wabid, emanswfan, Solid11 - my terrific work print team who provided many valuable suggestions, without which this edit would never be as polished as it is.
The Phantom Editor - for providing the inspiration of how to keep the "kiss" in the movie.
Having thoroughly enjoyed Seciors Return of the Sith Revisited Edition, I thought I'd go on with his second. I was very encouraged by some of the reviews here that say that the love story is handled particularly well and that was a feature of RotS:RE.
Again, a short run time of 85 mins - can it be achieved? A BIG YES! I got something I wasn't quite expecting from Army of the Republic - to me, this film now feels like a sci-fi, wrapped around a love story. The editing of Ani/Padme is done so well...that it no longer feels uncomfortable and awkward. There are some cringe scenes that are left in, but because they are handled well it reinforces the love story!
It's a much simpler story and moves on quickly...there's nothing complicated in the other plot...I can only echo below comments about the nonsense Sifo-Dyas thing. It's a cool touch to have Dooku as Count Dooku all the way through and have him/Sidious appear at the start...
I did note a couple times where it seemed that the transition occurred quickly to cut off some dialogue that Seciors clearly didn't want - but it's nothing jarring. There are a couple scenes that I also still in- the younglings and that cafe scene, which others did away with by simply having the assassin say Kamino.
Anyway, again - really enjoyed it, I think Return of the Sith is more fun to be honest..I'm hopiing Seciors may have a stab at Episode 3.
In my mind, there were two major problems with AotC – the dire love story and the confused Machiavellian plotting of the Sith. This edit successfully resolves both of these issues.
A number of romance scenes that I always hated (me and most editors!) are retained, but by removing the worst of the dialogue, no longer do I think those scenes are beyond saving. Instead, some clever editing (including the insertion of the under-rated deleted scenes with Padme’s family) has improved the love story tenfold.
The editing of the Clone army story is simple, but extremely effective. The ridiculous Sifo-Dyas plot point is removed. In this edit, it is clear that Count Dooku is the ex-Jedi behind the secret development of the Clone army. Also, the revised first scene establishes Dooku as the villain of the movie (in league with a mysterious master dark lord). The movie benefits greatly from this improved clarity of storytelling, whilst successfully retaining the mystery of the exact identity of Darth Sidious (thereby increasing the impact of his reveal in Episode III).
There is some very clever dialogue replacement - something I have never considered for this movie, but it is done with skill and works extremely well.
Technically, you get no complaints from me. The sound is crystal clear and I’m always blown away by how beautiful these movies look in HD. The transitions (audio and video) can sometimes be a little abrupt, but I understand this just comes with the territory when editing a Star Wars movie.
All-in-all, another success from one of my favourite fan editors. Well done, Seciors!
Watched this two days ago, and I have to say, waiting a long time for this to come out...it's a shame to say that I'm feeling a tad mixed.
Let me start with what I really liked about the edit: the love story. The scenes were arranged very well, and you managed to get across the idea of Anikan and Padme having a "morning after" scene better than L8twrtr, and given how great The Republic Divided is, that's saying something. The only thing about it that bugged me was placing the funeral scene before the garage scene, because we see Padme in her white dress, then her blue dress, and the next time we see her in her white dress again, and it's something I can't get past. Also, if you ever think of making a version 2, I recommend watching Slumberland's episode 2 edit and how he makes the lake kiss look like it's taking place at sunset, as that would help with the "morning after" vibe I think you were going for. Also, loved how you removed "we've got to get to that hanger," really worked out well.
For Obi-Wan's story, I really don't abject to the diner scene, as I'm a fan of the 1950s vibe, and I can somewhat get behind keeping the Yoda/younglings scene as it comes off less as Obi-Wan being clueless and more about him confirming his suspicions. The Jango/Obi-Wan conversation is also welll done, being able to remove any mentions of Tyrannus and Sifo-Diyas. However, I really felt that the first fight they have should've been cut down like how the Phantom Editor and L8twrtr did. That way when we get to the space battle it doesn't feel like the movie's dragging, which I honestly thought it was sadly.
