Star Wars fan edits, which and how?
September 5, 2010 1:38 PM   Subscribe

Star Wars Episodes I, II and III disappoint me. For me, the they're in love with scenery and expense and try to make up for it with plodding exposition. They need editing. I think I would enjoy something like The Phantom Edit. But how do I get ahold of it? Is it the best edit? Are there other fan edits of I, II and III that are worth seeking out? And how do I get and watch them?
posted by artlung to Media & Arts (16 answers total) 11 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: The answer to every question of the form "how do I get ahold of x", where x is any media object that can be represented in digital form, is "BitTorrent".

(BitTorrent is a protocol, not a program—meaning that you can use any number of different BitTorrent clients to download torrents. I recommend µTorrent.)
posted by ixohoxi at 1:59 PM on September 5, 2010 [2 favorites]

Best answer: Are these the droids you're looking for?
posted by griphus at 2:07 PM on September 5, 2010 [3 favorites]

It's on the pirate bay.
posted by beerbajay at 2:22 PM on September 5, 2010

The rifftrax versions are substantially more watchable.
posted by rr at 2:24 PM on September 5, 2010

This is a bit tangential, and you may have already seen this, but redlettermedia is a guy on Youtube who has done a couple of really in-depth, hilarious, and scathing reviews of the Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones.

The Phantom Menace review.

Attack of the Clones review.

I hated the movies too and you might find these reviews illuminating with regards to just why they suck. I found it articulated well many things that bothered me that I couldn't quite put my finger on.

NOTE: the guy has a certain... schtick and on-going serial killer joke that some find annoying. Personally I just ignore those parts.
posted by marble at 2:49 PM on September 5, 2010 [5 favorites]

I'll second marble -- watch those reviews instead, and curse the day the prequels were conceived in the mind of Lucas. Then decide if you still want to watch edited versions. I just try to forget they ever existed.
posted by teedee2000 at 5:10 PM on September 5, 2010 [1 favorite]

For a completely different sort of edit, if it is generally the sort of thing you do, you might consider playing lego star wars. Plodding dialogue is...completely dispensed with.
posted by advil at 5:56 PM on September 5, 2010

FWIW, The Clone Wars animated series on Cartoon Network is a much better take on the events of the prequels and helps ameliorate some of their worst flaws. I don't watch it regualrly, but the episodes I've seen have fleshed out the characters a little better (especially Anakin's) so that when I happen to catch Revenge of The Shit now, I actually feel sad about Anakin's descent into the Dark Side, because you can see glimpses of his potential for good that was hyped in The Phantom Menace that Lucas failed to show in Attack of the Clowns and Revenge of The Shit.
posted by KingEdRa at 5:57 PM on September 5, 2010

Based on your age, you should outlive Lucas by 3 decades or so. If you're patient, you can just wait for someone more competent to make new Star Wars movies without his interference (this is what I'm doing).
posted by deadweightloss at 5:59 PM on September 5, 2010 [6 favorites]

Thirding marble. The Phantom Menace review is perfectly spot-on.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 6:27 PM on September 5, 2010

BITTORRENT. You'll find whatever you need by googling it with "+torrent" in your search. ixohoxi recommended a windows tracker. For Linux or Mac, try Transmission.

I'd also recommend re-watching Return Of The Jedi sometime to get a better feel for Lucas' work. Huge chunks of Jedi are sub-par in comparison to the original Star Wars and Empire Strikes Back. I did watch the three prequels in theaters when they were released, but I knew going in that they'd suck, and they did. Return Of The Jedi was a reminder to keep my expectations low.

The most amazing thing about George Lucas, beside the fact that he managed to make two of the best movies of all time, is that he also managed to get horrendous acting out of truly amazing actors. Look at the list of talent in the prequels. Look at what he got from them. That shit was baaaaaaaaaaad.
posted by 2oh1 at 10:40 PM on September 5, 2010

The answer to every question of the form "how do I get ahold of x", where x is any media object that can be represented in digital form, is "BitTorrent".

Many questions, most questions, but not every one. Depending on what you're looking for, you might be more likely to find it on Youtube, at, via interlibrary loan, on Rapidshare/Megaupload/etc. sites, etc.
posted by box at 6:46 AM on September 6, 2010

Response by poster: I think the thing with the prequels is that there is interesting stuff in them, some good moments, and some great visuals. The "lego pieces" are there, but deployed badly and flabbily.

Currently using a torrent tool to download "Phantom Edit" and "Attack of the Phantom" and hoping for the best. Sounds like III has not been addressed, but it could use some trimming as well.

The suggestion to lower expectations or watch reviews or watch it with rifftrax are not what I was asking, but I appreciate the the thought. I have seen the redlettermedia reviews, funny, good. But criticism is not the same thing as just getting it done and turning lemons into lemonade. I'm crossing my fingers that the Phantom Edit versions are worth it.
posted by artlung at 9:28 AM on September 6, 2010

Basically, when Gary Kurtz left after Empire, the series started to fall apart. See this recent interview in the LA Times.
posted by teedee2000 at 10:55 PM on September 8, 2010

Response by poster: I was able to get a hold of a torrent of The Phantom Edit and Attack of the Phantom and turn them into DVDs. The quality is okay, not incredible. Thanks to all who helped out!
posted by artlung at 7:28 AM on September 12, 2010

Best answer: Sorry I'm late to the party, but you should check out You'll find exactly what you are after there (and more, I suspect).
posted by Sutekh at 8:31 AM on September 22, 2010 [1 favorite]

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