Melissa bought me the complete Star Wars boxed set on Blu-Ray yesterday as a belated anniversary gift. I’m really happy to have it, as it’s something I probably never would have bought on my own.
We’re starting from the beginning with “The Phantom Menace.” As much as there is that’s wrong with this movie, the Obi-Wan/Qui-Gon/Darth Maul lightsaber fight at the end is still incredibly awesome, and it looks fantastic in HD. Maul was a fantastic villain; the next two prequels could have been improved greatly by keeping Maul as the apprentice and ditching Count Dooku. But, what can you do.
Mel and I are going to go through the six in order… I started Star Wars right after getting the set opened at home yesterday, but only got through it to the point where Luke and Ben find the destroyed Sandcrawler. Some of the changes from the 1997 special edition I’d have never noticed; R2’s changed hiding place from the Tusken Raiders when Luke is attacked, etc. But Ben’s new Krayt Dragon howl just seems… wrong. That sound was one of the signature things about that movie, and to have it different now just seems pointless. Add to the it that the new one sounds like a spit-take from an episode of “Family Guy”… It would just be very interesting to know what was going on in the room when George Lucas was watching Star Wars for the 12 millionth time and decided “y’know what, I know it’s been this way for 30 years now, and it’s one of the most-identifiable pieces of audio in this movie, but let’s just change it. Whatever.”
There are purists online who are complaining about every single change in the movies – there are people who are mad that there are now more TIE Interceptors in the Death Star II battle in Return of the Jedi. I’m sorry, but more TIE Interceptors are never a mistake. But in this case, I’m just not sure how changing the Krayt Dragon howl could be remotely considered to be making Star Wars better.