Review Detail

8.6 5 10
(Updated: September 11, 2012)
Review by buddythegoon — January 28, 2011 @ 8:18 am

I’m on a renewed prequel fan edit kick (burned out on them in 2009 I think).
I’ll first admit to being shallow. I was meandering through all of these pieces of art by all of these very talented people, saw Spence’s Episode II and Kerr’s Episode III, and thought, “hey, those are the shortest ones.”

And there’s the selection criteria.

I have no problem with short. In this case, in particular, I freaking love short.
This is a much more elegant take on the previously bloated and beleaguered Ep. II. Spence achieves his purpose well especially with regard to Anakin. In the scenes with Padme, he actually seems like a somewhat charming kid. Since a lot of expository and ridiculous dialogue is removed, we get to see Padme and Anakin doing things together and actually bonding. The reinserted scenes with Padme’s home and family certainly convey the message that these two kids are going to hook up way better than whatever goofy garbage was in there before. You know what I mean – flaming hearth, dominatrix outfit, dialogue delivery not worthy of a 4th grade Christmas pageant. It has been evicted. These kids are really falling in love now. No more Anakin as whiny baby creepo. No more wondering what kind of horrible treatment Padme was subjected to as a child to make her fall for this maladjusted turd of a person that Lucas made Anakin in the original. He’s a nice kid, maybe a little confused. She digs him. Simple. Elegant. Well done.

I wonder though if it would have been even better had Anakin not told his future wife that he slaughtered an entire colony of Tuskens. “I love you sweetie and I want to be with you. I don’t care what the Jedi say. Also, I slaughtered a bunch of innocent women and children with my lightsaber. Marry me!” It’s just a thought. I still really like the way Spence did it.

I know a few other editors have excised Yoda fighting with a lightsaber. It works here just as well. I didn’t miss it. In fact, I wasn’t even thinking about it as all the action moved along. I remember seeing Episode II in a theater on opening night and laughing my arse off when Yoda starts to fight. I know that it’s not supposed to be funny, but it’s an utterly ridiculous scene the most serious point in the movie. Dude just got an arm chopped off, two Jedi heroes lying in a heap, and here comes an 81-year-old man battling a cartoon character? No. I would like it if there were a way to keep the force battle in and just remove the lightsaber portion, but I’m not sure that’s plausible. Regardless, removing the entire Yoda sequence holds true to the more logical flow of the movie for which Spence is aiming.

I really believe that Lucas tried for some kind of profundity in all of the prequels. Unfortunately, he attempted to convey the weight of various moments through unnecessary or repetitive expository dialogue and a bunch of “look-what-I-do-mom!” action sequences. Spence cures this issue as best he can. We’re left mostly with dialogue and happenings that move the plot and elegantly, without beating us over the head with the obvious, convey the weight of what’s going on.

I didn’t hear any wonky audio edits and the video cuts were smooth for the most part.
I gave it a 9/10.
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