Just a quick update. This edit is now posted on fanedit.org! So if you have an account and feel so inclined, head over there and leave a review! Constructive criticism is always welcome and appreciated!
I guess I’ll be sending you another PM soon! Very cool to see this new FX work!
Thank you very much! And thanks to everyone here for the help and feedback. Of course, this is mostly a modification of Hal’s Legendary cut, so I must pass along most of the credit to him!
I don’t think it’s up on the IFDB yet, but I’ll post again when I see it listed.
I’ll definitely be considering the BB-8 and Paige ladder kicking in a future version.
I don’t know about making my own alternative experimental version, but, of course, anyone is welcome to use Rekindled as a base for whatever they want! The collaboration and sharing of ideas is one my favorite aspects of this forum. My version is based on Hal’s Legendary edit, after all.
You make good points about BB-8, and my wife feels the same way about him (me too actually).
The Boba Fett anecdote really resonates because the trouble with all fan-editing is that inevitably you’re going to cut someone else’s favorite gag or inside joke. These moments, good or bad, have become part of culture.
For me, though, BB-8 went too far when he started piloting imperial walker. It was such a silly way to get our heroes out of a perilous situation, and it was just moments after the climax. I don’t think it’s a scene I’ll get used to.
The stuff in the X-wing isn’t as bad because it’s early in the film and it’s more subtle. The Ortega edit was so smooth, though, that I’ll at least entertain it, and maybe try a version that keeps a bit more of the silliness as you suggested.
Sorry, I’m probably forgetting some line of dialogue, but when does yoda confirm in ROTJ that luke going to help leia and han(on bespin I presume), was a good thing? Doesn’t he actually say that it was unfortunate that he went there because his training was incomplete?
You know, I just watched it again and it’s actually very strange.
In ROTJ, Luke return to Dagobah and says he’s come back to complete his training, to which Yoda replies:
“No more training do you require. Already know you that which you need.”
However, after Luke has Yoda confirm that Darth Vader is his father, Yoda says that it’s unfortunate that Luke rushed off to face Vader without completing his training. So which is it?!
He also adds “Not ready for the burden were you.”
I had always interpreted Yoda’s first response as being to condone Luke’s fortitude in following his moral compass (to Bespin) despite the objections of his mentors. That it may have even been a test of his character that he passed. With the “unfortunate” dialogue a few lines later, I’m not entirely sure anymore what Yoda really thinks about whether Luke was ready or not.
I’d also argue for trimming more of the phone call gag, a la Hal’s Legendary version.
Definitely would consider this for a future version! Also considering trying again to remove the “union dispute” line from Maz (that’s a tricky one, though, because of the blocking of the scene).
Ziggy, thanks so much for the compliments, and I’m so glad you enjoyed the edit!
Further trimming Paige Tico (bomber girl) kicking the ladder to drop the detonator.
I too had a similar reaction when I first saw the film. I think Hal’s edit improved it significantly while also maintaining seamless audio. Let me check out the Clean Cut Edition, though, and see how ForceGhostRecon handled it.
Changing BB-8’s repair of Poe’s X-Wing
I think this is worth looking into, as I remember watching that video months ago and thinking it was pretty seamless. Specifically the cut from BB-8 moving down to the tracking shot of Canady has such a nice rhythm of camera motion.
Finding a better way to introduce Holdo
This one I am less sold on. While I think the editor did a great job of rotoscoping and does a good impression of Ackbar, I think it’s still just a little off and may introduce more questions about Ackbar (how did he survive the explosion unscathed? Why does he have his old white uniform? Where is he the rest of the film?) than it solves with Holdo.
Nev and RogueLeader,
Those are great points.
It is absolutely over-simplication to boil Luke and Rey down into “good people.” I think I did that for brevity. The point was to show where they were the same, rather than their unique qualities.
As RL pointed out, both were motivated by different altruistic drives. I think it’s those drives that make us like them in the first place, and what makes for a typical protagonist in this genre.
I do think you could argue Rey’s decision to not join Kylo-Ren is a bit dishonest. Rey’s path down the dark side had real momentum. I think maybe the filmmakers wrote themselves to this point, but were afraid to make that final leap because of how challenging it would have been (for audiences and the writers) to continue with Rey and Kylo-Ren together.
At the same time, I think RL gives good reasons for why Rey makes the choice she does. It’s not simply about goodness, it’s about belonging, something that the film devotes a decent amount of time to. Her training is bungled to nearly disastrous consequences thanks to Snoke’s manipulation, but she’s able to seize upon some of her core qualities to overcome it.
Whichever direction the film should have gone, the point I was hoping to make is that Rey is no “Mary Sue”. She’s a flawed character navigating difficult choices and making mistakes along the way.
I think I actually said Force ghost Luke training Rey, but it’d be cool to see Yoda training her too!
