Star Wars - Silent Edition: Episode VIIFeatured
And thanks to Ripplin for being the first person I talked about making those edit, almost ten years ago!
- NTSC DVD-5
Overview - How do you fix a crappy reboot? Oh, how about making it a Silent? No more annoying voices! Check. How about shredding all the dull stuff? Say half the film. Check. How about Rey Mary Sue? Oh, you can’t. Bummer, dude.
Video - 854 X 480 AVC. Fair amount of added grain, not excessively so. Minimal damage effects, thank you! Other editors go hog-wild adding scratches and debris, never considering how hard restoration crews work to clean up damage for nit-picky buyers. So well done. Tinting is superb, particularly several of the day scenes with what appears to be two color tints. Aspiring editors, take note. Learn.
Audio - 256 kbps 2 Channel AAC. No subs, but inter-titles, yes! Music uses John Williams cues, and always reinforces visual goings on. This is sharp attention to detail. Lessor editors fumble this and permit rousing crescendos inappropriately inform a romance sequence. Only quibble (which I have ignored), the score is missing during the opening thirty seconds. To me, this is an error.
Narrative - As a stand alone, this hurtles at a gallop, yet is incoherent. Unless you are familiar with the full length original – and yes, everyone who views this is – this version is a hectic dash. Characters surface and react at a dizzying pace. Much of this stems from the original script, the writer of which has always shown indifference towards audience’s intelligence. TMBTM did better with his previous Silent Star Wars releases, and this narrative suffers by comparison.
Enjoyment - Somewhat of an improvement over “The Force Awakens.” At least you no longer hear characters talking like hyper excited eight year olds. Actually deriving pleasure, however, no, sorry. It still strikes me as pandering to target demographics, feeble characterizations, and lacking any sort of soul. In short, the Force is weak.
This is also much too long for a serial. Broken into fifteen minute chapters would have been more appropriate.
Very good fan edit. It's improving all the story of TFA by eliminating the Death Star plot. And, surprisingly, it's working. But it has its weak points (who can be resolved). The bound between Han Solo and Ray is not credible because some scenes are missing. You can definately eliminate the awkward hug between Finn and Poe - it is not necessary to the plot and it is to much (it is not credibile even in the movie). And you can do some more dialogues in the war room to give the new plot more credibility - it seems too rushed. Also, the scene from that new Cantina is a little bit confusing. The visual editing is almost perfectly. In the audio side you can work a little bit - some scenes has not the proper music. The narrative seems to work because you don't feel anymore that you watch "A New Hope" all over again.
I have to say, truly impressed by this edit. Even with no actual sound from the actual playing video, everything just... works! I agree with the others, and have to say that TMBTM is seriously an expert editor. The narrative flows well, everything comes together nicely, dialogue cards are used well, does not take you out of the experience at all. What TMBTM has achieved is great, condensing TFA into just 55 minutes is impressive, and key elements, breathing room, emotional moments still have their place with nothing out of place. The music is great, very fitting overall, and also lets you feel the whole score with no other noise while making it fit emotionally, and TMBTM has done this excellently. The colour tint of the B&W scenes show emotion and tone of each scene, and more importantly each moment. The pan&scan 3:4 format, and then the vignette, grain, imperfections and all that good stuff are also done superbly!
I'll echo the others' once again too, I think I'll sit back and take a look at the other 6 edits, because this one was amazing. Stellar job, TMBTM!
This was an absolute joy to watch. At less than hour long, TMBTM manages to still maintain a consistent and clear narrative, capturing all the key plot points.
I dare say I enjoyed this more than the original. A delayed reveal of Kylo Ren as Han and Leia's son, very little Star Killer Base/Death Star fan service...all the bits I didn't like were gone, and a simple, but satisfying story remained, as did character charm.
It was wonderful hearing the soundtrack as a feature. It truly allowed me to appreciate elements of the music that I wouldn't normally notice.
Visually, this was gorgeous as well. The contrast in colour, black & white and sepia was superbly used and created an excellent visual dynamic. Music and colour told more about the emotion of the story and characters than you would necessarily expect (A key example being the death of Han Solo).
Now for the qualms, (the part of the review I hate). These are pure nitpicks compared to the beauty of the overall product:
I noticed a few music transitions, most of which would easily go unnoticed. There was, however, one jarring music cut at around 50:24. There was also one visual cut at around 46:54ish (possibly just before) that I found took me out of the experience slightly.
Overall, though? Wonderful. A genuine pleasure from beginning to end. I'd echo Q2 in saying that this makes me want to go and watch the other silent edits. It also makes an excellent recap of The Force Awakens - just in time for Episode VIII!