I found the bookends - opening and closing - truly inspired.
Scenes of walkers superimposed against WWII stock, that took my breath away.
Creative idea of what an Empire invasion would resemble.
The ending with the Death Star was brilliant, as well.
Where I had problems were the additions of Bridge Kwai, Force Navarone, and especially Rasputin.
None of those worked for me. Different tones, different looks. Like mashing country and rap.
Took me right out of the narrative and I found myself impatient for them to end.
Also the black out segues between scenes grew noticeable after a bit.
And three hours?
Matrixgrindhouse gave this a nice review, which was what lured me.
I can see what T-Bone was aiming for, and to be honest, he did a great job.
I can also see where other viewers will enjoy this and give it raves.
By all means, check this one out.
Primarily sourced from Blu-Rays and high quality DVD releases, this 720p release looks great. Some high resolution but unrestored deleted scenes are also included. Some less-than pristine footage from DVD and archival sources is used as well. However, the editor has incorporated them in a very natural manner, adjusting the adjacent high-quality footage to ease the transition to and from such footage. It is obvious what’s sourced from what, but it is never (unintentionally) jarring. Some slow motion sequences use artificial frame interpolation to create the illusion of high speed photography. Whether this is visually unappealing is subjective. I wasn’t bothered by it. The stereo soundtrack is mixed well. One early sequence may seem to be problematic at first listen, but it’s actually a rather clever intentional alteration for artistic purposes. I won’t spoil the reason for and meaning of it, however. It’s much more fun to think about it, let it click for yourself.
Good skills on display here. Besides successfully combining a variety of sources, the editor has combined and altered many film sequences in a variety of ways. It’s always convincing, and handled more than competently. There’s one particular moment that was so seamless that I didn’t realize how significantly it was altered until after the revised scene had played out. My brain just accepted it as a natural sequence of events, when it most certainly wasn’t in the original film. Also, there’s at least one chilling subliminal message I caught in there. There may be more.
Very good work here. Smooth crossfades when needed. Almost flawless dialogue replacement in a few spots. No obvious music bleed, if any. A few instances of well-executed music replacement.
This is where the project really shines! This is a radically different story. “A long time ago, in the not too distant future” – indeed! The galaxy is a very different place than the one we’re used to. Technological gaps vary from planet to planet. There are some nice lore references in the location names. If you know what Korriban is, you’ll get just a bit more out of this. If you don’t, you won’t be missing out, either. The primary motivation for the conflict appears to remain religious, but no longer between the Jedi and Sith. It would seem that at some point Earth got tangled up with the Galactic Civil War. And that point happens to be the mid 20th century. Rasputin’s influence is present. There’s a sentence I never thought I’d type when talking about Star Wars! Furthermore, it would seem that the Axis Powers are Imperial puppets in this world, with the Allies siding with the Rebels. Also, I’m pretty sure Obi-Wan is a Communist in this version, disillusioned with the Alderaan monarchy. It isn’t entirely clear – in a good way. Much like George Lucas, T-Bone has crafted a large story in an even larger universe. There’s a much bigger story that we’re only getting glimpses of. However, the glimpses make sense. In terms of plot, thematic elements, and imagery everything has meaning and joins with the Star Wars elements in a way that that shouldn’t work, but does. Eventually. Clocking in at just under three hours, this is a slow paced project. Slowly paced – but not poorly. Everything serves a purpose, and pays off in some way. However, it doesn’t become recognizable as version of A New Hope until about the ninety minute mark. You’ll need patience for this one, but it is most certainly worth it.
The setting has changed. The plot has changed. The sequence of events has changed. The characters have changed quite a bit, both in terms of backstory and personality. Star Wars is a sci-fi/fantasy adventure influenced by pop culture of the mid-20th century. Star Wars: The Epic Picture is a war movie, influenced by the tragic history of the mid-20th century. It isn’t deathly serious, of course. It carefully balances just the right elements of humor and levity with the heavy stuff.
It really feels like watching something new, for the first time. That’s what this is all about. Strongly recommended.
There were some neat special fx seeing the incomplete Death Star in the sky at one point, and I liked some things toward the end, particularly the shots of Harrison Ford and Alec Guinness looking sad.
I am eager to read other reviews.
Thanks for the review!
So.....where to begin.....
Are you right in the head? I need to ask. Enjoyment is subjective, so I am not about to tell you right from wrong here. But when you seem to have based your opinion on some really random points that have no bearing on reality, then I really feel the need to say something in support of myself. I can quite happily accept that not everyone will like this. That is fine. I am a big boy. I can handle it. What I can NOT handle are untruths and a poor review written by someone who has clearly not properly watched this edit, if they watched it at all.
So, where do we start then? (this should be fun)
Firstly, if you didn't want to watch a 3 hour film, then why the hell did you download and watch a 3 hour film?