Whoops, you did! Sorry, I either read it too fast or read into it what I wanted to see. But you’re right, of course, force ghost Luke would probably make a lot more sense. I just couldn’t resist the idea of Yoda and Rey together.
Exactly, it’s the same reason Palpatine’s temptation of Luke didn’t work. Luke never wanted power.
I think your points about the echo chamber and vitriolic reaction to TLJ are spot on. I just can’t believe how loud it’s become. There are certain internet outlets (don’t want to be specific, because I’m not trying to trash anyone) that I follow that have evolved/morphed into an extension of this echo chamber and now pump out more and more content that strains rational thought.
Great points all around! Thanks for pointing out that even Obi-Wan’s lesson with the lightsaber was more about “letting go” than about the lightsaber itself.
I hadn’t thought about the literal nature of Rey taking the books, and you’re right that it’s odd that Yoda would talk about “not losing the girl, Rey” with the scene is moved to just before Crait. I still think it’s worth it, but that could be just one of the many imperfections in the film!
As for force ghost Yoda training Rey: I think that would be gold!
What’s the TL;DR version
Ha! Yeah I woke up this morning and just had this stream of consciousness slip out of me. I did try to organize it so it wouldn’t be too jumbled, but I look at it now and it is quite long!
The short take is that I think Rey is about as good of a character as Luke was in the OT. They both have natural force abilities and good temperaments. I think it’s unfair that people call Rey a “Mary Sue” for her natural abilities and lack of training, because Jedi training (even Luke’s) was always really about personal character development.
I began writing this in response to the changing tone of Star Wars fans, which to me has grown out of control with many railing against feminism and “SJW”s. But that’s such a huge topic, and I realized that it might be more effective if I focused on a very specific complaint around which much of the Disney Star Wars criticism is based.
Rey. The term most often thrown at her is “Mary Sue.” This is because of her natural ability with the force and her lack of training. I find this argument frustrating because it ignores so much about her.
Rey is an orphan who has honed survival instincts through years of scavenging and defending herself, unknowingly aided by the force. She is truly the “raw, untamed power” that Snoke thinks he sees in Kylo-Ren. Her abilities are not unlike those of Anakin Skywalker, who as a young boy is building droids and racing pods. Luke is barely trained himself and destroys the Death Star. This is consistent with Rey, who in TFA is a proficient pilot who was able hold her own in a lightsaber fight against a severely wounded Kylo-Ren.
The fact that Rey has no formal training is not a flaw. If we can take anything away from the prequels, it’s that the hubris and arrogance of the Jedi are what led to its downfall, something that Luke specifically refers to when talking to Rey. The rigidity of the Jedi code runs counter to the fluid nature of the force. For example, Luke and Rey were both “too old to begin the training” under the old thinking.
I would also argue that many people mistake the actual Jedi training of Luke. Luke’s training has nothing to do with lightsabers or rocks. Luke’s training occurs when he fails to lift the X-wing out of the swamp because he didn’t believe he could. Luke’s training occurs in the cave, when he discovers himself to be his greatest obstacle. Luke’s training occurs when he decides to help Han and Leia, despite the protests of his Jedi masters, because he knew it was right (a point confirmed by Yoda in ROTJ). We never even saw Luke train with the lightsaber in ESB.
The point is, Jedi training revolves around character, not special powers.
Rey has a different path than Luke. She has great ability, but she doesn’t know what to do with it (a point she makes to Luke). She seeks out Luke’s help, but this is where things go awry. Luke is damaged by his failure with Kylo-Ren, which opens the door for Snoke to begin manipulating Rey: first in the cave, and then continuing with his mind-linking Rey and Kylo-Ren. Rey’s journey leads down the path of the dark side, and when Luke fails her, she almost completely falls into the trap. At her lowest point, she turns to Kylo-Ren, confesses her loneliness, and they touch hands.
Rey then confronts Luke again, where she gets the answers she needs to be able to make the right decisions about Kylo-Ren. Thus, when she’s ultimately tempted to turn after the fight in the Throne Room, she declines.
Now, there are a few of problems with the movie here. The stage had been set for a dramatic throne room confrontation that gives Rey a real option to turn and join Kylo-Ren, but the filmmakers shied away from it. That would have been a very bold direction for the story to go, but perhaps they felt it was too bold and too risky. I think, ultimately, Rey is a good person and that’s the reason she makes the choice she does.
Another problem is the Yoda scene. Yoda outright states that Rey already has everything she needs, when she barely does. It’s a little thin at this point to trust that Rey will choose the right path. This scene’s placement before the climax is also problematic. Hal 9000’s Legendary edit moves the Yoda scene to after the Throne Room and Supremacy scenes. This helps the claim by Yoda, since we’ve already seen that she made the right choice.
