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urluckyday 06-22-2006 10:13 PM

What's Wrong With The Special?
I've always wondered something. What is so wrong with the Special and DVD versions of Star Wars? I mean it is pretty cool to get a nostalgic feel when watching the "original" Star Wars episodes, but I think that the DVD versions are just as great as the "originals". I don't know about you, but I love them either way!

RellikRats 06-22-2006 10:26 PM

Hear, hear. Fanboys who get their panties all in a wad over George's "greedy sacrilege" or whatever-the-heck need to just relax a little bit and enjoy the ride.

However, you do have to credit them for the release of the originals this coming fall, although some of them are even griping about that because it's not being done in exactly the very specific and totally the only possible freakin' way they wanted.

Whatever. There's no pleasing some people.

Darth Andrew 06-23-2006 12:16 AM

The versions I have are between '77 and the Special Editions, so I've grown up with those. Since some of the DVD changes sound odd (Han not shooting first, weird saber colors), I guess I would say the orignals.

boinga1 06-23-2006 09:27 AM

A few things, like Han shooting first, are cooler in the originals. Also, they totally f***ed up the sabers in the DVD versions. We see Vader with a pink saber at various points, and even though these new blades are supposed to be more liek the prequel sabers, they are frequently assymmetric (the blade doesn't line up w/ the glow). Last, of course, is the inclusion of Hayden Christianson at the end of ROTJ, a decision which does not make sense in terms of the story. Furthermore, Hayden doesn't deserve to be in one of the better movies. ;) I believe these are the primary gripes, and they are perhaps the only things I would like changed about the DVD version.

RellikRats 06-23-2006 11:50 AM

Heh, and I was so disappointed in the way Sebastian Shaw looked that I would have accepted almost anyone George decided to put in his place in the SE...

Buddy Hackett
Jonathan Winters
Arnold Schwarzenegger
The Elephant Man

Anyone. Hayden worked just fine for me, although they could've made him look a bit older, IMO.

MachineCult 06-23-2006 03:20 PM

I agree, RellikRats. I have yet to hear a good reason that Shaw is better than Hayden.

PoiuyWired 06-23-2006 04:12 PM

Well, I like the original more definitely. That having said, I do enjoy the enhanced graphics(like the touched up rancor) and outside footage on the planets, as well as some of the recoloring.

I do not enjoy the "altering" stuff, like the crawling Jabba and new dancers, and I don't even want to mention Greedo...

Steve-O Kreesh 06-23-2006 06:32 PM

I grew up with the original '77 versions. But I also like the updated "Special" editions. George could put out 5 versions of these films and I would still buy them...oh wait, he has put out 5 versions already! :D

urluckyday 06-23-2006 09:18 PM

Hayden is perfectly fine at the end. I mean either Shaw or Hayden is fine...they both work...Hayden was the embodiment of good Vader, but so was Shaw at the very really doesn't matter too much...

woogiee 06-24-2006 12:12 AM

im not exactly easy to entertain :r2d2: ooo look a blue droid (10 points if you catch the reference) but I like both versions. though Im not sure I want to spend $30 for 2 versions of 1 of the OT movies, 1 of which i just bought last year

Lantzen 06-24-2006 12:04 PM

Have not seen the new versions, so my vore go to the old ones

urluckyday 06-24-2006 10:16 PM

See the new ones too...good stuff...

The Source 06-25-2006 03:24 PM

To be honest. I think George is getting too money hungry. I am not a fan of all the edits to the Special Eddition, but I do like how he fixed them up. Sweet! :)

I didn't like Shaw being replaced by Hayden, and I found no logical reasoning for it. I am not a big fan of Haydens, and I am not going to be one any time soon.

I also didn't like Greedo shooting first, nor did I like the 'Little Shop of Horrors' head in the Sarlac.

Everything else was pretty cool.

My only problem with this mess is that George is releasing another set of his movies. If I knew he was going to re-release the 1977 version, I would have not bought the Special Edittion.

It was a known factor that George added the Ewoks to Return of the Jedi, so he can sell merchandise to kids. I think he still carries the same mantality today.

