I have a bad feeling about this

It’s Star Wars, and the original trilogy. I don’t think that I need to describe the plot.

I could rave about the film, but what’s the point – it’s Star Wars.
The movie that took b-movie plots, turned them into classic myths and one of the most popular/successful movies ever made.

I shall become more powerful than you can possibly imagine.

This is the original, and excuse me, the best.
cut scene - Luke meets BiggsThe first film deals with a farm boy from the middle of nowhere saving the Universe from the ultimate killing machine. There is a story. I just find it hard to get too excited about a film dealing with trade sanctions, as Phantom Menace did. Sorry.
The harsh industrial look of the first film, due as much to the period it was made as to the younger Lucas’ dystopic vision was unprecedented at the time.
Of course Lucas originally wanted to make a movie version of Buck Rogers, but couldn’t get the rights, so he made up his own story.
Star Wars was a huge success, but Lucas had a problem. George hadn’t just used part of his story for this film, he had used all the best bits. What to do? Tell it again!
Obi-Wan was remade as Yoda, Grand Moff Tarkin remade as The Emperor, Wookies as Ewoks and the Empire can just build another Death Star.
Who cares they were sequels.

The DVD is a lovely film transfer, and the soundtrack is very good too.
It’s like Lucas owned the companies that did the transfers.

The commentary is interesting, but come on – one commentary with a combination of the three of the men instrumental in making the movie – Lucas, Ben Burt, Denis Muren along with one actor Carrie Fisher and Kershner joins them for Empire.
Where are the other actors (as though Dave Prowse was too busy)?
What about the huge input by Ralph Macqarie on the look of the film? Where’s his commentary?
Where is the isolated soundtrack with John Williams, where is Jedi director Marquand?
Where are the deleted scenes (Luke and Biggs at Anchorhead in Star Wars 77, The Stormtroopers releasing the Wampums in Empire, etc)

And the most important question, ‘Why won’t Lucas leave these films alone?’

D'oh, my head

I don’t know, I can imagine quite a bit.

I won’t detail the changes here, there are many listing on the Internet, but it is enough to know that Lucas has gone back and made changes to the films again.
After the unpopular changes that he made with the Special Editions, he has made further changes, predominantly to help them fit in with the prequels.
For all the mythological power that the first movie has, it seems that character development is just a bit out of Lucas’ conception. In the original version of Star Wars 77 the bounty hunter Guido is shot by smuggler Han Solo. Solo starts as a bad guy and this helps establish that his character is nasty. By the end of the film Solo has become a good guy, risking his life for his new friends. Character evolution. By taking away the callousness in the original version of Solo, (he now shoots in self defence), the evolution of the character is reduced.

On the positive side, there is an excellent feature length documentary “Empire of Dreams” included in this set, which is quite thorough. It includes many of the stories that aren’t discussed much. If you are a fan, pick up the recent release of THX-1138: Director’s Cut (surprise, surprise) which has the documentary “A Legacy Of Filmmakers: The Early Years Of American Zoetrope” tracing the Lucas years leading up to Star Wars.

There is another

There is another.

I will bet my life that this is not the final release of the trilogy, and I don’t mean just the inevitable format upgrade to HD-DVD/Bluray that will be with us imminently.
There is just too much missing.
I could name more than half a dozen official makings of and specials that are missing from this set, which offer their own unique input (like “Star Wars To Jedi: the making of a Saga”), combined with all the numerous special appearances (Chewbacca inducted into the MTV Hall of Fame), and let’s no forget the Holiday Special.
But I am foaming at the mouth again.
There will be new releases of these films within the next two years, probably a two disc edition of each film with some of this missing material plus a bunch of the missing commentaries.
The deleted footage exists, some of it has been posted on the official website. The uncut animatics for Jedi were on the Laserdisc release, along with a different commentary
There will be more.

When Star Wars was first released Lucas said that this was a nine movie series.
Mark Hamill has supposedly said that Lucas has recently approached him about the next three films (though the trouble is that the story, according to the Official timeline becomes increasingly less saga-like). In the commentary Lucas continually talks about how he never intended making the first three movies, they were just the back story, while also saying that he intended making the original three.
Back in 1977 Lucas said that C-3PO and R2-D2 were going to be the only characters that went through all nine movies, but I can accept that he found the Vader character more interesting.

These films also display the wise move that Lucus’s ego has prevented him from doing on the subsequent trilogy. He gave the directors chair to other people who could direct actors. Lucas did the story, and was happier working on the technical aspects, which his increasing fortune has allowed him to do amazing things with in the new films. As talented as Lucas is, he really shouldn’t be directing.

This DVD release is a must for any science fiction fan, and you will want to buy them. I won’t advise you not to, but there is a lot more material to come.