Star Wars - Episode III: Dark Force Rising

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Star Wars - Episode III: Dark Force Rising
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Brief Synopsis:
This is a streamlined, fast-paced, and hopefully more believable version of Anakin Skywalker’s transformation to Darth Vader.
I like the prequels. I like “Revenge of the Sith”. It does, however, have a few shortcomings, the biggest of which I think is that it doesn’t make the audience sympathize with Anakin. Between Anakin and Obi-Wan, the audience is more aligned with the latter, while it should have been the other way around, at least until Anakin’s turn. One of the goals of this edit is thus to realign the audience’s sympathies. This has been done by presenting Anakin and Palpatine as the only (apparently) truthful and honest characters. I’ve also altered the scene where Anakin “turns” to make the turn less sudden. Instead of having him fully embrace the dark side in this scene, I’ve tried to reedit it so that Anakin only joins Palpatine because he’s left with no other choice. As such, there’s no longer any one point where Anakin turns to the dark side — it’s a more gradual descent into darkness beginning with the killing of Mace Windu and ending with Anakin being locked in the suit. Other changes have been made to improve pacing, while some have been made just for fun.
Release Information:
Cuts and Additions:
Cuts removed/added/extended:
- New opening crawl
- Cut Anakin’s lines about Grievous’ ship and Vulture Droids, as well as Obi-Wan’s response
- Cut Anakin’s “This is where the fun begins”
- Cut the missiles and buzz droids
- Moved “Oh, I have a bad feeling about this” so it comes in response to Anakin’s “General Grievous’ ship is dead ahead”
- Cut the lines about the ship’s shields still being up
- Cut Anakin unbuckling his seatbelts
- Cut the battle droid’s “There they are!
- Cut Anakin’s “I sense Count Dooku”
- Cut directly from “Spring the trap” to Grievous’ introduction
- Cut the elevator sequence
- Added music to the duel with Dooku
- Cut Palpatine’s “Get help” etc. and Obi-Wan’s response
- Cut Dooku’s jump from the balcony
- Cut Anakin’s “My powers have doubled” and Dooku’s response
- Cut the balcony falling on Obi-Wan
- Cut Palpatine urging Anakin to kill Dooku
- Cut from Palpatine’s “You did well, Anakin” to the Star Destroyer attacking Grievous’ ship
- Cut Anakin’s “We’re in a bit of a situation here”
- Cut Anakin’s “Oops!”
- Trimmed the falling elevator scene
- Cut Grievous’ “Activate ray shields!”
- Cut the “We’re smarter than this” dialogue
- Cut bits of the dialogue of the Grievous confrontation
- Trimmed the fight on the bridge
- Replaced Grievous’ “You lose, General Kenobi!” with “Time to abandon ship, jedi scum!”
- Cut Grievous launching the escape pods
- Cut Anakin’s “The ability to pilot this thing is irrelevant”
- Trimmed the destruction and descent of Grievous’ ship
- Cut Obi-Wan’s “We’re still flying half a ship”
- Shortened the shuttle landing sequence
- Trimmed the conversation between Anakin and Obi-Wan
- Cut reference to Grievous being a coward
- Cut Anakin’s “Spare parts” line
- Cut bits of Anakin and Padme’s reuinion
- Replaced venetian blinds transition with a straight cut
- Shortened the landing on Utapau
- Cut Sidious telling Grievous to send the separatists to Mustafar
- Cut balcony scene and Anakin’s nightmare, going directly from Sidious’ closeup to Anakin waking up
- Trimmed the conversation between Anakin and Padme
- Trimmed the conversation between Anakin and Yoda
- Trimmed the conversation between Anakin and Obi-Wan
- Replaced the strange transition used after the scene in Palpatine’s office with a linear wipe
- Reinserted the “A Plot to Destroy the Jedi?” deleted scenes, with a few cuts and alterations
- Cut Anakin’s whining to the Jedi Council when he’s not made a master
- Trimmed Anakin and Obi-Wan’s conversation in the hallway of the temple
- The scene in the gunship ends with Mace Windu’s “So the prophecy says.”
- Trimmed the balcony scene with Anakin and Padme, and ending it after “What is it?” “Nothing”
- Reinserted a trimmed version of the “Stirring in the Senate” deleted scene
- Shortened the opera scene, removing mention of midichlorians among other things
