNOOOOOO!!" to remind us just how bad this series can be when it tries. It's hard to love the prequel trilogy for exactly this kind of thing: every time it reaches for greatness, Lucas makes a forehead-slappingly bad decision that nobody dared to challenge him on, and we're back to square one. But Revenge Of The Sith is far and away the best of the three, and it might even be better than Return Of The Jedi. If everything from Episodes I and II could have been described in the opening crawl of this film rather than played out over two disappointing episodes, the world would probably be a better place. Still, if The Force Awakens is the new hope we've been waiting for, it'll be in no small part because the prequels were the lesson from history we all had to endure.
The Clone Wars
Yawn yawn John Williams is amazing again
So bored of repeating myself, but Jesus Christ how does he do it? 'Battle Of The Heroes' is the music I play in my head whenever I'm in a meeting with my boss and I cut his arms and legs off and set him on fire.
The ending (one of them)
The subtitles on this Chinese bootleg
What is the point of all this? I'll tell you. (short answer: no point)
Header pic by dark lord of the Sith Olly Moss