There’s also the issue of Luke. He basically fails with Rey. She confirms this to Kylo-Ren: “I thought I’d find answers here. I was wrong.” This is only an issue if you think Luke shouldn’t have failed. I would argue that this makes the story more interesting, and opens it up to new possibilities. If Luke is the perfect teacher, then he would set up Rey with everything she needs and send her on her way, just as we expected and have seen before. Would that really have been rewarding? With his failure, she can be tempted to join Kylo-Ren. The decision is hers to make.
Rey is a deeply flawed character. She’s a desperate loner who can’t figure out where she belongs. She clings to the thought of parents she knows aren’t coming back (and probably wouldn’t love her anyway). She attaches herself blindly to any parental figure she can find, which has almost disastrous consequences when Luke fails her. She is lost, even at the end of TLJ, when she despairingly asks, “How do we rebuild the rebellion from this?” It’s so sad for so many reasons that Carrie Fisher died. I have a feeling from the way TLJ ended that Leia was meant to finish Rey’s training, or at least serve as her mentor.
In any case, when confronted with the choice to turn to the dark side, Rey makes the same decision as Luke. I think that’s because they are both essentially good people. When Luke was tempted by Vader and Palpatine, he rejected the offer. It wasn’t Luke’s training, it wasn’t something he learned along the way, he just was a good person. That’s why we like him. The same goes for Rey. One thing we’ve known about Rey from the very beginning (when she takes in and protects BB-8) is that she’s good. Ultimately, it comes down to a moral choice based on the characters’ established traits.
I don’t think people give the writers the proper credit for Rey’s character, instead focusing on her proficiency with a lightsaber and lack of training. Yet Jedi training is not about ability, but about character. I also think that sometimes people mistake flaws in the storytelling with political agendas, and that’s really unfortunate. I wish there was something better to do, but I thought I could at least write about it.
EDIT: I tried to clean up the language a little bit, as I wrote this all on my phone rather quickly.
DVD slip cover art for all interested (I know it says Fox instead of Disney… call me nostalgic)
I just want to jump in here and say I love all of your artwork! The posters, slip-covers etc. are just great!
I haven’t gotten to watch the full edit yet, but you’ve made some cool choices and this is clearly well-though-out project!
Just to reiterate, you can also request a link by clicking on my name atop any of my posts, and send me a pm that way!
Your edit is hot, Poppa!
Thanks, RogueLeader! It wouldn’t be worth a thing without your early guidance and suggestions. And, of course, Hal’s Legendary!
This is some really nice work, and in record time! Congrats! I think your shot by shot can also be used as a great basis for further tuning to cater to each and everyone’s personal preferences. Here’s my little effort, starting from the last shot of the film. I personally feel the color grading could use a little warmth to bring it more in line with the technicolor references.
Hey DrDre, I was just wondering, are the technicolor references really that warm? Just looking at the video scopes, the red is very pushed. Not saying that’s wrong, I defer to your knowledge, just curious! The sanjuro_61 frame is a bit cool according to the scopes, so just as a quick test, I balanced the highlights, and the result is somewhere in the middle.
That’s a really cool video, and really impressive roto work!
Perhaps competent isn’t the right word. What bugs me about her character is that she comes out of nowhere, we’re suddenly supposed to just go along with her plan (which the audience doesn’t know about), and then in the end, she saves the day?
I don’t think we’re supposed to go along with her, I think we’re supposed to be suspicious of her like Poe is. Then we’re surprised (like Poe) when she actually has a plan and saves the day.
I think the problem from a character perspective is that she does nothing to reassure anyone that she knows what she’s doing, creating growing animosity that leads to a mutiny.
One explanation that I thought while watching it was that she couldn’t trust anyone after being tracked through hyperspace. It reminded me of Battlestar Galactica, when they kept getting followed through light speed because someone planted a tracking device on their ship. If Holdo is suspicious of a traitor, she might keep her plans more secret. However, this is not really addressed in the film, so it comes off as a plot contrivance.
Thanks so much for your feedback! I’m so glad you enjoyed it, and that’s it’s your favorite Star Wars! The Legendary cut is excellent, so I would recommend.
That’s an interesting idea! I’m not sure it’s something I’d try, though.
You could change the color of the armor and dub new lines (although getting it perfect might take a long time), but you still have Gwendoline Christie’s stature and movement. I feel like we’d always be able to tell it’s Phasma.
And although I was happy to trim her to remove the fight scene with Finn, I like Christie and I’d rather not remove more of her performance than I have to.
Still, I’d love to see it tried and would be curious to see how effectively it could be done!
Dr. Krogshöj, I appreciate your observation. It was strange to me as well that Phasma and her troops were marching in formation at the other end of the hanger. It looked cool, but otherwise didn’t seem logical.
Cutting it removed a lot of moments that bothered me in the theatrical version, including the BB-8 imperial walker material, which really kind of stunned of me when I first saw it. I like silly, but that was too much at an inappropriate time.