Top notch edit which takes a fine movie and makes it really good, in my opinion. I bought Oblivion when it first came out on Google, started watching it twice, fell asleep (there may or may not have been adult beverages involved) and then forgot it existed for a long time. I downloaded Beezo's edit a while back and finally gave it a whirl. I'm really glad I did; I can recommend this edit to just about anyone into sci-fi. This is now a pretty good movie. I went back and watched the theatrical after and enjoyed it far less. A bunch of minor annoyances add up to a far worse experience.
A/V Quality: 10 - Looks fantastic and crisp. This is really a gorgeous movie and the edit looks great.
Visual Editing: 10 - Great work, cuts were seamless.
Audio Editing: 9 - Nothing jarring, seamless work. The score did occasionally overwhelm but it sounded pretty similar in the theatrical (though I had to watch it on my tablet so it's hard to compare).
Narrative: 9 - Original would be a 6. By removing unnecessary information and nipping and tucking little moments galore Beezo has made for a much stronger narrative. The viewer is genuinely surprised at some plot points which are pretty much telegraphed in the opening voiceover. The plot isn't hard to follow, it's more showing than telling (rewatching the original made my head hurt how they overexplained everything to death with lots of superfluous, bad dialogue. By reducing some Tom Cruisey moments (which admittedly, I love but belong more in different movies - looking at you motorbike jump) and reducing his inner dialogue we are left with the actor doing some great pensive acting. It shines through here instead of feeling dumb with his inner voice. Looking back on the voiceover parts, sure, you can see it as visuals that look like a voiceover is happening. But without that knowledge, its' just a great sweeping intro to the world, and thoughtful finale. I'm only giving it a 9 because of a couple extremely minor plot things which I never would have noticed if Beezo hadn't pointed them all out in his audio commentary. :)
Enjoyment: 9 - Damn good movie, this edit will completely replace the theatrical for me. Great job.
Minor quibble: The blu-ray menu is mapped oddly. Instead of up and down going up and down between the two options, down is down and then right or left is back up. From there, the other direction goes back down. Easy to get past without issue but thought I'd mention it (there was a similar thing on the Blade Runner blu-ray menu IIRC).
EDIT: Forgot to mention the commentary track, which was a real delight to listen to. Beezo explains his intentions behind each cut, and explains his process behind each and every cut (which was a ton more than I would have thought but all the nips and tucks really add up to a significantly improved experience). I would highly recommend listening to everyone interested in fanediting or who is already editing.
Do you recommend this edit?
Thanks for such a great review! Checks in the mail. :P
I have not seen the original version of this film. Since I had little interest in seeing the movie in cinemas, I thought it would be interesting to see Oblivion as a fanedit before seeing the theatrical cut. The AV quality seems flawless, and only one or two cuts are noticeable (placement of characters from shot to shot in one or two scenes). The narrative was mostly easy to follow, I found the first half of the film to be intriguing, exciting, and enjoyable. After a certain point, the film seems to draw inspiration from (or flat out copy) other sci-fi concepts from previous films (i.e. 2001, Moon, Independence Day).
That being said, those issues are with the film itself, and not the edit. I enjoyed the ambiguity of some scenes (and the overall tone of the film), and I really appreciated the lack of any sort of 'beat-you-over-the-head" VO that explains everything flat to the audience (apparently there was one in the original, based on the reviews here). A bit too much may have been cut concerning some dialogue: I did find myself having to skip back a few times to catch an important line that I missed.
The pacing of the film was great, the run time was a bit too long, and each scene flowed together really well. I think if I watch the edit again, I'll get more out of it, so I'll keep it for future use. Nice work!
Thank you for un-dumbing this movie. I don't know why studios insist on inflicting the SciFi audience with lazy storytelling cliches like a VO narration. Blade Runner didn't need it, Dune didn't need it, yet it persists. I've watched my Oblivion Blu-ray about half a dozen times now and I always skip over the beginning because I detest the narration.
I liked the opening montage and didn't miss the VO one whit. I don't know how someone who had never seen this movie before might react, but I knew right away this was a post-apocalyptic Earth tale. If that wasn't enough, you have the (re)telling of the story by Jack to Julia and all of the other references about going to Titan, etc.
Visually, this Fanedit looks even better than my Oblivion Blu-ray when viewed on a large plasma display, if that's possible. I did find the audio to be cranked up a bit in spots and had to use a db cut to my subwoofer to keep peace in the neighborhood. However the soundtrack and sound editing were very good and added to my enjoyment of the movie.
Of course opinions are going to vary about the alternative ending, but I'm glad you made some choices there. Its yet another reason why I would watch this Fanedit as opposed to another repeat viewing of the original. The result is a more immersive and thought provoking movie experience.
This is a highly successful fanedit that noticeably improves upon the original film. The pacing has been improved. Poor dialogue from the original has been erased. Characters I found annoying in the original, namely Sykes (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and Beech (Morgan Freeman), have been made far more palatable. The film as a whole is a much more enjoyable experience as a result of Beezo's edits.
I do have a few minor criticisms. While I appreciated that Beezo removed the VO from the beginning and end of the film, its absence was rather noticeable in the fanedit's opening. I found myself thinking, "Oh yeah, this is where the VO was." A more succinct opening may have alleviated that problem and fit better with the overall tone of the film. At times the music felt overpowering, though I don't recall how much of that existed in the original film. I'm torn about the new ending; I understand why the change was made, but it left some questions unanswered. What happened to the other survivors? What happened to 52?
All in all, this is an excellent fanedit and I highly recommend it to both new viewers of the film and those who had issues with the original.
Do you recommend this edit?
(Spoilers) Thank you for your review. Incidentally, my first edit of the end did have the reveal of Tech 52 and the other survivors, while omitting the child. Unfortunately, I still felt theme of sacrifice was undercut by this reveal, less than two minutes after the hero martyred himself. So, thematically, I felt the inverse (just revealing the child) would be more appropriate to meet those ends.