A L I T T L E B A C K S T O R Y . . .
As our movie opens, THE CLONE WARS have been wrecking destruction upon the galaxy for several years.
No one is unaffected, with the SEPARATIST FORCES growing increasingly aggressive, attacking every star system they can.
THE SENATE pump more and more resources into the war in hope of bringing it to a swift end, as blockades and attacks are making lives difficult all over,
with raised taxes and the people of CORUSCANT forced to aid in the war effort.
Yet even in this time of strife and chaos there is remaining hope to be found in the form of ANAKIN SKYWALKER,
who since our last encounter in Episode II has become a symbol for the war against separatist forces, as SENATOR PALPATINE uses him as a poster-boy and propaganda piece.
THE JEDI COUNCIL are skeptical, as they neither wish to be associated with pro-war propaganda and made into patriotic symbols nor for Anakin to become [more] arrogant as a result of his new fame.
Even so, Anakin's new role is undoubtedly effective,
becoming a great motivation for the people of Coruscant and for the new STORMTROOPERS (as the heavy losses among the CLONE TROOPERS have forced the Senate to draft volunteers from
the star systems opposed to the separatists). He has also proven himself to be a brilliant warrior and strategist, having won several victories around the galaxy.
He hasn't achieved all of this alone, however.
His friendship with OBI-WAN KENOBI remains strong; stronger than ever, as a matter of fact,
as they have grown even more protective and appreciative of one another as a result of the hardships of war.
On Coruscant, Anakin's not-so-secret secret bride PADME AMIDALA (their "secret marriage" is one of the worst-kept secrets on Coruscant,
with both Obi-Wan and several Jedi and Senators well-aware and acceptant of the situation, if not particularly happy about it) continues her work in the senate,
working to keep balance and some measure of prosperity on Coruscant and the other planets while simultaneously opposing those forces in the senate who wish to decrease democracy in favor of
a stronger war-times leadership. She is also pregnant with twins, a GIRL and a BOY (confirmed via ultra-sound), whom she and Anakin have yet to name.
With this backstory, our movie opens...
on the planet of HOTH, where a separatist siege has cost the life of most of the planet's small population (which consisted mainly of research stations,
as Hoth has never had sentient native inhabitants; even so, the siege has cost the deaths of thousands of innocent scientists and their families).
Anakin Skywalker and Obi-Wan Kenobi lead an attack on the main separatist base on Hoth, beginning with a heavy air-battle.
During the dogfights Anakin proves his worth as one of the galaxy's greatest pilots; while some of his death-defying stunts can come across as a bit show-offish there's no doubt that he is
far superior to Obi-Wan and the other pilots, not to mention the separatist droid pilots (being unable to improvise, perhaps Anakin's greatest attribute).
Having taken care of most of the air defense of Hoth, Anakin, Obi-Wan and the Stormtroopers land and engage in a battle.
While the skills of both Anakin and Obi-Wan are shown during the battle it is clear that the separatist forces have learned from previous mistakes,
having replaced many of their easily-beaten droid fighters with trained mercenaries and well-paid bounty hunters; the fight proves more difficult than the Jedi have predicted.
The battle also clearly shows Anakin's and Obi-Wans brotherly relationship; they always have each other's backs,
constantly making sure that the other is alright and aiding each other when necessary.
Making their way into the separatist base - which used to be the hub of the largest scientific station on Hoth - Anakin comes across a control room where several dead innocents have simply
been thrown into a pile. There are both men, women and children in the pile, mercilessly gunned down by the separatist forces.
Anakin - who despite his great prowess is still facing difficulty keeping his emotions in check (one of the reasons why the Jedi council isn't crazy about him becoming
the war's main poster-boy) - gets into a rage, cutting down the mercenaries.
COUNT DOOKU - in another part of the base - is making an emergency call to the not-so-mysterious DARTH SIDIOUS.
It is clear from the call that Sidious intends to send no further aid do Dooku; if he is not capable of defeating the Jedi and the Stormtroopers,
then he is not worthy of taking a part in the coming new world order.