MachineCult 06-25-2006 03:42 PM

Hayden being there makes about as much sense as Shaw, Shaw ain't Vader, thus he isn't Anakin, Hayden is Anakin, and he was Vader.

The Source 06-25-2006 04:52 PM

Nostelgic reasons. Remember, I did not say there was anything wrong with the films. I did say I prefer preserving certain nostelgic elements of Episode IV,V, and VI

Lets see who played Darth Vader:

Episode III:
Hayden Christensen (For five seconds)

Episode IV, V, and VI:
David Prowse (For 3 Movies. Except for Stunts.)
James Earl Jones (Played Darth Vader. The Voice. 4 Movies.)
Bob Anderson (Vaderís fighting for 3 movies.)

Episode VI:
Shaw (For 5 seconds.)

Lets see who played Anakin Skywalker:

Episode I:
Jake Lloyd (For one movie)

Episode II & III:
Hayden Christensen (For 2 whole movies)

Episode VI:
Shaw (For 5 seconds.)

From where I stand, I don't see why Shaw was replaced by Hayden. The character didn't have one solid actor the whole time. Maybe it should have been James Earl Jones. I just don't see any logic in changing the force ghost to Hayden.

We could go back to Episode I-III, and change the actors heads to a digital younger David Prowse. Remember, Shaw also wore the Vader outfit.

Prime 06-27-2006 03:29 PM

I don't have a favorite really. I like them all for different reasons.

urluckyday 06-29-2006 12:39 AM

He doesnt want to forget about it...he wants to make it better...

Commander Obi-Wan 06-29-2006 01:07 AM

I'd say the special editions since I haven't seen the unaltered versions.

urluckyday 06-29-2006 01:24 AM

Where have you been?

Commander Obi-Wan 06-29-2006 01:37 AM


Originally Posted by legowar
Where have you been?

Home. School. Where else?

I'm 15 btw.

The Source 06-29-2006 09:35 AM

What if George decided in about twenty years to change Hayden's face in Episode II and III to a digitally younger David Prowse (The Original Darth Vader)? Would you be upset?

Think about it this way: Several of us have been bourght up with the original cut of Star Wars for 30 years. One day, George decided to make tweaks to his films. After making several cool tweaks, he also managed to make some argumental tweaks. The movie that I grew up with no longer exists. The movie that I fell to admire for its place in film history has been overhauled in a way that is indifferent. If the Star Wars saga was built from Episode I - VI, from the very beginning, I would probally not like the franchise. Episode I-III don't sit well with me. When it comes to George making changes to Episode IV-VI, this ultimately changes the story I grew up with.

From my perspective: Luke Skywalker & Han Solo are at the center of Star Wars.

To everyone who did not see the original 1977 cut, they see Anikan Skywalker at the center of Star Wars.

Boba Fett is a prime example of another change, which I honestly didn't want to see happen. I felt that seeing Boba Fett as a child ruined my perspective of him. I rather think he is ruthless, but now I see him as a cheap kid in a bounty hunters suit looking for revenge.

Mediclorians (sp?) are another example of horrible changes to the story. I grew up with the force being an energy filed, which a human can summons and control. Now, that idea was crushed by the medaclorians. Grrr....

Princes Leia's story is intresting. She was the only one who remembered what her mothers face looked like. Episode III messed that logic up. A five minute old baby will not remember the events that occur at the time. I personally thought Leia was brought up for a few years or so by her mother, and Luke was seperated from them to protect them fromVader. Combined, they act like a force beacon, which Vader could find and locate. Seperately, the force would bee too weak for Vader to notice.

Commander Obi-Wan 06-29-2006 02:15 PM


Originally Posted by Chase Windu
Well you better get yourself copies of the original cuts and see what awesome really means.

I intend to when they are released on DVD.

MachineCult 06-29-2006 03:07 PM


Originally Posted by Commander Obi-Wan
I indeed to when tey are released on DVD.

You'll hate the end of ROTJ.

urluckyday 06-30-2006 11:43 PM


Originally Posted by MachineCult
You'll hate the end of ROTJ.

