November 04, 2018
I really loved this edit. Though I have a soft spot to The Phantom Menace, and I prefer some things in the original over The Ancient Lore, TAL is a vast improvement over the original.
I want to talk about the few negatives before I delve into the positives. I’d have to agree with courtlyhades that I wasn’t very fond of all the musical changes. I especially didn’t like the heavy use of Across the Stars. Some references are okay, but it got to the point of replacing Anakin’s Theme which is way more fitting, and the love theme being used for scenes without there being romance was weird.
Technically speaking, at the beginning the pan down after the crawl stutters and skips frames which should be fixed, I remember Obi-Wan’s “We haven’t much time” being out of sync; Count Dooku’s hologram at the beginning of the movie is pretty hard to hear; the Neomoidian subtitles misspell “boycott” as “boycotte”, and I couldn’t make out what Padme says at the end of the ship scene. I think it was “Miss your mother” but its use is very abrupt and odd. Finally I noticed Qui-Gon’s purple lightsaber in the desert looked really fat. But otherwise, I didn’t notice any other technical issue.
Narratively speaking, I loved the changes and additions made; they really made the experience better! I especially loved the added depth to the Neomoidians. Who’d have thought Nute Gunray of all people would be ruthless and threatening, but also sympathetic? I would love to learn more about this guy’s past. The new additions to Darth Maul with the fan film, subtitles, and unused trailer dialogue about fear, Maul becomes even more of an effective villain.
The ultimate fight of oppressive technology vs mother nature, freedom and independence vs corrupt bureaucracy and fascism, has never been so relatable and engaging. Thumbs way up!