Empire Strikes Back
Star Wars (ep 4)
Return of the Jedi
The only Special Edition I saw was ep. 4 at the theater in 1997. I boycotted the rest of the SE based on the botched Greedo scene and the horrible entry into Mos Eisley (you know the CGI robots that looked totally out of place).
I found the new ESB and ep4 to be not too bad. I liked the extended scene with the Wampa clutching to his severed arm. I like the scene with Biggs. I was happy that Luke's scream was edited out. I didn't really mind Boba Fett's new voice. Ian McDarmid replacing Clive Revill is also not that bad--but I still prefer the original dialogue ("The Son of Skywalker must not become a Jedi"). I found that Vader's voice didn't quite sound like James Earl Jones as he asks for his shuttle. If George Lucas felt the need to add this scene so badly, couldn't he have called JEL and asked him to speak that line and then have it recorded? I kind of liked the improvement on the new Greedo scene--though Han's head does skip. I still hate the fact that Han steps on Jabba's tail. I also hate Luke and Obi Wan's entry into Mos Eisley with the CGI robots having a scuffle. And Luke's sabre is green when he uses it in the Millenium Falcon (I could ignore this by imagining to myself that lightsabres have a color setting...)
But after watching these two movies, I was thinking "so far... not too bad". And I put in ROTJ in the DVD player with some sense of renewed optimism...
UGH. YUCK. TERRIBLE.
The "new" Return of the Jedi is by far the worst botched job in the history of movies. This is worse than the Greedo scene from the 1997 SE. I can't believe that the changes made to ROTJ have not elicited more fan backlash than TPM and AOTC.
Changes come to my mind, that have absolutely ruined SW for me:
-the new song "Jedi Rocks"
-Hayden Christensen replacing Sebastian Shaw
-Ewoks' "Yub Yub" replaced by cheezy muzac music.
The original song "Lapti Nek" was one of the coolest moments in SW history. And now GL has erased this and put in a "Monsters Inc" type of music video called "Jedi Rocks"... this looks completely out of place. It's like the new entry into Mos Eisley--but it's 10 times worse. It makes the 1950s diner scene in AOTC look cool by comparison. The rest of the changes that I'm comlaining about, pretty much speak for themselves.
Although I consider ROTJ to be the weakest of the O-OT, it's still a good movie (better than TPM and AOTC anyways). Is George Lucas insane and senile? This is the only explanation I can come up with for the decline in the quality of Star Wars. Even artists who are past their prime are capable of showing flashes of their former brilliance (think Beethoven's 9th or Iron Maiden's "Brave New World"). But George Lucas completely pisses on his past work. I think he has some secret bet with the Illuminatti where he will prove that he can make absolute crap and put the name "Star Wars" on it and still make billions of dollars off of it.
I can't believe that the same man who made "American Graffitti" and the 1977 version of "Star Wars" is giving us ROTJ re-edits, TPM and AOTC.