Now some stuff I really didn't like. I hated how much of a novice Anikan came across as in the movie. He loses his lightsaber, misses his turn while in the car, and then get's his lightsaber smashed. If he's so attuned to the force that he can levitate a ball and free Padme, he should've at least seen the lightsaber stuff coming. The Anikan/Palpatine scene was also really missed, as it plays nicely into episode 3. And finally, cutting out the Obi-Wan/Dooku. I know how it kinda makes the Jedi look stupid for not taking Dooku's word, but let's be honest, they had it coming. They wouldn't believe that Dooku would take a hit out on Padme, I can believe that they don't pay his warnings lip service. It's just that that scene shows Christopher Lee at his finest, and removing that scene, imo, nullifies any attempt to try an put focus on Dooku, because I really enjoyed you're restructured opening. Also, I'm not sure if it was the choices you made with this edit or because I really like L8's take, but I didn't enjoy Yoda's lightsaber duel as much as I did.
I'm sorry if I seem negative, when there were some things in this edit that I really loved and should be incorporated into other edits and I do recommend it, but some there was too much that rubbed me the wrong way.
"So here we go again, another ATOC edit," you may be thinking. But, no, this is most certainly an amazing version of the film, with a new spin. I was pleasently surprised to find that I did not just find the film not annoying or weak, I found it enjoyable and strong.
Audio/Video Quality- I was really amazed at the encoding quality. Even the mp4 looked almost identical to the original bluray! 10/10
Visual Editing- Nothing stood out to me, except for several cuts. I knew the cuts, so that's probably the reason they stood out 10/10
Audio Editing- Same quality as visual editing, but it seems a tad harder to work with the audio as everyone's familiar with the cues. 9/10
Narrative- Seciors' version is definately different then the other two good edits, Q2's and L8's. One major difference is Anakin's fall. His fall now begins in ATOC and is never influenced by the Chancelor (hope he can keep this for EP III). Another, is that the movie opens completely different, now utilizing the Dooku/ Palpatine scene. NOW, and this may sound like the other edits, the Anakin/Padme and Anakin/Obi Wan relationships are hugely improved. But what's difference is the ability to feel the relationships. I genuinely felt Anakin and Obi Wan were best friends with occasional hits at each other, "I hate it when he does that!". The Anakin and Padme relationship was even better as the romance waan't just believable but could be felt. The kissing scene was amazing here! Overall, Seciors' is better however there were certain times I would lean towards L8 or Q2. 10/10
Enjoyment- From a person, who can't stand the original (although I am a weirdo who actually likes C3PO in the Droid Factory), this version felt worthy of an OT movie. The only thing that held me back from giving a perfect score would be the sheer lack of length in the film. For the most part, there was nothing that could be done to retain the quality of the narative, however L8 and Q2 had some cuts that could have added more runtime. 9/10
I re-watched Seciors' Star Wars Episode II - Army of the Republic, and it's definitely one of the better and more creative AOTC edits on the site. Some scenes that are unneeded and a little dialogue that I would have removed are still present, but the editor has explained his reasons for keeping them and I'm cool with it.
Audio/Video Quality - Outstanding dude! One of the greatest things about this edit! 10/10
Visual Editing - The video editing is excellent! There were however some minor cuts that were a little obvious, but they are barely noticeable. 9/10
Audio Editing - Like Return of the Sith, there are a few audio crossfades that could use a little more work, but again it didn't hamper my enjoyment of the edit. Dooku's new line at the beginning was a bit obvious, but upon my second viewing it was less noticeable. Overall everyone sounded great! 8/10
Narrative - Seciors is a fantastic storyteller, but a few things about this edit bugged me initially. The Yoda lightsaber fight is still here, but the editor has made more tolerable. It now seems like Yoda is fighting in self defense. Both of the Jango Fett actions scenes with Obi-Wan are also present, and both are too cartoonish and useless to watch. Seciors has stated he liked the scenes, and I respect that. Seciors' editing of the Anaking and Padme romance is hands down the best I've ever seen. Brilliant! The subplot about Anakin's mother is perfectly rearranged for a more powerful sequence of events, and I loved the added Imperial March music. Finally, Anakin is no longer a creepy monster! Jango Fett is no longer decapitated by Mace Windu, and it is assumed that he trains Boba to be a bounty hunter before the events of the original trilogy. The removal of that Sifo Dyas guy works well, and Army of the Republic is generally less convoluted than the original film. 10/10
Enjoyment - I hate this goddamned film to death, and no matter what no editor can fix it (Unless the entire community bands together and edits the film as a group). This was a valiant effort by Seciors to make it a better film, and like I said it is a great edit in the same league as L8wrtr's and Q2's edits. 8/10