Why's that? I think it's amazing in both versions!

MachineCult 07-01-2006 05:56 AM

He's younger than me FFS, he'll think it's childish and inappropriate and he'll be glad that it was changed, and then he will try to forget about it.

RellikRats 07-01-2006 12:37 PM

Ah, speaking of RotJ, I hadn't seen it in a long while. One of the joys of having smaller kids is getting to experience some of these things vicariously for the first time again, if you know what I mean :wavey:

My 5 year-old insisted on watching it last night, so we popped in the SE (all I have until September.) I didn't realize how much I really liked this movie. I got goosebumps all over again, as if I was 15-going-on-16 again and sitting in the darkened theater.

I did find that some of the SE changes were almost seamless, but a few were, IMO, clunky. I didn't mind the enhanced saber blades so much, but the sand-creature-gullet-thingie (can't remember the name offhand) wasn't so cool. I liked it when it was just this dark hole with a few tentacles and you went down-down-down if it got you :clap2:

I found I didn't mind the ewoks :wok1: as much as I remembered, although I still wish for something a little darker and on a larger scale than a little forest moon thing.

What was most interesting to me was how having seen Revenge of the Sith colored my viewing of Jedi. Colored, I should say Enhanced, with a capital "E". Knowing the story made such a difference, and I found myself much more deeply involved. In fact, it made Vader and Luke's interaction a little more subtle, almost as if it really had been made "after" Sith. Even though I've seen Jedi at least 50 or 60 times over the years, I found myself quite moved during Yoda's and Vader's death scenes, such as I hadn't in a long time.

And, quite honestly, it made absolute perfect sense to me to see Hayden as Anakin's Force ghost at the end. Even that moment, as a confirmation to Luke of his father's final redemption, was a moving moment for me.

Anyway, I had such a great viewing experience that I just had to share it...

PoiuyWired 07-01-2006 01:15 PM

Well to be fair the new saber blades are not too bad.

Things I really don't like:

4) Weird Band additions (cause there are too many good stories about the original Band), even more weird weird "Chicken mouth of Carkoon"

3) Vader's Head Change, it really is not necessary.

2) Crawling Jabba and hutt stomping Han. Its just stupid.

1) Greedo, nuff said. &^$%&*$&**&$

MachineCult 07-01-2006 01:54 PM

Vaders head change?

Kurgan 07-03-2006 02:51 PM

Well there are a few smaller problems here and there, that one can argue about:

The DVD Editions: the lightsaber effects are inconsistent. Sabers change color seemingly at random, look solid in some shots, more transparent in others. Some shots are obviously too bright (garbage matte boxes around TIEs in ANH space battles, others too dark (saber clash in ROTJ). Bad color timing/balancing (Leia's caked on makeup, blue shirted Rebel troopers, wrong saber colors, "white" death star 1 explosion with blue artifacting, orange skinned characters on Tatooine, "too blue" R2 in ANH, "too green" Yoda, etc.)

Pasting Anakin's head over Shaw in ROTJ just seems like a blatant attempt to force us to think of the Prequels, rather than show us Anakin's redemption. Lucas' explanation of a person looking how they did before they "turned to the Darkside for the last time" just seems goofy and forced (no pun intended). Erasing his eyebrows seems similarly pointless (okay so they burned off, but not the rest of his face?), makes the bald cap more prominent (destroying some of the realism of the makeup) and takes away some of the actor's expressiveness (the eyebrows do a lot in that scene).

Poorly delivered lines by Ian McDiarmond as Palpy in ESB, and needlessly modified dialouge. Original scene was far more effective.

Needless overdubbing of Boba Fett's lines. Now he just sounds like some guy you'd have a BBQ with and some seafood, not a scarred and nasty Bounty Hunter. The character was so shallow, at least giving him a gravely voice made him seem a bit tough.

Bad sound problems on the English/Spanish track for ANH (awesome music drowned out by engines during the Death Star Trench run, Tarkin/Leia's lines not equalized leaving "tape hiss" especially for Leia, channels swapped for no reason).

