Star Wars: Episode III - Labyrinth Of EvilHot
- NTSC DVD-5
Fan Editor’s commentary
Synced ‘Backstroke of the West’ subtitles
Subtitles in English, Spanish, and French
1) Bend the prequels to the story continuity of the original trilogy and the impressions it gives.
2) Improve the prequels in and of themselves, as films, through conventional 'FanFix' methodology. The pacing is improved, dialogue trimmed, and characters are developed better. This is the most readily apparent of these three goals that can be seen in The Phantom Edit, for example. The edits should be viable as films on their own.
3) They ought to be functional as replacements for the original versions. This means leaving the film's thoroughly "prequel" nature unaltered, respecting the broad strokes of Star Wars orthodoxy, and avoiding making changes that would betray to the audience that they're watching a fan edit. In other words, none of the other two listed goals should put undue stress on the goal of producing something that would have been suitable to have been released in 2005.
Trimmed unhelpful dialogue during the opening battle.
Trimmed the buzz droid sequence. This and other trims serve to downplay Obi-Wan's familiarity with R2 somewhat.
Removed Obi-Wan leaping from his cockpit, and his little jump during the fight with the battle droids.
Lovingly borrowed audio from L8wrtr's edit in a few spots to remove battle droid voices.
Dooku is not mentioned until he arrives to confront the Jedi.
The elevator sequence is gone, taking the R2 humor with it. Obi-Wan never refers to R2 by name. It's not much, but it's a small way to gloss over the tension between the continuity of the PT and OT.
A match cut removes bad dialogue before the duel.
Removed sound effects in the rear audio channels that were lifted straight from The Empire Strikes Back.
Cut away as the railing starts to land on Obi-Wan. The original made it look like his legs were crushed.
Anakin quickly decapitates Dooku with no influence from Palpatine. However, he still questions his actions. This makes him appear more mature and autonomous.
Trimmed dialogue and tightened up the action sequence leading up to the bridge fight, including removing R2 slapstick humor.
Corrected two inaccurate lightsaber ignition sounds during the opening sequence. Obi-Wan and Anakin's sabers must match their ANH and ESB sounds.
Removed as much silliness as possible during the fight on the bridge of the Invisible Hand.
Grievous says, "Time to abandon ship" as he breaks the hull and escapes.
Lightly trimmed dialogue during the crash landing on Coruscant.
Trimmed Anakin and Obi-Wan's dialogue recounting past adventures we never get to see.
Removed Jar Jar's one line.
In this version, we see Anakin's political motivations for turning to the dark side and tensions with Padme before he develops concerns about her impending doom. He is only shown to have one nightmare about her, and the order of scenes implies it was planted by Palpatine.
Anakin never tells Padme about his nightmare, another conflict within him.
Replaced scene with Windu hearing that Obi-Wan has engaged Grievous with deleted scene "A Plot to Destroy the Jedi."
Dialogue trimmed in most scenes, especially during Anakin's appointment to the Jedi Council.
Reinstated the deleted scene in Bail Organa's apartment in order to give Padme something worthwhile to do in the film and contribute to a sense of tension between her and Anakin.
Trimmed a brief reference to the Jedi Code.
Moved Grievous' arrival on Utupau to after Anakin and Padme's tense political discussion.
Placed Anakin's sole nightmare after this, with the opera scene right afterward.
During the opera scene, removed reference to midichlorians and creating life. Also removed Palpatine calling Anakin out on spying on him. It is more effective to let Anakin carry that tension inwardly only, and provide no relief.
Reinstated the sunset meeting between the loyalists and Palpatine, further elaborating on the tension between Anakin and Padme.
Anakin is depicted as being in his right mind up until he formally joins the dark side. The scene where he seems to have paranoia about Obi-Wan being as Padme's apartment is gone. I guess we can interpret his crazed psyche at the end of the film as being caused by using the dark side. Your guess is as good as mine, but it's better than having his personality fluctuate throughout the film.
Along with other dialogue trims, removed Obi-Wan telling the corduroy man to summon warriors.
