At last, I can finally enjoy the prequels! Years after giving up hope of finding prequel edits that I could really enjoy, Hal9000's Episode II edit has done it!
I watched so many fanedits of Episodes I & II that left me wishing I could get my time refunded (nothing against the faneditors, just the material). I recently realized I had been taking the wrong approach by looking for an edit that removed all of the elements that I disliked, as edits that took that approach never seemed to have enough material left to craft what felt like a full film. Hal9000's edit is more reserved cut-wise and seems to try to include as much as possible to give the film enough content and weight to flow smoothly and feel like a complete film. Somehow Hal9000 was able to include much more of the film than I would have though possible while still (mostly) avoiding the frequent criticisms of the film like bad writing, acting, attempts at humor, etc. and the quality of the edit is top-notch.
There were at most a couple of instances where I felt like a transition wasn't quite flawless, either visually or audibly, but it may just have been a result of knowing the original too well or watching too many fanedits. Regardless, they were the most minor of issues, and I can't even recall which scenes were involved because I was just so surprised by how much I was enjoying myself watching this film!
Hal9000 has elevated this film to a place I never though possible: a worthy companion to the original trilogy!
Entertaining, fun, realistically romantic, fixes most of the problems Anakin has, which is very hard to do, especially taking into account the terrible performance of Christiansen. It makes the movie more focused, straightforward and action-packed.
After watching this I must say I'm a huge fan of your work. The main thing that bothered me in the original version was the relationship between Anakin and Padmé. Thanks to your edit it actually works and isn't cringy at all. I appreciate you used some cutscenes, the story works much better with them. But unfortunatelly the quality of those scenes isn't great and it distracts me a little (more than in the episode I). I also like you cut out Anakin's meltdown. It's just better when it's his dark secret.
The only part where the story felt illogical was the arrival of Anakin and Padmé to Geonosis. It looked like Dooku was expecting them which doesn't really make sense. I think some shots from the droid factory could be used to fill the hole (not the whole thing, just the capture). I personally like what OnlyYodaForgives did with this scene in his Neon Noir edit. But overall this edit is great. Good job!
It's been a couple of years since I saw this fanedit. I won't see it again anytime soon but I still remember it quite well. Here's a pros/cons list I made for myself after I saw it:
+ Good image quality
+ Better Obi Wan - Anakin dialogue
+ Yoda more serious
+ Droid Factory scene cut
+ Younglings were cut
+- Padme family scene
+- Obi Wan humor scaled down
- No Yoda lightsaber fight
- Anakin telling Padme that he killed the Tusken Raiders was cut
I did enjoy the fanedit quite a lot. I always kinda liked the Yoda VS Dooku lightsaber duel but I understand perfectly why it was cut out. Unfortunately HAL 9000 took out one of my favorite moments of the movie too, and that's the one when Anakin tells Padme about killing the Tusken Raiders. I always felt it's a very nice portration of Anakin starting to shift to the Dark Side.