PDA

View Full Version : Harry S. Plinkett's Star Wars: A New Hope commentary track



JediTricks
08-27-2012, 09:20 PM
I can't link you to it as it has naughty language (lots of it, and varied types... Uncle Owen and C-3PO's meeting gets an interesting twist, to say the least), but it was pretty good, and it doesn't take it easy on the film, Mark Hamill's acting is lambasted to a degree I'd call harsh, and that's the least of it. ANH is compared to the prequels here and there, and there's talk of the Special Editions additions. It's designed for the SE DVD, but I watched it on the Blu Ray and it nearly perfectly synched up. Interestingly, there are a couple moments where he talks about scenes changed for the Blu Rays despite not watching them, and he's on the ball with each one - that R2 cave thing is just about the lamest thing yet, it's so 2-dimensional, and you can see they just couldn't stop themselves, they wanted to put in a little rock and instead added a ton of nonsense rocks from only 1 angle.

However, the reason I cannot unhear this commentary track is because of the VERY LAST THING PLINKETT SAYS, it shook my faith in Lucas to the core despite being an incredibly tiny thing. This is something I hadn't really noticed in any viewing of the SEs up until now, and I saw ANH SE twice on opening day! Anyway, what happens is that Leia is the last thing you see as the film iris-wipes to the credits, in the original OT version of ANH she just stands there and looks regal, but in this new version she's standing there looking regal right up until she moves her hands to clap or something and whatever low-level ILM tech in charge of putting the movie back together after Lucas broke it into tiny shards didn't really pay attention to the cinematic aspect, so this tech just freeze-frames it on Leia's hands in the middle of clapping with a little motion blur even, and it holds on that awful freeze frame shot while the iris completes its wipe. It's the most amateurish, least-appealing thing in the whole SE project and it's like the FedEx arrow, once you see it you cannot unsee it.

It shakes my faith in Lucas because he's become so slavishly addicted to "fixing" and removing challenges at any cost that he's sold his storytelling soul to the technological effects keyboard-mashers at ILM that he allows a rookie sloppy mistake to permeate one of the finest films of all time for the last 15 years! This isn't like changing lightsaber blade rotoscopes, this is just basic stuff - don't make it look like a shoddy sitcom, and if you do, don't LEAVE IT THAT WAY!!!

Anyway, if you seek out the Harry Plinkett commentary, remember to start it at the first frame of the "Star Wars" logo and watch it through (or pause the review, then pause the film, then reverse-order that when you unpause, it works great). It wasn't quite as brilliant as the TPM review only because it gets lost in its own silliness at times, and it's not as easy a film to knock from an objective viewpoint, but I quite enjoyed it and laughed myself stupid at times during it.