Pulp Empire

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9.1
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9.5(64)
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8.9(64)
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9.4(64)
Narrative
 
8.8(64)
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Overall rating
 
9.4
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10.0
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7.0
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10.0
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10.0
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10.0
I have to admit, I've seen the poster for Pulp Empire on this site a few times and I immediately dismissed it thinking "Huh? That'll never work." But I ended up stumbling across a few clips on Vimeo tonight including the entire last chapter of the edit and being a fan of both Tarantino and Star Wars, and being intrigued by njvc's choices in the clip I saw, I decided to watch the whole thing.

One of the things I always find most entertaining about Tarantino's films is his oddball choice of music, the bizarre yet genius mix of Motown, surf music, and the occasional Ennio Morricone track that has come to be known as "the Tarantino sound".

Njvc has taken this signature sound and applied it to a cut of The Empire Strikes Back that we've never seen before. It's an arrangement of the narrative that is so unique, even if you were to take away the Tarantino-fied soundtrack, it could be watched on its own merit alone.

What njvc has created here is not quite a Tarantino film and not quite The Empire Strikes Back, but something entirely strange and new, and beautiful. It's very akin to the feeling I get when I watch The Wizard of Oz with Pink Floyd's "The Dark Side of the Moon" playing over it. It feels at once both familiar and alien.

I love radical edits. This kind of fearless fanediting is what I admire the most and it's the type of thing I always endeavored to create when I was editing. It's the concept of "Let's do something completely different with the material..." And njvc has done that successfully.

There's so much I loved about this edit: The non-linear narrative, the character introductions, the split screens, the animation in the cave vision. All inspired work.

But the part that I found to be most improved by this edit (ironically) is widely considered the best and most important in the entire saga. The "I am your father" scene, which is now juxtaposed with Neil Young's "Old Man". The way njvc handled it with the scrolling flashbacks...the father/son parallels. It was just so well done. It even evoked some emotion in me, reminding me of my own relationship with my father and I think that's when art is it's best, when it acts as a mirror for the viewer. So in that way, you've taken THE scene...the most important scene in the entire saga, injected it with an emotional power that elevated what was already there and created a version that surpasses the original (for me), even as iconic a scene as it is.

It's worth the download for that scene alone.

All of that being said, if I had to name a weakness in this edit, it's John Williams. Though he's been relegated to the back burner reasonably well by njvc, it seems the white-bearded maestro keeps trying to creep back in at every opportunity. At times, it sounds like there are two or even three pieces of music playing at once. Not for long, mind you. But it's enough to keep this from getting a perfect audio editing rating.

To be fair, I was wearing head phones while watching, so it may sound better on a TV. It's a tough subject because I know how very, very hard it is to deal with that center channel music in one of Lucas' or Spielberg's films. There's nothing you can really do about it.

Having done 100% audio rebuilds of protracted action scenes, I can tell you, it isn't any fun. It's the same thing that killed my Star Wars: Reborn edits, the frustrating plague of John Williams encroaching into the center channel, ruining something that you know could be so great if only he wasn't there. I always said the greatest gift someone could give to the fanediting community is a clean, music-free audio track with only dialogue and effects for all six Star Wars films...and maybe Indy 4.

But, I know a LOT of work must have been put in by njvc to making Pulp Empire's audio as good as it is at this point.

All in all, you did an amazing job, njvc! I really enjoyed the unique experience you delivered with this edit and I'm hoping you'll do "Inglorious Clones" with Samuel L. Jackson, the ultimate Tarantino/Star Wars connector. There's always the play on "Jango/Django Unchained" you can pilfer too. ;)

--InfoDroid

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
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Digital
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Overall rating
 
9.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
9.0
Audio Editing
 
9.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
8.0
Enjoyment
 
9.0

Overall, I felt that this was a brilliant edit - there were a couple of niggles, but nothing that should stop anyone from seeking it out and watching it ASAP.

Visuals
+ This is probably the most seamless and stylishly put together FanEdit I've seen. The split-screen Hoth battle especially is excellent and the Tarantino styling is spot-on. Character intros were v cool. Loved the use of B/W.
- Only gripes (and this is incredibly minor) was that I felt there were a couple too many instances of slow-mo.