- Cut Yoda’s “Quickly and decisively we must act”
- Trimmed the Anakin/Obi-Wan talk before Obi-Wan leaves for Utapau
- Reinserted the final “Birth of the Rebellion” deleted scene
- Obi-Wan’s adventure on Utapau has been shortened, recut and altered quite extensively
- Cut the scene in the Jedi war room
- Tightened the scene in Palpatine’s office
- Cut Anakin’s “I wish I knew. I know there are things about the Force that they’re not telling me.”
- Shortened and reordered Palpatine’s revelation, making Anakin catch on a bit quicker and removing the “Jedi are evil” subplot and Anakin wanting to kill Palpatine
- Cut from Grievous’ death to Mace Windu’s “A Sith Lord?”
- Changed the “venetian blinds” wipe to an iris
- Cut C-3PO walking up to Padme
- Cut Palpatine’s “I take it General Grievous has been destroyed, then”
- Palpatine’s attack and killing the three Jedi has been made faster
- Trimmed Palpatine vs. Windu
- Shortened and changed the Anakin/Palpatine/Windu confrontation, removing Palpatine’s first lightning attack among other things
- Cut Palpatine’s first “Good”
- Cut Palpatine’s “To cheat death” etc.
- Cut Anakin’s “Thank you, my master”
- Cut Palpatine’s “along with all the senators” and replaced Anakin’s reply with “I understand, Master”
- Cut Palpatine’s “including your friend, Obi-Wan Kenobi”
- Cut Palpatine’s “We must move quickly” etc.
- Reordered some reaction shots of Anakin
- The scene ends with Palpatine’s “to save Padme”.
- Cut the scene with Padme watching the burning Jedi Temple
- Cut the scene with Bail at the Jedi Temple
- Cut the scene with Obi-Wan swimming
- Cut the scene with AT-STs searching for Wookiees
- Cu t the scene with Yoda leaving Kashyyyk
- Replaced the “venetian blinds” transition from Obi-Wan’s ship to Padme’s apartment with a wipe
- Cut Anakin’s “I’m fine. I’m fine. I came to see if you and the baby are safe.”
- Cut Anakin’s “I will not betray the Republic”
- Cut Anakin’s “and with the Senate, and with you.”
- Cut the dialogue between C-3PO and Padme
- Cut Yoda’s “Hmm. Suggest dismantling the coded signal, do you?” and Obi-Wan’s response
- Cut the scene with the separatists on Mustafar
- Cut the scene with the Tantive IV returning to Coruscant
- Cut Nute Gunray’s “Welcome, Lord Vader. We’ve been expecting you.”
- Cut Obi-Wan’s “Not even the younglings survived.”
- Cut Yoda’s “Killed not by clones” etc.
- Replaced Yoda’s “For the clones, to discover the recalibration, a long time it will take” with “Until the time is right, disappear we will”
- Cut the dialogue about having to destroy the Sith, and any mention of Yoda going to fight the Emperor
- Cut all dialogue in Padme’s apartment before “I need your help”
- The scene ends with “Padme I must find him”
- Cut the scene with Padme’s cruiser taking off and Obi-Wan sneaking aboard
- Cut Anakin communicating with the Emperor’s hologram
- Shortened Padme’s cruiser’s landing on Mustafar
- Cut Anakin’s “I saw your ship”
- A lot of dialogue between Anakin and Padme has been cut
- Added sound effects to Anakin choking Padme
- Cut Obi-Wan’s “You have done that yourself” and Anakin’s “You will not take her from me”
- Cut Anakin’s “I see through the lies of the Jedi” etc.
- Cut “freedom” from Anakin’s list of things he has brought to his new empire
- Cut Anakin’s “If you’re not with me”
- Cut the dialogue that follows “Then you’re my enemy”
- Anakin and Obi-Wan now ignite their sabers nearly simultaneously
- The entire Yoda/Emperor duel has been cut
- Cut all dialogue during the duel except “This is the end for you, my master”
- The duel ends a bit differently than the original
- Cut all dialogue after Anakin’s defeat except “You were my brother, Anakin. I loved you.”
- Padme doesn’t wake up on the cruiser
- The Emperor’s arrival on Mustafar has been moved to after the first Polis Massa scene, and has been cut so Anakin appears to truly be dead when the Emperor finds him
- Cut Padme losing her will to live
- Cut the birth and naming of the babies
- Cut the entire “NOOOOO!!!!” scene
- Cut the entire scene on Tantive IV, making Padme’s dying “There’s still good in him” the last words to be spoken in the movie
- Added fan edit credits
Cover art by Kerr (DOWNLOAD HERE) image