Secondly, did you actually watch it? It seems more like you have read the outline and made up a fantasy edit in your head. Like, maybe you read about it and thought the idea wasn't sound, contemplated it, let it fester and bubble until you couldn't stand it any more and then came here to unleash some random "review". Maybe your bad feelings are based in your own inadequacies. I'm not really sure. But your rundown of the edit seems to be based on some kind of strange idea that you hatched in your head and not of what was actually produced, accepted, enjoyed and uploaded. Maybe you DID actually "watch" it, but I think you were FAR from actually paying any attention. Were you doing other things while it was playing? Like, maybe you were chatting with the voices in your head. Or maybe some girl you fancied didn't accept your gift of homemade knob cheese and you needed to vent. Who knows? For starters, no, it is NOT simply random films just stapled together. This is the first sign that you have not actually watched it. There are constant threads woven throughout the film linking everything. Yeah, it can be complicated sometimes, and maybe thinking isn't your thing. I don't know! Did you expect to just see a Star Wars film? Well sorry, but that isn't the point of a FanMix. There was no "bridge being built on some random planet". The bridge is referring to the bridge of a vessel, in this case, the Death Star. You need to let go of your preconceived ideas of the meaning of "bridge" and its context in the original film. I know it can be hard to separate what is already cemented in your head and maybe open your mind a little, but you should give it a go. You'll learn all sorts of new things. The Death Star bridge that these prisoners were building was CLEARLY explained at several points. It couldn't be any clearer. I'd love to try and ease any other misgivings might you have about how things "weren't connected", but you didn't really get into much detail. So: bridge, clearly explained. It isn't my fault if you are too thick to understand it.
And the films ARE all connected, narrative wise. The whole point of a FanMIX edit is to create something totally new with the familiar. You need to open your mind, let go of what you know about the original works. This edit is SUPPOSED to be a little different. It is SUPPOSED to make the viewer think a little bit, ponder it, not just stare through the screen, pausing randomly to point their finger at the cat and make laser "pew! pew!" sounds and then sop up the drool. If there is anything else that needs explaining, I'd be more than happy to talk with you about it, because trust me; I spent a long time fine tuning this edit to make sure that things DID match up and DID flow. I know this edit in tiny detail. I am VERY confident that I can explain any and all aspects of this edit and how one thing fits in with another and how it all comes together at the end. Maybe some things flew right over your head. Give it another watch. Maybe....just maybe.....you'll start to understand it.
Thirdly, thank you for your helpful comment about maybe using different music throughout to link things a little. That's a great idea. Ooh, that's right! I actually DID THAT! I even went to the incredible effort of changing sound effects, adding subtitles and changing lines, giving characters new names and backgrounds that THREAD EVERYTHING TOGETHER. Seriously, there are literally hundreds of tiny cuts, additions and changes throughout. I am surprised that you seemed to miss them all. I mean, yeah, you'd probably miss some due to the high volume, but ALL of them?? Wow. That's really something.
Look, sorry to come off bitter here.....no, wait...no, actually, I'm not.
Again, enjoyment is completely subjective and I appreciate you rating highly on the editing score. But your complaints are not based on what was produced. Example: if you had have said something like, "Yes, I can see what is going on here but I just didn't enjoy it", that would make sense! This kind of edit really isn't for everyone, and that is fine! I don't WANT to make edits that are for everyone! That is why IFDb has these write ups. You can spend time reading up on things and figure out what might interest you. Look at sources used and other reviews and RUNNING TIMES. That way you won't waste your time on something that you will clearly hate, like this edit.
Look, I understand that it's probably not your fault. It's the same reason that Justin Bieber will sell more records than Damon Albarn, or that more people will watch American Idol than they will Les Revenants. Not everything can appeal to the lowest common denominator. That's fine. I get that. But PLEASE, I beg you, do the next fan editor a favor and actually watch the film before you stab at the keyboard randomly with your stumpy fingers (yeah, broad assumption there, but I'm fine with it). Feel free to rate enjoyment as low. That is seriously FINE. I don't care what your OPINION is. But what I DO care about is someone trashing something that they do not understand. I DO care when someone is giving a really false representation of what this edit is about and what it contains. I CANNOT STAND an untruth. And based on what you have written and formed your opinion on, it is clear that my film was either not watched or not really had any attention paid to it.
So thank you for the review. I really appreciate it. I am fine to leave it here, along with this response. I don't want you to change it. No, no...PLEASE leave it here for all to see. It is a great example of what a poorly thought out review looks like. Others can read it and learn from your mistakes and know how to maybe form a sentence and articulate exactly how they feel about a fan edit properly, instead of just spewing out whatever fantasy world bull shit popped into their head.
I have saved your review to my computer. I can look at it when I am feeling down or uninspired. I can read it, breath it in, let my frustrations float away with the wind and know that if a halfwit like you didn't like my work, then I must be doing everything right.
Oh, and you'll be pleased to know that I am already in the very early stages of the sequel! It's going to be great! Please stay away.
T-Bone x x x x
Now on to the things I really liked **Spoilers**
The storyline of Count Dooku being Darth Vader was clever and well thought out. What I really enjoyed the most, however was the ending. Ingenious, the way you turned the end of episode IV on its head and made the bad guys win. The ending footage of Han Solo and Kenobi was perfect and conveyed the mood precisely.
I can see that the editor put a tremendous amount of work into this edit and should be rightfully proud of this edit.