(MINOR GOT SEASON 1 SPOILERS AHEAD!)
When Andreas announced he was working on a Game of Thrones edit, I got pretty pumped. Of all the seasons, the first one may be among the most primed to be done for a TV to Movie Edit (I believe 4 and 6 would also be great as movies). The editing here is all really good for the most part. The change in aspect ratio is a very stylistic choice, and it pays off for the most part. Andreas took his time with each crop to make it look realistic and not take anything important out, and it worked very well. While replacing the amazing Game of Thrones soundtrack is something that I immediately resisted, the implementation of Lord of the Ring music worked very well and felt well implemented throughout. I will say, for future edits I would love to see a few themes from GoT mixed in (Rains of Castamere is a must IMO, and I wouldn't mind Jon Snow's theme coming in for truly epic moments).
The choices of what to keep and what to remove worked really well. While the petty squabble between the Starks and Lannisters over the direwolf helped to establish the beef between Ned and Cersei, it certainly wasn't too missed in the edit. I greatly enjoyed Tyrion's subplot with Lysa and the trial of combat that ensued, but I certainly understand why it had to be cut. I am also all for the cutting of a lot of Drogo's character development, as I enjoyed it but it wasn't too necessary to the plot. A few scenes were really missed for me, such as the Stark family finding the direwolves (though I understand having that scene creates a plot hole with the Sansa subplot removed) and Ned bringing Arya to her lessons. Other than those, I thought that this edit was very on point. I couldn't wait to watch through the whole thing, and the character beats and pacing were fantastic. You did a truly great job of making a 10 hour season into a movie length.
I am now hooked and I absolutely can't wait on the second movie! No hurry, though. Thanks for this fantastic edit and I hope you see this saga through to the end!
A true achievement to trim 10-ish hours down to a perfectly reasonable 2.5 hour-movie. I certainly didn't miss anything, but I did have to recollect a few times to remind we of what happens "in between" the cuts. No biggie unless you dive in to this without having seen the entire first season.
The audio and video editing is flawless and the LotR-music worked better than I thought, to be honest. Some of the musical cues do remind me too much of LotR, though, and did bring me out of it momentarily. My big issue with this edit is the letterboxing. Does it give a more cinematic feel? Sure. Is the framing thrown out the window? Mostly. It becomes evident that this is a fan edit (an otherwise stellar fan edit) the moment the framing feels off in a scene. A hair too much there, a foot there; it is noticeable throughout that the framing was not intended for 2.35:1 (or what the result here is).
Other than that I would certainly recommend this edit to anyone, really. Maybe one should be familiar with the first season in order to pick up some of the missing parts. Bottom line: A great edit in every way and an interesting concept, what with using LotR-music and all.
TV-to-movie edits are tough. It's really easy to take a 10 hour TV season and make a 4 hour TV season. What's difficult is taking a 10 hour season and making a proper 2.5 hour movie. In that sense, this edit passes with flying colours. There's another edit of season one that didn't do a good job with the narrative but this is on another level. This is a gripping story with all the right elements. The opening is genius and it flows like a proper movie. The only bad thing I can say about the narrative is that it's not a self-contained story and relies on the fact that sequels are coming. But that's a minor quibble because you'll definitely want to watch the sequel right after this anyway.
The picture quality is great and the addition of the LOTR score is a great bonus. But there's a serious issue with this edit in that there about a dozen or so spots where the picture becomes very pixelated for a few seconds. It's bad enough that it takes you out of the movie and the editor really should have corrected this before releasing it. Were it not for that, this would easily be a 9 or 10 out of 10, but as it stands now, I can't recommend this edit. The editor should really take another shot at this because the narrative is so good that it deserves a release without technical issues.
Awesome movie. I really felt it told the story exceptionally well. To distill a season down to a movie, make the resulting story so damn enjoyable, and the character's personal arcs so well defined that you really do feel invested in everything they are doing is really something remarkable. I can not wait for the movies that follow. /bravo