Just got a chance to watch this.
Overall, this definitely improves the experience of watching The Phantom Menace. The pace is brisk without feeling rushed (usually), and the performances are often improved through the omission of certain cringey dialogue.
The specifics (in order of appearance):
Naboo Part 1
-The new crawl is an improvement, if slightly too wordy.
-Obi-wan and Qui-gon’s conversation is a fairly good omission.
-Neimoidian cuts are often good, though subtitling them as well would be better.
-I would have liked to hear Sidious’s ‘make it legal’ line.
-I feel the absence of the Neimoidians discussing the Jedi via hologram. A single line retained from that would have been nice.
-The omission of the Gungan city is well done.
-The first 17 minutes feel slightly rushed, re-adding in a few of these lines would make it flow better.
-Jar Jar’s antics in the shop were a welcome surprise. The sequence of him examining a ‘folded’ pit droid to hitting the nose of a (presumably different) pit droid implies he deduced the functioning of the droid from his cursory examination. If there were a few more moments of intelligence from Jar Jar in this film it would go a long way to redeeming the character. This action, small as it is, makes me appreciate him.
-The Jar Jar and Sebulba scene is much improved, and the subtitles throughout are on point.
-Anakin’s line about the sandstorm feels strange.
-3PO is much improved.
-Some part of the balcony scene should have stayed.
-Podrace scene still feels too long. I remember the theatrical version having less of a startup sequence, so that would be the go-to version for me. Similarly, the final part of the race feels somewhat lacking without the commentators. Even the audio overlaid on the pods would be fine.
-‘pathetic life form’ line omission is a welcome choice.
-‘keep the suns from setting’ and the farewell to Shmi should have been retained.
-Probe droid destruction feels strange, since the same droid presumably informs Maul in the next scene. Either the Maul at his spaceship scene should be cut, or at least the part where the droid speaks to him.
-‘Tell them to take off’ didn’t need to go, since Anakin could have told them offscreen.
-‘One big city’ line is gold, and I will fight anyone who says otherwise.
-The Jedi council scene is definitely improved, the only thing I’d change is to retain one of Anakin’s statements near the end of the questioning.
Naboo Part 2
-New Gungan scene makes me forget that there ever was a Gungan city. This is not a bad thing.
-Anakin’s rush to help his friends needs some vocalization, perhaps ‘we’ve gotta do something, R2’, except as he is running up the steps to the fighter.
-There are some jarring moments during the restructured 4-way battle. ‘Everything’s overheated’ could have stayed.
-There are 3 scenes establishing that Anakin is to be trained as a Jedi. One of these could probably be cut without much trouble. It would be interesting if Qui-gon was dead before Obi-wan got to him after the battle, so that Obi-wan could have taken it upon himself to train Anakin.
-Love the reordered final shots of the film.