Now the SE's:

Greedo shooting first, or shooting at the same time, etc. Pointless and stupid. I don't care about the whole "character arc" or "roguish nature" arguments. Anybody would have been justified plugging Greedo under the table after he clearly threatened Han's life AND had a gun pointed at him. In a court of law he'd have gotten off with "self defense." No need to let Greedo, a supposed bounty hunter, take the first shot and MISS from such a stupidly close angle (what, was Lucas trying to make us think of 'Pulp Fiction' here?), and then have the blaster bolt do no damage (it BOUNCED OFF THE WALL, where did it go? In the next version you'll hear and "eiiii!" off an unseen bar patron who got hit by the bullet and died.. comedy!). I guess the "sizzling flesh" sound effect added was kinda neat, but the whole change to the scene was unnecessary. Nobody would fault Han (rogue or not) for shooting first when his life was in danger. And it just makes Greedo look like even more of an idiot. The turning of any credible threat to the Heroes into comical bumbling objects of slapstick comedy just serves to destroy any drama or suspense... reminds me of the prequels and their "battle droids."

[Everybody whines about that scene, but those are the real legit reasons to have a problem with the change, not some nebulous "it detracts from Han's roguish nature" argument. Watch it you just have to stop for a second and go "What the heck just happened?"]

Needless insertion of Fett flirting with new dancing girls. Silly.

Overly cartoony "backup artists and that singing Yazum" added to the Rebo band sequence. Yes the Yazum was a character created just for ROTJ back in '83, but still, it was good they left it out, since it looked more at home on some Ewok show for kids. Jabba's palace has enough slapstick already without characters like these.

Jabba scene: poorly done, repeats almost verbatim of Greedo scene. More slapstick... don't stomp on the crime lord's tale! Jabba is just too nice, and Boba Fett mugs for the fanboys in the audience (ugh). DVD edition improved graphics, but Jabba still looks different than ROTJ and too lovable.

The SE & DVD editions (like the THX enhanced set) use the alternate (not as good) sound takes on two lines (ESB: "You were lucky to get out of there." instead of "You're lucky you don't taste very good!" / ROTJ: "Don't worry I can see a lot better" instead of "Don't worry, trust me." - Some people didn't like the "Close the Blast Doors!" because it made the Stormtroopers seem even more inept, sort of like the added head bonk sound effect in the DVD, though the new footage of the room full of troopers at the end of the hall makes the original scene seem less comically inept with regards to the troopers).

The "comic slapstick" moments added to Mos Eisley in ANH are annoying and silly (plus look very out of place in spots), with the Ronto's tossing Jawas and the worker droid punching an annoying beeping camera droid. The "serious and forboding" scene is turned into yet another joke for the kids.

Changing Lapti Nek to "Jedi Rocks." LN was cheesy, but Jedi Rocks is even worse, and the title sucks!

Changing the Ewok song at the end of ROTJ makes a more fitting end to the saga, but sort of ruins the mood a bit for the Ewok victory (dancing and helmet xylophone timing is thrown off), which I guess is fine by some people. Brief shots added to the scene give us more Ewoks, oh well I guess. It was kind of a silly scene to begin with, now it becomes more somber and serious. But previously it was meant to be a contrast between Luke's sadness over Vader and everybody else partying down because they're alive and the Empire is decapitated.

Shots of the planets being liberated are kinda okay, they look a little too modern and pasted in, though if you've just seen the prequels they fit better. "Wesa Free!!!!" arggh, I didn't need to hear that. Feels like Lucas just wanted to rub the Gungans in our faces one last time..

Needless "censoring" of blaster shots exploding on the chests of Imperial Officers on the Death Star. This is still a PG rated film, George, give us a break! And besides, you missed one...

"Bring my shuttle" (pissed off Vader) vs. "Alert my Star Destroyer to prepare for my arrival" (business as usual). I prefer the old line. The recycled shot of Vader arriving on the DEATH STAR 2 (not the Executor) just feels lazy. The "added suspense" is a slight improvement, but many felt it unnecessary. Either way we knew Vader was coming and it was a race to save Luke.

