For what it’s worth, I made a custom “v5.5” edition of Cloak of Deception that removes JarJar slurping apples and a couple of other bits not to my taste, and I will probably do the same with The Approaching Storm. Right now my plan is just to remove the creepy Anakin moment and a few bits of JarJar that snuck back in, but I could maybe make a version without Dex and the Droid Factory if people really want it. Personally, I think Hal’s new edits of these scenes work quite well in context.
Hal 9000 said:
I expected a little backlash for that one, but I feel like
A) It doesn’t end abruptly as it did in prior versions
B) It mediates the smoothed over love story and the very next scene where the two are a little cold toward each other
C) It includes a movie trope that goes way back about the woman initially resisting the man’s advances (the #MeToo thing) which is consistent with the love story’s ‘old cinema’ style (and begins to show us that she is denying to herself that she may have feelings for him, as continued in the family dinner scene)
And mutters D) The Phantom Editor saw fit to leave it in for his cut.
All around I felt like it was the right thing to do, though I anticipated some blowback. I’m sorry, everyone.
JEDIT: I actually shortened it slightly, mimicking Attack of the Phantom. I would suggest watching this cut and see how that moment strikes you in context of the whole.
Thanks for the thoughtful explanation Hal. I understand your reasoning, although I don’t agree with it. I felt that ‘old cinema’ trope was tired and outdated (not to mention harmful) in 2002, let alone 2019. Regardless of the real-world optics of the scene though, I think the bigger problem is that it just doesn’t work in the context of the movie. After all, The Empire Strikes Back (my favorite Star Wars movie) employs the same trope, but far fewer people take issue with it because of the direction and performances. Even when Han and Leia are at each others throats, we can tell they have feelings for one another. Christensen doesn’t play the scene with old hollywood charm, he plays it as genuinely creepy. Portman seems firmly repulsed; there isn’t really a second layer to her performance that suggests her defenses might be coming down.