Audio
+ The song selection was very mostly good and appropriate to the scenes. Loved the Joda-dub/sub work!
- I'm not sure if QT would have used the (admittedly awesome) Chemical Brothers track, and it felt a little out of place given the genre of music used elsewhere. Also, it felt as if there was almost too much new music (I noticed this mostly during the Could-City scenes) - not sure how much of this was due to editing out Williams though.

Narrative
+/- I had a niggling feeling that the reordering of the story could leave first-time viewers scratching their heads. Obviously most people will be coming to the edit already being familiar with the story, so this is probably not an issue.

I seem to have written much more negative than positive in this review, but I'll just stress again that these are all at best minor issues with an incredibly professional piece of work. Well done, njvc!

ps. See it! Now!

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1 reviews
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(Updated: May 13, 2013)
Overall rating
 
8.8
Audio/Video Quality
 
9.0
Audio Editing
 
8.0
Visual Editing
 
9.0
Narrative
 
8.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
Side note: I've watched this fanedit as a previewer but I think the "final cut" is about the same.

This is a very good fanedit. Strong concept, well done and with a passion.

I will not repeat too much of what the other reviewers said. I wanted to focus my comment on the audio side of this edit.
The audio aspect of it is its stronguest point (great choice of songs, great timming, fits the project perfectly) and possily its lowest too (some original music bleeds occasionally, but I know too well how it is difficult to remove Williams music from this movie!, volume levels could be adjusted here and there etc.). That's why it's difficult to rate the audio here. It's not perfect, it maybe could have been (a bit) better in places, but it simply cannot be perfect as the goal here was to remove all Williams music (something I did not even dare to try in both of my War of the Stars edits). There is enough heavy work done here on the audio side of things (lots of sounds reconstructions) to fully enjoy the edit without being too much of a nitpicker. Very good job.

To me the narration flows well. I understand some people saying that there are nice scenes that are missing. But my guess is that some of them are missing because the music could not be removed. There are some fanedits where your main goal dictates your cuts and you have to play around it. That can be frustrating for the faneditor, but it's also, ironicaly, what is fun!

The "Tarantinish" mood is fully exploited and the enjoyment was exactly what I hoped it would be.
(I wonder what the people who understand what Yoda is saying now will think of the edit, haha).

Thanks for this edit.
It's one to keep and to share with people to show what fanedit can create.

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
DVD
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Overall rating
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
Okay so if you're a die hard Star Wars fan, you're probably going to be confused by Pulp Empire! A couple of my mates watched it with me when I first viewed v1 and didn't know what to make of it. I absolutely loved this edit, and thought it was time I submitted a review considering njvc has released v2.

It's amazing what has been achieved here! It's not Star Wars as you know it, so don't expect that! It's not even a true Tarantino style film either, but for some reason it absolutely works here! I thoroughly enjoyed Pulp Empire and will continue to watch it to give me inspiration as a fan editor for motivation for my next project.

Thank you njvc for a brilliant piece of film art!

User Review

Do you recommend this edit?
Yes
Format Watched?
Digital
Report this review Comments (0) | Was this review helpful? 2 0
Overall rating
 
10.0
Audio/Video Quality
 
10.0
Audio Editing
 
10.0
Visual Editing
 
10.0
Narrative
 
10.0
Enjoyment
 
10.0
I was very skeptical about this edit at first. In fact, I only watched it because I was intrigued by the trailer and I loved the dubbing of Yoda. So I came back and watched a little more of the trailer. Chapter I is a little slow, although the introduction of Yoda is genius and no slower than the original, but I ended up watching everything and continuing with chapter II. That's when I was hooked. Chapter II is brilliant, a masterpiece. The introduction of Darth Vader with the flashback, the battle of Hoth with the use of slow-mo, the seamless editing, the perfect pacing. It all works great, even the music, which at first I thought was just for kicks, gives a superb atmosphere and blends in perfectly with all other elements.

Can't recommend this enough, I loved it.

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Yes
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