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Rant Of The Day THIS RANT 24/03/97

Rant Of The Day is where I get to mouth off about whatever I feel like for however long I like. Theoretically, I'll update my whinge/opinion piece every weekday; in practice, maybe not so often.

The force may be with you

I'd like to pretend I'm as resistant to marketing hype as the next person, but I'm not. In the early hours of Thursday morning, I dragged myself into a city cinema so that I could be among the first people to see Star Wars: The Special Edition on its Australian release. Other people in this mildly select group (I actually went to the third Sydney screening) including a bunch of people in togas who mooned the audience, and a dickhead sitting in the row behind me who felt compelled to make frequent stupid comments.

Despite my age and general addiction to all things pop cultural, I actually hadn't seen any of the movies in the trilogy up until last year, when I watched the enhanced video re-releases. My verdict at the time? Kinda fun, great 70's bar music, hasn't changed my life but I can see and respect how people might come to be addicted to it.

My view on the Special Edition isn't quite so favourable. Sure, I enjoyed seeing the movie on a bigger screen, and with enhanced sound. But the added effects and footage don't really add much to it. In places, adding them in has made the old effects look hokey, and I don't see how an extra encounter with Jabba has improved the structure. When it comes to special effects, I'll be really impressed when they can fix Mark Hamil's haircut. As for the sound, that had been remixed for the video release anyway. The bottom line: I'm happy to have seen the movie, but without the value-add of being in a room full of obsessed people and observing their behaviour, I'm not sure it was worth the $12 price tag.

[Paranoia note: the image for today's rant is a scanned ticket because apparently Lucasfilm has been cracking down on unofficial sites and graphics. All up, it just ain't worth the risk.]


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