Anakin makes it to Count Dooku before Obi-Wan, and engage him in a violent light-sabre battle.
Dooku is unprepared for Anakin, who somehow manages to let his fury fuel him without losing control of the situation. Anakin bests Dooku and kills him. The battle is won.
Anakin, Obi-Wan and c:o arrive back at Coruscant and are treated as heroes.
With the Count defeated and the Hoth base free of separatists once more, victory and the end of the war appears to be within reach.
As usual, Senator Palpatine lays the focus of the victory on Anakin, proclaiming him to be the Chief Protector of the Republic.
It is obvious that the people of Coruscant love him; despite the economic hardships - forcing people to queue at soup kitchens - the cheers arising around the capital are genuine,
and young men and women are proud to sign up to the Republic Army and join the fight led by their hero. Obi-Wan doesn't mind, feeling that his good friend does deserve credit for the victories.
The Jedi Council grow even more skeptical.
Instead of heading out to a celebratory dinner held by Palpatine, Anakin decides to stay in with Padme, and we get a good look at how their relationship has changed.
They have been "secretly" married for several years now and have grown accustomed to each other, leaving the initial "My soul is tormented by your beauty"-phase behind them.
They relax with one another,
and can blow off steam about their respective situations (Anakin not being all that comfortable with his new stardom as he fears that this might distance him from Obi-Wan and as he feels
an animosity towards him from the council; Padme concerned that an increasing amount of senators are appealing for a new reform which would give Senator Palpatine even more "emergency" powers
so as to more effectively lead the war machine).
Most of all the two are weary of war, politics and conflict, looking forward instead to a peaceful future and dreaming of settling down on NABOO with their children once the war is over.
Talking about dreams, Anakin's have grown more peaceful. He has finally let go of the death of his MOTHER SHMI, and dreams now instead of a house by a lake in Naboo.
He dreams of playing with his son and daughter.
The young man whose dreams were once action-filled adventures is now dreaming of adventures of a different kind, exploring the country-side with his wife and children.
Anakin grew up without a father and had to shoulder adult responsibilities early in the harsh climate (both literally and socially) that was TATOOINE.
He intends to be the best father he can possibly be to his children and a caring husband to his wife. And as it is now, there is little to suggest that this won't be the case.
The future looks bright.
Unfortunately, there is more to this situation than he knows.
The Jedi council is holding a meeting, with Obi-Wan in attendance (but not Anakin, as he is still not a Jedi master).
MACE WINDU raises the issue of Padme's pregnancy, and explains to the council that something needs to be done.
Obi-Wan fails to see the problem, and asks what Mace's reason for thinking there is one he has.
Mace explains that a large majority of the Jedi - like Obi-Wan and Mace themselves - were born with an increased ability to use THE FORCE, while their parents were unremarkable, normal people.
However, there have been previous instances of Jedi born to Jedi parents, and these have almost always proven to be more powerful by far than even a Jedi Master.
Mace explains that while no-one knows who Anakin's father was, his prowess and abilities correspond with previous examples of Jedi born by Jedi.
Mace now fears what abilities Anakin's and Padme's children may have,
especially if trained early on by Anakin himself (especially as he has proven to have problems with keeping his emotions in check, as well as showing a disdain for even attempting).
Mace suggests that as a precautionary effort they should take care of the Skywalker children early on, to ascertain their prowess and make sure that they'd only use them for good.
Obi-Wan is skeptical to say the least, knowing that neither Anakin nor Padme will take kindly to the plan, and feeling that it wouldn't be the just thing to do.
He voices his concerns: that the role of the Jedi should be to protect others, not to control them.
However he is over-ruled, with almost all other Jedi masters (including YODA) voting in accordance to Mace's proposition.
It is decided that they are to make some simple tests on the children almost immediately from birth, and - if the tests correspond with their theory - to take care of the children.
A defeated Obi-Wan pleads the council that they not break the news to Anakin or Padme; that it would be better if it comes from him,
as he knows them better (and would find a way of telling them that would sound like it came from an emotional understanding human being rather than a practical droid). The masters approve.