Removed Boga's noisy introduction, and lessened her vocal presence throughout.
Removed the first half of Grievous' line, "It is a volcanic planet. You will be safe there." Volcanic equals safe?
Trimmed Grievous' lunge that Obi-Wan does not react to. It betrays the chasm between the CGI and live elements.
Grievous retreats as soon as the clone troops arrive, in keeping with what little characterization about him we have seen so far, rather than gloating a bit and then running away.
Removed the now redundant scene in the war room talking about a plot to destroy the Jedi.
Trimmed dialogue as Palpatine reveals his true nature to Anakin in order to slightly downplay Padme as Anakin's only real motive for joining the dark side.
Removed Palpatine's voiceover as Anakin waits in the Council room, talking about Padme again.
Trimmed dialogue as Windu and his gang confront Palpatine. It reads, "Are you threatening me, Master Jedi?" "Not yet."
Trimmed the lightsaber fight, including Palpatine's bizarre serpentine jump.
As Anakin enters the scene, Windu is already going to kill Palpatine, who defends himself with force lightning and sends Windu falling to his death. I made use of an idea from Kerr's fan edit that L8wrtr also used to imply that the wrinkly face was Palpatine's true appearance all along. Palpatine uses lightning only once instead of twice. He's human-looking at the start, then the lights go out, and he has a monster face when they come back on. Trust me, it's better than it sounds.
Anakin and Palpatine don't mention Padme during the knighting of Vader scene. Other dialogue is trimmed a little for effectiveness. The idea is that saving Padme's life is the spark that ignites a myriad of other factors for Anakin's turn toward evil.
After Yoda's brief and only use of his lightsaber in the whole trilogy, removed the scene where Anakin ignites his saber on a roomful of children. By cutting this, Anakin's slip toward depravity can be seen as a little more gradual. Plus my version of the trilogy does away with the idea that Jedi are harvested as infants and raised in a cult environment. The term "youngling" doesn't appear in these edits.
Removed Yoda's interactions with the Wookiees after Order 66. Chewbacca remains in the background, hopefully unnoticed.
Removed R2 popping out of Anakin's fighter.
Removed Obi-Wan and Yoda's fight to enter the Temple. The line of dialogue about everyone being preoccupied about the Senate session is good enough.
Because I removed the duel between Yoda and Palpatine, I also removed discussion about said duel after Obi-Wan sees the security hologram. Also removed Yoda's line that sees Anakin and Vader as separate people; it sounds like something he would have said in Return of the Jedi, rather than immediately after Anakin turned.
Padme is never informed about Anakin killing children, for the same reason as in my edit of Episode II. It is out of character for her to take it with anything other that indignation. Trimmed other dialogue during this scene for effectiveness.
Removed Obi-Wan sneaking into the bathroom on Padme's ship. If you missed him during the wide shot, it'll be a surprise when he shows up later.
Removed most asinine dialogue as Padme arrives and confronts Anakin, including "I saw your ship." No reference to younglings. Tension ratchets between the two as Anakin finds out Padme told Obi-Wan about their relationship. No discussion about Anakin trying to save Padme; she never knew about Anakin's fears about that. Anakin doesn't seem focused on it himself anymore.
The duel on Mustafar plays out in full without cutting away to other plot threads. There is no duel between Yoda and Sidious. Not that the EU has bearing on my decisions, but I rather like Timothy Zahn's description in Spectre Of The Past: "If Luke's own current level of knowledge was any indication, Yoda could surely have defeated the Emperor all by himself. Yet he'd chosen instead to leave that task to Luke and the Rebel Alliance."
Removed dialogue about the ‘high ground’ at the end of the duel.
Removed Obi-Wan referencing the chosen one prophecy during Anakin's immolation. It's more effective when it's personal rather than philosophical.
The ending of the film was great fun to work on. You'll hear my own voice replacing that of the medical droid. His prognosis is not that she's dying, but rather that she will survive without ever fully recovering.
Replaced Vader’s scream with the Russian dub, arguably making it a little less cheesy.
Courtesy of Hundsdorfex, replaced shot of Taintive IV descending toward Naboo with the ship streaking through space.