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(Updated: November 14, 2014)
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In his desperation to save Padmé, where he failed to save his mother, Anakin trusts the only friend he thinks he has, Palpatine. Like so many heroes before him, Anakin brings his own worst nightmares upon himself.

The brilliant reinsertion of Padmé as one of founders of the rebellion, adds a greater depth to her character, as well as her relationship with Anakin. It is only natural, given the previous two films, that Padmé would have doubts about the Republic. Anakin now not only fears Padmé’s death, but also her betrayal.

The Finale is no longer Jedi against Sith, but friend against friend. Obi-wan's goal is not to kill Anakin, but to save him. Obi-wan’s love for Anakin is an erie contrast to Anakin’s hate. The battle is personal, paralleling well with their final duel in A New Hope.

Kerr’s Dark Force Rising takes a good movie and makes it great. It is quick and fast paced, effectively removing or altering much of the unneeded dialogue. My only real complaint–it's a great movie that ends too soon.

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DVD was great quality. Editing was smooth but some of the audio felt unbalanced at times. It could have been my 2.0 setup, sometimes the sound would drop down dramatically and then back up like as if the music was cut from the front channels abruptly but kept in the rear.

This was a pretty excellent Episode 3 edit. Only complaint I have is that the first half felt off narratively, it’s mainly a problem of the source movie though.

Emperor reveal was remarkable. That scene is now canon for me. I have officially forgotten how it happened in the theatrical.

A/V Quality - 9
Editing - 10 visual, 8 audio
Narrative - 9
Enjoyment - 9 (original is 6)

Recommended drink: Irish Coffee

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(Updated: September 11, 2012)
Review by BladeRunner391 — May 29, 2012 @ 7:56 am

*This rating was given before reviews were required*
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(Updated: September 11, 2012)
Review by MHBroly — September 19, 2011 @ 8:43 pm

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(Updated: September 11, 2012)
Review by darthscourge — October 8, 2011 @ 3:52 pm

Just finished it…and, man this was amazing. Everything worked so much better than the original, the deleted scenes insertions are well-timed and make a better story. The Yoda/Palpatine duel is not missed, yet I thought it would be. The agonizing decision that Anakin makes is tense and far more believable, and extremely emotional. It starts out in an upbeat way and ends on the darkest note possible, with just a glimmer of (A New) hope in those twin suns.

The shortened run time is perfect – now it plays more like an extended episode of The Clone Wars, which works so well. IMHO The Clone Wars series’ far outclass all of the original prequels anyway.

An excellent way to prelude Adywan’s ANH:R! Snaps and much respect to Kerr and all the other editors who directly or indirectly contributed. In the three or so years I’ve been a member here, I haven’t watched any of the others, so I cannot make any comparisons. But, man, this effing rocks! 9.5 lightsabers, just want a Hi-def fully-sick 5.1 version now for that extra .5!
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