Some things in the SE's were improvements, IMHO. The DVD Rancor scene is vastly superior, as is the new DS1 space battle (in the 1997 version, the DVD edition ruins the sound). I have no argument with the cleaned up video (though leaving in SOME film grain in the DVD's wouldn't have been wrong, but I guess Lucas wanted to match the "digital video look" of Episodes II and III, and if he ever cleans up TPM he'll probably do the same to it).

New echo effects in the Death Star "tarzan scene" are an improvement. Dianoga eye blink is fine. Bantha herd, who cares.

Oola's final scream scene I guess is kinda good, but unnecessary (either way, we don't see the Rancor yet).

The new Wampa scenes are arguable. The creature looks slightly different in the new scenes than the existing footage of the old Wampa, and the sounds are added onto the old sounds (are there two Wampas in the cave then?). Previous monster was more of an "unseen threat" in the cave, but the disarmed Wampa seems angry and dangerous so perhaps a little scarier (helping explain Luke's panic). So it's a toss up.

The Source 07-04-2006 09:20 AM

You have a point. :)

Kurgan 07-04-2006 01:41 PM

To sum up... it's better in a few ways, worse in a few ways, and "ho hum, it's just different" in a LOT of ways. But the few negatives are really a sticking point with many of us who watch the movies for nostalgia (and not having to worry about how the prequels "tie in"... I mean, the prequels should spin their own story and "fit" based on their own sequence, he shouldn't have to tweak the old movies to "fit" right?).

RellikRats 07-04-2006 03:23 PM


Originally Posted by Kurgan
I mean, the prequels should spin their own story and "fit" based on their own sequence, he shouldn't have to tweak the old movies to "fit" right?).

Well, easily said, but if you do any writing (and a lot of us on this board do, I would wager) you must know the permanent dissatisfaction most writers have with a finished work.

When a person looks back on a finished work, they always see flaws, think of improvements they'd like to make, or things that one would change in hindsight for consistency's sake. Lucas was in the position to say, "If I'd known I'd do this or that in Ep.III, I'd have done this in Ep.VI... wait a minute, I CAN do that."

I understand the nostalgia of it all, but I also understand how Lucas would see the saga as a whole in his own heart and mind and would want to do his best to make it as cohesive as he could.

PoiuyWired 07-04-2006 07:19 PM

Kurgan get most of the points.

Thing is, being a "Special Edition" or DVD version or whatever, the overall performance should be Better, not Worse than it is. After all those taken into consideration, I don't think SE did a really good job overall when it comes to changes, other than graphic cleanups.

I don't really mind some of the non-storyline whacking jokes (like the ronto) but some of them are really an eyesore, aka next time someone yell "mesa free!" I am going to hurt some fluffy baby animals.

Kurgan 07-05-2006 01:48 AM

Well see I don't CARE if an artist or author wants to go back and revamp their work a decade or so later to how they want it. As long as they give the public the option (because now the work has become part of the public, in a sense, especially in the case of Star Wars) to continue to buy/own/watch the earlier version if they choose.

That's why I'm glad Lucas if FINALLY releasing the original original trilogy on DVD (though he's being a little bit greedy about it by making it a LIMITED TIME RELEASE, and forcing people to buy a copy of his revamped 2004 Editions with it if they do, and knocking off Anamorphic support, which has just been standard for DVD's for many years... it's like he resents his fans or something, and can't bear to quite give them what they want without one more snicker... oh well, eccentric millionaires!).

The thing with the Special Editions was it took me a lot of training to not jump up and point and go "whoa, there's a new scene!" Many others I watch with are the same way. And the more you watch it the more you notice.

The first few times it was like "wow, cool" then it was like "how did they do that" then it was like "okay that doesn't look so good anymore they can do better" and finally "that's so dumb" and "I wish it were back to the way it was before."