Trimmed dialogue aboard the Taintive IV to accommodate the idea that Padmé survives to travel to Alderaan with Leia.
Replaced Padme's funeral with the deleted scene of Yoda arriving on Dagobah.
Padme is seen cradling an infant Leia on Alderaan, using footage from The Other Boleyn Girl, with her eye color corrected by Hundsdorfex. (Idea by 'The Cutter,' also used in Q2's edit.)
Added credits for myself, workprint viewers, contributors, and acknowledgements of all other ROTS "FanFix" fan edits to date.
All right. This is very different from Hal's TPM and AotC edits, because instead of just trimming the fat, he also changes the plot quite heavily. And that's why I'm not much of a fan of this one.
The fundamental change to the plot is that in Hal's version, Anakin's main motivation to turn to the dark side is political, while love for his wife is secondary. If you think this would improve the movie, then you'll love this version, as V5 is an impressive technical accomplishment in fanediting. If you're like me, however, and think that this fundamental change weakens the plot, then this is probably not the version you're looking for.
Interesting to notice that the way this edit's structured is how Lucas first structured the movie, but feedback from people he previewed the picture to made him change his mind and make Anakin's love for Padmé the primary thing to turn him to the dark side.
Regarding the new ending: it fixes a gigantic plot hole - that Leia remembers her mother - by having Padmé survive! Technically seamless, it strengthens the six movie saga, but weakens the prequel trilogy as a trilogy in a way: it takes away the tragic irony of Vader doing everything he can to save his wife only for him to be the one to kill her, in the awesomely edited ending of the original film.
Besides the fundamental creative difference I have with the editor in regards to the plot, this is another very good edit by Hal taking away most of the stupidity and cheesiness and crafting a much more enjoyable experience in that regard from the original film. Palpatine's incredibly cheesy moments during his fight with Windu/when Anakin turns are highlights. Still, I think he takes away a tad too much from this one.
Alright. This is great! Lots of things I didn't like in the original are fixed. It's still a little cringy in some parts (especially Anakin's turn to the dark side). But I can't blame you, it's a problem of the source material. You obviously did your best to make it better. I really like how Anakin's turn is motivated more by politics and the Jedi order than Padmé. And the final scene with Padmé holding baby Leia? Are you kidding me? That's genious! You managed to fix one of the biggest plot holes in Star Wars. But because of that, Luke's separation doesn't make so much sense anymore. I believe it's to protect Leia as Anakin thinks he had only one child. But it would be great to point it out somehow (maybe cut the conversation between Yoda, Bail and Obi-Wan). But still, this is the best version of the episode III.
HAL9000 gives us a perfect conclusion to the trilogy. After his excellent Parts I and II, this Part III edit elevates the entire trilogy to a higher level through the Boleyn inclusion.
Does this make the Prequels a great story? Nope. Does this make a *better* story? Yes! HAL9000's Prequel trilogy is the only one you need.
Well, it's been a long search for the perfect edit for ROTS. I'm now with Hal9000's indefinitely. There is so much that is so right here that I forgive the moments I'd take out, myself.....ROTS is a tough one to edit and please everyone, and some of the other attempts I've seen at editing this film try way too hard, others not hardly at all. This one finds a comfortable ground with familiar edits while at the same time delivering one of THE whopping masterstrokes of fanediting that I've ever seen.
Incidentally, I like pairing this film with L8wrtr's TPM and AOTC edits. That's my current "go-to" trilogy unless some mindbending new edit comes out.
***Of course, the economy of the edit takes out the corn and the silliness, and what's not to like there? There are a LOT of small cuts, but they all work and if you're not familiar with ROTS you'll not know they're gone. My personal favorite? The eternal dismissal of Obi-Wan's "...for DEMOCRACY!!!!!!" I remember laughing out loud in the theater when he said that.
***The 2nd-boldest move of the movie is the face-off between Windu and Palpatine. That's another scene with some got-to-go GL silliness ("HE'S the traitor, arrrrgghhh!") I get EXACTLY what Hal was going for here, and it does indeed work. It does sound odd, but I like the guts Hal had to try and realize the vision. That scene had far too much filler, dialogue, and needless suspense for my taste in its original form. Now we get right down to it.
***The focus on politics being Anakin's primary motivation for the turn works very, very well. I thought the Padme thing was always way too obvious and predictable, but with politics at the forefront his change becomes far more realistic and believable. Certainly politics has put people on weird sides of one another, especially during wartime. Padme's element is delightfully downplayed, to the point that when Palpatine says that line ("...save your WIFE from certain death") it has a huge impact, because we're so focused on the politics it makes Anakin's one dream seem trite, but then suddenly very important. Especially when Palpatine reads Anakin's trouble a little too accurately. Later on, when Anakin leaves Padme in the dust after the chokehold and rambles on to Obi-Wan about this and that, it fits right in with the Padme motivation being minimal against the power he craves. When Vader asks the Emperor post-surgery about Padme, it fits even better with the minimized arc - in other words, he feels guilty as hell.
***Padme as one of the instigators of the rebellion? Giddy-up! Why Lucas chose to delete this subplot is mystifying, but makes sense here in light with the above political motivations.
The hmmmmm.....(all minor nitpicks)
***OK, there are some lines that could still be easily excised. One of the most self-rightesouly laughable moments in the entire PT is Padme's "thunderous applause" bit. Spare us, please!
***Also, not the fault of our intrepid editor, but shouldn't 3PO's line be "I feel so.....USELESS?" Not "helpless"? Anyways, Hal, since you boldly dubbed the droid at the end, how about that line? I bet Anthony Daniels would do it for scale ;) That said, I love the battle droid voice removal. Now we have to tackle the entirety of the Clone Wars...
***I think it's OK to have more Wookies, and Yoda's interaction w/ Chewbacca definitely helps set the table for ANH and Obi-Wan "randomly" finding Chewbacca at the bar.
***Showing Obi-Wan sneaking onto Padme's ship in the closer shot works as in the original cut....there's no need for a surprise reveal.
***I wouldn't mind a little more dialogue to imply Obi-Wan's fate on Tatooine. While this would be tricky to edit around Padme's now non-demise, I liked that interaction.
and....the balls-out bold:
***That footage of Padme alive and cradling her infant daughter is amazing and I was bowled over at the audacity of the decision. It works even without the motivation being the plot hole fix from ROTJ. I like how so much is implied and the myth driven by images, not dialogue, in the film's final moments. Hal using his own voice for the mid-wife droid - again, bold and a hopeful sign of things to come with our wonderful editors and their tasteful decision-making. That finale, again, with Padme, is beautiful stuff. And...isn't it telling how Natalie Portman suddenly becomes a great actress when out fo the hands of GL?
Lots to admire overall in the cut. Lots of attempts have been made at ROTS, but I'm very pleased to have this one as my go-to. Again, quibbles are nitpicks, as the overall arc of the film is extremely powerful (especially when viewed after the Clone Wars).
As I continue my search for the prefect prequel edits, I was happy to come across this excellent effort by Hal 9000.
Hal cuts down a great deal of the movie, which is very welcome. In my experience, I've never seen an edit that I thought cut too much. His reshuffling of scenes and his use of a deleted scene is quite effective.
Although I wouldn't make this choice myself, I love Hal's gutsy use of a scene from a different Natalie Portman movie to imply that Padme lived and raised Leia. I understand that his goal was to make the lines in RotJ make sense, about Leia remembering her mother but Luke not remembering her. Unfortunately, there's no explanation as to why Padme would raise Leia but abandon Luke. Mind you, no explanation is possible with the available footage. The script would have to be rewritten from scratch to accommodate this, so what could any editor do? So, again, even though I wouldn't do it myself, I'm glad that such an edit exists, both for the uniqueness of it and for those who choose it as the way to fix the PT's inconsistencies with the OT.
The video and sound quality are excellent, and the editing is seamless. I can see why this edit ranks so highly among Star Wars edits. It's definitely one of the best of the bunch!