Most of the stuff was not really necessary. It was done "because he can." Lots of us assumed this was being done as "practice" for the Prequels, to try to make "StarWarsy" stuff and practice CG tech. So we ended up with a CG Yoda, CG Stormtroopers, CG aliens, and full CG realized main characters. As high an improvement as these elements were in Episode III from the first special editions, they still don't quite look "real" compared to puppets or actors in suits, who at least, in most cases, are actually tangible and in the same scene with the other actors, having weight and such. The CG in the prequels doesn't bother me, since the movies were made with it originally in mind. In the OT, it just sticks out. The places it works best is in the space scenes, because there's nothing living, and it's more like a video game anyway. As long as its pretty close to what we'd expect, it looks fine, and it actually looks great in most places. They did make a few goofs, like making all the new X-Wings have the same markings and same pilot inside them (one of the development guys served as the model), but only very observant "nerds" will notice things like that.

Still. The SE's are fun for what they are, but I want the originals. Ultimately, that's the meat and potatoes, the SE's are just the twinkie for dessert.

The graphic clean ups and such would have been fine, but they didn't go far enough. It seems Lucas could have spent the millions he wasted on unnecessary CG insertion, on actually getting the color timing correct, normalizing the lightsabers properly, and cleaning up the garbage mattes around the objects in space and other flying things. Instead he just seems to have modified stuff that would wow people on the big screen (the matte boxes for example become MUCH more prominent on home screens).

In this the digital age, many fans have taken to even making their own customized versions of the movies and putting them on DVD to watch. Taking the "best of" all versions to make their ultimate version, even doing stuff like correcting the Death Star plans (so they actually match the model of the Death Star scene in the rest of the movie) and taking out Vader gesturing with no lines in Tarkin's ready room, etc. If these amateurs can do this, then it proves there is no excuse for Lucas not doing it.

So anyway, that's cool. But fans shouldn't have to rely on other fans to do Star Wars right... right?

It's sort of like if LucasArts releases a bad game, people are like "well, we'll just make good mods to make up for it." :P

I think we can safely say that the 2004 DVD editions, as great as they are, could have been much MUCH better, had they given a little more time, rather than rushing them out as quickly as possible (and then re-releasing them twice to milk as much money out of it as possible)... plus they way they tried to artificially boost the sales figures of the Battlefront games with the sale of SW DVD's just seemed a little underhanded.

DarthXilon123 08-24-2006 10:08 PM

Hey I just like both of them a lot. If they didn't make the originals they wouldn't make the DVD.

Great Scott! 08-24-2006 11:30 PM

Okay, here's something that I think I'm the only one who's ever noticed. I know I will be flamed, attacked, and burned by fanboys of the original versions for saying this, but here goes...

The first editions I ever saw were the special editions, and later the DVD editions. Now these were all fine and well for me, but because of all the people saying the original versions were so good, I decided to watch my grandparents' old, unopened 1995 VHS versions. Now ESB and RotJ weren't really much different to me, but when I saw A New Hope... here it comes...

The quality looked like crap. I could not believe how low-budget it looked during the whole movie. The orange effect under the speeder, the terrible, pretty much white lightsabers, and worst of all... during the throne room scene, right before the credits, the screen just shifts to the left randomly (even in the credits it looked uneven). I could not believe how terribly cheap it looked. I'm sorry fans of the originals, but it was just very hard to enjoy when it felt like I was watching a crappy little fan-film (picture quality-wise, not dialogue quality-wise). Please don't flame me, but this was really how I felt whilst watching (I guess it was a little exaggeration saying "the whole movie," but it looked low-budget at some relatively important/exciting parts)...

ABCIMe123 08-25-2006 12:35 AM

That's because you've been spoiled by the Special and DVD Edition.

Great Scott! 08-25-2006 12:41 AM

Hang on, someone's trying to page me.

Oh wait, that was my fanboy alert, never mind.

Just because I happen to like the quality of the SEs and DVDs more, doesn't mean I was "spoiled" by them. It's just the quality in the originals wasn't that great...

McCusto 11-20-2006 06:54 PM

I liked the DVD versions just because the old Anakin and Emperor just didn't fit into the movie.

Prime 11-21-2006 01:32 PM


Originally Posted by McCusto
I liked the DVD versions just because the old Anakin...just didn't fit into the movie.


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